Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Disney Vacation Day 2 - Of Hotels, Sales Pitches and the Grand Floridian

Day 2 began with a quick breakfast and then being on the receiving end of a 2 hour sales presentation.

As part of our Vacation we had received a great discount for the hotel in return for listening to a time share presentation.

In short they had a well-tuned sales pitch but we resisted mightily and didn't buy anything. Indeed, on later investigation, the resale market in time shares lets you get them for much, much less than direct from the marketers.

After the presentation we did a little shopping for souvenirs and trinkets for family and went back to the hotel for a swim at the pool.

We had reserved a "Disney Cinderella Dinner" at Disney's Grand Floridian (you need to book this way ahead of time as it fills up fast). The Grand Floridian is a really, really nice hotel/resort on the Disney property - very nicely decorated and appointed with some very attentive staff.

The dinner was very nice, buffet-style with excellent food for the adults (everything from Prime Rib to paella) and appealing child fare.

And there were the Princesses -

Abby and Leah were thrilled to meet Cinderella, her step-sisters, the wicked step mother and of course, Prince Charming. They got everybody's autograph, had pictures taken with them and got to talk to them which was a lot of fun as everyone stayed in character, even to the point of putting on a show:

The stepsisters acting up:

The stepsisters getting a time out (nose to the wall, or else!):

Basically it was a fun, interactive dinner and if your kids are as Disney princess-crazed as mine are they'll enjoy it.

After the dinner as the wicked step mother suggested go to the Polynesian resort of out in back of the Grand Floridian to the dock to see the fireworks and light show (again, the staff at Disney were constantly nice, helpful and full of great suggestions to make the vacation experience even better.)

We took her advice and after touring the hotel and watching a live band perform we first hopped on the monorail for a tour of the Disney properties and then rode the monorail to a number of resort hotels, Epcot and the Disney transport center and back to the Grand Floridian - it gave a nice view and the kids liked being on the monorail, and best of all they could sit down and didn't have to walk anywhere.

After the monorail we went to the dock at the rear of the Grand Floridian and watched the boats come and go from Disney world and then watched the light show, which was a very long series of towed barges on the water that each held what looked like LED screens that lit up in different shapes (flags, animals etc) accompanied to music. The kids enjoyed it and then as it was getting late and they were getting tired, we went back to our car, drove back to the hotel and happily ended day 2.

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