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Old 10-05-2009, 07:57 PM   #1
Earning My Ears
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Just Back Report - 9/26-10/3 - Somewhat Magical Trip

Just got back and thought I'd give my $.02 for those doing research (I know the board helped me tremendously!! )
This was the 8th time at the World, and I gotta say it just wasn't as magical as I remembered it.

Resort: Coronado Springs - We will NOT be staying here again. The place is SO spread out that it is exhausting getting anywhere especially the main lobby/restaurants. When booking, I was told that Golf carts were avail to take you do other parts of the resort, but we NEVER saw anybody riding in the MANY stretch carts we saw and when we stopped one several times for a ride, the answer was "NO" followed by an abrupt power take off... Just a bunch of empty carts running around all week....
The bus transportation was lacking as well. The bus stop was fairly close to the room, but we waited between 20-30 minutes for EVERY bus. Sometimes we would see 2 buses go by to other parks before the one going the park we wanted showed up! Very frustrating and time consuming.
The rooms were just ok - The doors were made of balsa wood so you could plainly hear the family of 5 leaving at 6am for rope drop AND the family of 6 getting back in a 1am from a MNSSHP The rooms did have ceiling fans in them which was cool No animal-towel creations, no bounce-back offer, no frills of any kind....
Also, the Marina was NEVER open. We saw lots of other resort maria's (boat rentals) open, but not CSR.... The pool was really nice, however!! Nice size and nice slide
The Pepper market was just ok food-wise, but as mentioned in other posts, the service was sub-par. There was also NEVER any clean tables at the Rix cafe or outside on the deck - I wasn't expecting to have to clean tables on my vacation
As mentioned here as well, this is a convention resort and seemed to have a hussle and bustle feel with rudeness everywhere - not at all what I was looking for in a vacation resort.

Magical Express: This was a Great service and worked well. The only issue was in returning - they did not communicate well as to what they were doing or what you needed to do. They will check you in on your airline and print boarding passes (which is cool) and will take your check-in luggage from the resort directly to the plane (which is also cool). The morning we departed the airline check-in area was jam packed, and after waiting in line for 30mins, a cast member came by and said their "system was down" and that we would have to take our bags on the bus and check them in at the airport (which I thought we were doing anyhow). But then when I asked another cast member if we could leave out bags somewhere while we hit the pool, he looked at our bags and said you have tags and are good to go, and took them over to a white truck. I ask him if the "system" had come back up, and he said no but you are good to go.... I was completely confused but our bags showed up on the carousel when we got home, so that's cool.

Dinning Plan: This was very mixed for me - I know we saved a lot of $$ but unfortunately at the expense of a relaxing vacation. Because of all the reservations and feeling the need to use them all to make it worth while, we were in rush mode all week and it just really took away from the magic for us. Because of the transportation times, I was looking at my watch ALL week (and I didn't even want to wear a watch!!), and we always had that "hurry up or we're gonna miss our dinner res." feeling. All of the Table service joints were packed all week, and if you didn't have res. (thankfully I made them 90-days out) you simply weren't eating. I overheard one couple saying they had ordered room service 4 times because they couldn't get in anywhere. Most seatings were 5-20mins past our res. time, but Tues at Hollywood and Vine it was over an hr!!! - which completely blew our plans for the evening to see Fantasmic.... We would've like to squeeze it in another night, but because of the travel times/waits, it would be a 3hr ordeal which just didn't fit into anything.

Crowds: This was absolutely the strangest crowd week I've ever experienced. It seemed to be REALLY crowded - buses were standing room only, monorails were packed, boats were packed, had to fight strollers all week, bumping into people, etc.... BUT there were NO lines for anything all week!!! The most we waited was 30mins for Peter pan. Everything else was 10mins - walk on including toy story mania, pirates, buzz lightyear, Soarin, test track, etc.... very strange - but it did allow us to ride almost everything multiple times! That was magical.

