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  1. #1

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    My first Trip Report - Club 33: OFF the Bucket List


    In the mid-80's, when I was about 15 or 16, I heard about this legendary and
    exclusive club hidden in Disneyland built by Walt to treat his park sponsors to
    an elegant lunch or dinner away from the crowds. Dubbed Club 33 sometime after
    Disney's passing, it was the only place in the park that would serve alcohol.
    Memberships ran into the many thousands of dollars. I'd try to imagine what it
    looked like inside ever since. Having worked there for a short time, it was one
    of the few places in Disneyland I had never been. It's pretty much been on my
    "Bucket List" for almost 30 years. As a teenager, I'd daydream sometimes about
    taking Mary, my high school crush, there with me. We've since become a live-in
    couple, raising a very energetic toddler named Ean.

    Last Saturday, June 29th, this heartfelt and seemingly impossible dream came
    true. With the help of a longtime friend with a connection (identity withheld), I was able to take
    her there for her birthday.

    It was dicey day to start with. My love simply did not feel like getting up that
    morning. We'd had a choppy night with the little one, who is battling the
    dreaded teething monster. I knew that if we missed this window - well, that
    would be very bad. A lot of planning had gone into this and a lot of effort
    spent to keep her from knowing what the actual docket was. She simply believed
    our destination was the Blue Bayou, which is where we had treated one another to
    lunch for our Birthdays since 2009.

    News reports, as some of you Californians might be aware, were already calling
    the weekend the hottest in a decade. This made the prospect of a full park day a
    little trying, but it had an effect apparently of keeping the crowds very light.
    I'm used to seeing waaaay more people than what we saw walking down Main Street.
    However, even with the ease with which we entered, we still made our way hastily
    to the air-conditioned comfort of the Lincoln Theater.



    Ean is at that wonderful age where even though he has been here a couple dozen
    times with us, each visit is like his first. He hasn't seen everything in the
    parks yet, so each day is a new adventure for him.





    We then took him on his first Snow White Scary Adventure.



    And then tried to keep him from eating an Apprentice Mickey merchandise display
    in Frontierland (what this is doing in Frontierland and not Fantasyland is
    another thread).



    Actually it was in this gift shop that we accidentally ran
    into the friends that were to get us into 33. The plan was to take Mary over to
    the Blue Bayou at the time of our appointment and "coincidentally" run into
    them. Then head into the club. I had to feign surprise right then and there on
    the spot and about them being in the park at the same time as us.

    In order to keep up the illusion, I invited them to join us for lunch at the
    Bayou and pretended to get on my cell to Disney Dining to "change the
    reservation". Mary didn't believe in a million years that this was possible (and
    it may very well not be) but I convinced her that it had been done.
    From here, it was time to head over. I really wish I had the camera out to get
    the look on her face when we started entering the door next to the door.




    She looked around the foyer, taking in the detail. I wanted to soak it in with
    her but I decided that since it was her birthday that I would focus on keeping
    Ean, who decided that he was not going to be held, from getting into too much
    trouble.




    He decided that he wanted to literally hit on the hostess. He climbed the short
    flight of stairs to her post next to the French elevator and repeatedly tapped
    her arm. This kid simply has no fear.



    All of us save for one were able to fit into the tiny elevator to ascend to the
    meal both Mary and I had only fantasized of to this point. Of course, once we
    were on the second level above NOS, Ean went into full exploratory mode. He
    wanted to see everything, and really so did I.








    "The old man's gonna knock on the sky. Listen to the sound."

    AP'er since 2004. Yup.....I'm one of THEM.

  2. #2

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    Re: My first Trip Report - Club 33: OFF the Bucket List

    Sounds like you obtained what so many of us long for and it turned out well. Good for you!
    Here You Leave Today and Enter the World of Yesterday, Tomorrow, and Fantasy.

