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2400 pictures! Beach Club, Universal, and Bay Lake Tower Grand Villa-COMPLETE!

Discussion in 'Completed Trip Reports' started by dr&momto2boys, May 15, 2010.

  1. dr&momto2boys

    dr&momto2boys DIS Veteran

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    Day 3:
    We had 7:30am ADRs for Cape May Cafe, a character breakfast just a short walk from our villa. The kids were raring to go armed with their autograph books, and me with my camera, of course! ;) Here they are waiting for Cape May to open.
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    These character meals always make me a little nervous. Since DH and I take turns taking the kids up to the buffet and go up for ourselves too, I'm always afraid someone will miss a character, or I'll miss taking the picture. I guess DH could take one. :rolleyes: Anyway, it's not exactly a laid back meal, but it sure beats standing in line to see characters at the park! And the kids love them!
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    Ella's response to Goofy: (She warmed up pretty quickly after that, thank goodness.)
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    We had enough time to get the boat to DHS and get there minutes before rope drop.

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    We followed the massive but relatively orderly crowd to Toy Story Mania. Max and I got in the FP line while Marc parked the stroller and got in the standby line which was out in the street. Even the FP lines are crazy long first thing in the morning. It's cute that the Green Army Men were out in force to direct the traffic.

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    We got our FPs to use later and joined DH and the others just before they went into the real queue. Max was afraid to go on this ride and I spent the whole time in line convincing him that he would like it. He had even been on it before at DL. Sure enough, as soon as the ride was over, he wanted to go back on it! I told him we'd come back later with our FPs.

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    Next was Star Tours. We had watched Star Wars the week before our trip so that the boys would recognize the characters. Jacob was really looking forward to this ride. He went on it with both DH and I. It was another hot and humid day! I broke down and bought one of those water spraying fans. Jacob had been wanting one ever since he saw them, so he was excited and it basically became his fan. He was more than happy to spray anyone who wanted it/would let him.
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    DH ran over to Rockin' Rollercoaster and Tower of Terror to get FPs. We walked at our normal pace and stopped for a bathroom break. DH was waiting for us at ToT. We didn't time this very well. We had figured DH or I would ride R&R through the single rider line, but it was shut down for an unknown length of time. We ended up walking all the way back over to Toy Story to use our FPs.
    Ella loved TSM so much that she was dragging DH through the line!
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    Then we walked all the way back to R&R again where only DH had time to ride before we headed back to Sci-Fi for our lunch ADR! That's a lot of walking for a little riding. Not our best planning! Somewhere on one of the walks back and forth we stopped for a frozen lemonade.
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  3. dancer4life22

    dancer4life22 I wanna go to Disney

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    im joining you!

    im loving this trip report! your kids are sooo cute! i loved the "i wanted him to have his bestest day ever":tongue:
     
  4. dr&momto2boys

    dr&momto2boys DIS Veteran

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    Sci-Fi is another first for us. All of the restaurants so far on this trip have been firsts. The waiters are on rollerskates. One spent quite a while talking to Jacob about Monsters Inc, since Mike Wazowski was on his shirt, while we waited for DH and Ella to come back from a diaper change.

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    I liked the atmosphere. The boys sat in the front seat of the car. We had to smush into the second seat with Ella between us in a booster seat. We couldn't have had a "real" car with a highchair. The only problem was that we couldn't keep things out of Ella's reach. Also the table surface is extremely small. That's my only complaint though. Overall it was a great experience. The kids enjoyed it too.

    It was too dark to take pictures of the food and I was getting tired of doing that anyway, so I only got a picture of dessert. Sorry.

    For appetizers, DH had the spinach and artichoke and chili bean dip with tortilla chips. I had the onion rings. The dips weren't that good--just okay. The onion rings were delicious!

    I had read that I have to have an oreo shake here, so I did. It was very good! But of course very filling. I had a bacon cheeseburger for my entree. It was the best burger I've had on property. Quite good! I think DH had a reuben. It was "good." ;)

    For dessert, we had the celebration cheesecake--yummy! and the chocolate peanutbutter cake--alright.
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    I think the kids had a hotdog and fruit or fries. Not memorable. I believe they did get ice cream sundaes for their dessert too. I know they liked those!

    One more trip over to R&R for me to ride! I used the single rider line instead of my FP and it was faster than when DH used the FP line. Then we went to ToT.

