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Old 09-20-2010, 06:57 PM   #91
Joyciemc
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More Day 4: Let's finally start this!

I was thrilled to see that there were no unexpected objects to be found in our new room. We had just enough time to take in the fact that this room was ok when there was a knock on the door. I have to admit my first thought was that someone from the Poly was checking on us to make sure we were ok this time. Nope, it was a maintenance guy coming to replace the phone. At least we knew our phone worked, now.
I took a few pictures before we finally headed out to get something to eat.







This was our view:


Much better! Though there was a random plastic bag on the sofa


Wembly and Figment hunkered down to get in the Island spirit


Now I'll just get this out of the way right now: We didn't love it. Our room, that is. We still love the amenities of the Poly, but the guest room just left us feeling 'eh'. It was dark- even with all the lights on we just couldn't get it to feel bright. The room was decent size, but small compared to the Portofino. It had a flat screen TV, but the cable quality wasn't great and the channel selections minimal (we were not planning on watching much TV, so this wasn't an issue, really)
That is 100% our opinion, and I am sure it was influenced by:
-Coming from the Portofino which is a very different sort of place
-The fiasco with the Samoa room
-All of the anticipation and expectations we put on the Poly
-Knowing how much they charge here rack rate

We probably won't be staying here again, but that has a lot to do with a completely unrelated event that will happen later and not because the Poly was so bad. For those heading there soon: Have fun and don't worry! The room itself was fine, I was just left underwhelmed because of all those things I listed above.

We practically ran back to the Grand Ceremonial house (Tahiti is a good distance away, but not a bad walk at all) to get some food. We were running on fumes and barely capable of being civil to each other. It was after 11AM and we decided that lunch at Captain Cook's would be the quickest way to get some food in us. We ordered Aloha Pork sandwiches with polynesian chips and a dole whip. Yep, we got the exact same thing. We also got bottles of water with our CS meal to save for later- we bought refillable mugs so I could drink my weight in Coke Zero during the week (I love that stuff!)
The ordering process was painless and we got our pager to wait for our food. After a while, Ben went up to check and our food was ready- our pager never went off It's ok- things were about to get a lot better with some food in our mouths.



I had been looking forward to this sandwich and it did not dissapoint! Very yummy. By the time I finished my Dole whip, I was a happy girl again and thrilled to be in WDW and at the Poly (I do still love the place!).
We had not planned to be here already, as we thought we'd stay at the Universal parks today. What to do with this extra time? Well, we just had to pop over to MK, of course!
We walked to the TTC, because our room was on the way there and we wanted to drop our mugs off. We were thrilled when we realized just how close we were to the TTC... so easy to get to both MK and Epcot! Yippee!

I had never been here much before, but we got to know this place very well:

There was a poster advertising the upcoming Secretariat movie. When I read it, I thought the tag line was 'The Important Story'. So then I started wondering what the unimportant story about Secretariat would be... like what kind of grain he ate and what color water bucket he drank out of. It was funny at the time. For those wondering, it actually said "The Impossible True Story" Mine is better, I think.

Our first monorail ride of the trip!


I was surprised to see that MK was already decked out for Halloween.


This is the obligatory 'first view of the Castle shot':


It was great to finally be here! But we quickly noticed that the park was crowded! We were not too concerned because we still planned on coming back for EMH later that night.
We also noticed that it was hot. Very hot. And super humid. We didn't go far, just headed to Tomorrowland to grab some Space Mountain fastpasses.


The only thing we wanted to be sure to do was Philharmagic. This would be Ben's first time seeing it since having Lasik surgery. He was looking forward to a 3-D movie without wearing his glasses!
I was so sad as we headed over there and saw the Fantasyland pile o'dirt. It was very disorienting- all my usual landmarks were gone and we actually had a hard time finding Philharmagic!
When we did find it, we walked right in. We love this attraction and Ben thought it was so much better now that he only had to wear the one pair of glasses! As we walked out of the theater, Ben noticed that the way a light lined up with a sign was pretty funny:


The wait for the Haunted Mansion was 40 minutes, so we walked by and decided to just go ride the People Mover until it was time for our Space FP.
On the way, we asked a Photopass CM to take our picture.


Right after she took our picture, she accidentally bumped a lady with her camera lens. The woman stopped and gave the CM a death stare. She apologized profusely, and asked if she was ok. 'I was', said the woman as she kept rubbing her elbow. She moaned a bit more and the CM finally asked her if she needed to go to First Aid. Suddenly, the lady stopped milking it said she was fine and continued on.

