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Home » Disneyland General Discussion and Trip Planning » Hotter than Hades - a Halloweentime October 2015 trip report

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10/14/2015 1:50 PM
Vala
Cheshire Cat
Vala

Posts: 1975

edited by Vala on 10/17/2015
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10/14/2015 2:13 PM
hildekitten
Peter Pan
hildekitten

Posts: 293
Mr Oogie Boogie says... there's trouble close at haaaaaaaaaaaaaad Big Grin
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10/17/2015 1:57 PM
Vala
Cheshire Cat
Vala

Posts: 1975
Wait, did you read my Twitter?

It was a bit... chaotic. Certainly not what I am used to.
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10/17/2015 2:26 PM
Vala
Cheshire Cat
Vala

Posts: 1975
Day 1: Travel


As a change to the usual routine travel this time was with British Airways. The last minute drop of Lufthansa direct flights never materialized, and as this time my friend Andrea was travelling with me for the first part of the trip we had decided to British Airways due to the stopover in London. She always gets a little nervous with immigration procedures in the US.

The second leg of the trip was with a brand new Airbus A380. I strongly recommend paying for seat reservations if you're travelling on this aircraft with BA. A couple of people close to us in middle seats were not happy.

In the end the whole journey was pretty uneventful. I don't really know what I was expecting, but with all the hype about the A380 I guess I thought some sort of epiphany was coming. Big Grin The service was okay and not much slower than on the normal international aircrafts. There were some problems with in flight entertainment, it took the crew several hours to get it to work. But that can happen anywhere I guess. I did manage to nap a little, something I really had to do. Due to our early departure from Frankfurt we'd arrive in Los Angeles shortly after noon, but that wasn't the end of our trip... somehow it had seemed like a good idea to get a rental car and carry on right to Las Vegas!

So after getting through immigration and a painfully long wait to get our bags we were off to Alamo to get our car and hit the road.

Said "hitting the road" took a little longer than anticipated, especially after we got lost once we hit Las Vegas... the right turn our GPS kept telling us to to was a 100 percent left turn. But we figured it out eventually and made it to our hotel for the night, The Orleans.
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10/17/2015 4:23 PM
Mitchell
Tiana
Mitchell

Posts: 1096
Oh dear!

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Heya, I'm Mitchell!

Next Trip: Photopass Day!

Follow my twitter @MitchellDisney for tweets!

Please check out my YouTube channel! https://t.co/8wbANN35lK including Vlogs from my Disneyland Paris holidays!
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10/17/2015 6:04 PM
DisneyDan
Sorcerer
DisneyDan

Posts: 3516
I'm looking forward to hearing about my cameo role, hunting for Chipmunks and Donald, LOL!

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Check the Character Central Blog for all the latest character news and rumours!

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Dan.
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10/18/2015 2:45 AM
hildekitten
Peter Pan
hildekitten

Posts: 293
Vala Wrote:
Wait, did you read my Twitter?

It was a bit... chaotic. Certainly not what I am used to.


Haha no, I don't even know the link to your Twitter.
I just felt like typing that because it was the first part of Oogie Boogie's song that sprang to mind
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10/18/2015 6:46 AM
DisneyMart
Sorcerer's Apprentice
DisneyMart

Posts: 3161
Looking forward to reading this!!!

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Follow me on twitter to see my character pictures and for live tweets from our trips to the Disney Parks!!

Next Trips:
30th April - 1st May 2016 - Disneyland Paris
23-24 July 2016 - Disneyland Paris
22nd July - 5th August 2017 - Walt Disney World

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Now posting trip pictures on Instagram
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10/18/2015 9:37 AM
DisneyDuckLover
Thumper
DisneyDuckLover

Posts: 1343
More more more!

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Blog: http://DisneyDuckLover.blogspot.co.uk
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10/18/2015 10:41 AM
MadMadamGaetane
Angel
MadMadamGaetane

Posts: 379
Bring on this report!

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Black sorcery is my cup of tea...

Memories you'll keep long after...

www.madmadamgaetane.com
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10/18/2015 1:12 PM
Vala
Cheshire Cat
Vala

Posts: 1975
Sorry for the delay... slight scare due to a misplaced memory card. Your regularly scheduled trip report will continue momentarily...
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10/19/2015 2:30 AM
Vala
Cheshire Cat
Vala

Posts: 1975
Day 2: Viva Las Vegas!


Up way too early. My sleeping pattern is out of whack anyway, the time difference does not help.



We end up in the food court of the hotel - hey, at least one step up from dinner at McDonalds in Barstow the night before. Big Grin



A place called Foodruckers.

