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Old 02-06-2009, 07:40 AM   #16
k&a&c'smom
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I've had the 50-minute Swedish massage at AKL and the GF, 80-minute Swedish at SSR. They were all good, but I don't remember the names of the therapists, sorry. I liked the GF and SSR visits a little better, but I think that is only because I chose an aromatherapy oil at AKL, and I had oil in my hair for several days after, lol.

I'm surprised to hear you were pressured to purchase anything, KatMark, that's a shame. I had a great experience at the GF spa, the CMs were extremely friendly and no pressure at all.
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Old 02-06-2009, 08:43 AM   #17
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I've had the 50-minute Swedish massage at AKL and the GF, 80-minute Swedish at SSR. They were all good, but I don't remember the names of the therapists, sorry. I liked the GF and SSR visits a little better, but I think that is only because I chose an aromatherapy oil at AKL, and I had oil in my hair for several days after, lol.

I'm surprised to hear you were pressured to purchase anything, KatMark, that's a shame. I had a great experience at the GF spa, the CMs were extremely friendly and no pressure at all.
It was almost five years ago. Maybe enough people said something and they stopped (I had other people tell me they had felt the pressure from there as well).
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Old 02-09-2009, 08:15 PM   #18
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Old 02-09-2009, 08:18 PM   #19
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Bump!

I've been looking for this thread. Dh told me I can book a treatment for my birthday, whoo hoo! (which is right before we leave..darn it, no free admission or gift cards but oh well).

I was looking at Wilderness Lodge and wondering if anyone has gotten the firm pressure massage there as it sounds like several people have been somewhat dissapointed in the firmness of their massages. Definitely a much more limited menu of services than the spa locations though. I can relate to the firmness problems, it is generally my experience at a spa location as well (with a significant magical exception in Napa but I digress).

WL is much more convenient for me to get to as I'm at the Fort in a cabin and as the Fort's pool is under reno we get to use the WL anyway so we plan to be there one day (assuming the sun cooperates) but I do see that SSR has a hot stone massage...I've had one of those once and really liked it. Has anyone done it at SSR? Wondering if it would be worth the trek not to mention the significant extra $$. At twice as much $$ for only an extra 30 minutes....it would be great to have some feedback!

Getting a pedicure with DSD earlier in the week at the GF so would like to hit more than one spa or massage center while there and I will post my reviews when we get back. A little bit annoyed with the GF age structure. A child's pedi goes until age 11. At 12 they have to pay the adult pedi rate. But they can't use the fitness center until they are 14! Seems like those ages should match. DSD is bummed about the fitness center, she's 12.

So hopefully it's worth it, that's a lot of $$ for a 12 year old! But I think doing it at the GF (she got to pick which location) will be a pretty special "girl" experience. We plan to go early, have breakfast and then hit the steam room etc.

9 days until we leave!
Thanks for resurrecting this thread.
From what I remember, I think Rachel R. travels to WL. If you like firm pressure, she definitely can give you that. Just be very clear about what you want. As a LMT myself, I always appreciate it when a client is honest and clear with what they want. Rachel R. can also go to SSR. But, as of last August, she did not do hot stone massage. She might be trained in it now, I do not know. SSR & GF are the locations for hot stone. We'll be reserving our AKL massages with Rachel R. pretty soon.

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Old 02-19-2009, 04:42 PM   #20
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GF/WL Spa Report and the Main Street Barber Reporting back!

Reporting back!

