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WeLoveDisney
08-11-2002, 12:21 PM
Hi All
Laurie528 and I would like to respond to the few of you today who are asking what some favorite WDW activities are. We have had our favorites for years, but if you read our posts you will understand our new ones.

Here are the top 10

10. Towel Animal Kingdom - Occupant: 1 eyeless washcloth

9. It's Tough to be a Concierge Guest - no 3D glasses required

8. Dehydrationland (cant get beverages from concierge)

7. Find the Hidden Attendants - Is that a server's head in the wallpaper?

6. Back Track (when the concierge sends you to your room to make your own calls to Guest Services). No Fast Pass required for this one!

5. I'm LIVING but i cant SEES (since the concierge wont help me find my eyeglasses).

4. Honey, I Shrunk the Stawberries

3. Find your lost wallet treasure hunt

2. It's a Hot World After all (80 degrees in my room and this song in my head)

1. Concierge of Terror (beware when you get in that special concierge elevator do-do-do-do).

queenofhearts
08-11-2002, 12:29 PM
Heee Heee! :)

This made me giggle (I especially liked "the eyeless washcloth")

I was very sorry (and mad) to hear about your negative experience in the RPC. However, I'm glad that you can find some humor in it. :teeth:

Luv2Roam
08-11-2002, 12:43 PM
funny! :jester:
ya gotta put humor in a bad situation. :)

CaliforniaDreaming
08-11-2002, 12:53 PM
While I can't do anything to improve your situation with the Grand Floridian Concierge, there are still those of us who love the resort and don't find humor in it being bashed. :rolleyes: And, yes, I have had bad experiences at the resort, but it is the cast members who have made it up to me. But, again, it just goes between your opinion and mine - neither one can be deemed as the "right" opinion. :)

Peter Pan Fan
08-11-2002, 01:00 PM
Funny List! Glad you can find some humor in your situation. Normally I find that I disagree with those posting that their experience was less than magical, but the exception is concierge service. I truly believe that you *are* paying for the special extras, and you should get them. I read both your post and your sister's post and you were treated very shabbily. Coincidentally I took my Mom to the GF last December as a mother/daughter trip and because she was recovering from breast cancer (no chemo thankfully, but a double mastectomy). We didn' t stay concierge so I wasn't expecting extras, but the overall service left much to be desired. No bell service, we actually helped 2 elderly ladies with their bags when no one from Disney assisted them in getting their belongings down the back stairs and out into the courtyard. No guest services desk - we left to the WL (where I had stayed before) and used their very efficient guest services to help us with some directions to local attractions. Our bill was repeatedly messed up, we were overcharged, told the wrong thing, etc. We still had a great trip and the resort is beautiful but the 'flagship resort' label is misleading. It wasn't so bad that I wouldn't go back, but we've had much better service at WL and especially at the Dolphin. I hope you get some resolution...I don't think asking for the difference in the concierge rate vs the normal rate would be out of line at all. Again, normally I would never agree with something like that but you clearly did not get concierge level service, so why were you charged for it? But the most important thing is to remember the great parts of your trip, namely that your whole family was with you.

Best of luck to you & your sister!

jlima
08-11-2002, 01:08 PM
My family went on the 7-day Magic DCL cruise last summer. We had concierge service in the cat 3 cabins and I though the service was mediocre so your problems with the GF concierge don't surprise me at all.

But the towel animals . . . I think it depends on the skill & experience of the housekeeper. My cabin had towel animals every night - elephants, aligators, etc. (and they had eyes! the steward used the square gold-wrapped chocolates that they left on the pillows for eyes in the towel animals) My sister's cabin had animals on just 2 nights and she expected better than that. Even in the best hotels this position turns over rapidly and I'm sure training new housekeepers how to make towel animals isn't high on Disney's list of priorities.

On the night I had a monkey hanging from a skirt hanger with the leis from Tropical night draped on him, she had the most anemic looking towel-animal version of a rubber chicken, hanging from a hanger. When she saw it she said, what is that supposed to be? And I said, well, we have a monkey in our room, and it's sort of looks like that. But yours looks like a chicken!! We got a good laugh out of that.

My favorite on your list is Back Track . . . can't believe the lazy CMs who won't make a simple phone call for a guest . . .



:bounce:

WeLoveDisney
08-11-2002, 04:17 PM
CaliforniaDreaming
It was just a joke - a way to find something to laugh at despite how upset we are. I'm sure you had great CM's there, we encountered them, too. Just none of them in the concierge or management.

Poly Pal
08-11-2002, 04:51 PM
JMHO, but I think you are letting some of your "services issues" get the better of you. Your son must have had an expectation of towel animals in your room, so he was set up for disappointment. Then for you to complain that the one left for you had no eyes seems rather brattish to me. Not really the GF's failing. In 15 years of trips to Disney Deluxe Resorts, we've not had one single towel animal, ever. No chocolate covered strawberries available...well it is August and strawberries are out of season - again an expectation that was not met, but not really the GF being unreasonable. You got a "blue" key card instead of a "gold" key card...hhmmm, don't know why that would be important.

