An Engaging and Magical Asian Adventure (2017 trip) - New Update 05/06/21 + Bonus Europapark 05/09/21

Flossbolna

Sea days are just so relaxing!
Joined
Sep 8, 2006
Day 6 – July 4, 17: Tokyo DisneySea

Part 2: Eating with the Society of Explorers and Adventurers


A brief reminder: me @Flossbolna will be writing in this lovely blue color, Michael will continue to add his commentary in an (angry? :duck:)
red color...

Ah, welcome back to anyone still reading. On behalf of myself and Big Sugar D, we're very grateful you decided to return to one of our multiple unfinished trip reports. Honestly, it isn't all the German's fault -- just most of it. The past few years have been largely an ugly blur. Indeed, a year ago at this time, I likely would have the given the odds at 50/50 of the USA continuing to exist as a place one would want to live in. As much as that may have inspired some of you to go back and dwell on happier memories and times, it did not have such an impact on me. Apologies in advance if this describes any of you, but I also had zero desire to go to Apocalypse Dizzy World when the pandemic magically ended in Florida last summer. If you did, I think you might want a psych evaluation.

Anyway, you might have noticed that the German is very competitive and never wrong. So when our new neighbors from NYC (Agatha, JJ, Lil' C and The Wonder Dog) decided to start a pre-trip report for their upcoming visit to the resort in the swamps that has fired most of its staff and expects you to do everything with a smart phone while being yelled at by CMs, many who have had to deal with the worst of the worst Guests since reopening, she decided we would attempt to restart a report from a magical trip of ours. Since I am 78 years old now, my memory is fading and my notes are somewhere in a pile of crap in Florida, not quite sure how this is going to work, but here goes.

Thanks again for reading and sticking with us, although to be fair, some of you are close friends and have very little choice in the matter. We love you all.


We headed for our most coveted dining reservation for lunch! Magellan’s is a signature dining experience in the part of Mediterranean Harbor that is designed as a fortress as seen here:



The restaurant is two levels, you enter on the second floor and most dining areas are downstairs around a very large atrium with a beautiful globe:







The restaurant is themed to renaissance era explorers, scientists and artists and is beautifully decorated:











There is a "secret" room behind some library shelves, but we did not end up dining in there. Which was fine, our table was quite nice!


But Stephen would not consider this a real visit without sitting in said room.



Some of the floor had these beautiful tiles:



This was our "side room":



We were given menus:



Those of you who know their Disney theme park story lines will recognize the coat of arms on it. It’s the Society of Explorers and Adventurers. Also known from such places as the Jungle Skipper’s Canteen in Florida and Mystic Point/Mystic Manor in Hong Kong. The name of the restaurant was explained on the first page of the menu:



There were several set menus to choose from (as is common in Japan):







We both chose the lunch set. Unfortunately the price is blurred, but considering this was 4 years ago, it might not be of much help anyway. I just remember that we considered this quite reasonable for three courses in a theme park.


The cost for the entire meal was $31 a person at the time. THAT, I do remember. For a near gourmet meal in an incredible themed (that doesn't mean Disney IP all over the place like that cruise ship that was 'revealed' yesterday.)

But it was this menu page that made Michael truly happy: Look at the top line where it says under the price "free refill". Those are magic words for Michael! And the best was (which we found out later) that you could change between all those different drinks listed there!

Living in Germany has taught me many things, like maybe I am not cut out to live in Germany. Free refills have been commonplace in the USA since the 1980s. Not so much here (with some exceptions such as our new Five Guys and any KFC or BK that are not located in the city). I drink a lot. I then ... well, you can figure out what comes next. But I do recall being thrilled as I likely had 3-4 Cokes since it was quite hot and then a couple of iced coffees. In a typical German restaurant, the tab for that would have been approximately $95.15.

We got drinks and water and they served rolls. You can see my iced tea here, which was served with those little jars. One of them was definitely the typical "gum syrup" that you get everywhere. Ultimately this is sugar syrup that you get in Japan with cold tea or coffee in order to not have to deal with trying to dissolve sugar crystals in your cold drink. Not sure if the other one was cream…



For my starter I had the Today’s Creamy Soup. I am not sure what it was, I seem to remember that it was corn, but it looks too green for that. What I do remember is that it was delicious!