We were still in awe of hoe crowded the park was. There was even a line for the People Mover! It went back to the Astro Orbiter line. The line for Buzz was too long and we needed AC so we headed into the arcade at the exit for Space. I bought a drink and we just cooled off for a little bit. It still wasn't time for our FPs yet, and the stand-by line was an hour long. At least the People Mover was finally down to just a short line (only a little past the ramp) so we took a spin on that.


We very much enjoyed our trip around Tomorrowland and when it was over, we finally rode Space Mountain (space.... space..... space mountain. If you have ridden it lately, you may recognize that from the music they play now. I loved it!)
We knew when we were done with this that we had to head out of there. It was just too crowded and we weren't feeling the MK love that we usually do.
So we got on a very convenient Monorail and headed back to the Poly.
This was our little tiki friend near the path to the TTC

When we got back to the room, we quickly unpacked. I noticed a hidden Mickey in this picture, and Ben found 2 more!


It was about the time of day that we were used to taking a pool break, so that was our next plan of action.
Would the Poly pool be as much of a gem as Portofino's?

Up next: We sure did a lot this day...

Last edited by Joyciemc; 09-20-2010 at 07:52 PM.
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Old 09-20-2010, 07:10 PM   #92
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joyciemc View Post
Now I'll just get this out of the way right now: We didn't love it. Our room, that is. We still love the amenities of the Poly, but the guest room just left us feeling 'eh'. It was dark- even with all the lights on we just couldn't get it to feel bright. The room was decent size, but small compared to the Portofino. It had a flat screen TV, but the cable quality wasn't great and the channel selections minimal (we were not planning on watching much TV, so this wasn't an issue, really)
That is 100% our opinion, and I am sure it was influenced by:
-Coming from the Portofino which is a very different sort of place
-The fiasco with the Samoa room
-All of the anticipation and expectations we put on the Poly
-Knowing how much they charge here rack rate
Isn't that the worst, when you're so excited about a place and have built it up so much and then it just falls below your expectations? Hopefully this not-so-wonderful start to your Disney part of the week is the only low point in an otherwise WONDERFUL trip!
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Old 09-20-2010, 09:59 PM   #93
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I dont even know what to say. Im a little upset at your experience. They Poly has always been such a highlight of my trips and the service was always so on point. Im sorry you had to go through that I cant imagine counting down hours and taking a "ON OUR WAY!" to the Poly pic and then be greeted with that. Thats a mouse buzz-kill.

Other than that the 'dumb' ride sign made me laugh out loud, and as always im having fun on the journey through your TR.

...and girlfriend, let me tell you- you better eat WAY more Dole Whips!

xo
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Old 09-20-2010, 10:25 PM   #94
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Missyrose View Post
Isn't that the worst, when you're so excited about a place and have built it up so much and then it just falls below your expectations? Hopefully this not-so-wonderful start to your Disney part of the week is the only low point in an otherwise WONDERFUL trip!
I've never checked into a dirty room before and definitely didn't expect it to happen at a Disney resort! But mistakes happen and it in no way ruined our trip, we had plenty of fun ahead of us...

Quote:
Originally Posted by JMat View Post
I dont even know what to say. Im a little upset at your experience. They Poly has always been such a highlight of my trips and the service was always so on point. Im sorry you had to go through that I cant imagine counting down hours and taking a "ON OUR WAY!" to the Poly pic and then be greeted with that. Thats a mouse buzz-kill.

Other than that the 'dumb' ride sign made me laugh out loud, and as always im having fun on the journey through your TR.

...and girlfriend, let me tell you- you better eat WAY more Dole Whips!

xo
I almost felt silly for how excited I got before our Poly arrival. I really thought there was no way we'd be disappointed in that place!

Ben's new laser eyes helped him see a lot of new things... including that sign! I just noticed that there is also a lady in that pic that has some 'opera glasses' still on her head!
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Old 09-21-2010, 12:06 AM   #95
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You have me so hooked on your trip report! My husband and I have been married 24 years and are headed to WDW in 4 weeks....without the kids! WooHoo!! So, I started reading some trip reports...never thought I would be so into one.

Can't wait for your next post...and hope I am reading another great trip report when you guys have been married 24 years yourselves! Congrats to the newlyweds!
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Old 09-21-2010, 12:19 AM   #96
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I can see where going from Portofino to the Poly would be hard, Portofino looks stunning. I had somewhat a similar reaction, though in reverse, going from the Yacht Club to the Hard Rock.