Grand Floridian Spa Pedicure
DSD 12 and I had a spa pedicure at the Grand Floridian on Valentine’s Day. Interestingly enough I’d assumed we could just go to the ivy trellis salon and perhaps if I’d have asked we could have but the spa pedicure sounded fine so I went ahead and booked at the spa. The spa is an entirely separate facility, near the wedding pavilion and almost closer to the Poly than it is to the GF. It was a lovely pedicure, we had 3 different treatments beyond the normal nail /foot care and polishing. First, a sugar scrub. Second a honey avocado mask on the legs which they then wrapped with warm towels. It was nice and smelled great although I have to admit, the first time my legs have had a mask on their own. This was finished with a mint and something lotion that smelled heavenly, on both the feet and legs with a nice massage. All in all it was a lovely experience. DSD was a bit disappointed in the colors, it was a very sedate salon and she really wanted something brighter and trendier. I had a French and they did a great job. DSD’s however chipped right away although that was likely from being in the pool so much. My toes still look good lol.

It was lovely but a regular pedicure would have probably made more sense, I’m not sure it was worth the very high price point.

Wilderness Lodge Massage
I headed off to WL early for a belated bday present. Upon arrival I found out they’d had me down for an hour earlier than I had written down. Thankfully they were able to get me in a mere half hour later and it was not a problem at all. I was able to get a little workout in while I waited which was really nice. Rachel was my masseuse (and I’m not sure if it was Rachel R or not, oops!) and I did tell her that I preferred firm. She asked if I wanted deep tissue and I said I’d LOVE that, she mentioned it would be an up charge which I said was fine. I had a 50 minute massage and it was just heavenly. Definitely plenty of pressure, on the verge of too much which is actually perfect as it does the job so much better for me once we are done! I thought she was fabulous and at check-out there was no up-charge and the rates seemed about $18 lower than what I thought I’d seen online so that was a nice treat! I would absolutely go back and it was a nice little gym as well.

Main Street Barber
Thanks to reading this board I learned that there was a barber on Main Street. The younger boys were in deparate need of haircuts and loved the idea of getting it done in the MK. It is a first come first serve location and when we arrived, also on Valentine’s Day, there were about 6 people in front of us. It was a ton of fun to watch the cuts, they do a men’s and a boys cut, I did not see any girls get cuts (except for an infant girl). I did however see girls, women, boys and men, all get pixie dust! Girls were also able to get their hair done up in a pony before the pixie dust treatment at a fraction of the cost of BBBB. One family walked in and didn't have time to wait, the CM called the kids over, spritzed them with hairspray and sprinkled free pixie dust right on them while he was in the middle of cutting a dad's hair. One of the neatest things they do there is a baby’s first haircut. If you take your baby there for their first haircut they get a set of ears embroidered with “my first haircut”, pink for girls and black for boys and then a certificate of bravery. So cute!

We waited maybe ½ an hour/45 minutes and would likely have been stranded somewhere anyways for that amount of time due to the twirlers. The crowds were SO bad at MK that day that I didn’t mind just waiting there for the cuts. Both boys had wonderful cuts. DS8 has really tricky hair and they spent a ton of time getting it right. One of his best haircuts ever. DS went for pixie dust after getting a buzz cut that he really wanted. Probably the best $28 (for BOTH) I spent all trip! I tipped well

DS9 got comments all day and evening about his hair, he was in heaven.

I will post some main street barber pictures once I get them uploaded.
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Old 02-21-2009, 01:15 PM   #22
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Love this thread!! Hoping for more reviews please!!
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Old 02-21-2009, 01:45 PM   #23
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AKL facial

My DSis and I had facials at the AKL spa not too long ago. We had staff member, Tracey, from the SSR come over, and boy was I glad! I've had several facials and this was my favorite! The tech had a soft-spoken manner, which fit right in with the mood of the darkened room. Her touch was so relaxing, and I loved the product. She didn't press us to purchase...quite the contrary; but gave us a form filled in with the products that she used on us. I checked the prices online and the cost of the product (amala) is outrageous, compared to what I spend on cosmetics. I wish they were not; I'd love to use them!
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Old 02-22-2009, 10:53 AM   #24
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Reporting back! Grand Floridian Spa Pedicure
This is great. I've been waiting with baited breath for your spa report. I'm so glad that you and DSD had a good pedi experience. I'll have to tell DW. I've never had a pedi before. I think I need to try it someday.

