Trip report J18A



Well done!

Re: California Grill - we’re huge fans. When you check in, mention that you have been once before (which they will already know - :wink: ) and that you weren’t thrilled with the table location. They will make amends this time.

This happened to us on our first time to 'Ohana. I didn’t understand why everyone loved the place. We had an awful table and somewhat weird service. When we went this year, at check in I requested with a smile that we’d like to be “in the action” please. Last time wasn’t so swell, etc… They totally delivered and we had an amazing experience.


Never had a mickey waffle?! Well that’s reason in and of itself to go back so soon :wink:

DH and I loved Garden Grill. We have a similar plan to do Cali Grill on our arrival day for our April trip. We’ve never been, so fingers crossed for all of us. And we did “brunch” at Tusker House last year, and thought it was nice. We had BOG for each meal over the course of our trip, and we enjoyed each, although breakfast is my personal favorite. I love all PPO breakfasts if I’m being honest, but the quiche at BOG is something I just need to have lol. When we ate there for lunch I had the ham sandwich and DH had the turkey sandwich. We preferred the ham.

Oh and the HEA dessert party is a great choice. DH hates crowds, so I will book this for us every trip so that he won’t mind staying for the fireworks with me, which I just can’t miss. We did the fantasmic dessert package last trip and while I can’t speak to the seating as we were at the top in ECVs, the box of food and drinks were wonderful, a nice mix of salt and sweet.


If Fantasmic is your plan and your going to HBD do their package.

Feast, Then Fantasmic!
Reserve your VIP spot at this dazzling nighttime spectacular, along with a delightful dining package.

Whether you prefer the casual ambiance of Mama Melrose’s Ristorante Italiano, the bustling lunch scene at Hollywood & Vine or the fine dining vibe of The Hollywood Brown Derby, you’ll be sure to savor a mouthwatering meal before the stunning musical extravaganza known as Fantasmic! takes you away with its colorful waterworks, fantastical fireworks and a host of Disney Characters.

The Hollywood Brown Derby
Indulge in a culinary adventure featuring impeccable American cuisine while surrounded by the glitz and glamour of Hollywood’s Golden Age!

Package Details

Lunch/dinner – $62 adults; $22 children (plus tax and gratuity)
Some dining plans accepted; includes 2 Table-Service meals per package purchased


Great start!

Didn’t expect the about turn on the Cali Grill… but I’m glad you’re giving it another go.

Odd thing, my post on the original thread has gone. Or I can’t see it. It’s like a whole load of them from this morning (UK time) have disappeared, including mine urging you to write this. :thinking:


I did it on my last trip and it’s the only dessert party I’d do again. I think it’s totally worth the cost. I did toy with doing the Frozen dessert party again, but it’s more expensive and I only really wanted to do it this time to get on the ride, which would make it a ridiculous expense. Besides, I’ve done my own dessert party: Le Cellier, then IllumiNations from somewhere nearby. This will be my last night and my plan is then to walk slowly round World Showcase as a last goodbye.

1 Like

Hmm. I did this plan last time, but they’ve made it less attractive by making you choose between a starter and a dessert. Back in August you got both. So I’m not sure how good a value it is.

I don’t know if I’ll do Fantasmic. I have a very early start that day because I have my VIP Day of Action or whatever it’s called, which has an 8.15am check-in. And I’m staying off-property. :persevere:


Actually, looking at the menu, the HBD package is good value if I choose, say, the Cobb salad and the filet of Beef — they come to $60 and the package is only $62, so your’e basically paying $2 for the Fantasmic seating. Presumably I could order a dessert and pay extra?

1 Like

While I don’t know all the details of everything at WDW, the one thing I KNOW , is that you can always pay extra. :wink:


This makes my heart so sad. On my last night during our December trip I went back into Magic Kingdom by myself under the guise of needing to burn our remaining snack credits, but really I just wanted to say goodbye. I ended up stopping at every Photopass photographer I could find to get pictures of my me on main street and in front of the castle. It was so bittersweet.


Love your reports. .love your planning process…so pleased you are returning. …when in June? . …I remember reading about your planning a year ago and now I see you are going back a second time in less than a year …we have never been but are also going may June time …twice in year …may have to look at getting an AP soon? lol…not a stalker. …even though my name my suggest otherwise…just love your planning style. …maybe stil sounds a bit creepy lol


love the details and I am myself obsessing over a September trip, HDDR, Fantasmic dinner package, private dinner for DH and I, early magic hours, and finally a DVC moonlight madness at HS. How to fit all in in a week???
We love Universal too and have AP so considering one day there …
Have fun


Not at all! Glad you like my contributions!

1 Like

That is so cool. This is a new one to me…like I said on the other thread, if I were going solo, I may try this one too! I am laughing at your calling Disney in OUR middle of the night!

I hope Cali Grill pans out for you! My hubby and I loved it when we went. We were there to see the MVMCP fireworks. It was amazing. I think you have a great attitude about how to handle it though!

I know you are not a fan of early mornings but if you want to do a tour. The Marceline to Magic Kingdom tour was so great. The price is reasonable. It is a 3 hour tour at MK.

Will be following along on your journey!

I’m now at the next stage:


Now that I have a structure, I’m endlessly revisiting it and making changes. Two big changes to report so far.

On the advice I read in another thread, Le Cellier is out, Monsieur Paul is in. It’s new to me, the food looks amazing, and it still fits in with my IllumiNations and walk around the World Showcase plan.

Garden Grill is out. I couldn’t get excited about it. California Grill is in — but for Sunday brunch. So it half-counts as new.

Which means my arrival day plan is out because I don’t want to go to CG twice.


OK, arrival day plan — dinner at Jiko, and explore AKL.

This is perfect because (a) it’s new (b) apparently the food is great © I get to explore a hotel (something I’ve wanted to do) and (d) AKL is out of the way so this is a perfect day to slot it in.


What a great way to start a trip!


Hey, I tried to discourage you. I reminded you about your poor dog, but no, you still had to go. :wink:



1 Like

Ladies and Gentlemen, I present . . .

The first draft