Michael had the Organic Mesclun Salad with Cheese and Walnuts:



He was happy with it.

The rolls had a hidden Mickey:



Michael’s main course was the Red-Wine-Braised Beef Cheek:



I chose Today’s Fish:



Just with the soup, I don’t really remember what it was. But it was very good again. Finding out what those options were was a bit of a challenge as our server, who spoke good English, did struggle with the correct translations of all food items. Which is fine, menus are tricky to translate! She was rather lovely, but then just disappeared during our meal and was replaced with another one. We think her shift just ended and it did not affect our service at all as the second server was very good, too. It was just odd.


I don't recall any issues with language at all. I also thought everything was in Japanese and English on the menus.

I was talking about when I asked about what the Today’s Dish was. I did not want to order without having a clue about what it is. And while our server’s English was very good, she just struggled with some ingredients. I sometimes do when having to explain German food in English as well.

Michael of course got Creme Brûlée for dessert:



I got the seasonal sherbet:



Here I do remember what it is! Because it was my first time getting something yuzu-flavored. Yuzu is a citrus fruit that is very popular in Japan. I think when she tried to explain what it was, I only got that it was a local fruit and our server said it tasted good. In hindsight I am surprised how adventurous I was with my ordering for that lunch. I am normally afraid of not liking something and therefore sticking to stuff I know. But I love everything citrus and so this dessert was a great hit for me!

Lunch took quite a bit of time, but it was wonderful to get to rest in a cool spot. The weather was hot and humid as it was every day of our trip… We both really loved our food. Looking at the pictures now I think the portions look small, but we did not feel like that then. We also got plenty of the delicious rolls!


They were not small. But they certainly were not American or German sized portions. And the food was absolutely wonderful as was the service as was the ambience as was everything. If the Japanese ever let us in again (we had planned a Summer 2020 Olympics trip, which obviously didn't happen and then we decided we'd make it a summer 2021 trip and then ... well, at this point, no plans, but hopes to return to Tokyo sometime next year. Both AA and UAL have had some truly amazing fares to Tokyo that have had me plotting ... fares as low as $250 ROUND TRIP from FLL or MIA to Tokyo for the rest of this year and into next year. Going into my tenth month of pandemic living in our small provincial village (he is leaving out the vacations to the Black Forest and Denmark that we took last summer while most of Europe was nearly Covid-free during the summer months) after four months of being locked in a house or out in 90-plus degree weather in the swamps has got me wanting to go anywhere that isn't where our homes are located.

Continued in next post
 

Flossbolna

Sea days are just so relaxing!
Joined
Sep 8, 2006
Continued from previous post:

After lunch I took a couple of pictures and then we headed on to the Tower of Terror.





There is an attraction there called „Fortress Explorations“ that is a walkthrough themed to the Society of Explorers and Adventurers. I really wanted to do that, but somehow we did not manage to fit it in. I think it had limited opening hours.

This is a view back to Mediterranean Harbor:





The crane is there building the Tokyo version of Soarin’ over the World.

Happily, this has become one of the most popular attractions at the park. Right alongside Toy Story Mania. Two attractions I am more than willing to skip from now to eternity. BTW, many parks now have variations on the flying theater concept, including German's top theme park resort -- and a place you SHOULD visit -- Europa Park. Their version is better than the current Disney version and basically a Soaring Over Europe deal, except their footage is real (except for one scene) and not mostly CGI like Disney. I do so still miss the original Soaring Over California, but that's another subject.

Just as a side note: Yes, Europapark is a wonderful theme park that has some recent additions that make a visit a really nice detour on a German vacation. It's just at the foot of the Black Forest (which despite its name is a mountain range) and was a big part of our pandemic summer vacation.



A nice view of the Columbia:



I am not sure how well it comes out in this picture, but as you see, there is nothing but horizon behind the ship. That’s because on this side the park blends into the sea. There is only the monorail, a road and a seawall separating the park from the ocean. I found that fascinating as it is so unusual for a Disney park. Usually your vistas are enclosed by trees, buildings or hills.

You know what is missing? Giant, horrible looking non-moveable stage pieces for a giant Disney IP show!!! Imagine if those were right there ... pure magic!!! BTW, I know what you readers are thinking right now: boy, did we miss these pearls of wisdom and intellectual observations. We do accept gift cards and they don't have to be Disney ones.

