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  1. #1

    • insufferable know-it-all
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    A good walk spoiled

    What does Disneyland on a Saturday and golf have in common?
    A good walk spoiled.

    Why on earth would I post such a thing? It all started as a lovely morning suggestion by my guy that we head to the park just before 10am yesterday. Now usually we'd stop on the way and eat before hitting the park. We didn't. Mistake numero uno.

    We got to the park, and upon arriving at the DTD tram stop, immediately perceived a HUGE crowd in the form of a pin queue running the entire length of WOD, past the end and continuing on beyond the former watch store. Not in a position to determine whether it WAS a collectors line or the line for bag check (you never know these days), we decided to head for the monorail entrance instead. On our way in that direction, we finally uncovered that it was a pin trader (shudder!) line.

    We get to the other end of DTD and by this time my guy has decided it might be nice to catch a bite to eat at ESPN zone and watch more of the NFL draft. We get inside and are informed that the room they have open is full, so we'd have to sit at the bar, because the rest of ESPN zone doesn't open till later. Well, that sucked, but no worries, it was still only like 10:15. So we head over to Storyteller's, figuring a nice brunch there would be just the ticket. Well, we get there, and the place is PACKED, the entire wait area full, the walkway between the doors and the pool fence outside is also completely full of people waiting. So we're a little frustrated, because we like Storyteller's, but hey, we NEVER go into DCA, so we decide why not pop in there and dine somewhere inside. We go to the gate, and the CM won't let us use it, despite the complete lack of a line because we aren't hotel guests. Nope, we're just guests trying desperately to spend money at a restaurant, and that apparently isn't good enough.

    By now, we're a little miffed. Heading back toward the tram area, we get a better look at the bag check gate. Doesn't look too bad, so we decided we might as well give in-park dining a shot since we're there. We get into DL, pick up Buzz fastpasses, and I suggest R2P2, but my guy didn't want pizza (we'd had it the other night). I point out to him that R2P2 pizza is deplorable and NOT the reason to eat there - it's the pasta you want. Ah, but he doesn't like their pasta. So we breeze by Tomorrowland Terrace, figuring we can at least pick up a quick bite there, even though it's not exactly a sit-down meal like we'd been pursuing. No dice, over half the dining area is walled off, and they have service limited to one line, two windows, and guess what... the line is long.

    Well, let's hope the train and head over to New Orleans Square. We do. French Market is PACKED, line way out the door. Cafe Orleans is CLOSED. We head over to Blue Bayou. Now, mind you, it was like 10:30ish at this point, maybe 10:40. Blue Bayou isn't even open, save for the one window with a CM taking reservations for the day. We stand IN LINE for this window... and when we get up there, we're informed that they had completely filled up on ressies for THE DAY, and they weren't opening till later, so it's not like we could have stood in line for it. Someone want to explain to me why the CM allowed people to wait in line to be told they couldn't get a ressie?

    By now, we're quite pissed. We were walking over the Pirates bridge and noticing the HUGE crowd in line for it - including the roped off queue on the front side, completely full. And they announce that it's broken down, so we jet out of the area before the crowd disperses, and head straight down Main Street. Carnation Cafe - PACKED. Queue full, line spilling out onto the sidewalk. We get out of the park, and the lines for DCA had died down. We were STARVING at this point, having walked so far in search of an open restaurant that didn't have an hour wait. I suggest Trattoria and we head in that direction - CLOSED. After zipping through the tortilla exhibit (thank god I could get food somewhere!), we notice that the cruddy little soup and salad place in the food court area (Cannery Row area) has a line OUT THE DOOR. Now, mind you, they have a large queue area and a teeny menu of mostly salads. My guy comments on the fact that he's never seen the Chinese place open at all, ever. He's never tried Ariel's Grotto, so he suggests going there. We walk over the bridge to Ariel's and it's CLOSED.

    We finally gave up. It was not even noon yet and every restaurant worth eating at (notice that we were trying to eat at one of the nicer places, not burgers) was either PACKED or CLOSED.

    There's no excuse for packed restaurants if you haven't bothered to open the other places. My take on this is here we were, ready to spend decent money on a meal, and Disney didn't want our money badly enough to provide a pleasant dining experience for us. If they had, they'd have had more restaurants open on a crowded Saturday. There is absolutely no excuse for this. Disney guests pay a premium for Disney dining in anticipation of a pleasant dining experience - not in walking for nearly two hours in search of an open place or for waiting over an hour for our shot at a tiny table in a crowded place to be rushed (excuse me, proactively bussed) through our meal. There is also no excuse for building one more dining location if they aren't going to open the ones they have - ON A SATURDAY! Like the crowds were a surprise?

    You can either have high prices or long waits, not both.

    So we left the park and drove to Knott's.

    Unusually and exceedingly peculiar and altogether quite impossible to describe...



  2. #2

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    Disneyland's dining situation has infuriated me to the point of foaming at the mouth on more than one occasion, always because of closed restaurants. They are almost encouraging people to pack their own meals it seems. There is a definite disconnect between their desire to extract as much money from visitors as they can and providing people a place to do it. The left hand isn't talking to the right, obviously.

  3. #3

    • insufferable know-it-all
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    Yes, exactly. It's like they don't really want our money. This was the first time in a very long while that my boyfriend was actually willing to dine on property, and we got thwarted at every turn. Ariel's, Cafe Orleans, Trattoria... closed? On a Saturday? When all the other sit-downs are packed? Why?

    Unusually and exceedingly peculiar and altogether quite impossible to describe...