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Wilderness Lodge Massage
From the sound of it, you described Rachel R. It makes me very happy to know you got exactly what you wanted.

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Originally Posted by eandesmom View Post
Main Street Barber
Yeah...the MSB is one of WDW's best kept secrets...until now. But seriously, we didn't know about it until my DW's cousin told us before we went last year. It worked out perfectly for our one year old DS. He received his first hair cut certificate, a lock of his hair, & the ears. SO COOL. His barber - Penny, was awesome with babies. She was a natural. Now the barber our 4 year old DS had, was neither here nor there, not very warm & fuzzy. But she gave him a nice hair cut. He got the pixie dust too. I guess we forgot to take a picture of the pixie dust. But I got it all on video though. The MSB was so crowded and busy that day, that we're glad the kids didn't have a meltdown. But yeah...we highly recommend it too. We'll forever treasure that moment.






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Originally Posted by grannyminnie View Post
My DSis and I had facials at the AKL spa not too long ago. We had staff member, Tracey, from the SSR come over, and boy was I glad! I've had several facials and this was my favorite! The tech had a soft-spoken manner, which fit right in with the mood of the darkened room. Her touch was so relaxing, and I loved the product. She didn't press us to purchase...quite the contrary; but gave us a form filled in with the products that she used on us. I checked the prices online and the cost of the product (amala) is outrageous, compared to what I spend on cosmetics. I wish they were not; I'd love to use them!
I was wondering how the esthetics were at AKL. DW will like this report too.

Thanks so much for sharing. GREAT TRIP REPORTS!!!

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Old 02-22-2009, 11:59 AM   #25
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This is great. I've been waiting with baited breath for your spa report. I'm so glad that you and DSD had a good pedi experience. I'll have to tell DW. I've never had a pedi before. I think I need to try it someday.
A good pedi is a beautiful thing! I have to admit, the woman next to me was getting a mani and a pedi done at the same time and that looked awfully nice. I do plan to check on the ivy trellis though. A normal full pedi should run about $35. I found the massage prices to be what I'd expected but this was a bit high but of course we got "more" than you would at a standard pedi. I would not have minded if she'd been a little more aggressive on my calluses. But for "big girl" treat this was a pedi unlike anything DSD had ever had or seen and that was pretty special. It is just beautiful there. And btw...no product pushing at all. Not even mentioned actually!

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From the sound of it, you described Rachel R. It makes me very happy to know you got exactly what you wanted.
Yep! Exactly what I wanted and honestly, having that little bit of weight lifting time before actually worked out well to warm up my muscles. I was thrilled and this felt like a good value! She was PERFECT! I think I need 80 minutes next time.

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Yeah...the MSB is one of WDW's best kept secrets...until now. But seriously, we didn't know about it until my DW's cousin told us before we went last year. It worked out perfectly for our one year old DS. He received his first hair cut certificate, a lock of his hair, & the ears. SO COOL. His barber - Penny, was awesome with babies. She was a natural. Now the barber our 4 year old DS had, was neither here nor there, not very warm & fuzzy. But she gave him a nice hair cut. He got the pixie dust too. I guess we forgot to take a picture of the pixie dust. But I got it all on video though. The MSB was so crowded and busy that day, that we're glad the kids didn't have a meltdown. But yeah...we highly recommend it too. We'll forever treasure that moment.


How cute! I only knew about it through this board, I'd looked at the "cool dude" thing at BBB for DS9 (DS8 hates having "stuff" in his hair) and when I found out about MSB I was so thrilled. They needed a haircut in the worst way and we saw 3 different barbers while we were there. All were magical with the kids, truly special people who just seemed to love what they do. I guarantee you, DS9 will be getting a haircut there until he's 70 whenever we/he goes, that's how much he loved it.

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I was wondering how the esthetics were at AKL. DW will like this report too.
Mnn! That makes me want a facial on the next trip! Or that hot stone massage lol. All depends on where we stay!