But the important thing is you are there and made it to the MK! Crowds look UGH though.
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Old 09-21-2010, 02:13 AM   #97
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Omigoodness I can't believe your room hadn't even been cleaned Its not good when your first experience of staying at the resort you have dreamed about turns a bit sour, but I am glad that the CM was expedient in rectifying the situation and for scoring you a room with a balcony too

DF is going to be room checker when we check in, he's looking up how to spot bed bugs and will be checking that the room has been cleaned, as we have heard the horror stories of some Mousekeeping experiences.

The Aloha Pork sandwich looks delish and a Dole Whip to finish off is always good

Loving all your pics, I must admit I got very excited when I saw your castle shot

Looking forward to more
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Old 09-21-2010, 03:08 AM   #98
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That sucks that the room was not truly ready for you! I am glad they got you into a new room, but sad it wasn't as great as maybe it could be. I love the perks you get for staying on property, but...lets face it..I think the rooms themselves are not as nice as you could get off site...and cost soo much more.

MK was really packed the days we went as well. I guess I was dumb and didn't think that sunday and monday would be bad days to go to MK...especially with EMH...oh well, we still had a good time. I just wish the crowds were a bit less. (as well as the heat)
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Old 09-21-2010, 09:05 AM   #99
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 7mtina View Post
You have me so hooked on your trip report! My husband and I have been married 24 years and are headed to WDW in 4 weeks....without the kids! WooHoo!! So, I started reading some trip reports...never thought I would be so into one.

Can't wait for your next post...and hope I am reading another great trip report when you guys have been married 24 years yourselves! Congrats to the newlyweds!
Awwww, you're making me blush! Thank you so much for your very sweet comment! And thanks for reading!

Adults only trip in 4 weeks? That is something to celebrate! Where will you be staying?

Quote:
Originally Posted by eandesmom View Post
I can see where going from Portofino to the Poly would be hard, Portofino looks stunning. I had somewhat a similar reaction, though in reverse, going from the Yacht Club to the Hard Rock.

But the important thing is you are there and made it to the MK! Crowds look UGH though.
It's true- we didn't realize just how nice the Portofino would be... if we had, we may have changed our trip around a little!

Crowds caught us off guard- we thought Labor Day weekend would be busy, but not quite that bad!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stefy View Post
Omigoodness I can't believe your room hadn't even been cleaned Its not good when your first experience of staying at the resort you have dreamed about turns a bit sour, but I am glad that the CM was expedient in rectifying the situation and for scoring you a room with a balcony too

DF is going to be room checker when we check in, he's looking up how to spot bed bugs and will be checking that the room has been cleaned, as we have heard the horror stories of some Mousekeeping experiences.

The Aloha Pork sandwich looks delish and a Dole Whip to finish off is always good

Loving all your pics, I must admit I got very excited when I saw your castle shot

Looking forward to more
That lunch was amazing- partly because we were both starving and partly because it was so darn tasty!

Quote:
Originally Posted by annmarieda View Post
That sucks that the room was not truly ready for you! I am glad they got you into a new room, but sad it wasn't as great as maybe it could be. I love the perks you get for staying on property, but...lets face it..I think the rooms themselves are not as nice as you could get off site...and cost soo much more.

MK was really packed the days we went as well. I guess I was dumb and didn't think that sunday and monday would be bad days to go to MK...especially with EMH...oh well, we still had a good time. I just wish the crowds were a bit less. (as well as the heat)
The convenience of our location was awesome, and you'll see that we really did enjoy the Poly as a whole!

We had been over Labor Day 3 years ago and it wasn't this crowded, so we were surprised! But it seemed to be just MK that was bad..
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Old 09-21-2010, 11:42 AM   #100
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LOVE the trip report and look forward to each and every update! I sooo sooo agree with your observations of Fantasy Land. It was a bummer for me to see all those walls up. I look forward to seeing what they have done in a couple of years, though, when I plan to take my next trip.

You guys vacation a lot like how we used to, before we had kids. I can see our itinerary and hotel choices being exactly like yours. I miss those days a LOT!

It looks like you are taking full advantage of your time together so good for you!
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Old 09-21-2010, 11:49 AM   #101
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We will be at the AKL with dining plan. I like that it is a bit secluded. And I LOVE to have my coffee on the balcony with the giraffes.

