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bells ring, are you listening...in the lane snow, is glistening...A
beautiful sight, we're happy tonight ... reading the INTERCOT
Christmas and Winter Holiday Season upon us, the Insider is brining
you an edition filled to the brim with Holiday cheer.
In this edition we learn about a new book to curl up with, find out
about a jingle-bell-rock'n place to stay in Orlando, unwrap a big
box of Magic Kingdom trivia, find out what jolly happenings have
been going on from Disney coast-to-coast, and find out how to save
big in the New Year. Hang on to them Santa hats and glasses, cause
this here's the most informative ride on the internet!
<<Book Nook with
Disney in Details: A Scavenger
Hunt Through the Walt Disney World Resort (Disney Editions, 2011, 96
pages) by Jen Darcy and Jennifer Eastwood is primarily a souvenir
book that presents an overview of Walt Disney World. Unlike past
souvenir books, it includes a couple pictures on every other pages
that it asks you to identify the locations for. Other than the
scavenger hunt pictures, it is more about broad views and
descriptions rather than the details. Although I found the scavenger
hunt pictures somewhat challenging, I found the title misleading. If
you are really looking for a book about details at Walt Disney
World, this book is probably not the one you want. It is a quick
read and there are some interesting pictures, but not enough to
really make it a worthwhile addition to your Walt Disney theme parks
library. This book is available at Walt Disney World, although I
only saw it in a couple of different shops on my most recent visit.
<<A Rock'n Place to
Stay with MNNHFLTX>>
My son and I ended our recent
Disney World trip with a stay at the Hard Rock Hotel on Universal
property. Both of us had been anxious to try out the new (well, new
to us) Wizarding World of Harry Potter, as well as the other
attractions, and we figured the best way to be able to see it all
was to stay at one of the Universal resorts, so that we could
utilize the Express Pass available to guests.
We traveled to the hotel from the Caribbean Beach Resort by taxi and
it cost $28, plus tip. The Hard Rock lobby has a great “wow”
factor—a large open area with sweeping views of the grounds outside
and memorabilia from various music icons on display. It was apparent
that they were setting up the lobby for a concert later in the
evening, which turned out to be Starship (or the current version of
Starship). Fortunately I had booked a garden-view room and requested
to be at the back of the hotel, away from the lobby, because that
concert was loud! Very cool to watch when we got back from the parks
later in the evening, though. The main area in front of the stage
was for ticketed party-goers (all dressed to the nines), but you
could see and hear everything from the rest of the lobby.
The rooms at the Hard Rock are definitely a step above most hotels.
In our case, we had two queen beds with comfy mattresses and luxury
linens, a cushy armchair with ottoman (the pillow adorning it
embroidered with “Sweet Dreams are Made of This”), a desk, an alarm
clock that was also an iPod charging station, a Keurig coffee brewer
with various K-cups on the mini-bar, a 32-inch flat screen TV and a
bathroom with a separate vanity/sink area and bath products from the
in-house spa. There were also wall-to-wall windows with a gorgeous
view of the landscaped grounds and the canal beyond, used by the
boats that ferry resort guests to and from the parks. We did have a
few bugs to work out—we had to request a key for the mini-bar
because we had transported our own suitcases up and apparently bell
services usually provides the key. We also had problems connecting
to the (paid) wifi later in the evening. When I called guest
services they connected me to an outside IT help desk, which was a
little strange. It took 25 minutes to get my son and I connected,
which was inconvenient.
The two days we were at Universal ended up being very rainy, so we
spent one afternoon exploring the resort. The pool area was
expansive, with private cabanas and palm trees dotting the lush
landscaping. There was a sandy beach around the zero-entry pool
access, a giant slide and two smallish hot tubs. There was a stage
at one end of the pool too, where reggae-type bands played during
the day (when it was not raining) and where they occasionally had
bigger names perform at night. This is not a hotel to stay at if you
don’t like to hear music playing constantly! The hotel itself is
like a mini-museum for the music industry and you could spend hours
wandering the hallways to see all the displays. There are also two
restaurants (The Palm Restaurant and the less formal The Kitchen), a
couple of lounges, a small food-court area with various items and
the requisite Hard Rock gift shop with some very cool merchandise.
My son and I both agreed that the best thing about staying at the
Hard Rock was being able to take advantage of the Express Pass
(assigned to your room key), which gets you to the front of the line
at all the attractions, except for Harry Potter’s Forbidden Journey
and the Rip Ride Rockit roller coaster. We went on many of the
attractions multiple times, it was that easy and convenient to use.
For that reason alone I would recommend staying at the Hard Rock
Hotel or one of the other Loews Hotels on Universal
property—Portofino Bay or The Royal Pacific.
<<Disney Coast to
-- Social Media Edition --
Our intrepid INTERCOTee reporters
have been on the move. From Christmastime at Disneyland, to the
Grand Opening of the New Fantasyland at the Magic Kingdom, to the
media preview of Splitsville at Downtown Disney Walt Disney World,
to the Times Square Disney Store, to the Grand Opening of Test Track
ay Epcot--there's been a lot to cover and snap great pictures of.
Take a pictorial tour of these
INTERCOT Twitter Pictures
INTERCOT Facebook Album
<< Fun Facts with
-- Magic Kingdom: Part Three
- The four eras represented in
Liberty Square are: New England, Colonial Williamsburg, Dutch New
Amsterdam, and New York’s Hudson River Valley.
- All the doors in Liberty square have 2 digits numbers – if you put
an “18” in front of them, you will know the year that style of house
- Liberty Square Tree has 13 lanterns hanging from its branches;
each lantern represents one of the original 13 colonies.
- The three sections in The Christmas Tree Shop are: German
Immigrants shops, woodcarver’s shops, and musician shops.
- Every third log on splash mountain creates a splash insuring
riders get soaked as they plunge into the briar patch, as well as
those watching form the bridge. The splash is created by a water
cannon hidden in the landscaping, not the actual log itself. The
jewels scattered underfoot of the Magic Carpets of Aladdin are fit
for a princess, but as you walk past and admire them – watch out –
the camels spit water at you.
- The names on the fast past machines at the Jungles cruise as names
of members of the Adventurers club in Pleasure Island.
with Magical Journeys Travel
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For example, stay in a standard room at Disney's All-Star Sports
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<< Conclusion >>
The staff of INTERCOT would like
to wish the best to you and yours this Christmas and Holiday Season.
From the bottom of our hearts, we would like to thank each and every
one of you for the more than 16,500 subscriptions to INTERCOT
Insider. We’ll be back in the New Year with more reviews, news, and
other vacation planning tips . See ya real soon!
<< Thank You To Our
The INTERCOT Insider and INTERCOT.com
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