- Nov 6, 2014
Thanks for sharing your amazing trip with us!
The burger looks really delicious!I ordered the Lobster Thermidore Burger
I have always wondered about this on the menu, I would get this if I ever go to GF cafe!This burger was NOT one of those pre-made things. It was real, actual ground beef. It tasted fresh and was juicy and perfect. The lobster was so tender and buttery, the sauce was incredible...it was just the perfect combination
This is so true! I always tell Andi look at those people how dare they be so happy just starting their vacation haha!
My favorite. I was sad when it was gone from Aloha Isle! So glad it is backA vanilla pineapple swirl will always be my favorite Dole Whip!!
That is wonderful! Holidays and Spring break can be scary! Glad you learned what didn’t work the year before and had a better plan!I am no longer afraid of New Year's Eve at WDW, it is completely manageable. We learned so much after last year, and this year could not have gone better on the actual NYE holiday
I agree totally! Thank you for the fun report, I will be waiting for the next one!There is nowhere else I feel so unconcerned with the outside world, and can really ignore reality and just BE. You know?
We dined there in 2010 and absolutely LOVED it. It is an one of a kind experience, very elegant but not stuffy. The staff really make you feel comfortable. The food is beyond amazing. I would definitely go for it if you have an opportunity to do so.Have you been to V&A's before? The owner of DH's company who got the VIP guide for us has offered to get V&A reservations for us in June. We're torn about accepting.
Now I want to make a bunch of those tea cup cosies!
Love this pin!This is a tiki bird from the Adventureland Tsum Tsum pin set, and I was excited to find her!!
That looks yummy!I started with the Grand Mimosa: Champagne, Orange Juice, and a Splash of Grand Marnier
Pretty uninspired plating......and one sad strawberry? What's up with that?These were fine, if a little boring. The kids ate all of it, but were kind of underwhelmed.
Your meals look awesome!He enjoyed this, but I think he was jealous of my burger. It was just hard to beat that burger, it was perfect!
I need those pens in my life!At the regular gift shop I did pick up a package of fun ball point pens that look like pens you'd get at an insurance agency or hotel or something. They say things like Madame Leota Psychic Medium and Seadog Bail Bonds, like they're advertising for a company. They make me happy when I use them!!
yummy!A vanilla pineapple swirl will always be my favorite Dole Whip!!
It totally is the bench of shame!
Yes, I know and I feel exactly the same. It is my happiest of all happy places.Disney World has been my happiest of happy places since my first visit in 2001. There's a reason it's called the Most Magical Place on Earth. For me that rings absolutely true. I fully admit a lot of it is pure escapism. There is nowhere else I feel so unconcerned with the outside world, and can really ignore reality and just BE. You know?
That is a big mimosa, too!
4 months is pretty good, I think....The smoothie went onto the plane with me as we headed home. We landed. It was cold. We went home. The end.
Yep, the end. We made it!! It only took like four months to write
I will come back with one last wrap up post, and then that's all folks!!
Thanks for such a fun trip report.Good morning!! The kids are back at school today, finally. Kind of weird to be a full week into January before sending them back. X has a rearranged schedule b/c of his electives, so I'm hoping nothing crazy happens and he makes it everywhere ok.
I came home from WDW with a cold (luckily it didn't hit until on the way home!), so I've been really dragging the last couple of days, but trying to still get things put back to normal around the house. I've managed most of the laundry, but my house is still Christmasy. I've got a meeting in a couple hours, but hoping to get some of it put away this afternoon.
I thought I'd pop in and do a really short update of our arrival and first day...our dinner for this night will be its own thing.
Chapter Two: Throwing plans out the window. Or into the Pool.
So we had finally arrived at the Polynesian!!
I always think the Poly lacks in its Christmas decorations, but today they were the most beautiful things I'd ever seen!!
As soon as we got our bags from under the bus, I went to the check in desk to see if they could do anything about a room for us - we were willing to take anything, we just wanted to shower!!
**a note on our luggage: The night before, one bag had already been sent to Orlando. The other three were held in cold storage at the Atlanta airport. After I walked away from the lost luggage lady and DH took over that conversation, she reassured him that our bags WOULD end up in Orlando at some point on our arrival day, maybe even on our flight. We knew there was nothing we could do about the bag already in Orlando, but we were really anxious about the others. When we boarded the flight to MCO, I got an alert on the Delta app that our bags had been loaded on our plane!! I was so relieved!! Once we landed at MCO, we grabbed them from the carousel and went to check on the fourth bag - they told us it was already at the Polynesian!! We didn't use the yellow tags, so I have no idea how they knew?? Maybe from the regular luggage tag on the suitcase? It was a Disney tag and had our names on it, so maybe they checked it with Disney reservations when no one picked it up the night before?? Whatever it was, I was happy for that bit of Disney magic!**
It was just after 11:00 when we arrived, and the CM at the front desk said they'd make a note to give us the first room that became available. I told her my previous requests (Rarotonga third floor) didn't matter, we just wanted anything. She was sympathetic to our exhaustion, and I felt confident we'd get into a room soon.
