My second trip report, my first DLH stay!

Discussion in 'Disneyland Trip Reports' started by gethane, May 27, 2010.

  1. gethane

    gethane Mouseketeer

    Aug 26, 2002
    Who: Me - 41, Hubby - 39, K - female - 17, S - male - 6, Z - female 4.

    My oldest daughter wanted to visit some So Cal colleges (UC San Diego, Santa Barbara, and USC) so we combined the college visits with a Disneyland trip. We left Berkeley around 12:15 on Friday, May 21 and arrived at our hotel in San Diego around 10 pm (with stops). Hubby and littles did Sea World for a few hours (not enough time!) while oldest daughter and I did UC San Diego tour. Visited some friends from 3-6:30 then off to Disneyland!

    Saturday night, May 22

    We arrived at DLH late, around 8:30pm (after driving from San Diego). We pulled up to the front to unload our bags and check in. I was so excited. I decided to take the 4 and 6 year old in with me to experience my first entrance into the hotel. They were excited but tired and decided to watch the cartoons on the little couch. I mentioned this was our first time staying in the DLH and my oldest daughter's first trip to DL. The cast member helping me did some clickety clackety on the computer and then said that the room we were assigned had 2 double beds and a daybed (as opposed to queen beds) and asked if that would be ok. I said that might be a little tight and he said he'd see what he could do. He went into the back area and came back, did some more clickety clackety, and then said he had done a little magic and upgraded us to a suite!! I was over the moon excited!

    We arrived over at Wonder tower after looking in at the pool and walking past the waterfalls in awe. My 6 year old adores waterfalls and fountains so being in Wonder tower was actually a great thing. We went all the way to the top, floor 14 (but actually 13, there was no 13 button in the elevator) and went to our suite. We were directly above the waterfalls and the rushing water really added to the ambiance. The suite was huge. We had a bar immediately on our right upon entering and a room with a couch (pullout), two chairs, small table with 2 chairs for eating, a TV cabinet, and a desk. Directly to the left upon entering was a small square hall type area that split into the bedroom with 2 queens and the sink (with closet). Another door led into the toilet/tub/second sink area. After our bags were delivered, we decided to get everyone in bed so we could get up bright and early to make it to Early Entry at 7.

    Sunday, May 23

    There were a few things wrong with the room, and since it was a free upgrade, I felt too weird about calling, but I figured the next people staying might be paying for a suite and might be annoyed so I wrote the items on the comment card, and put it with the tip for mousekeeping (minor, like lightbulb minor). We had decided on ordering a little room service to share in the morning to help get us to early entry on time. Still we ended up running a little late and were walking under the railroad around 7:08 (but didn't have to do any waiting at the turnstiles). They asked for mine and my husband's ID, perhaps because it was our first time using our Annual passes?

    We did Peter Pan (almost walk on, after walking through queue, wait of less than 1 minute), Dumbo, Matterhorn twice (the littles didn't want to and so we did a trade off). The first time was walk on, a little line started building on the second time, and by the time we got off, there was a 15ish person line or more on both sides! Alice was down, so we did Mad Tea, Mr. Toad, Pinnochio and part of the party did Snow White. Then we went back to Alice which was up and running. We then did Storybook Canal and Small World, and arrived at PFF around 8:30 (so 10 rides by 8:25 or so, 11 if you count Matterhorn twice). There was already a short line, so we grabbed a little food to share (kid's pack, some croissants) but the line started building so fast we decided to finish our food in line.

    It was our first time at PFF, but both kids really did want to do it. We didn't get out of there until about 9:40. We then took the train over to NOS and did Pirates and Haunted Mansion (walked on both). We headed to Critter Country but Pooh and Splash were both down (I knew about Splash but was disappointed about Pooh). We did see Pooh and Tigger though. We grabbed a pickle and a pineapple spear and started to head out of the park. We stopped and saw the Disneyland band playing with Mickey at the front, then headed to DCA. We arrived at the Hyperion around 11:40 for a 12:10 show.