Milk Shake.



Waffle.



French Toast sticks with breakfast potatoes.



Why are we staying at The Orleans you ask?



Hey, if I can't have Louis I will start looking for a replacement. Big Grin

Mine, mine, mine! Big Grin



Off to the MGM Grand and our reason for the detour.



Walking Dead is everywhere.



Entrance to the Experience, going down the escalators.



As no photos allowed inside a quick rundown will have to do.

It's basically a walk through experience. You're a beginner CSI, solving your first case. There's three different cases, you are randomly assigned to one. Of course once you cracked the riddle you're getting a coupon for a discounted second case. It's Vegas after all.

Anyway, there's different stations starting with the crime scene, including the lab or the autopsy. Most stations are introduced by a short video with one of the cast members.

Once you've solved the case you enter your data in the system and get a certificate signed by Grissom certifying you're now a CSI. Of course there's also the ever present gift shop and you can get your photo taken in CSI outfit.

If you're a fan it's worth doing it I think. Is it worth a 4 hour drive... well that was my personal decision to go back to Anaheim within a day as there was something happening in Disneyland Thursday morning which I really did not want to miss. I didn't hate it, far from it. But I can totally see why some people rate it as "tourist trap" online.

Shortly before noon and with a 4.50 soda in our hands - don't ask... - we hit the road again. We're trying to escape at least the worst LA rush hour, plus we had been hoping to maybe get our APs and the Photopass before park closing. At the very least the goal was to check out the new dinner buffet at Paradise Pier.
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10/19/2015 7:44 AM
Nala
Stitch
Nala

Posts: 162
Oh so jealous! We were in Vegas too in our last trip, but we never got a chance to do it!
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10/20/2015 1:51 PM
DisneyDan
Sorcerer
DisneyDan

Posts: 3516
I've only ever been to Vegas once, and it was a very long time ago - pre-digital camera days, LOL. I really want to go back, but you know, Disney... :P

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Check the Character Central Blog for all the latest character news and rumours!

Visit Tsum Tsum Central for all the latest news on Disney Tsum Tsums, to update your own collection list and much more!

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Dan.
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10/21/2015 12:59 AM
Vala
Cheshire Cat
Vala

Posts: 1975
Vegas when the lights go out is a lot less spectacular if you ask me. lol But then again I am not one to live in giant buildings with another slot machine every step... Big Grin
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10/21/2015 3:06 AM
Vala
Cheshire Cat
Vala

Posts: 1975
Day 2 part 2: Back at the park


We just about manage to avoid rush hour traffic and arrive at the Desert Inn a little before 4 PM. We drop off bags, then go to drop off car in DTD before getting our passes.

No issues at car return, but for some reason there are insane issues for Andrea getting her AP. It is in the system, but can't be issued.

20 minutes and one run to Lost and Found later - someone had forgot their popcorn bucket at the neighbor booth and I figured I was being nice and handed it in - Andrea still does not have her AP and we decide I'll make a run for the photo store so I cab pick up the Photopass plus. Well that is not exactly how I wanted to enter the park again after almost a year.

On the way to the Photo place I am being sidetracked by singing through the speakers though and one voice mentioning the name "Nathan." Oh. The Dapper Dans. *detour to Firehouse*







Andrea catches up with me there. They eventually got it working, and they even gave her 2 20 percent off merchandise coupons and 2 of those special "good for up to 6 riders" Fast Passes for both parks.

First stop: get Photopass - which promptly leads to another detour when an Asian pin trader with a lanyard full of Hong Kong and Tokyo Disney pins appears next to us... not even 5 minutes after I jokingly assured Andrea that no, I would not be pouncing on every Asian visitor with pins. I never mentioned Asian visitors with Chipmunk pins though. :P

Some flailing of arms later the young lady has some shiny Paris pins and I have a Tinkerbell, Chipmunks and a Tokyo Rapunzel pin.

Seeing Tink is in the parade Pixie Hollow hours are already over, so the first stop of our usual agenda won't happen today. Jump to step 2... BUZZ LIGHTYEAR! Big Grin I really missed that ride. Paris just isn't the same.

Afterwards it's Haunted Mansion time. Try as I might, no chance to get a good picture of the Hatbox Ghost. They really had a reason for making the doombuggy shake in that area.



Our usual tradition had always been that the first meal was going to be at Goofy's Kitchen. But due to the changes (and also the fact that due to the long road trip we hadn't wanted to make a reservation) we decided to try something new: The Bonfire Barbecue at Paradise Pier.