    Both Jacob and Max had been talking about riding Tower of Terror for weeks. They had seen videos of the ride on youtube. After all the fright over TSM this morning with Max, I had been trying to talk him out of ToT all day. "You know it's very dark, right? It goes very high and drops down very fast, right? Terror means scary!" He told me he knows and he really wants to do it. When I took them up the fast pass line, I figured we'd be coming back in a minute. I didn't even think we'd make it in the door. Those boys did NOT turn back! I sat in the middle of the two with an arm over both of their chests. I could feel Max trembling with every lift and drop, but he was silent. Jacob, was yelling, "Is it almost over?" They both did it! And they weren't crying or anything. They didn't want to ride it again with DH, but I never thought they'd do it once! DH skipped ToT--he's not a big fan of that type of ride--straight lifts and drops. The boys said they would take Grandpa on this ride later in the week when we came back with the big group. That would be funny! We'll see!
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    We headed back to Beach Club to get our luggage and take a taxi over to Universal to check into our next hotel. Actually we stopped at Starring Rolls first to use a few snack credits to take with us for breakfast tomorrow. We picked up a butterfinger cupcake (the best snack credit--ever! Although, wait until it is room temperatue to eat it. We got one later in the week and ate it straight out of the cooler--not nearly as good), a white chocolate cupcake, and two rice crispie squares (if you're not going to eat these right away-buy the packaged ones. These were soggy the next day.)

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    Next up: (probably Wednesday)
    Royal Pacific Resort at Universal Studios

     
  5. dr&momto2boys

    dr&momto2boys DIS Veteran

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    :welcome: Thanks! That melted my heart. It was the perfect ending to a long, fun day. Who needs IllumiNations when you get a moment like that?
     
  6. dd50

    dd50 DIS Veteran

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    Now what kid doesn't want to go right back on TSM. That was cute that your daughter was in a rush to get back on.

    We ate at SciFi last year and I didn't care much for the food (I had ribs) but did like the atmosphere.

    Your little ones are brave to go on ToT.
     
  7. Stephanie239

    Stephanie239 Earning My Ears

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    Yea, prob. too much food for us. Think I'll stick with DP I have and just do OOP for another TS or two. Maybe if hubby and I ever go alone DXDP would work for us. Thanks for your reviews and opinion!

    Stephanie
     
  8. Twingle

    Twingle DIS Veteran

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    Great updates! Looking forward to hearing about your time at Universal, we've never been and are going for the first time in August.

    Thanks so much for sharing your trip!
     
  9. disneyfan61

    disneyfan61 DIS Veteran

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    I am joining in also!! We were at the BC from 4/30 to 5/7. We ate at Beaches & Cream for lunch on May 6th. I am really interested in your Universal days as we are going next year for my oldest son's college graduation trip. We went to Universal back in 1999 but have not been back since as I spend ALL our time at Disney.

    Ok need to get caught up on this TR!!
     
  10. bookmama

    bookmama Mouseketeer

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    Loving your TR. Your babies are adorable, I so love the shirts. You gave me an idea for our big trip in a few years.:cool1:
     
  11. snoopypharmd

    snoopypharmd Earning My Ears

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    Great report! We are thinking about the Beach Club when we go next year ... I think the kiddos (13, 9, 20 months, and B/G 9 month old twins) would LOVE Stormalong Bay. We are not doing the deluxe dining - Twice we have used the reg dining plan, and it was hard to eat all that food!
     
  12. dr&momto2boys

    dr&momto2boys DIS Veteran

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    People think little ones don't get much out of Disney, but I would disagree! Ella was definately into it! She probably won't remember it--but who cares? Actually my DH has a random memory of a DL ride when he was there at 9 mos. old!

    I can't believe my boys did ToT! I hope they turn out to be real ride enthusists! We'll have more and more fun for years to come!

    I dream of the day DH and I go on our own too and do signature dining. (But it won't be until my kids grow up because it's too much fun going with them!)

    Thanks! I'm a Disney nut, but I have to admit my favorite park in the whole wide world is Islands of Adventure! :eek:

    :welcome: Sometimes I feel like a traitor going to Universal! It's awesome too though! It's just different than Disney. I don't spend all my free time talking and reading about Universal though--so you know where my loyalty lies! :rotfl:

    :welcome: Thanks! Making shirts is addictive! On past trips we've had more than one custom shirt per day! :rotfl2: And boy, if I knew how to sew, my DD would have a wardrobe of adorable Disney Boutique clothing and matching bows!

    :welcome: You'd love BC! What a family! :worship:
     
  13. dr&momto2boys

    dr&momto2boys DIS Veteran

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    We took a taxi (van) over to Loew's Royal Pacific Resort on Universal property. It cost $35 plus tip.

    The resort is beautiful! You cross over a bridge to the entrance. Here's a photo of the bridge and looking over the side of the bridge.
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    The lobby is grand and difficult to photograph. It manages to have an open air feeling (like many hotels in Hawaii) while of course, not really being open to the outside--so it can be airconditioned!

    We walked right up to check-in. They gave us a room on the first floor close to the pool and close to restaurants too. :thumbsup2 (FYI--the lobby is on the third floor.) They gave Ella a Fischer Price Little People figure and car set and gave the boys a Little People DVD. Nice.
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    The room was very nice and comfortable.
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    Maybe you've noticed now, from pictures of the Beach Club bathroom and this one, that Ella is always the first one to thoroughly inspect the bathrooms.

    When we called for a crib, they brought one right to us along with a complimentary baby toiletry set--shampoo, lotion, powder, bubble bath, diaper rash cream. A nice and unexpected touch.

