"A free trip to the World? Sweet!" - AUGUST 2013 WDW AEP TR updated 10/19

Discussion in 'Disney Trip Reports' started by jenny105, Sep 10, 2013.

  1. Joyciemc

    Joyciemc DIS Veteran

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    I can't believe the room at the Contemporary was falling apart! And that's the room they showed to a group of TA... yuck!
    We LOVE BLT, though, I hope they keep up the room maintenance a little better over there.
    Wave has an AMAZING breakfast. Highly recommend.
     
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  3. RatherBeInAK

    RatherBeInAK Mouseketeer

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    How awesome to get a free trip! I think it would be fun to tour the different hotels and peek inside the rooms. Were you able to pay attention at all during the meetings knowing what was waiting for you outside? :)
     
  4. jenny105

    jenny105 DIS Veteran

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    I think they were embarrassed that room was shown. Our guide called the front desk right away and had someone sent up to repair it. I was not impressed! For the money they charge it doesn't seem worth it.

    I wouldn't mind staying at BLT!

    I'll have to try Wave one of these days. There are so many restaurants to choose from it's impossible to get to them all.

    I loved touring the resorts but the seminars...they had my attention at first and then I'd start zoning. A lot of it was information I already knew. If the seminars would have been shorter it would have been fine but they were on average about 3 hours. Also they were always right in the middle of the day so toward the end we'd all be ready for lunch!
     
  5. jenny105

    jenny105 DIS Veteran

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    We were up right and early again on Wednesday morning. We headed over to the GF Convention Center for breakfast at 7:30 followed by a seminar 8:10-11:30. There weren’t too many interesting things about the seminar other than the fact that they passed Magic Bands around for us to look at. Is it just me or are those things flimsy to anyone else? I wish we had a chance to use them so we could give feedback to our clients but since they were only in the testing phase they didn’t want us to have a negative experience. Of course we all had a ton of questions about them but Rita kept urging us to move on. I swear she was annoyed we stayed on the topic for as long as we did. Oh well. I’ll have to rely on the DIS for feedback since I won’t be using them myself until fall of next year.

    After the seminar it was time for more site inspections. First stop, Art of Animation!

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    Yes that is John Lasseter’s autograph. I wouldn’t have known it was there if Tommy didn't point it out.

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    I visited this resort myself last year but all I could see was the exterior. I was very excited we were going to be able to see some of the rooms. But first thing first – we stopped for lunch at Landscape of Flavors. I was very impressed with their selection. They offer a lot more than the usual value food court selection. CMs refer to AoA as a “value plus” resort because of the food court, pool, and overall the theming just goes one step further. I’d love to stay here one day.

    My lunch tandoori shrimp with basati rice & bread. And a chocolate chip croissant for dessert!

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    It was boiling hot out this day and all I wanted to do was jump in that pool!

    Has anyone stayed here? Can you really hear the Nemo characters while you’re under water?

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    Love the bar!

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    First stop – Cars section.

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    Cars Suite. When AoA was first announced and I saw the artwork for the rooms I thought they were hideous. After seeing it in person I changed my mind. They’re themed very well and so cute! When I showed Kris the pictures of this room he loved it! He’s a mechanic so it suits him.

    Table bed up.

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    Table bed down.

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    Kitchenette.

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    Living area.

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    I love the floor lamp!

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    The bedroom

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    I can see Pop Century from here!

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    Master bathroom.

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    Second bathroom.

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    Close up of the coffee table.

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    Back outside. I didn’t realize I got both the Cars & Nemo section in this shot. Notice the seagulls.

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    After Cars we headed over to Lion King and the Little Mermaid section. Stay tuned!​
     
  6. klacey1

    klacey1 DIS Veteran

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    I don't understand why the guide would urge you to move on if you had a lot of questions about the MB?? Don't they want TAs to be educated? Silly.
    I LOVE that couch in the Cars suite! Our house is kind of vintage styled and that would fit in perfectly!
     
  7. wiigirl

    wiigirl DIS Veteran

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    Great pics! :goodvibes
     
  8. Becca0711

    Becca0711 Earning My Ears

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    Having recently stayed at AofA AND being part of the MB test, I'll tell you my opinion. First, we LOVED the resort--we stayed in a CARS suite and other than using the Big Blue Pool, we never even checked out the other areas at all. I wish we had, honestly. And yes, you can hear music when you're under the water in the pool!

    The MB were awesome. AWESOME! I wonder if they gave you the prototypes to hold, because they were far from flimsy, IMO. I am a bit small-wristed and I could have easily removed the gray part of the band & worn just the pink part--that's what we had to do with our kids' bands! Our oldest did lose his band at the pool but it was returned before he even knew it was missing. I have no idea how it fell off! That's the only issue we had all week.