DH wanted to go change clothes since we now had our luggage, and while he did that I stopped in to BouTiki and picked up some Potion Purple ears. I swore I wasn't going to buy more ears...oops.
DH came back, and we all decided our first priority was food!! We'd figure everything else out after that.
We paid a visit to Captain Cook's, and I didn't get a single picture of the food I did get a picture of this tiki, though
I had the Polynesian Salad, L had the pork fried rice, X had the pepperoni flatbread, and DH had the pulled pork nachos. We felt like new people once we'd finished!!
I never get room ready texts for some reason (even though they always take my phone number, and it's already on file anyway) but I do get emails, so as we were leaving I checked to see if we'd been assigned a room. Yes! We had! Our check in CM had come through for us!!
And better yet??
It was 3rd floor Rarotonga, just like I'd wanted!! We had the best room location ever, 3801, right off the elevator and close to EVERYTHING.
Scruffy post-flight excited selfie:
Some room pics:
I know a common complaint is that the Polynesian rooms are starting to look tired and worn, and after my October 2017 trip I'd have agreed, but this room in particular looked great!
We had booked a garden view room, and I have no idea if this room was actually garden view or pool view, but here's what we could see from our balcony:
To the right:
And to the left, zoomed in a little:
I had to zoom in, come on! That view of the Grand Floridian is awesome!
We were thrilled to just BE somewhere, and be comfortable!!
Our plans were to spend the day at Epcot, seeing the last Festival of the Holidays day. Sadly, we'd already missed two of our fast passes, and even though I'd been trying to swap them all day the day before while we were stuck in the airport, I had no luck. We made the decision to skip the park altogether and just spend the whole day at the pool.
We have NEVER done this before!!
L and I got our suits on and went down to find chairs, DH came down not long after, and eventually X joined us.
The roaming waiter stopped by and dropped off a menu for us, and we spent the next few hours relaxing!
I had two Pago Pago Painkillers: Myer's Original Dark Rum, Orange Juice, Pineapple Juice, and Cream of Coconut
I think this was my favorite drink of the trip, I had at least one more during the week.
DH had a Lapu Lapu (minus the pineapple), and a Frosty Pineapple: Pineapple DOLE WHIP® blended with Captain Morgan Private Stock Rum
L had the Lava Smoothie, which was raspberry puree and frozen cream of coconut and pineapple juice. I LOVED this and had my own on our last day.
This was one of the best days ever. It was so nice to sit and relax. I never relax, I am just terrible at it. At home, if I "relax", I'm usually still thinking about everything I SHOULD be doing instead. It was just what we all needed after such a crazy travel day.
That's all for right now!! The next update will be our first dinner of the trip: The new Snow White dinner at Artist Point!!
Have a great Tuesday!!
Same!We started to head on in, but before we got to the tapstiles, I noticed some special friends over to the side. I ALWAYS miss out on characterpaloozas and character trainings b/c of timing
My favorite...though no one will ride with me.
One of my husband's faves.We had some time to kill before our next Fast Pass, so we decided to visit the Muppets again
Oh no!When we exited Muppets 3D it was POURING rain
My oldest son's favorite...and one of the few rides I refuse. Me + simulators = mostly a big fat NO. Though I love Soarin' and will try FOP in June (with Bonine and Sea Bands, of course).Luckily our destination wasn't far, so when it came time to dash through the rain we weren't dashing very far
I haven't done this one in awhile but we have an ADR for July.SciFi is one of my all time favorite Disney restaurants, I don't think you can beat the atmosphere.
I have an 8pm one scheduled for June. I hope it is dark enough.After dinner, it was time to head toward Toy Story Land and our Slinky Dog Dash fast pass. I was happy to ride it on our VIP day, but was REALLY looking forward to riding it in the dark.
Can't wait to see all this stuff in November!
I so want to see TSL at night but we always do Fantasmic one night and the Star Wars fireworks the other.The lights in TSL were so pretty!!
My DH and I really enjoy it as well. I am making the boys try it in June.I just love this little coaster!!
Same!Our last park night is always bittersweet!
Very nice.It was a Frye handbag I'd had my eye on for a long time.
Xavier reminded me of what it DOES smell like - "fresh air" scented trash bags Now it's all I can think of.