    It was our first time (and last) seeing Aladdin and everyone was mesmerized. My 4 year old, who can't sit through a kids movie at the theater, never took her eyes off the show, and neither did my 6 year old (or my 17 year old, myself, or my husband). This is definitely a DO NOT MISS.

    We headed back to DLH and grabbed some food at Croc's Bits to take to our room while we got ready for swimming. The things I had mentioned on the comment card were all fixed. My oldest daughter couldn't find her suit (we had a suitcase snafu while packing, zipper broke and had to move stuff, so I'm sure it got left at home) so I sent her to DD with her debit card to buy a suit while the rest of us went to the pool. My husband and the two littles decided the Cove was the place to be and we had a relaxing, and WARM, swim. The littles and my husband went up to the room around 4-4:15 to nap, and my oldest and I swam a little, found the restrooms, checked out the gift store, signed a waiver at Guest Services so she could work out, grabbed some caramel corn, and headed back to our room, arriving a bit after 5. This is where a suite shines! We just closed the door leading to the bedroom and didn't bother anyone. Around 5:30 I went and woke up the everyone else.

    We took the monorail back to DL, arriving in Tomorrow Land around 6:20, and walked behind Matterhorn to the parade route, grabbing a great spot just to the right of the Churro stand. While waiting we had some churros. Then the parade came by. It was our first time seeing a parade and we loved it. I literally gasped when I saw the stilts :). After the parade we headed to eat, decided against the Thunder BBQ, and my oldest daughter and I went on BTMRR while my husband and littles went on to NOS. We ended up at French Market and the grownups were all pleased with the food. My teen and 4 year old then did Tarzan. Then my husband and oldest daughter used some FPs for Indy we had grabbed earlier in the morning while I took the littles on Jungle Cruise. We grabbed some light up twirly Mickey's and headed to the castle area for Fireworks around 9. We had never done FW and I wasn't sure of the etiquette, where to sit, etc, so we wandered a little, probably missing a great spot or two in my confusion. Around 9:10 they announced that due to high winds, they might have to cancel the FW. They announced that again around 5 minutes later. But then, around 9:20, they announced that the FW would soon begin. The crowd cheered and clapped. Everyone but the 4 year old enjoyed the FW. She cried through most of it :(.

    Time in Park/s: 9.5 hours
    Ridecount: 18 (counting RR and monorail)
    Shows: Disneyland Band, Aladdin, Celebrate Parade, Fireworks
    Activities: PFF, 2 hours at DLH Cove pool

    Monday, May 24

    Woke up around 7:30 am. My oldest went to workout. Hubby grabbed some free DLH coffee (good!) and called Disney dining and grabbed a 6:30 PS for Ralph Brennan's. We got everyone else showered and ready. Headed out around 9:40. Grabbed 6 Krispy Kremes at Compass then headed on to DCA. Arrived a little later than I hoped, 10:10, and didn't make it back to Toy Story until 10:20 so we had a good 20 minute wait. Hubby took kidlets on Carousel, then Jumpin Jellies, and the Boat play thing while teen and I did Screamin. I then grabbed 4 FPs for Screamin for later. We then did Muholland Madness, then the Zephyr. We headed to the center area for a snack. I ran down to grab Soarin FPs. Then Hubby and I did Screamin' with FPs, then hubby and teen did Screamin while I took kids to Brother Bear Redwood Creek play area. Hubby and teen joined and I went to get FPs for Grizzly. Only a 10 minute wait and FP machines not running so we all just decided to go on it. Then we went and used our Soarin FPs. Lunch at the Pilot's Grill right next door (or whatever its called). Then we headed to the other side of DCA. Just missed Playhouse Disney at 2:15 so killed some time in the Animation Bldg (but didn't do shows). Headed back to the 3:15 Playhouse Disney. Then back to Animation Bldg for the Animation Studio. Then headed to Bug's Life and did Heimlich and Flik and got a little wet. We then headed to the Pixar Parade and just barely got a spot at 4:45! Watched Parade, then headed toward DD to wait for our 6:30 Ralph Brennan's seating. The littles were wound up and were dancing for us. We were there until 8:15 or so, then headed back to DLH and me, the 17 year old, and 4 year old spent some time in the Hot tub (OMG the chlorine fumes about killed us all!). Then to bed.