Cast Members: We didn't notice any cleanliness issues - The only issue I noticed was that rides that typically had an army of CMs running it (smoothly) now only had 1 or 2 running it. So getting on/loading/pre-show timing was really off.

MNSSHP: This was an absolute BLAST!!! A must do!! The crowd was low, EVERYTHING was a walk on, CMs seemed to be even happier and willing to play. Hallowishes was the best thing I've ever seen!!! Completely different from Wishes!! Upbeat and very cool. We got a center stage spot in front of the castle and is was like fireworks in the round!!

All in all it was a pretty good trip - but just the timing, crowds, transportation, and resort were a downer...
(next time it'll be a monorail resort where "popping over" to the magic kingdom is actually popping over!)
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Old 10-05-2009, 08:12 PM   #2
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[QUOTEResort: Coronado Springs - We will NOT be staying here again. The place is SO spread out that it is exhausting getting anywhere especially the main lobby/restaurants.

I agree ... it's beautiful, but waaaay too spread out.

The bus transportation was lacking as well. The bus stop was fairly close to the room, but we waited between 20-30 minutes for EVERY bus. Sometimes we would see 2 buses go by to other parks before the one going the park we wanted showed up! Very frustrating and time consuming.

Same thing happened to us. We spent so much time waiting for a bus; made for a lot of frustration!

Also, the Marina was NEVER open. We saw lots of other resort maria's (boat rentals) open, but not CSR....[/QUOTE]

We stayed there for a week in very warm weather and the Marina was never open then either. I think it's just there for looks.
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Old 10-05-2009, 08:15 PM   #3
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Thanks for the report.
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Old 10-05-2009, 08:21 PM   #4
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I have to agree on the service at CS, the Pepper Market service was not like at some of the other resorts. My daughter bought a refillable mug at one of the other resorts so she could have hot chocolate every morning. Pepper Market was the only resort that wouldn't fill it with hot chocolate. That sucked because that is the resort we were staying at. Also a lot of items that were snacks at other resorts and parks were not snacks there. Also our door to our room was left ajar after the maid left. The lady at the front desk told us we were lucky because sometimes the maids leave the door ajar and come back after their shifts to rob the room, that made me feel safe. We did bring this to the managers attention, his response was "what do you want?". I wouldn't expect this at Disney, but it happened. It was very unmagical stay. By the way we also spent a week at POR, and everything there was very magical. Too bad our CS stay was at the end.
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Old 10-05-2009, 08:26 PM   #5
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Sad to hear a lot of you not fond of CSR, i stayed for the first time in jan there and me, DBF and our friend LOVED IT. We got a decent room, never waited more than 5 min for a bus, the service was friendly, nice and quiet, BEAUTIFUL grounds. Biggest complaint? we did NOT like the food in pepper market. THe breakfast was great, anything else was AWFUL.

You've got me psyched for MNSSHP! and yeah, ive heard the same crowd report... crowded and yet...lines aren't bad. weird!
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Old 10-05-2009, 08:36 PM   #6
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I have heard the same thing repeatedly the past month.
It Feels busy everywhere else except ride lines, which are manageable.
It has to be free dining. Everyone is sitting down to eat instead of standing in line to ride. (?) It makes sense. If people ordinarily eat on the run, they will have more time for rides.
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Old 10-05-2009, 08:44 PM   #7
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Count me as another who won't stay there again.

I think the marina at CSR is a joke, the lake is way too small to do any boating in anyway. It would be nice to have surrey bike rentals though.

The Pepper Market is awful, and Cafe Rix is no good either. NONE of the bakery items were snacks at CSR in June, and we just stayed a night at CBR this past weekend and they all were.

I also found the staff to be subpar, especially in the food services.

To me the only plusses at that resort are the queen beds and the pool.
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Old 10-05-2009, 08:48 PM   #8
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I'me typing this from my room at CSR now. We checked in Thurs. night around midnight and we're staying until Thursday.

