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Old 07-18-2012, 07:25 PM   #586
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On a different topic - has anyone ever stayed at the GF during the Wine & Dine Half Marathon? GF is not a host hotel, so we booked at the Boardwalk for convenience. But this trip is just me and DH (no kids) and I generally prefer the MK resorts to the Epcot ones (the epcot ones just aren't as disney to me because of nostalgia). DH said he would be happy to drive to Epcot for the race (ends there) and drive back to the GF after.

Anyone have experience with staying at a non-host resort during a Race weekend?
We haven't stayed during the Wine & Dine Half Marathon, but have been there for other races, as well as Marathon weekend in January. The one thing to consider is many of the roads are closed for the runs, you may be diverted around and find driving more trouble than it's worth. Just a thought.

K&a&c'smom, ah, Christian on the piano. He is wonderful, I agree, he is our favorite also. He has come to know us a bit over the years. I can sit in the lobby and listen to him play for hours! Last spring my DD and I were walking back from the Polynesian and someone said hello right outside the main building. It was Christian leaving work, going to his car. We chatted for a bit, it was odd to see him in jeans and not a tuxedo!

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Old 07-18-2012, 08:54 PM   #587
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is christian the only harpist at V & A? or are there others? just curious!
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Old 07-18-2012, 09:39 PM   #588
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V&A.....ah, heaven. We've not dined there in some time. We need to rectify that! Have fun.
You do, indeed!


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K&a&c'smom, ah, Christian on the piano. He is wonderful, I agree, he is our favorite also. He has come to know us a bit over the years. I can sit in the lobby and listen to him play for hours! Last spring my DD and I were walking back from the Polynesian and someone said hello right outside the main building. It was Christian leaving work, going to his car. We chatted for a bit, it was odd to see him in jeans and not a tuxedo!


I'll bet that did look odd, so used to seeing him in a tux. We are the same, we sit and listen to him for hours. Thanks for the photo!

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is christian the only harpist at V & A? or are there others? just curious!
No, there is at least one young woman who plays, maybe more than one. We usually have a woman harpist, I'm sorry I don't know her name. Not much chance to chat in V&A's. I think Chris told us he plays harp on Tuesdays, possibly one other day of the week. DD may remember.
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Old 07-19-2012, 06:58 AM   #589
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We haven't stayed during the Wine & Dine Half Marathon, but have been there for other races, as well as Marathon weekend in January. The one thing to consider is many of the roads are closed for the runs, you may be diverted around and find driving more trouble than it's worth. Just a thought.
Very true...

Last year because of the race we had a very informal back stage tour of Animal Kingdom. Our bus ride back to the hotel took us through the back lots of many closed off areas. It was very cool. The entire bus gasped at some of the kool things we were seeing behind the scenes at AK.
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Old 07-19-2012, 07:06 AM   #590
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No kidding, k&a&c'smom....about V&A that is.

Pixarmom, I ws nosing around Steve's site last night and found another photo of the Polynesian baby pool Go to amenities > pools and scroll down to 2001 where he discusses construction of the new pool. The photo to the left is a picture that really brings back memories for me and includes the baby pool. I was talking with my eldest who also thinks the baby pool was still there until construction of the new volcano, zero entry pool in 2001. As he said, there would be no reason for them to take it out before then.

BTW, I completely agree that not all parents have a false sense of security around baby pools. I'm sure you don't nor did I. I always sat on the edge of the pool with mine. Loved those pools but my favorite thing to do when we took our kids in our arms into the deeper water. Oh, I miss those days. Anyway, if I had a one or two year old, I'd be sorry to see the baby pool gone, too. Maybe it won't happen.
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Old 07-19-2012, 07:11 AM   #591
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PAS--- so happy for your wonderful news with your precious DD!! I know you are so relieved.
Can't wait to hear about your trip to WL-- I hope you love it! I haven't see the pics of the renos yet either- I need to do that.

My DH was just talking this weekend about upgrading to RPC instead of SL this trip. I told him when he and I go alone again (Um, that'll be the second Tuesday of next week- we have a kiddo heading to college in a year) we'll do it. But for now with all of the construction- we'll stay where we are. (And hope for a Marina view!)
I really thought this would be my "year for RPC" but I want my trip with DH perfect...not that the GF isn't perfect. Just want him to be happy too....now my DD wants BC, but thats OK we are planning to be there when CY pool is closed (end of Sept.) and that would NOT be a good thing for my Princess. Long story short (too late) now is not the time to spend the extra money on RPC....JMHO

I will definitely report back on WL!!!! Enjoy your trip! I sure hope you and DH get your Marina view!!!!

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What a relief that had to be!!
Oh yes!!!!! I couldNOT have survived without all the support from my friends on the Dis YOU ALL ARE THE BEST!!!!!

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Your first trip to WL, how exciting to be trying something new. Thanks, I checked out the refurb photos - nice! I still miss the cute wallpaper in the bathroom and dressing area.~sigh~
I am also jazzed to try their CL, from Kook's reports it sounds like they can give our GF CL a run for their money
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Old 07-19-2012, 07:12 AM   #592
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I've never done the races either but DS1 and his wife ran the half when the rest of us were at the GF. It was so easy to walk out to the road to see them run down the road. From reading the Y&BC thread, I believe runners staying there for marathon weekend needed to take a bus to the front of Epcot. At least at the GF, you could walk to the TTC and monorail to the beginning of the race....or at least it was true when we've been at the GF & Polynesian on marathon weekend.
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Old 07-19-2012, 08:30 AM   #593
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9 days out...