On the way to the Tower of Terror in the American Waterfront area:







And there is the Hightower Hotel in all its splendor:





Up Next: Meeting Shiriki Utundu
 

soniam

Wooden leg named Smith...
Joined
Jun 22, 2012
We are still hoping to go to Japan summer 2022. Fingers crossed. The first trip we considered, but not planned too much, was affected by the tsunami and subsequent nuclear accident. We have luck like that :rotfl2: Germany was very lovely the Sunday after 9/11, when we were supposed to be there on 9/12. Tube strikes in London are fun. Pope died while we were in Rome. We actually have been lucky too and have just looked at these circumstances as adventures, or challenges, or maybe features:sad2:
 
  • Flossbolna

    Sea days are just so relaxing!
    Joined
    Sep 8, 2006
    We are still hoping to go to Japan summer 2022. Fingers crossed. The first trip we considered, but not planned too much, was affected by the tsunami and subsequent nuclear accident. We have luck like that :rotfl2: Germany was very lovely the Sunday after 9/11, when we were supposed to be there on 9/12. Tube strikes in London are fun. Pope died while we were in Rome. We actually have been lucky too and have just looked at these circumstances as adventures, or challenges, or maybe features:sad2:
    Ok, I think I am going to request that you don’t go to Japan next summer as we are planning for the same time frame. And I really don’t want any other catastrophes happening the next few years!:scared1:;)

    But of course I hope that you will get an amazing and feature-free trip to Japan! We can’t wait to go back!
     

    dizneeat

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 9, 2006
    I have not been on here in ages. Life has just been a bit "different" lately, and that not only because of the Pandamic.
    Thank you for getting me excited about all things Disney again. Love reading your TRs!!! Finish them ALL! We all need the distraction. :thumbsup2
     

    Flossbolna

    Sea days are just so relaxing!
    Joined
    Sep 8, 2006
    I have not been on here in ages. Life has just been a bit "different" lately, and that not only because of the Pandamic.
    Thank you for getting me excited about all things Disney again. Love reading your TRs!!! Finish them ALL! We all need the distraction. :thumbsup2
    I really haven't been on the DIS much lately either. But planning for the fall has made me start to venture on here a few times... And I will try my best to give you loads of distraction!! :rotfl:
     
  • tink2424

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    May 28, 2019
    Just as a side note: Yes, Europapark is a wonderful theme park that has some recent additions that make a visit a really nice detour on a German vacation. It's just at the foot of the Black Forest (which despite its name is a mountain range) and was a big part of our pandemic summer vacation.
    Just found your trip report and can't wait to hear about the rest of your trip as I'm hoping to go to Tokyo in 2 years.

    I was booked for a trip to Europa Park for the end of September 2020 but of course couldn't go (I'm an American) but I'm planning on going this end of September/early October. The park looks beautiful and has a good amount of rides. Any tips? I have looked and there aren't a lot of websites devoted to Europa Park to peruse.
     

    Flossbolna

    Sea days are just so relaxing!
    Joined
    Sep 8, 2006
    Just found your trip report and can't wait to hear about the rest of your trip as I'm hoping to go to Tokyo in 2 years.

    I was booked for a trip to Europa Park for the end of September 2020 but of course couldn't go (I'm an American) but I'm planning on going this end of September/early October. The park looks beautiful and has a good amount of rides. Any tips? I have looked and there aren't a lot of websites devoted to Europa Park to peruse.
    :welcome: to my ancient trip report! I'll ask Michael to write up some tips for you about Europa Park, he always likes to tell people that they should visit there. Are you planning on staying in one of their hotels? And are you going to visit Rulantica as well?
     

    tink2424

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    May 28, 2019
    :welcome: to my ancient trip report! I'll ask Michael to write up some tips for you about Europa Park, he always likes to tell people that they should visit there. Are you planning on staying in one of their hotels? And are you going to visit Rulantica as well?
    Awesome! I will have to look for that trip report. Finding blogs about Europa Park is hard... 8-)

    Yes, staying on site at the Colosseo hotel. We will have 3 full days in Europa Park (thurs, fri & sun) and we are doing Rulantica on Saturday. We think we will rent a hygge as well for the day there for a splurge. It will be me & my sister (we are both in our early 40s) and we are both really looking forward to the day we finally get to go. Hopefully this year but if not we will come next year. Thanks in advance for any and all tips!
     