I have made an canceled a few different reservations....I am going back and forth between wanting to eat at certain restaurants, and wanting this to be totally relaxed and pressure free so the thought of feeling like I had to be somewhere at a certain time kind of gets to me...if that makes any sense. A few musts for me: Tonga Toast at Kona, a dinner at Boma...and a breakfast there on the day we depart. Have a resi at Chefs De France for lunch on a Saturday as we are meeting up with aFrench friend who will be in the states and are treating him to a day at Epcot. Have several restaurants I would love to try but don't want to over-schedule since we only really have 5 days.

Hoping we can get a ticket once there to a MNSSHP event. Don't want to book in advance as my first choice of days is our arrival day on a Thursday but dont want to commit for fear we would have a missed connection on flights or weather delay that would mess that up. There is also a Sunday night party so that is do-able too.

Can't wait!
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Old 09-21-2010, 01:31 PM   #102
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Aww, I'm sorry the Poly wasn't all you dreamed it would be. That's actually the way I felt about dinner at Ohana-- I had built it up to be this amazing meal and we actually hated it! (Except for dessert!) Definitely seems like you guys focused on the positives, though!
I legit laughed out loud re:Secretariat. The line about the grain and water did me in. Got a few coworkers to look up from their desks. Whoops.
Ack, crowded MK is no fun! Hope it cleared up!
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Old 09-21-2010, 01:53 PM   #103
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LOVE the trip report and look forward to each and every update! I sooo sooo agree with your observations of Fantasy Land. It was a bummer for me to see all those walls up. I look forward to seeing what they have done in a couple of years, though, when I plan to take my next trip.

You guys vacation a lot like how we used to, before we had kids. I can see our itinerary and hotel choices being exactly like yours. I miss those days a LOT!

It looks like you are taking full advantage of your time together so good for you!
Thank you very much! We love vacations very much... we've got our next 3 or 4 already in the works!

Fantasyland was a bummer. I knew about the work being done but didn't realize that there was a giant dirt mountain completely visible 'hidden' only by a boring wood wall. I guess it will make us all appreciate it that much more when it reopens!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 7mtina View Post
We will be at the AKL with dining plan. I like that it is a bit secluded. And I LOVE to have my coffee on the balcony with the giraffes.

I have made an canceled a few different reservations....I am going back and forth between wanting to eat at certain restaurants, and wanting this to be totally relaxed and pressure free so the thought of feeling like I had to be somewhere at a certain time kind of gets to me...if that makes any sense. A few musts for me: Tonga Toast at Kona, a dinner at Boma...and a breakfast there on the day we depart. Have a resi at Chefs De France for lunch on a Saturday as we are meeting up with aFrench friend who will be in the states and are treating him to a day at Epcot. Have several restaurants I would love to try but don't want to over-schedule since we only really have 5 days.

Hoping we can get a ticket once there to a MNSSHP event. Don't want to book in advance as my first choice of days is our arrival day on a Thursday but dont want to commit for fear we would have a missed connection on flights or weather delay that would mess that up. There is also a Sunday night party so that is do-able too.

Can't wait!
Your trip sounds great! I really enjoy Boma, but Ben hated it so we haven't been back. I can relate to not wanting to over-plan meals, it can make the trip feel too short if you 'have' to be somewhere each day.

Hope you get to a MNSSHP! That's still on my 'some day' list...

Quote:
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Aww, I'm sorry the Poly wasn't all you dreamed it would be. That's actually the way I felt about dinner at Ohana-- I had built it up to be this amazing meal and we actually hated it! (Except for dessert!) Definitely seems like you guys focused on the positives, though!
I legit laughed out loud re:Secretariat. The line about the grain and water did me in. Got a few coworkers to look up from their desks. Whoops.
Ack, crowded MK is no fun! Hope it cleared up!
At least now we can look at other resorts and pick a new 'dream' place to stay!
Hating 'Ohana would be bad, since you don't get to pick the food. Though I guess you could've just told them to take it all away and bring back 5 bowls of banana bread pudding... that wouldn't suck!

Yesssss... I am too excited that I made you laugh! Every time I see a commercial for the movie now, I think of it
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Old 09-21-2010, 03:34 PM   #104
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Day 4: This day will end... eventually.

It wasn't until I got to the third Day 4 post that I realized just how busy this Sunday was! If you're still interested, here's the next chapter in this epic day.

After unpacking, we headed out to the volcano pool to get some relaxing squeezed in to this stressful day. We decided to take the path near the beach, and it was a very pretty walk!