Now the a/c thing is a real problem, but it sounds like it is not just with RPC. And there is no excuse for rudeness. To suggest you were trying to wrangle a discount is horrible. Shame on them.

I would concentrate on being thankful for having both of your parents be able to join you on a great vacation. Now THAT is a luxury!

I'm glad you had an otherwise good time. We've never thought of Disney properties as being better than a Westin or Marriott. They are not world class resorts. To pay extra for concierge seems a waste to our family. Your story supports that!

Laurie528
08-11-2002, 05:02 PM
Poly Pal,

Let me begin by saying that as far as my son expecting towel animals he sure did. We have stayed in numerous Disney Resorts and travel there at least twice a year. On every vacation we've have ever had there we received these things. Yes I know it sounds silly to complain about. However we were paying a lot of money for this vacation and had to request these things at least four times. We did not expect to have them every night. I'm sorry your family has never received them, perhaps if they did maybe they would be looking forward to them on your next visit. As far as the keys, the blue one actually worked in the parks, I would have preferred to have all blue ones that worked. As far as my husbands care to the keys It doesn't bother him as he is colorblind. Like I have stated in my original post this did not ruin our vacation by far , I am not that petty. However it definately took magic out of it. As far as being brattish, my son would have been happy if I threw a crumpled wash cloth on the bed and told him it was a jellyfish. The point of the towel things is the surprise on his face when he runs back into the room to see what the maid has left him (as he's travelled and stayed in disney resorts at least twenty times since birth).

WeLoveDisney
08-11-2002, 05:08 PM
Poly Pal
If you read our original post, you would see that the towel animals were not that big of a deal to us - we laughed about it. We have always gotten them and our kids love them. We asked especially for them (and left generous tips) and thought it was very lame that we got one twisted washcloth with no eyes. By comparison, when my sister left and went to WL and told them her son was disappointed, they had 16 large and decorated towel animals in the room. Would we have expected that? Certainly not, but it is an example of GREAT service vs someone who is not really going out of their way for you.

The key - obvouisly it didnt matter to me what color my key was. If you are familiar with the concierge levels you would know that only the GOLD keys operate the elevator to your room. My problem was that my key didnt operate the elevator and unless I was with someone else I had to go to the front desk to be let up to my room.

Strawberries? There were strawberries there, and I dont know if they are in season or not, but the issue is not an actual strawberry, it was the rudeness of the staff regarding the issue. We made it very clear to the concierge what we wanted for my mother, offered to pay extra, and were told not to worry about it they would take care of it. They didnt. That is the issue.

Not the level of service of a Marriott? What is your travel experience? I travel about 40 weeks out of the year and stay in everything from a Holdiay Inn to Four Seasons/Ritz Carlton. I have never expected Disney to be at the level of a Four Seasons, but would expect the concierge to offer more services than a standard Marriott room.

If you read the post, you will also see that these were small things on top of each other, and on top of larger issues. I gave details because when other people make general statements about something being great or not, I like to see how those things relate to my preferences.

skiwee1
08-11-2002, 07:37 PM
I have to agree with WeloveDisney on the Marriott issue. I've never stayed at the GF concierge but I would hope that it would be better then the Marriott. LOL! Maybe they are considered world class if all the other hotels are Holiday Inns but not before. We've traveled extensively also and Marriott is not too high on our list of nice hotels. They are okay but I think every WDW resort, including the Allstars, would beat them. WeloveDisney, I'm sorry you had such a rotten stay at the GF. Hopefully they will get their act together.

WeLoveDisney
08-11-2002, 10:48 PM
Thanks Skiwee,
I've never stayed at AS, but most any service I've received at Disney has been better than other mainstream hotels. It's a shame we had these problems.

skiwee1
08-11-2002, 10:54 PM
Welovedisney, I've never stayed at the Allstars either! Just from my past stays at the Marriotts, I feel that any WDW resort is better. I have only stayed at the CBR and the WL. In 60 days I will be at the Poly!! Can't wait!

Poly Pal
08-12-2002, 07:47 PM
WeLoveDisney and Laurie528,

I think you missed my point. It does sound like you received mediocre service. But you say that things like towel animals are not important and then complain about them, even though you've been fortunate enough to have them on your son/nephew's last 19 trips to Disney. I was not saying your son was brattish in his disappointment. (If I read your post correctly, he wasn't the one who complained about "no eyes" on the duck!)

You say that the concierge lounge ran out of strawberries which you mother really had looked forward to. Laurie528, didn't you mention that chocolate covered berries were delivered to each of your 4 rooms?