    Flossbolna

    Sea days are just so relaxing!
    Joined
    Sep 8, 2006
    Awesome! I will have to look for that trip report. Finding blogs about Europa Park is hard... 8-)

    Yes, staying on site at the Colosseo hotel. We will have 3 full days in Europa Park (thurs, fri & sun) and we are doing Rulantica on Saturday. We think we will rent a hygge as well for the day there for a splurge. It will be me & my sister (we are both in our early 40s) and we are both really looking forward to the day we finally get to go. Hopefully this year but if not we will come next year. Thanks in advance for any and all tips!
    I meant this one! It’s from 2017. 😉 We took notes on our first trip to EP, but never got around to write the report. But I will post something here as “bonus updates”.
     

    Tinkerbelle's Mom

    <font color=purple>Will clean houses for tags!<br>
    Joined
    Jan 8, 2007
    I am loving this trip report and so glad you have come back to it! I am hoping for a wonderful 50th birthday trip to visit TDR, Hong Kong, and Shanghai along with a few other stops. But... its not for a couple of years. However your trip reports is total inspiration and gives me more to look forward to!
     

    Captain_Oblivious

    DIS Dad #257, Galactic Salad Dodger
    Joined
    Nov 10, 2008
    upcoming visit to the resort in the swamps that has fired most of its staff and expects you to do everything with a smart phone while being yelled at by CMs, many who have had to deal with the worst of the worst Guests since reopening,
    Most Magical Place on Earth!

    That looks like it's worth a stop just for the theming. Incredible.

    There is a "secret" room behind some library shelves, but we did not end up dining in there. Which was fine, our table was quite nice!
    Any place with a secret door/room is good with me!

    But it was this menu page that made Michael truly happy: Look at the top line where it says under the price "free refill".
    It's the little things, I guess.

    But I do recall being thrilled as I likely had 3-4 Cokes since it was quite hot and then a couple of iced coffees.
    Now why would you let him have that much caffeine? You should know better by now!

    I sometimes do when having to explain German food in English as well.
    Some things you can't explain, like ruining perfectly good desserts with raisins.

    Going into my tenth month of pandemic living in our small provincial village (he is leaving out the vacations to the Black Forest and Denmark that we took last summer while most of Europe was nearly Covid-free during the summer months) after four months of being locked in a house or out in 90-plus degree weather in the swamps has got me wanting to go anywhere that isn't where our homes are located.
    Even Delaware?

    Their version is better than the current Disney version and basically a Soaring Over Europe deal, except their footage is real (except for one scene) and not mostly CGI like Disney. I do so still miss the original Soaring Over California, but that's another subject.
    Yes. Soarin' over California was so much better than the current version.

    BTW, I know what you readers are thinking right now: boy, did we miss these pearls of wisdom and intellectual observations.
    Yes, that's exactly what I was thinking.

    :rolleyes1
     

    Flossbolna

    Sea days are just so relaxing!
    Joined
    Sep 8, 2006
    I am loving this trip report and so glad you have come back to it! I am hoping for a wonderful 50th birthday trip to visit TDR, Hong Kong, and Shanghai along with a few other stops. But... its not for a couple of years. However your trip reports is total inspiration and gives me more to look forward to!
    Sounds like a great birthday trip. This trip in 2017 might have had a similar background! Not me though, I am a young spring chicken just like the Magic Kingdom! :rotfl:

    I am sure a lot of the practical aspects will have changed between 2017 and your trip, but I hope the magic in those parks will still be as lovely as it was when we were there!
     

    Flossbolna

    Sea days are just so relaxing!
    Joined
    Sep 8, 2006
    That looks like it's worth a stop just for the theming. Incredible.
    I think I said it before, but the whole park is one picture opportunity. You really need to build in time to just enjoy the views. And that volcano was even more dormant than it usually is, because the big ride in it was not working.

    Now why would you let him have that much caffeine? You should know better by now!
    Somehow he refuses to listen to me...

    Yes, that's exactly what I was thinking.

    :rolleyes1
    :rotfl2:I hear you. And I live with him!!
     

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