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Thanks so much for sharing. GREAT TRIP REPORTS!!!
And now to figure out how to get a next trip, sooner than later!
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Old 02-22-2009, 12:52 PM   #26
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Planecrazy4dis, I was not impressed with the AKL spa itself (had too many other nicer ones in my spa repertoire). The exercise room being the first thing you see when you enter, it's not something that puts me in a relaxed frame of mind.. There was really no room to lounge in while waiting for your service, but I do understand that it is a very small spa. I hope to try the GF spa on my next trip.
If by esthetics you simply meant the actual service room feel, then it was just fine...
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Old 02-22-2009, 01:18 PM   #27
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fyi that is exactly how WL is but..

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Planecrazy4dis, I was not impressed with the AKL spa itself (had too many other nicer ones in my spa repertoire). The exercise room being the first thing you see when you enter, it's not something that puts me in a relaxed frame of mind.. There was really no room to lounge in while waiting for your service, but I do understand that it is a very small spa. I hope to try the GF spa on my next trip.
If by esthetics you simply meant the actual service room feel, then it was just fine...
Some are "spas" and others are simply massage and fitness centers. I'm not sure where AKL falls but WL is definitely in the later, GF in the former so very very different feel.
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Old 02-22-2009, 02:39 PM   #28
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After being an employee for both the Four Seasons & currently at the Ritz for many years, I too expect certain standards at a spa. (that can be good & bad) With that being said, eandesmom is unfortunately right, most of the Disney resorts are basically fitness centers with a few treatment rooms for massage & facials. And Zahanati Massage & Fitness Center at AKL is one of those little limited spaces. GF is probably the spa with the most atmosphere, because it is free standing and they have the room and the staff to cater to your needs. I don't know from experience, but I heard SSR has a pretty good size spa. Does anyone know how the atmosphere is? I haven't tried Mandara Spa at the Swan & Dolphin yet either. From what I have read about the Mandara company, they are known for their Zen like theme. Has anyone tried Mandara? Oh...BTW...Four Seasons is coming to WDW property (I think 2012). You can bank on it that their spa will rock.
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Old 02-22-2009, 02:49 PM   #29
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exactly

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After being an employee for both the Four Seasons & currently at the Ritz for many years, I too expect certain standards at a spa. (that can be good & bad) With that being said, eandesmom is unfortunately right, most of the Disney resorts are basically fitness centers with a few treatment rooms for massage & facials. And Zahanati Massage & Fitness Center at AKL is one of those little limited spaces. GF is probably the spa with the most atmosphere, because it is free standing and they have the room and the staff to cater to your needs. I don't know from experience, but I heard SSR has a pretty good size spa. Does anyone know how the atmosphere is? I haven't tried Mandara Spa at the Swan & Dolphin yet either. From what I have read about the Mandara company, they are known for their Zen like theme. Has anyone tried Mandara? Oh...BTW...Four Seasons is coming to WDW property (I think 2012). You can bank on it that their spa will rock.
Technically only 2 of the resort locations are considered spas. The GF and SSR. Their menu of offerings do differ. All of the rest, and there are 6 sites, are massage and fitness centers. I guess for me, it is exactly what I expected given that title. I used to get a regular massage at my gym and it was basically the same with a slightly nicer room. It had music and candles and sure it was basic (although I"m pretty sure that she had a steamer going during the deep tissue, it sounded like it) but it definitely met my needs. I think it's all about what type of experience you are looking for. I looked into Mandara and it seemed pricier than the GF but it was somewhat irrelevant as it was so much easier to get to the GF than the other locations that I didn't consider anything else.

If we stay in the Epcot area next time I will try the SSR location for sure!
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Old 02-22-2009, 02:58 PM   #30
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Some are "spas" and others are simply massage and fitness centers. I'm not sure where AKL falls but WL is definitely in the later, GF in the former so very very different feel.
Oh, I'd say it falls in the massage and fitness center catagory..
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