Compared to CBR and POR I would say that CSR seems smaller to me. Also, we haven't had the issue with buses as some others say, although Friday morning there were a couple of disgruntled people waiting for a MK bus and they must've been waiting for a while. However, it came a few minutes after we got there.

We've been taking our meals from the Pepper Market outside to eat and have never had any trouble finding a clean table. And there IS a bounceback offer on the desk in the room. It is for free dining from 8/15-9/30.

The CM at checkin told me we could ask at bell services for a golf cart ride to our room, but we decided to walk. He also said bus stop 1 was first to be picked up which I knew was wrong after reading these boards.

We also have free dining and at CP they called us right at our time, at Sanaa we checked in around 20 minutes early and they took us right away and at Chefs de France we checked in an hour early and took us right back. However tomorrow we have CM at 8:30 and 'Ohana for dinner, so we'll see if our luck holds!

Crowds have been fine. Yesterday it seemed real crowded at Epcot and we waited longest to get on Maelstrom than we ever had. Today at Typhoon Lagoon there were LOTS of empty chairs, no waiting and just a nice day. We have never been there before so we don't have anything to compare though.

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Old 10-05-2009, 09:16 PM   #9
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at CSR about 2 yrs agol.. we loved it. room great...in fact much better than POR...had no trouble with bus and we loved the pool..

Pepper market was not great but I had no expectations so no disappointed.

had some great margaritas at the bar.

I guess it just depends on the week, your location of the room and the staff.
Guess you can have a bad time at any resort

sorry yours wasn't picture perfect.

hope weather was good
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Old 10-05-2009, 09:17 PM   #10
Earning My Ears
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I agree that the Free Dining is screwing with the typical crowd M.O.!!

Lot's of people! Table Service is insane!! Transportation is jammed!! But No attraction waits....

Pugrpooh, sounds like your having some good magic at CSR (hope it keeps for you).

We just didn't care for either schlepping all the way over to pepper market and then having to wait for 2 busses cause the first one was full (Stop #1 is the last stop) or waiting 30mins plus 20-30min travel time to a park just to eat some food for energy for the day - seemed to waste too much of the day.
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Old 10-05-2009, 09:51 PM   #11
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Take a taxi.

The way I see it....I'm 1500 miles from home...at Disney. why not pay $10-$20 to save some wait time.
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Old 10-05-2009, 09:55 PM   #12
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When we stayed there I noticed the golf cart thing also. Lots driving around, but never an offer/opportunity to get on one!
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Old 10-05-2009, 10:29 PM   #13
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this report very much reflects my trip as well .. however i didnt stay at the same resort you did. i stayed at ALL STAR MUSIC and from what the CM's tell me, the resort was booked 100%.
MNSSHP is a total blast and always a highlight of my fall trips.
there were VERY LONG lines for all the popular attractions as well as buses/monorails.
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Old 10-05-2009, 10:45 PM   #14
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We stayed at CSR our last trip and had many of the same issues you had. We won't be staying there again. It's beautiful but not my kind of place.

The crowd thing is weird to me. Obviously people are there as the transportation and restaurants are so crwoed but how the heck are the rides not reflecting that? Do people just walk around and eat all day?

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Old 10-05-2009, 10:45 PM   #15
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From what I understand the golf cart is now only taking guests and luggage to their rooms. It is no longer being used as an internal means of transporting guests.

We love the size of CSR. The walk is stunning! After a meal at either the PM or MG, a good walk is just what we need.

I understand though that some don't like to walk. Next time you plan a trip to WDW, click on the resorts link at the top of the page. It will take you a page with all of the resorts. There are maps for each one that wil give you a better idea of the size of each one. WL and POFQ as well as the Swan and Dolphin are great for those who don't like to walk around large resorts.

Last edited by rie'smom; 10-05-2009 at 10:47 PM. Reason: sp
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