  4. #4

    • For old time sake
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    What i don't understand is Disney has restaurants in the Grand CA. Fine. But don't deny non hotel guests the right to eat there just because they are not staying in the hotel itself. I can understand this on days like New Years Eve and all, but on a busy day??? Hmmmmm. Another thing too, is I know they are getting ready for the 50th but I noticed there are ALOT of places closed which only creates, as you said longer lines and irritable hungry people. Makes for a magical experience doesn't it???
    Katie
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  5. #5

    • Feel the breeze!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Disneykat
    What i don't understand is Disney has restaurants in the Grand CA. Fine. But don't deny non hotel guests the right to eat there just because they are not staying in the hotel itself. I can understand this on days like New Years Eve and all, but on a busy day??? Hmmmmm. Another thing too, is I know they are getting ready for the 50th but I noticed there are ALOT of places closed which only creates, as you said longer lines and irritable hungry people. Makes for a magical experience doesn't it???
    You are able to eat at the hotels if you do not stay there, DK.

    Gah! I said this all wrong!
    Last edited by Gwyren; 04-25-2005 at 01:18 PM.

  6. #6

    • For old time sake
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gwyren
    You are able to eat at the hotels if you stay there, DK.

    Yes and if you don't??? THere are a coupke restaurants in the Grand CA that, if they ahve a CM at the gate that leads to the hotel entrance (from DTD), us regular visitors cannot eat at. WHat I am saying is: On New Years Eve you culd not even get to those restaurants cause the place was closed off to guests only. Understandable, I know
    Katie
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  7. #7

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    Perhaps you misunderstand me.... we tried eating at Storyteller's in the Grand Cal, and it was full. We couldn't get through the DCA gate INTO DCA to look for a restaurant there, because we were neither hotel guests, nor had we already entered a gate that day. I get their reasoning, but it seems stupid to do when all a guest wants to do is spend money at the resort. Instead they angered us, and we didn't spend a dime. Then they complain that APs don't spend enough

    Unusually and exceedingly peculiar and altogether quite impossible to describe...



  8. #8

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    Interesting though. We stayed at the paradise peir recently...then walked across the street to Grand CAl, and when through the gate no problem (even though they said Grand Cal guest only and had a cm there). But we didn't say anything, and just swiped our pass and went into DCA no problem. I didn't think it would work, but alas it did! Sneaky sneaky!
    Marge: Barnacle Bill's Home Pregnancy Test? Homer, shouldn't we have gone with a better-known brand?
    Homer: But Marge, this one came with a corn-cob pipe!
    Marge: [reading from the test box] "Ahoy, Maties! If the water turns blue, a baby for you! If purple ye see, no baby thar be!"
    Homer: So, which is it? Blue or purple?
    Marge: Pink.
    Homer: D'oh!
    Marge: "If ye test should fail, to a doctor set sail!"

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cuzco-topia
    Interesting though. We stayed at the paradise peir recently...then walked across the street to Grand CAl, and when through the gate no problem (even though they said Grand Cal guest only and had a cm there). But we didn't say anything, and just swiped our pass and went into DCA no problem. I didn't think it would work, but alas it did! Sneaky sneaky!
    I have done this as well Cuzco. I think they will let anyone staying at a property hotel in through that gate.

    DK, my earlier post stated the exact opposite of what I wished to state. I apologize for that.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gwyren
    I have done this as well Cuzco. I think they will let anyone staying at a property hotel in through that gate.

    DK, my earlier post stated the exact opposite of what I wished to state. I apologize for that.
    Yes, but they didn't know we were hotel guest at all. Never asked, never told.
    Marge: Barnacle Bill's Home Pregnancy Test? Homer, shouldn't we have gone with a better-known brand?
    Homer: But Marge, this one came with a corn-cob pipe!
    Marge: [reading from the test box] "Ahoy, Maties! If the water turns blue, a baby for you! If purple ye see, no baby thar be!"
    Homer: So, which is it? Blue or purple?
    Marge: Pink.
    Homer: D'oh!
    Marge: "If ye test should fail, to a doctor set sail!"

  11. #11

    • For old time sake
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gwyren
    I have done this as well Cuzco. I think they will let anyone staying at a property hotel in through that gate.

    DK, my earlier post stated the exact opposite of what I wished to state. I apologize for that.

    No problem, I read too fast therefore responded before really looking again at it. I've never stayed at a DLR hotel!!!!!!
    Katie
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  12. #12

    • insufferable know-it-all
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    they allow non-guests through that gate (eg: ENTERING dca) after 1pm.

    It's still stupid to punish people for trying to eat at their restaurants.

    But this is straying too far from the point: the point is, not enough good restaurants open, the ones that are are too full to eat at. You can either have long lines or high prices, not both.

    Unusually and exceedingly peculiar and altogether quite impossible to describe...



  13. #13

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    I can't speak for foods, but I know there are always LOTS of CM call outs. The crowds this weekend were a bit unexpected, because it's the end of the 2fer tix. IMO, even though Disney knows how many of those tix were sold and used, they're not going to beef up the scheduled CMs "assuming" that all the outstanding tix will be used on one day or another. We pretty much had the same amount of CMs scheduled, but then had tremendous attendance. Maybe foods had to cut back for the same reason.

  14. #14

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    seenoevil: in Walt's day, nothing was closed when the park was open.

    Unusually and exceedingly peculiar and altogether quite impossible to describe...



  15. #15

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    I'm sure that's so, but unfortunately, people's work ethics have changed since then (CM call outs), as have many people's consideration for others (they don't care if you stood in line for nothing). It sure didn't help your situation by being hungry! Maybe you were really in BizarroDisney! I hope you have a better time next time!

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