Definitely do. Though it is hard because there are so many treats to try at MK. I hate to keep going back to the same ones.Ugh, that's what several people have said. I may have to give it another shot
Yeh, I think that was the issue. I want to try the totchos at Woody's Lunchbox, though I have heard the Grill Cheese is so good. Maybe both???I can see how them getting cold and soggy would make them not as good. We all ate at the same time and they were crispy and the meat and everything on top hadn't had the chance to soak in and make them turn gloppy.
Yeh, it usually ends up working out after some tweaking, right?Yay!! We did too aside from timing on our first park day (Epcot). I'll play with that day a little more over the coming weeks, and hopefully will make it work better.
Hopefully they will be there when you go but if not, yes, get that sucker back! HAHAI didn't realize that, oh no! I hadn't seen anyone else with one, boo!! DH is changing offices soon, so I may just tell him that one might need to find its way back to our house, LOL
I love the coffee cup quotes.
I really want to try this spot. I think we might be trying Kona in Aug and The Wave in Oct but I need to get this scheduled somewhere.We were just a little early for our reservation at the Grand Floridian Cafe. This has become one of my favorite breakfast/brunch restaurants on property.
Good to know!I mean, usually a mimosa is a mimosa, but this is one of the best I've had.
Sounds yummy!I ordered the Lobster Thermidore Burger: Artisanal 7-oz Burger Patty and Lobster-Parmesan Thermidor Sauce on a Seared Brioche Bun served with Cafe Signature Seasoned French Fries
Well, of course, you do!Cold or not, once we got back to the Polynesian, everyone decided we needed a farewell Dole Whip
It was definitely a sign!I laughed when I saw this picture - the lights above the sign are glaring and make it look like some angelic glow shining down from the heavens upon the delicious frosty pineapple goodness
I love that pin!I made the trade from the board inside Boutiki after I picked up my traditional resort pin (we try to get resort pins and/or magnets each time. sometimes we don't but I'd say 90% of the time we do)
One of my DH's faves. Of course, he is from Louisiana so it probably makes sense. LOLOnce in Atlanta, we had time to get dinner, and settled on Popeyes
Of course we absolutely LOVE WL. It's our DVC home. But I cannot wait to )hopefully) try out the Poly in June 2021.now I think the Polynesian is tied for second place with Animal Kingdom Lodge as favorite resort. Wilderness Lodge will always and forever be #1.
It was kind of sad to end it, but now I get to go back and read through it to relive it myself!! That's part of the fun for me, lol!! Yes to more trips...and I'll probably start a combo PTR for both of them pretty soon!!Oh how sad to see this report come to an end But I know you have some more fun trips lined up!
Your last day sounds good. I love the GF pics! And of course you needed one more dole whip before you left!!
That pic on the plane home is gorgeous!! Such a pretty sky!
Aw, thank YOU for following along. I love having the TRs as a way to remember our trips, so I will probably always write themThanks for sharing your amazing trip with us!
This one is over, but a new adventure will begin soon!! You know I'll be looking to see if you're working on my next two trips!! I won't let any resting villain face scare me away, LOL!!And it's over. Sadness. Glad it was overall a good trip and I hope you'll be able to watch the fireworks from atop the treehouse one day!
it was the best burger!! Maybe I was just really hungry, but I don' think so - i feel like it really was THAT good.The burger looks really delicious!
I have always wondered about this on the menu, I would get this if I ever go to GF cafe!
This is so true! I always tell Andi look at those people how dare they be so happy just starting their vacation haha!
My favorite. I was sad when it was gone from Aloha Isle! So glad it is back
That is wonderful! Holidays and Spring break can be scary! Glad you learned what didn’t work the year before and had a better plan!
I agree totally! Thank you for the fun report, I will be waiting for the next one!
I'm glad you enjoyed it!! I complain about getting behind in writing sometimes, but I really enjoy writing them (and going back to read them from time to time!!)I loved reading your trip report. Thanks so much for sharing.
You may have convinced me to try and work it in soon!!We dined there in 2010 and absolutely LOVED it. It is an one of a kind experience, very elegant but not stuffy. The staff really make you feel comfortable. The food is beyond amazing. I would definitely go for it if you have an opportunity to do so.
Thank you!! We definitely felt the Polynesian magic this time around!!I very much enjoyed your trip report. The Polynesian will always be our #1!
I love using them, especially on iced tea or coffee drinks - they catch all the drips from the sweating cup!Now I want to make a bunch of those tea cup cosies!
Love this pin!
That looks yummy!
Pretty uninspired plating......and one sad strawberry? What's up with that?
Your meals look awesome!
I need those pens in my life!
It totally is the bench of shame!
Yes, I know and I feel exactly the same. It is my happiest of all happy places.