    I'm loving the perspective of your TR! Thanks for sharing your thoughts!
     
  9. Becca0711

    Becca0711 Earning My Ears

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    p.s. The only thing that would keep us from staying at AofA next time is just how far away it is to get almost anywhere. We loved the theming & with a large family (my hubs, four kids & I) we don't have a lot of choice in resorts--our kids are too little to stay in a room alone. But it was a wonderful resort!
     
  10. Joyciemc

    Joyciemc DIS Veteran

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    Pop Century is our favorite value, so I have a feeling we would love AOA!
     
  11. jenny105

    jenny105 DIS Veteran

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    She was older so I think part of it was that she wasn't comfortable with the technology so she simply chose not to discuss it. That was the one thing everybody had questions about and it was glossed over!

    Thanks!

    Thanks for your feedback about both the resort and the MBs. They gave us Tommy's MBs so I don't think they were the prototype. To me they just looked and felt flimsy but again I have no real opinion because I haven't used them. I feel like they could just fall off at any given moment, like I'd look at my wrist and be like 'oh crap!' lol. It's good to hear that you didn't feel that way.

    I thought AoA was adorable. I wouldn't mind staying there but I'm not sure I'd splurge for a suite for just to the two of us & the LM rooms are hard to get sometimes. And we all know how I feel about Ariel. :rotfl:

    You probably would! It's Pop one step further.
     
  12. FauntleroyFAN07

    FauntleroyFAN07 Commander of Donalds Crew Oh Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy

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    you can hear music for sure under the water, a few times between songs i heard some talking but could not make out what character it was suppose to be...and i can only hold my breath for so long so didnt get to hear as much as my lungs would let me.
    :upsidedow
     
  13. jenny105

    jenny105 DIS Veteran

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    C'mon Dan, hold your breath longer next time. These are important questions that need to be answered. :rotfl:
     
  14. jenny105

    jenny105 DIS Veteran

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    Continuing our tour of AoA we headed over to the Lion King section next. The Lion King is one of my favorite movies so I was picture happy! I remember seeing it in the theater three times when it was released and I had the soundtrack, Lion King ornaments, stuffed animals, and remember the old Disney Adventures magazine? There was one devoted to Lion King and I had that too! Oddly enough I’ve never seen the Lion King on Broadway. I’ve seen Newsies and Mary Poppins on Broadway so I don’t know why I’ve never seen Lion King. I’ll have to fix that sooner rather than later.

    Anyway, off we go to see the Lion King suite!

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    Asante sana squash banana!

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    The Lion King suite. This is the table top bed but I don’t think I have a picture of it pulled down.

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    Second bathroom

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    Master bedroom.

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    Is it weird that my favorite part of the suite was the master bath?

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    Table in the living room

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    Cute carpeting in the hallway!

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    I wish we’d been able to see a Nemo suite but no luck or time. We headed over to the Little Mermaid section next. I really wish they’d picked another movie to theme the standard rooms after. We all know how I feel about Ariel. I do love Sebastian and Under the Sea but she just bugs me! I don’t think I could spend an entire week in a room devoted entirely to her lol. Anyway these rooms were built in the buildings that were supposed to be the next phase of Pop Century – the Legendary Years. So therefore they are exact copies of the Pop rooms and have exterior hallways instead of interior like the rest of the AoA resort.

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    I do like that the sink resembles sand.

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    Artwork in the room.

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    And that brings our tour of AoA to a close. Time to head back to the bus and explore Riverside next!

    I really have to get moving on this TR if I want to have it finished by the time we leave for vacation. We set sail two weeks from Sunday on NCL’s newest ship, the Breakaway! There is a little bit of Disney mixed in since we will be headed to Epcot when we dock in Port Canaveral. Food and Wine festival, yum! Is anyone interested in a mini-TR of the cruise? Not sure since it isn’t Disney related but I’ll post if there’s interest.

    See you next time!​
     
  15. FauntleroyFAN07

    FauntleroyFAN07 Commander of Donalds Crew Oh Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy

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    i think you should post about the epcot and food and wine section of it.:thumbsup2
     
  16. princess_momma

    princess_momma DIS Veteran

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    I feel like their are parts of the Contemporary that are impressive (monorail, restaurants) but I've never been thrilled with the rooms. I would take BLT in a heart beat though! I love those rooms and I love the pop art MK icons everywhere. Magical! :lovestruc I also think if I wanted a monorail resort, I'd book the others first. I wouldn't ever need it to be IN my resort, though I do love seeing it when I'm visiting the Contemporary.