    “To all who come to this happy place; welcome. Disneyland is your land. Here age relives fond memories of the past...and here youth may savor the challenge and promise of the future. Disneyland is dedicated to the ideals, the dreams and the hard facts that have created America...with the hope that it will be a source of joy and inspiration to all the world.” - Walt Disney, Disneyland Opening Day Speech 1955


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  3. #3

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    Re: My first Trip Report - Club 33: OFF the Bucket List

    Continued

    The elegance of this place was like nothing I had ever seen at the Parks, with
    the possible exception of the Napa Rose. Not even the multitude of picture I
    had seen before over the years online really prepared me for seeing it all in the
    flesh. I couldn't even steady myself for picture taking half the time.







    The appetizer and dessert bars were absolutely outrageous, and really did help
    to explain the 80.00 a plate lunch charge. Not only were the entrees just by
    themselves incredible (I highly recommend the Chateaubriand), but the idea
    that you could just coming back to get this stuff floored me. I've since changed
    my middle-name to "Shrimp-Breath".






    Mary's birthday dessert was nothing short of amazing. About the size of half a
    baseball, this lump of pure chocolate evil was just about the best thing I'd
    ever tasted....and this is coming from a man who worships at the Reese's altar.




    After 2.5 hours though of sampling, chatting, sipping coffee and then taking the
    kids outside to "hulk-out", it was clearly time to end this long-awaited
    realization of a dream that few have had. I was immensely grateful to my friend
    for making this happen for Mary and myself, and allowing me also to share this
    experience with my son. We could've stayed in that wonderful AC all day, but
    Ean was done. We made a quick exist upon paying the bill, which had the
    unfortunate effect of me forgetting to buy souvenirs and I also forgot to keep
    the pen with which I signed the check.



    Oh well, here's to hoping there is a next time.


    ......And hoping that we can get a babysitter.


    "The old man's gonna knock on the sky. Listen to the sound."

    AP'er since 2004. Yup.....I'm one of THEM.

  4. #4

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    Re: My first Trip Report - Club 33: OFF the Bucket List

    Quote Originally Posted by Acpisme View Post
    Sounds like you obtained what so many of us long for and it turned out well. Good for you!
    Thank you, and yes - fortune smiled on me and my family.
    "The old man's gonna knock on the sky. Listen to the sound."

    AP'er since 2004. Yup.....I'm one of THEM.

  5. #5

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    Re: My first Trip Report - Club 33: OFF the Bucket List

    How wonderful! I've been lucky enough to have dinner there, and it was a magical experience! Thanks for sharing your adventure and the pictures! I hope you also get a chance to go again, so you can get those souvenirs!




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    all you need to know about the mommy stick is.. out of all the bad things that could happen to you... it's right between wetting yourself and death.

  6. #6

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    Re: My first Trip Report - Club 33: OFF the Bucket List

    Great trip report! Thanks for sharing! Your baby is too adorable. Hopefully, he'll remember his first Club 33 experience when he's older!

  7. #7

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    Re: My first Trip Report - Club 33: OFF the Bucket List

    So glad you had a great time! I've been dreaming of that Chateaubriand since we had it almost 6 months ago... the BEST! Thank you for sharing your wonderful experience.

    Thank you to Poisonedapples for my awesome signature!
    KellyMcG86's Disneyland To Do List

  8. #8

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    Re: My first Trip Report - Club 33: OFF the Bucket List

    Sounds like you had an awesome time! You are a brave soul with the toddler. My hat goes of to you. Glad you made it and that the celebration was a hit. I heard they are going to close later this summer for a renovation, so perfect timing. Bummer on the souvenirs...

  9. #9

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    Re: My first Trip Report - Club 33: OFF the Bucket List

    Quote Originally Posted by KellyMcG86 View Post
    So glad you had a great time! I've been dreaming of that Chateaubriand since we had it almost 6 months ago... the BEST! Thank you for sharing your wonderful experience.
    Thanks Kelly.....and hey, did you notice the highchair in the pic?

    Quote Originally Posted by KiMcHeEfOrLiFe View Post
    Great trip report! Thanks for sharing! Your baby is too adorable. Hopefully, he'll remember his first Club 33 experience when he's older!
    Thanks for the kind comment about the little dude. I hope he does remember, but in case he doesn't, I'll always have the pics to prove that he once got in.
    "The old man's gonna knock on the sky. Listen to the sound."

    AP'er since 2004. Yup.....I'm one of THEM.

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