This is my Disney story. The magic of Disney captivated me from the time I can remember through their movies and the Wonderful World of Disney on Sunday nights. I visited Walt Disney World when I was 17 with my family when there was no Epcot and no fastpasses. We stood for an hour in the hot Orlando sun in August to ride one ride. I remember with fondness an Eastern Airlines ride that simulated flight, a submarine ride and a few others that are no longer there as well as some that are. We all came away glad for the experience, even with the sweltering heat and the crowds.
I went again in 1982 when Epcot was new. We all loved the entire experience, even though a lot of the attractions that are there now were not operational then; but, the countries and the whole concept were mesmerizing. I returned a few times between then and 2009 becoming increasingly taken by the magic during each trip.
It was during the 2009 trip that we first stayed at the Beach Club Hotel. I was taken in with the beauty of the hotel, the charm of the cast members, and certainly the proximity to the parks. To be able to just walk into Epcot in a few minutes made all the difference in my enjoyment of the park. We rode the Friendship boats to Hollywood Studios and enjoyed them almost as much as the park.
We returned again in 2011 during the Christmas season. This trip marks the true start of my utter fascination, addiction, fanaticism (supply similar adjective). This trip could not have been any better for a variety of reasons. We stayed at the Beach Club again and, to my great surprise and enjoyment, we were upgraded to the concierge floor. They supplied us with food and drink and turndown service. The thing that “made” the trip however was all of the Christmas ambience from the smells and music at the Beach Club to all of the beautiful decorations both inside and outside.
Since then, we have dove in head first, returning several times per year, taking a Disney cruise, and going to Aulani. I look forward to sharing insight that I have gained including seasonal variation, theme park tips, money-saving tips, hotel tips, DVC tips, and more.
Coming tomorrow: Our feelings on the removal of the Sorcerer’s Hat at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.