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New Year Visit- just wasn't the same this year

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New Year Visit- just wasn't the same this year
« on: January 21, 2018, 02:30:40 PM »
Well i said in a previous report that i was hoping that the trip would be different from the last one and it wasn't, well this trip wasn't either. I think it was doomed from the start but we still made the most of it.
Prior to leaving on the 30th December there were many unforeseen circumstances happening that i was ready to scream- It snowed!!! my biggest fear when driving haha the thought of driving in the beast of a vehicle,  well i was past myself. I got toothache on christmas day and went to the dentist asap and she said she couldn't do anything because she didn't have time because she was going on holiday, i had to take pain killers and enjoy my trip! Hubby kicked up a stink and she fitted me in on the thursday to remove my filling and apply a temporary filling- face was agony for 4 days! My mam had unexpected surgery on the thursday and was told to rest until we left for disney. Hubby decided to help me pack and messed it all up, we left our holiday money in my other bag so had to use cards whilst away. I know some may think this isn't an issue but it's how my family like to spend in the park (personal reasons). Not a good start!

6 of us travelling- 4 adults, 1 teen (birthday whilst away) and 1 child. We were staying in the Magic Circus 30th-1st and then Sequoia Lodge 1st-5th Jan, with half board plus meal plan.

Saturday 30th December 2017/New Years Eve
Up extra early due to the weather and the fact we decided to travel straight through to France rather than stop over night this side of the channel. It was freezing! -1 when we left the snowy icy north east. It was not a nice journey for the first 1 1/2hour with the snow and the lorries but i saw the temperature slowly creep up and roads clearing, i started to settle down. We stopped at Peterborough services as usual for breakfast and then headed to the tunnel. We arrived over 2 hours before our train time only to be informed that there were delays and we ended up leaving half an hour after our train time.
Arriving in France the weather was bad! gale force winds and driving rain. We had a straight run no major issues except at the Toll both when the machine wouldnt accept the toll card. They are no longer manned so had to buzz for help. The traffic here was horrendous! people in the wrong lanes so forcing their cars into other queues and if that didn't work (our lane had a lot of British cars in so we were bumper to bumper) one car even let the passenger out and he stood between two cars to force them apart so his wife could get her car in!!!. We arrived at the magic circus about 7pm.

Magic Circus- i was apprehensive about coming here due to the recent reviews it had but what a lovely hotel! I went to check us in and as i entered my initial thought was "wow!" The theming is really good. We had to wait a while for check due to a family turning up and not having booked anywhere! its new year what were they thinking! the hotel did manage to squeeze them in but were told only one night. We checked in and i was surprised i had local tax to pay because it wasn't stated on my booking (19 euros) so please check your bookings carefully or query with whoever you are booking with. We were placed in adjoining rooms on the second floor. The rooms were lovely,spacious, warm and clean. We had tea/coffee making facilities and a fridge. We ate in the hotel that night and food was on par with Disney prices and drinks the prices of the more higher priced Disney hotels but nothing like the reviews said, i just wonder what on earth some people were drinking to come up with prices they were giving. Unpacking here was when i discovered we had no money with us! I cried to be perfectly honest but soon thought don't be silly you are at Disney, you have cards, enjoy it!
New Years Eve, the kids and hubby used the pool here and loved it, myself and my parents walked around the hotel- it is huge, and then sat in the bar relaxing until they were finished in the pool. We got the free shuttle to the village and went there for the afternoon. We were going to stay until mid evening but after the queues to find food and the torrential rain that hit we decided to return to the hotel and spend New Year there. It was a lovely atmosphere, the bar pulled down a projector screen and played music then had a few fireworks. We were able to watch the fireworks from the parks and surrounding hotels from our hotel and they were great, a good 20 minutes or more of them. We brought cake with us so ate that happily.
New Years Day we had breakfast then checked out to drive the 5 minutes to The Sequoia Lodge and check in there.
We had breakfast included in our stay and the food was lovely, cooked and continental, great variety and staff very friendly.