Again, it is hard to read inflection or tone on a message board. To me it sounds "spoiled" to go on about silly little things. All I was saying was try not to focus on the negative. Rather, relish the fact that your parents are still living and well enough to join you on a special trip with the rest of your family! My gosh, your mother has overcome a life threatening illness! Your mom had her wish of staying at the GF come true and you had beautiful accomodations in one of the best locations on property! Many folks will never have that luxury. Don't let trifles keep you from appreciating and celebrating everything that you have.

As for levels of service, I have not found the Disney properties, other than for their theming, to be superior in any way to a nice Marriott, Westin or Hilton. They are not world class, 5 star resorts like the Phoenician, Greenbrier, Breakers, etc. They do not compare to the personal service we've had at Four Seasons or Ritz Carltons. Disney is targeted to middle class American families (nothing wrong with that of course!) where as the superior properties are aiming for a more discerning customer (nothing wrong with that either!)

The 5 star properties we've stayed at don't charge extra for the services of a true concierge. To me Disney's concierge level is pretty much limited to continental breakfast, snacks, making PS's, and sometimes a preferred location or view. I can do a better job making a PS (heck, you call WDW Dine or you call the concierge who calls WDW Dine. I'm less likely to make a mistake!)

Hope your next Disney vacation is the best one ever! But remember nothing is perfect, even when you're paying alot of money. You'll be alot happier
;)

WeLoveDisney
08-12-2002, 07:56 PM
Hi PolyPal,
Agreed - for the most part anyway :)

The problems absolutely did not ruin our vacation. It was great to all be together - that is what's important. Laurie and I took on the brunt of the issues because we wanted everything to be perfect for my parents. My parents have never been on such an expensive vacation in their lives. They've owned a small grocery store for 30 years and this was the first time they have ever travelled at a Deluxe resort. My mother has been talking for years how she wanted to stay at the GF. Maybe Laurie and I who have a lot more travel experiences than they do tried too hard, but I dont think we expected too much.

I also agree with what you are saying about how Disney deluxe resorts dont compare to the others you mentioned (ie Phoenician, Greenbriar, Breakers, etc.). I would never expect that they would - but for what they charge they ought to consider offering service like that. I pay the premium room price for the exact reasons you said - location, access to snacks, and what I thought until now, service. I'll most likely continue to do this, just at another deluxe resort.

CaliforniaDreaming
08-12-2002, 08:02 PM
The problem is that the premium charged on rooms is set by Disney to be right on Disney property. You could stay a comparable resort minus the location for less than half what Disney is charging. It's all based on supply and demand. Now, if Disney started doing things the old "Disney way" - there would be a lot more value for your dollar. The GF is rated the #49 hotel in the US & Canada by Travel & Leisure Magazine. Something must be seen in that place is excellent - it rates higher than the Plaza in New York and the Greenbriar in WV (just to name a couple).

crazyforgoofy
08-12-2002, 08:21 PM
My last stay at The Plaza Hotel near Central Park in Manhattan was awful! Lousy service, dirty room, poor response from the management team. I've had much better assistance and cleaner rooms at the value resorts at Disney and I mean MUCH BETTER. I'd certainly hope the GF would rate higher in general, perhaps not this particular concierge floor in this particular building.

WeLoveDisney
08-12-2002, 08:22 PM
Cali,
Now you sound like me :)

I often defend the prices in the restaurants to others, asking if your favorite restaurant at home is located in the most magical place on earth, has a themed uniforms and interiors to maintain, etc. All that costs more.

I agree with you on the location thing, and I know the Conde Nast ratings. But, I've stayed at a lot of those other places and the service that I got and the rooms at GF just didnt compare (now dont jump all over me, the rooms were fine, just not the same "luxury" as the others). Hey, we all have our own opinions, that's why Baskin Robbins makes 31 flavors

indigo
08-12-2002, 08:54 PM
I think it's quite ironic that 'towel animals' (and the strawberries)are highlighted in the Grand Floridian Great Hotels episode on the Travel Channel. Seems to me that guests have a reasonable expectation now.

-Indigo

CaliforniaDreaming
08-12-2002, 08:59 PM
Originally posted by indigo
I think it's quite ironic that 'towel animals' (and the strawberries)are highlighted in the Grand Floridian Great Hotels episode on the Travel Channel. Seems to me that guests have a reasonable expectation now.

-Indigo

You would pay a nice chunk of change for that plate of strawberries that was shown on the Travel Channel! That is no where near complimentary!

matterhorngirl
08-25-2002, 08:58 PM
1. Towel Animal Kingdom
2. It's Tough to Be a Concierge Guest
3. Dehydrationland
4. Find the Hidden Attendants
5. Back Track
6. I'm Living But I Can't See
7. Honey, I Shrunk the Strawberries
8. Find Your Lost Wallet Treasure Hunt
9. It's a Hot World After All
10. Concierge of Terror

Jeanny
08-25-2002, 09:09 PM
Now THAT'S funny!! Those "activities" are SO great! I bet a lot of guests have been on those rides!!