Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Day 5 at Disney World: Lights, camera, go home the lines are too long

I’d have to say that the Disney Hollywood Studios Park (formerly known as Disney MGM Studios) was my favourite theme park in terms of the architectural style and configuration of the park. I loved the look of it. R says it was bought by Disney recently. It really had the look of 30s and 40s old Hollywood in the design of the stores that were meant to resemble diners, old cinemas, soda fountains, California style hotels, etc … and of course were full of a great deal of the Disney junk.
I rushed into a store resembling a small town cinema (just gorgeous outside) in anticipation because it proclaimed it had classic film memorabilia for “all the stars” and found a whole bunch of teenage clothing and paraphernalia on Miley Cyrus and the Jonas Bros (ech!). What a let down!
And it was still a challenge getting on the rides. There was the 15 minute Little Mermaid Show in a seacave like, small auditorium for the younguns (fairly entertaining), the Great Movie Ride which is a slow, somewhat dated, ride through various old movie sets and scenarios with a cheesy hostess narrating the whole thing and the frighteningly fast Rock'n'Rollercoaster.
This last ride has a great premise: you enter a sort of recording studio and are addressed in a video by the rock band Aerosmith welcoming you as if you are visiting them while they are recording. Illeanna Douglas, the actress, plays their manager and the band asks her to rent a limo to accommodate their "friends" (us - the viewers of the video). The coaster is very fast and takes off like a bullet. I almost bolted from the ride as I was a bit intimidated. The ride inside a tunnel is very black and psychedelic and pumps this super loud rock music during a fairly short, intense ride. I have to admit my eyes were closed for most of it!
Finally there was some merchandise that J liked in the stores: a skull and crossbones necklace (!), a black toque, a stuffed Dumbo (this was her first Disney character on film when she was two) and new sunglasses for me as I had lost the ones I brought on the darn rollercoaster. We got these great Pirates of the Caribbean hockey shirts (that sounds odd doesn’t it – mixing pirates and hockey?) for the nephews and a cool T-shirt with a guitar on it for the b-i-law who wasn’t on the trip.
The in-laws wanted to go to the Pixar Studios to see how animation cells were made so R and I took the girls to the pool at the resort to cool off.
Dinner was at the wonderful California Grill at the Contemporary Resort. The resort didn’t look like much from a distance, just a boring building from the 60s but I liked it once I was in it. Click on the link above and you will see what I mean regarding how dull it appears.
The California Grill is at the very top floor and has a great aerial view of the Magic Kingdom, the Grand Floridian and the Polynesian resorts. The food was excellent – fresh sushi, great, innovative desserts, artfully displayed, well done food and a very attentive waiter. The resort had a mickey mouse head shaped pool right on the water (hmm .... not my favourite thing but looks neat up close). They show Disney films in the evenings on the beach. There were hammocks by the beach and pool. It seems like a more adult resort. I loved the feel of the place I had to admit. This was my resourceful s-i-l's first choice in resorts but we were unable to get into it.
After some confusion on the Monorail we scooted home -another long but fun day!

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