    The main reason we chose this hotel was because people staying "on property" at Universal get "Express Access" to the rides. For people who don't venture away from Disney, it's like unlimited Fast Passes. There is a separate Express entrance to almost every ride with little or no waiting! You just show your room key and walk right up. Sweet!

    We immediately hit the pool! It was a scorcher today and we couldn't wait to get refreshed! I went ahead with Jake and Max while DH got Ella in her bathing suit. I wondered what took them so long. DH said it took him 3 tries to get Ella's suit on right. Girls' clothes are complicated!

    The pool was nice, but too warm! It was like bath water--not quite refreshing enough. There was a splash zone that had cool water though and it flowed into the pool a little--so we hung out near there where it was a little cooler. Plus the boys liked exploring the splash area. Part of the pool was zero entry too, so that was nice for the boys, and Ella liked being able to reach the bottom and run around a bit too. It was fun!
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    We spent a couple of hours there until it was time to get ready for dinner and meet up with the in-laws.
     
  14. MadiMouse

    MadiMouse Member of the 2011 WDW Moms Panel

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    I just found your TR. I'm loving it!!! ;) We are making a trip in July and you are really getting me excited. I'm also making matching shirts this time. I can already tell that it will be addicting. We also stayed at RPR back in 05 and LOVED the front of line access. I also enjoyed City Walk. Can't wait to read more. I'll be waiting!
     
  15. kimmylaj

    kimmylaj DIS Veteran

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    your daughter definitely looks a little like boo. too funny.
    we thought the scifi was definitely a fun place to unwind and it was so quiet with everyone watching the movie , a nice relaxing place for lunch. i am hoping my son will be brave enough for tower of terror in august but probably not. his nickname is chicken little.
    universals hotel looks really nice cant wait to hear more about it
     
  16. dr&momto2boys

    dr&momto2boys DIS Veteran

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    :welcome: I'd love to see your shirts! One tip: The part of the shirt with the iron-on doesn't "breathe." My DH complains that he is hotter with a big iron-on and you can see the sweat seep out around it. :rotfl: The kids haven't complained. Just thought I'd mention it, since you're going in July.
     
  17. MadiMouse

    MadiMouse Member of the 2011 WDW Moms Panel

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    Thank you for the tip!! :thumbsup2 I will be sure to post the completed project! :cool1:
     
  18. dr&momto2boys

    dr&momto2boys DIS Veteran

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    DH's mom and stepdad and sister and her family had arrived late the night before. They were staying at a hotel very close to Universal last night and tonight. SIL and BIL were meeting up with friends from Florida, while MIL and FIL took care of the kids, Kyle and Avery. We decided to meet them for dinner at our hotel.

    DH and the kids are much faster at getting ready for dinner than I am, so they took a walk after they were ready. Loew's hotels often have complimentary drinks set out in the lobby and here they had some around the pool too. They always had cold water with lemons available by the pool too. In the lobby on check out day they had strawberry lemonade. A nice touch, I think. On a theme park vacation, you're not used to getting anything for free.
    Here is Jacob with a complimentary drink and a picture of Citywalk at dusk:
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    I was supposed to call DH and join them when I was ready. I couldn't reach him, so I figured his cell phone was off or dead. He finally figured that out and called me from the lobby when his mom and everyone arrived. We decided to eat at a place called Jake's (I think.) It was a nice looking place and not busy at all. We were seated in a back part of the restaurant--almost a separate room all by ourselves. I guess they saw 5 kids and wanted to keep us away from everyone! :lmao: Either that or that's the only place they had room for a table of 9.

    The menu looked good, but the service was ridiculously slow. It took forever to get our food. (Even though it wasn't busy.) Fortunately the kids were so happy to see each other, they kept each other entertained. I didn't take any pictures, sorry. I can't remember what we ate. It was good. I'm glad we were just relaxing and not in a hurry.
     
  19. dd50

    dd50 DIS Veteran

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    Royal Pacific looks nice. I will have to remember that if we go to Universal next year. I haven't been to Universal in years.
     
  20. disneyfan61

    disneyfan61 DIS Veteran

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    So cute your boys thought that Grampa was in the Norway film:)

    I agree about Deluxe Dining. Waaayy too much food! We did it for the first time this last trip & probably will not do it again.

    We love Chefs though & did eat there last time. Enjoying the report.
     
  21. dr&momto2boys

    dr&momto2boys DIS Veteran

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    Sorry I didn't add much today! I asked my DH to sit down with me and rough out a park plan for our December trip so I could figure out which places to request ADRs for next week. Well, he suggested we start our trip with a 3 day cruise! :banana: And I thought I was bad! Now we've been trying to figure out how to make that happen. Now I'm less prepared for making ADRs than ever and our relaxing Christmas trip is turning into one of our normal pack everything in kind of trips. That's just the way we are though! I knew it would come to that eventually! :rotfl:
     

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