New Years Day
Weather: Rain!!!!
Checked into the Sequoia about 11am, reception quiet and staff friendly. That was were it seemed to stop unfortunately for the remainder of the trip. Our rooms weren't ready as we expected so collected our tickets and off we went to the parks. Had lunch in the Earl of Sandwich (a must every trip for our family) and then we headed to the main park. We visited City Hall for my dad's pass then made our way to the Christmas parade. It was great. I wasn't sure when they first brought the song out but i love it, i danced and sang all the way through, much to the annoyance of my eldest, but i don't care  :D. It was great. Even my dad said so and he doesn't normally comment like that. The park was busier than the previous new year we visitied but It was still a nice amount of people. We got on Thundermountain!!!!! My youngest was over the moon, a 10 minute wait! Well i say she was over the moon until she rode it. OMG! they have sped that up! She broke her heart. Kept screaming my head so i kept reassuring her everything ok and we would be off shortly. She was devastated. It's the only fast ride she will go on. By the evening she did say she might go on again though. We then managed to ride Dumbo! couldn't believe it,it was raining as well. We did a few more rides then headed back to the hotel to collect our keys and freshen up for our evening meal in Plaza gardens. We were given Lakeside Montana rooms which were nice but they were far from reception with the doors on the ground floor of the south wing no longer being open as you come back from the park, entrance at restaurants are but its a faff with  my dad in a wheel chair now so it gets hard pushing him, hubby used to go in up to reception then run round to open the doors so we could go in that way.
We returned to the main park for our meal in the Plaza gardens. What a carry on. We approached the door and a cast member asked why we were there, told him had a booking so he said ok and let us in. We stood inside for ages with no-one speaking to us, a huge queue the other side with people looking fed up. We approached an empty till and she asked have we been sent to her, we said no, well can't be served until my colleague sends you here, we asked what colleague, her reply oh she gone. Then all of a sudden a woman ran us and started screaming at us and another family "behind the line behind the line!" what line? She then took our ticket and directed us to another till that had a queue and left the empty til empty! This cast member then apologised to us. Why should she apologise? she hadn't done anything. She was lovely. When we finally sat down the food was ok not great like on the previous visit but desserts were nice (this is a reoccurring theme to my eating due my tooth, i didn't care, all can eat dessert buffet haha).
We were planning on watching Illuminations that night but due to the weather we decided to return to the hotel and have a few drinks in the bar. This bar did not seem friendly at all, they chose where you sat, seemed put out because we had a wheelchair and then seemed to rush you with your drinks to get you out. Totally different to previous visits. also some of the guests, so rude and up themselves! There was just no need. If this is the clientele that Disney wants with their prices then Disney is no longer the magical family place it advertises itself to be. We returned to our room early in the night, lovely and warm and had some drinks there before having an early night.

Tuesday 2nd
Weather: Rain and wind
Headed to breakfast to be directed to one of the restaurants. Communication not great between the staff here. Food lovely and one of the chefs she was lovely. They had ran out of bacon so we asked when more would arrive and she said few minutes and to sit down. It arrived and she brought us a huge plate of bacon over to us, saying my dad should not walk that far (we help my dad usually) and said she got the best bits for us! Sometimes its just the little touches that help.
We went to the Studios today and managed to get on lots of rides, took my dad on Ratatouille for the first time, my mam wouldn't risk her head spinning so said she would enjoy the Parisian feel of that area. The queues for food in the park were vast. It was ridiculous! at one point i had a heated discussion with someone over putting their hands on my child when she went to sit at a table, she grabbed and pushed her away and sat down herself. Hubby had the food in his hands.She claimed didn't understand what i was saying, she certainly did by the end of it and i'm normally the quiet calm one. She then didn't sit there because her family didn't want to, i was livid! I don't know why other people think it is ok to grab at children when it comes to queuing for things or sitting down in Disney. There was an incident on the busses with another family having the same done to them. Keep your hands off other people's children!!!
We watched the shows which were really good then headed back to the hotel to freshen up and head off to the Parkside Diner for our evening meal. I was a little worried because friends had told me food wasn't that good in the New York. Well i have to disagree. It was gorgeous. The options for everyone were great, so varied, i attempted some of the mains but my mouth was sore so i gave up and headed to the desserts- a great excuse  :D. Well i thought i had died and went to heaven! they were fabulous! Everything for kids up to adults and such a wide range, even my kids eyes widened when they saw what was on offer. The staff were so friendly and couldn't do enough for you. They had to roll us out of there. We then had a few drinks in the bar here and what a difference compared to the Sequoia. We drank here the rest of the nights.