Thank you!What a lovely trip and a great trip report! I'm impressed that you braved Disney World during the New Year's holiday - I love going at less busy times, but I think it can be done successfully with proper planning. Even when your plans changed it seems you did a great job of making everything work smoothly (without resorting to acting like the people who yelled about not being seated quickly without an ADR or about their "missing" Fastpasses - what is wrong with people?!). I'm also impressed you included so much relaxation, going-with-the-flow, and pool time. It's so hard (especially for us DISboarders!) to do that, but it really makes for a nicer overall vacation.
I'm pretty excited to see Toy Story land - I'm glad you loved it! Thank you for all the wonderful pictures (both here and throughout your entire report!).
I was quite sad when I heard they'd changed Artist Point to the Snow White dinner - Artist Point was one of my favorite restaurants from my last two trips. I was especially excited to bring my husband (a big national park fan - therefore perhaps a Wilderness Lodge fan?). I will still miss the Portobello soup (SO GOOD!), but your very positive review gives me pause on brushing off the restaurant altogether. We'll see!
I may need to consider breakfast at Garden Grill! My only PPO breakfast at Epcot has been Akershus (which I really enjoy - I adore the lingonberry cream cheese!), but that cinnamon roll skillet looks AMAZING. My cinnamon roll-loving husband would LOVE that!
Your VIP tour sounded amazing! I'm glad you grew to like your guide - and that he did such a great job getting you to all your must-dos. What a great way to do four parks in one day - and with prime viewing for the fireworks, to boot! It's too bad your son missed out on a lot of the fun.
Your tour at Animal Kingdom also sounded great. I'd love to do another tour one day, and several of the Animal Kingdom options sound enticing. I love Animal Kingdom more and more each time I visit - it's becoming one of my favorite parks! (Also, do try and have lunch or dinner at Yak and Yeti sometime - it's fantastic!)
Thanks again for the wonderful report! I'm glad your family had such a wonderful vacation!
I know! Even better!!That is a big mimosa, too!
4 months is pretty good, I think....
Thank you for reading!! I had a lot of fun writing it!Thanks for such a fun trip report.
Right?? I could not believe how windy it was!! It is windy here at home quite a bit, and will blow even our heavier lawn furniture across the yard, and the wind that night was worse than that.Wow!
Aw, well if we're in the same place at the same time, I will ride with you!!My favorite...though no one will ride with me.
I notice that each year it makes me feel a little sicker each time I never had a problem with motion sickness until we went to Universal a few years ago. All the simulator rides really did a number on me, and now I feel it on Star Tours. FOP doesn't bother me much, and my mom who gets very motion sick after going through chemo, had great luck with sea bands when I took her!!My oldest son's favorite...and one of the few rides I refuse. Me + simulators = mostly a big fat NO. Though I love Soarin' and will try FOP in June (with Bonine and Sea Bands, of course).
I just want to try everythingYeh, I think that was the issue. I want to try the totchos at Woody's Lunchbox, though I have heard the Grill Cheese is so good. Maybe both???
It's so hard to choose! I admit, I picked GF Cafe b/c it's a favorite of mine. DH likes Tonga Toast but was content to just get some at Captain Cooks, but I did feel some guilt not booking Kona. Everyone says good things about The Wave breakfast, so I might try it sometime...our dinner there was just ok. Not bad, just not anything exceptional.I really want to try this spot. I think we might be trying Kona in Aug and The Wave in Oct but I need to get this scheduled somewhere.
The Lodge is the BEST!! But I do hope 2021 at the Poly works out for you, and that you enjoy it as much as we did this time around!!Of course we absolutely LOVE WL. It's our DVC home. But I cannot wait to )hopefully) try out the Poly in June 2021.
Thanks for sharing the trip!
Oh my gosh, I was terrible about keeping up with WRITING it, and I'm behind on literally every trip report I'm even halfway reading, LOL!! I'm always impressed by people who can keep up because I am NOT one of themLoved reading about your trip even though I was terrible about keeping up and commenting I just recently booked us Backstage Magic for June 21st! The whole Tiffin's/ROL really sealed the deal for me.
Well isn't that... appropriate?!I laughed when I saw this picture - the lights above the sign are glaring and make it look like some angelic glow shining down from the heavens upon the delicious frosty pineapple goodness
That's a perfect name for that bench. And they are wise to put it away from the smiling, happy guests just arriving... I always find myself looking over there longingly... and depressingly...
OMG! That's an awesome tip! I'd never thought of that.
I'm so happy to hear this. I am booked there for August!Mama Melrose deserves a mention for restaurants. I don't know if I'd call it a favorite, but definitely a solid choice. I was so, so pleasantly surprised by how good our food was here.
Yep, we sure do!There is nowhere else I feel so unconcerned with the outside world, and can really ignore reality and just BE. You know?