Looking back at Tahiti (I'd have to think that the lagoon side rooms in this building would be my favorite location, if we were to come back here)




When we got to the pool, it became clear that finding a couple of lounge chairs was not as easy as it sounded.



Even though it was pretty cloudy by now, the pool and deck were mobbed. Every single chair has something on it, though many were not in use. We decided to cut our losses and head back to the quiet pool closer to Tahiti. (Sidenote: when I first called it the 'quiet pool', Ben heard 'fire pool'. The name stuck)

While this pool lacked the pizazz of its own volcano, it was a very peaceful place and we had no problem finding a place to relax!



We swam, we sat, we talked about what to do next. Dinner was at 8:30
(not 7:40, as I keep thinking it was and may have said in an earlier post) and it was now about 3. We did the obvious:



Went to Epcot, of course!
This is when I finally took a breath and felt 'Disney'. I knew within a few minutes of entering the park that the week was going to be a good one, despite the rough start.

We headed straight to Spaceship Earth, which had been closed on our last trip. I loved the new version and the video at the end cracked us up!

Next was Mission:Space (Orange side, please!) which is one of Ben's favorites. As usual, this ride made me hungry. I can't explain why a ride that has sick bags in it makes me hungry, but there it is. I figured Ben and I could split something at Sunshine Seasons, so we headed to the Land.
I got a grilled vegetable sandwich and it was really good! We each ate half because I wanted to be nice and hungry for 'Ohana in a few hours.

After this snack, we took a spin on Living with the Land.

After I took this, I got yelled at for taking a picture. I didn't think it would matter since we hadn't left the station yet. Oopsie!

As usual, it was a great ride- I just love the greenhouses. Ben agreed that we should do the Behind the Seeds tour on our actual Epcot day (remember- this is still our 'bonus WDW time')

We then walked through Innoventions, where Ben did the make-your-own-video-game. This was great!



Ben's eyes had been bothering him since Mission:Space and he was afraid it had something to do with his laser vision and the simulator. Because of this, he didn't want to try the Sum of All Thrills when I suggested it. I admit that I got a little upset that he got to do the Innoventions thing he wanted, but I couldn't do mine. But I put on my big girl panties and moved on...

What could help me get out of my slightly funky mood? A casual stroll to World Showcase, with an ulterior motive...

I popped in here, hoping the phone would ring:

But it didn't.
Remember how I didn't want to spoil my appetite for 'Ohana? Well... I was pretty hungry already, and France was right there. Would it be the end of the world if I just...


Scarffed down a napoleon? No, I didn't think so!


For the record- I did share this with Ben. But I may have yelled at him for taking really big bites (seriously, he was shoving mountains in his mouth at once. Not fair.)

Now it was about 8PM and well and truly time to haul butt back to the Poly.
We made it to 'Ohana's check in podium without a moment to spare. And were handed a pager.



And we waited for a bit...





Before we were finally seated. The waitress handed me the bread to carry (is this new? And why?) and took a picture of us.



Dinner was really good, but I think our 'Cousin' was stretched a little thin- service was slow and drink refills were hard to get. I was proud of myself for pacing my food intake and made sure to leave room for delicious banana bread pudding. Yum!!

We left dinner and still had more on the agenda: EMH at MK. Looking back, this was really dumb. We had just been there and saw first hand how crowded it was. But we clambered aboard the monorail and were walking down Main Street just as Wishes was ending at 10PM.


That picture should get an award for being 'The Worst Wishes Photo Ever'

Our earlier trip to Epcot had really helped our spirits and we were happy, crowds and all:


We went right to Frontierland and rode Splash Mountain with little wait. Stand by for BTMMRR was long... too long, so we skipped it. We ended up in Tomorrowland to check out the Buzz wait, and were about to get in the 40 min stand-by when a very nice man handed us two FP good right then. Thanks, sir!
After that, we rode Space Mountain. We used FPs we had picked up when we were there earlier in the day. Otherwise, the wait was pretty nuts.
At about midnight, we admitted defeat and headed out. There was quite a crowd waiting for the monorail, and we didn't get back to the TTC till almost 1AM.
We set the alarm for 7 and lights out...

*Woohoo! I finished the day, that feels like a real accomplishment!*
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Old 09-21-2010, 04:58 PM   #105
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Great update! Thanks so much for finishing the day! That is hilarious that the hostess made you carry the bread! I was just there and they didn't ask us to do that so I have no idea what that was all about!
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