Wednesday 3rd Jan
Weather: cold and rainy
Woken to a scream. It was my eldest's birthday (15th i might add). She was over the moon to be in Disney for her birthday. She wanted to hurry for breakfast so she could get into the park and share on social media where she was! Again we had to queue for a restaurant but the cast member on that morning was fab, chatting and calling everyone minnie, mickey, princess whether adult or child. Food again was nice.
We headed towards the parks and just stood near the cinema and thought OMG, the queues for those coming in, i have never seen it like that in a very long time! It took longer to get into the main park due to the amount of people just standing and looking at the hotel and fountains etc  once inside we managed to do its a small world and buzz, we wandered around a few shops then attempted to get some lunch- nope! queues were out of doors. We tried every where. We gave up in the end and headed back to the village and had lunch in Mcdonalds. This was bad enough. My hubby and youngest decided to change their plans and said they would go swimming that afternoon whilst the rest of us decided to shop in the village, someone had birthday money to spend didn't you know :) We then returned to the hotel, had a rest then made our way to Billy Bobs. We had never eaten here before so were unsure what to expect but were told it was nice. The staff were really helpful, taking my dad and eldest to the lift and up to the restaurant whilst the rest of us queued.  I didn't realise just how big this place is. Staff were very friendly whilst in there. Food was nice but not very warm, like Disney a few years ago, but it had a nice atmosphere. We would eat here again but not rush back to do so.The Chuck Wagon is just as good but entertainment wise it would be better here. My hubby and eldest returned to the park to do some rides whilst we went to the New York for a few beverages.

Thursday 4th Jan
Weather: rain
The queues again were bad, long queues  but more so for places to eat and grab a drink. Got to ride Pirates today and loved it! got wet but loved it. It was lovely to see everything working again and Jack Sparrow and Barbossa being added really adds to it. Rode it twice  :D
We got a lovely spot to see the stars on parade and it was great. The weather was absolutely horrendous prior to the parade so didn't think it would go ahead but it did. The floats are fabulous, great interaction from some of the cast members which adds to it, i just don't like music, sorry. Maleficent to me is the best part. Once the parade had finished we headed back to the hotel to begin to pack our things up and then head to our meal in the Hunters grill. The food was nice, better than on a previous visit and it was hot, the staff though were not the friendliest. They seemed very rushed and didn't want to know any of the guests, we seemed to be in their way. We finished our meal, had a quick drink then went back to our room.

Friday 5th Jan
Weather: Rain!
Again the parks were busy. We did a few rides then decided if we can't beat them, join them and queued from 11:30 outside Cowboy Cookout so we could get our food. Still had people coming to the front, ignoring the large queue and trying to go through the doors first, even with the doors saying closed. Why do some think you are standing there? for the good of your health? Food was lovely here as usual, entertainment was good and there was a sweet little girl dancing her little heart out whilst the band was playing, it was lovely to watch.
We finished lunch and headed back along Main Street, buying our donuts and muffins for the trip back. We returned to the hotel and went to start the car- oh no! it wouldn't start!  couldn't believe it! We had been out earlier and turned the engine over with it being bad weather. Hubby went back into the hotel and out came a lovely cast member to the rescue and gave us a jump start. Thank you again to Reception staff at the Sequoia lodge! We headed back to Calais, getting traumatised along the way ( well i did, had to stop to use the toilets, never again!!! that's all i will say). We got on an earlier train and arrived back in the UK at 7pm. We drove to our hotel for the night, fab staff, great food and went to bed, couldn't believe our trip was over. :(