Just received my 10 days out email yesterday- I am SO excited and I love that disney keeps the excitement going throughour your planning process. What are your week prior tips and routines? I have not yet started to pack- but will likely do that this weekend-
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Old 07-19-2012, 09:21 AM   #594
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On a different topic - has anyone ever stayed at the GF during the Wine & Dine Half Marathon? GF is not a host hotel, so we booked at the Boardwalk for convenience. But this trip is just me and DH (no kids) and I generally prefer the MK resorts to the Epcot ones (the epcot ones just aren't as disney to me because of nostalgia). DH said he would be happy to drive to Epcot for the race (ends there) and drive back to the GF after.

Anyone have experience with staying at a non-host resort during a Race weekend?
I haven't done the Wine&Dine Half Marathon, but I did the ESPN 5K two years ago and the Princess Half Marathon last year.

For the ESPN race, (which went through Hollywood Studios) we were staying at the GF and it wasn't a host resort. To be perfectly honest, it was a bit of a pain. We didn't have a car, so we had to get a cab (at 5 a.m. no less), and it was pretty hard navigating the road closures to get to the right starting spot. After the race, since we were at Hollywood Studios we hung out there for a while and took the standard bus back since it was then operating hours.

So fast forward to the next year for the Princess Half-Marathon, we decided that we would do a split-stay at the BC (a host resort) and then back to the GF. We had never stayed anywhere but the GF so I thought it was time to branch out, but I couldn't fully commit (hence the split stay). Anyway, it was SOOOO much easier staying at a host resort. I hated the BC for other reasons, and was so happy to get back to the GF, but if I ever do another race, I will definitely stay at the host resort again for the night before and after the race (and then head back to my "home," the GF, after that).

Good luck! I really wanted to the F&W half this year, but it doesn't correspond to my kids' fall break.
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Old 07-19-2012, 09:43 AM   #595
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You do, indeed!






I'll bet that did look odd, so used to seeing him in a tux. We are the same, we sit and listen to him for hours. Thanks for the photo!



No, there is at least one young woman who plays, maybe more than one. We usually have a woman harpist, I'm sorry I don't know her name. Not much chance to chat in V&A's. I think Chris told us he plays harp on Tuesdays, possibly one other day of the week. DD may remember.
I know he plays the piano in the lobby Sunday, Monday and Thursday. We love to listen to him, go to Narcossees for dinner, then come back and listen some more. Listening to the music in the lobby is just one of the many things that makes the GF so special.
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Old 07-19-2012, 10:10 AM   #596
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HFC1969 - it's always fun when you wander off the official trail at WDW, isn't it? Interesting to see behind the scenes.

BCV23 - I did not remember the baby pool at the Poly, either, though I do remember the old pool. My kids were much older by the time we stayed at the Poly, so no reason I would remember it. Am I completely off, or was there music underwater for a time in the 90s? I vaguely remember my younger son loving to go underwater to hear it, while I sat with a mai tai.

pas130 - I think you will love the WL, and the CL CMs there are very nice. No offense to WDWKOOK, but the CL there wasn't my favorite, mostly due to the dormer balconies on the 7th floor. I'm in the minority, so don't go by me, I hate having to stand to see out my balcony, even at the GF.

I love the lounge, a similar feel to both AKL and RPC lounges in that it is all around the atrium with a bird's-eye view of the lobby.

Jungle Cruiser - sooo true! We discovered another favorite, now that DD is over 21 - sitting in Mizner's with a few drinks, listening to the music and watching the upper fireworks.

GFmom - only 9 days to go, woohoo! I don't think I have a week prior routine, to be honest, lol. Usually we are running around trying to get things done here at home and making sure we have the essentials for our travel bag, new socks, digging out bathing suits, etc. I'm a last minute packer, so we rarely pack until the day before. Oh, I do usually go for a pedicure so my tootsies look good - maybe a manicure, if I can get one the day before. Otherwise, I wear it all off cleaning house!
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Old 07-19-2012, 11:51 AM   #597
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Just curious and did not want to start a thread. Is anyone having problems with the Disney site today ? I cannot book any dining. Thanks.
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Old 07-19-2012, 12:05 PM   #598
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Just curious and did not want to start a thread. Is anyone having problems with the Disney site today ? I cannot book any dining. Thanks.
It's been up and down since yesterday. Most people were unable to view/book ADRs yesterday, but that problem does seem to be alleviating today. You might want to just call the reservation hotline for now until they get it back to 80%.

I would say 100% but I'm pretty sure even on a GOOD day that website is buggy.
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Old 07-19-2012, 12:31 PM   #599
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It's been up and down since yesterday. Most people were unable to view/book ADRs yesterday, but that problem does seem to be alleviating today. You might want to just call the reservation hotline for now until they get it back to 80%.

I would say 100% but I'm pretty sure even on a GOOD day that website is buggy.
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Old 07-19-2012, 12:34 PM   #600
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pas130 - I think you will love the WL, and the CL CMs there are very nice. No offense to WDWKOOK, but the CL there wasn't my favorite, mostly due to the dormer balconies on the 7th floor. I'm in the minority, so don't go by me, I hate having to stand to see out my balcony, even at the GF.
That is a downside....kook understands She's good like that. I like all the nooks and crannies around the lodge DH and I can just chill...
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