    Time in Park: 7.5 hours
    Ridecount: 10 (12 if counting all Screamin rides)
    Shows: Disney Playhouse, Animation Studio, Pixar Parade
    Activities: Boat play thing at DCA, Redwood Creek, 30 min in hot tub

    Tuesday, May 25

    Another EE and we have to check out and have bags stored. We need to be leaving DLR area by 1 or so for a 2:30 USC tour. Hubby arranged a 12:10 PS at Carnation Cafe. Had bellhop get bags around 7:40, express checkout, and left. No breakfast! Arrived at monorail station to a line around 7:50 but we did just barely get onto the first train, arriving in Tomorrow Land around 8:10. Me, oldest daughter, and youngest daughter did Nemo while hubby did Star Tours and Buzz. Then us three girls did Buzz. We all met up at Space Mntn so oldest daughter and I could ride. Grabbed some Autopia FPs, did Astro Orbiters then Star Tours (again for the two guys). Headed to grab a little to eat (croissants, muffins, apples) while waiting for Toon Town to open. Then Roger Rabbit, Mickey, and Gadget Coaster. Then the three girls waited for too long at Pixie Hollow (sorry to everyone after us for how long the 4 year old monopolized Iridessa and Tink!) while the boys did Autopia and watched Jedi Academy. Then we all met up at Carnation Cafe to eat. Headed back to DLH, got our bags and souvenirs we got the day before at Guest Services (well, the bellhop did) and off we went shortly after 1 pm. Whew!

    Time in Park: 4.5 hours
    Ridecount: 10 (counting monorail)
    Shows: Jedi Academy
    Activities: Pixie Hollow, Mickey visit

    After our USC tour we drove to Santa Barbara and toured there the next day, then drove home to Berkeley area, arriving around 8:30 last night. Berkeley - San Diego - Disneyland - USC/LA - Santa Barbara - Berkeley in 5.5 days!! During the UCSB tour I was DRAGGING and 17 year old was like, why are you so tired mom?

    I think we did pretty good with the limited time we had. Plus, UPGRADE TO SUITE! We plan to always stay on site in the future if funds allow. We really preferred the DD walk to the Harbor Blvd walk while staying at the HoJo last time. We really felt the Disney Magic at Disneyland Hotel.

    Thanks for reading!

    oh! forgot to mention. For you Fairy fans, the CM at PH told us there are 2 more movies coming, one in November 2010 and they will retheme PH for it.
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  3. maryr1oz

    maryr1oz Mouseketeer

    Feb 5, 2008
    What a fantastic report - loved reading about your days in the park... you also had great luck in getting upgraded to a suite!

  4. gethane

    gethane Mouseketeer

    Aug 26, 2002
    Thank you! I know it was so amazing. I absolutely never expect it to happen again :).
  5. deejdigsdis

    deejdigsdis I

    Aug 28, 2009
    Oh, I am so jealous of your Sunday Magic Morning! My Magic Morning a month ago was a bit of a bust. I was by myself and I only got 4 rides in during that hour. I was shocked how crowded it was. You really packed in a lot during those days!
  6. KatelynnsAuntie

    KatelynnsAuntie <font color=teal>We always bring in bottles of wat

    May 29, 2003
    Enjoyed reading your report! We will be there in two weeks! :cool1:
  7. gethane

    gethane Mouseketeer

    Aug 26, 2002
    Thank you! Have fun! I'm already eager to return in September :)
  8. kristie73

    kristie73 Mouseketeer

    Aug 14, 2006
    Thanks for sharing. When you ordered room service for your first morning, what time did you order and what did you get? I'm curious about our first morning there because I want to be in the park by 7am, but wondering about breakfast too.
  9. gethane

    gethane Mouseketeer

    Aug 26, 2002
    We ordered a basket of muffins and oatmeal. Which was enough to share. Next time (cross fingers for another DLR stay) my hubbie and I will share an omelet and let the kids share a mickey (pancake or waffle? whichever it was).

    We had to pick between 6 and 6:30 so we chose 6. It worked great.

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