Saturday 6th Jan[/u]
Got up nice and early, had a lovely cooked breakfast in the Travelodge and headed back up to the North East. The car started first time however, my dad realised he had lost his spare key. Next time he might listen to me and not take it out with him whilst in Disney. Said we can't do anything until we are home.
We arrived home about 3pm, we don't rush ourselves as it would me being back to normality to soon.

Despite the many things happening before the trip, the crowds, the weather etc and what seems to be a negative trip report, we did have an enjoyable time, more importantly my kids did and that's the main thing. We are now counting down the days until we return for Pirates and Princesses as a family of 11 and i can't wait.

On a side note, my dad contacted the Sequoia and they said Lost and Found have my dads' car key so we are in the process of having it shipped over. Can't wait until the next trip in case we lose the one we have.
« Last Edit: January 21, 2018, 02:44:22 PM by Zee79 »


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Re: New Year Visit- just wasn't the same this year
« Reply #1 on: January 22, 2018, 09:28:57 AM »
Enjoyed reading your trip report  :)
Not good with the rain but glad you still managed to get out and enjoy some magic!

I couldn't believe someone grabbed your child like that you must've been so angry! I can however believe about people pushing and not waiting in line it infuriates me sone think they're more important than others!

I love the sequioa lodge too.

Slimy yet satisfying

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Re: New Year Visit- just wasn't the same this year
« Reply #2 on: January 22, 2018, 09:43:27 AM »
I agree that the rain was dreadful at New Year. After an awful queuing system to get into the main park for the party we were all made to walk around to the back of the park in the pouring rain backstage through some very poorly lit areas. We were herded along soaking wet unable to stop undercover anywhere because of the volume of people behind us and CMs  not allowing people to stop. It was ridiculous. By th time we were permitted to stop it was IASW and we were soaked for the rest of the evening. The queues were huge. There was little extra entertainment. The main parade floats broke down so was a long wait with performers stopping. Stood beside Constellations for the midnight fireworks and the bloomin background music speaker wouldnt go off so nobody could hear the music to go with the fireworks. Zero help from CMs who also looked peed off and were soaking hiding under trees. Definately will not be returning at New Year again. Lacking in magic for me.
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1994 Oct DH, 1996 Jan DH, 1998 Oct DH, 2000 Oct DCR, 2002 Jan SL....too many babies so a big break...2010 Mar SF, 2011 Mar SF, 2013 Jan Kyriad, 2013 Apr Gite, 2013 Oct Gite + 2nts DC, 2014 New Year/Jan SF, 2015 New Year/Jan SF, 2015 Oct Gite, 2016 Jan Gite, 2016 Easter Kyriad, 2016 June Explorers, 2016/7 NY Dream Castle and Gite, 2017 Feb Cheyenne , 2017 May Dream Castle,  2017/8 NY/Jan Gite, 2018 Feb Dream Castle Hotel, 2018 Nov Dream Castle, 2019 Feb Santa Fe.


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Re: New Year Visit- just wasn't the same this year
« Reply #3 on: January 22, 2018, 09:50:38 AM »
Littlebitofpixiedust- I was fuming, you shouldn't do it to any child but my youngest is a lot more sensitive shall we say so it upset her, if it was my eldest she'd have probably flattened them! She doesn't do people touching her plus she very good at certain languages i shall say so would've probably said something back.

Slimy yet satisfying- we tried to get tickets for new year party but after reading reviews and listening to those who were there I was glad we didn't especially due to weather and a lot of them saying it's nothing like Halloween, no rides or any real atmosphere. I did watch the parade on periscope. I'm hoping Easter will be more magical when we go.