    The GF is gorgeous. I'm not always the biggest fan of the rooms...too much grandma floral in my opinion. But I love the views, the atmosphere, the feel, the exterior, everything else. It's so gorgeous! I love the elegance you just feel enveloped in.

    I am just so excited for New Fantasyland! I always loved The Little Mermaid and Beauty & the Beast! :cloud9: (Your opinion of Ariel cracks me up...but I feel like when you think about it...a lot of them are either bratty or sickeningly sweet.) Anywho...I remember reading a picture book of the real, non-Disney LM when I was in 3rd grade and it was pretty traumatizing. I still can't figure out when it was doing in a 3rd grade classroom!

    I personally didn't think the MagicBands seemed flimsy. That's too bad you guys couldn't test them out though! I'm so excited to test them, so I'll give you some good feedback! There's already a lot I don't think about them and a few things I do. We shall see how I feel after actually using them.

    AoA is just mind-blowing! I would LOVE to stay there one day. We just were going for cheaper though, so no family suite, and went with Pop because I didn't want to stay in a LM room...and I even like her more than you do! I do like a lot of that area of the resort though! I'll have to be sure to find that Eric statue! Anywho...back to the rest of AoA, the exterior and pools and all that jazz look AMAZING! I will definitely be stopping over there to take a look and try out Landscapes of Flavor!

    Goodness...the Lion King! :worship: Such a great, timeless movie. I love it so much. I'm SO excited for that part. I was obsessed as well. We watched it a bunch, had ornaments, stuffed animals, an entire collection of trading cards, a cat named Simba, I was in the play, the whole sha-bang! I love the tile in the master bath as well. B-E-A-UTIFUL!

    Can't wait for more! And I would love a full TR of your cruise! :goodvibes
     
  17. RGirl

    RGirl Change Is Good

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    Joining in! I am LOVING seeing tours of all of the different resorts in on TR! Thank you for taking so many great pics!
     
  18. jenny105

    jenny105 DIS Veteran

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    I'm happy you're enjoying it! :)

    See when I first saw pictures of the GF rooms I thought the same thing! But the rooms are actually pretty nice and they're huge. Pictures don't do them justice. I liked my stay there more than I thought I would.

    I just think the snaps that hold the MagicBand on your wrist seem really easy to break. I would constantly be checking my wrist to make sure it was still there.

    You should definitely make a trip across the bridge to walk around AoA. It's a great resort! Landscape of Flavors is delicious and so different from any other value food court I've ever been to. And the Eric statue is really easy to find! Plenty of photo opps there especially in the Cars section.

    I may just tack on the Breakaway portion at the end of this. I won't be taking notes or anything though. I need to relax! :)

    Got it :thumbsup2
     
  19. jenny105

    jenny105 DIS Veteran

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    Next stop – Port Orleans Riverside. I’ve always wanted to stay here but believe or not, I’ve never stayed at a moderate before. If I had my pick, I’d probably choose Riverside. It’s stunning! I fell in love with this resort. We grouped in the lobby before heading out and I looked around for anyone I knew. I had three families booked at POR the same week I was traveling but I didn’t see any of them – oh well!

    The lobby.

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    Boatwright’s. I’ve never been – is it any good?

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    The inside of that building houses the food court.

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    Old Man Island. I think this would be the difference in me choosing POR over POFQ. The POFQ is so lame!

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    Signage

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    Pool bar

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    Alligator Bayou room

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    This replaced the trundle bed. I think it’s absolutely adorable!

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    Bed up

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    I think I might get lost in the Alligator Bayou section. It’s massive and all the buildings look the same. The mansion buildings (or Magnolia Bend) each have a distinctive design and are more spread out instead of clustered in one area. Two of them are strictly devoted to Royal Rooms and we were able to visit both types!

    Standard room

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    I love the Disney boats!

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    Notice the royal banners

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    Royal Room. A letter from Princess Tiana welcomes you.

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    Even the princes get some love.

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    This concludes our tour of Riverside. We hopped back on the bus and headed home to Grand Floridian. We were free for the rest of the day. Stay tuned for some pool time and Epcot!​
     
  20. RGirl

    RGirl Change Is Good

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    Great POR tour! We were actually booked in a POR Royal Room for our trip in August, but we ended up switching to the BW. I love the Epcot resorts, and I'm glad we switched - but I still wish we'd gotten a chance to experience POR!
     
  21. jenny105

    jenny105 DIS Veteran

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    What did you think of Boardwalk? We toured it but it's not the same as staying there! That is my first choice for next year's trip.
     

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