Our first fear - "hopefully we can get a table" is already squashed. We're in fact being greeted with a "yay, customers" when we reply to the "do you want to dine with us tonight?" question with an enthusiastic "yes!" We stayed a while cause the athmosphere was so nice, and over the course of the night never saw more than 6 tables taken.

Overview of the buffet area:



Specialty pizzas - make sure to tell your server you want to try those, they are not automatically brought out.





The upper one is a goat's cheese pizza - absolutely delicious.

Speciality drinks. For the life of me I can't remember what mine was - something with coconut. Andrea had a wild berry lemonade.





Carving Station.



Now the sauces were delicious. I actually prefered them over my beloved sauce from the Ranch Barbecue and that means something. Andrea gave the ribs a thumbs up too. The tri tip however... I loved the first serving I had, it melted in my mouth. When I went back for seconds that one was very gritty and chewy.

Bread and butter:



Seafood:



Garlic bread:



Tacos and Mac and Cheese:



Chicken:



Pork Belly - didn't try, not my thing:



Mini Burgers and Hot Dogs:



Mini Stuffed Potatoes - needed a bit of salt:



Mozzarella:



The "salad Bar":



Deviled Eggs:



Salmon:



Extras at Carving Station:


Desserts:

Coconut Pineapple whatever... one of my favorites. Seems to be seasonal, it's currently not on the menu anymore.



Chocolate Bacon Caramel goodies... tastes way better than it sounds.



Fruit kebabs.



Berry Cobbler.



Dessert Pizza - again didn't try, I don't like the brioche style too much.



Build your own Strawberry Shortbread - thumbs up from all involved.



Dessert cones - the favorite all around.





Overall verdict: we enjoyed ourselves and it definitely was a meal I'd go back to. If that's the usual popularity level though I wouldn't count on it lasting much longer. It was so quiet, it was almost scary.
edited by Vala on 10/21/2015
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10/21/2015 7:57 AM
DisneyDan
Sorcerer
DisneyDan

Posts: 3516
There looks to be way too much meat on that buffet, which is no good for vegetarians like us, lol. I'd probably only ever go back to the PP for the character breakfast anyway. We don't tend to do higher end dining unless it's for characters or a very specific reason.

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Check the Character Central Blog for all the latest character news and rumours!

Visit Tsum Tsum Central for all the latest news on Disney Tsum Tsums, to update your own collection list and much more!

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Dan.
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10/21/2015 11:25 AM
Vala
Cheshire Cat
Vala

Posts: 1975
DisneyDan Wrote:
There looks to be way too much meat on that buffet, which is no good for vegetarians like us, lol. I'd probably only ever go back to the PP for the character breakfast anyway. We don't tend to do higher end dining unless it's for characters or a very specific reason.


Yes, Vegetarians would be pretty much screwed there.

The beans, zucchini tacos, that paltry excuse of a salad bar and the mozzarella. That's pretty much it besides the desserts. I didn't investigate the eggs too closely. Oh, the mac and cheese of course - what else would you try on a buffet? Big Grin

It's not actually higher end dining per my definition. I think we paid 27.99 per person, so definitely one of the cheaper buffets.
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10/21/2015 12:55 PM
Vala
Cheshire Cat
Vala

Posts: 1975
Day 3 part 1: Minnie's Breakfast

First stop is at DTD - pin release. Not the Alice set we all had been hoping and praying for and the Ariel surprise pin isn't released either, but well, I guess the Fantasmic Dragon is something.

Happy Homecoming!

My friend Jackie meets us at the gates to join us for a Thursday tradition... Minnie's Breakfast.

Food still not our thing, but characters galore - though it did turn out that today has what seems the standard cast: hostess Minnie, Chip and Dale, Hook, Fairy Godmother, Tigger, Eeyore and Pooh. In the past years there had always been at least two guest stars in the mix. Okay then.

Still, playful and fun... unlike a really bad experience my poor friend JJ had some months ago.





Andrea loves Jungle Book and is wearing the Paris Kaa baseball cap and a Kaa shirt this morning. Lots of great reactions to that - Dale and Tigger both got hypnotized and even make her hide the cap in the end after frantically trying to cover it.

Pooh loves his drawing.





Yes, I still love you - you're the one who keeps running off with other girls. Goofus













Dale coming back to check on us and promptly spotting the munks camera bag.







Speaking of running of with someone else... *nervously checks watch* Guys, I don't know if you want to join me, but I definitely got to run off now to see someone. New Orleans Square it is!
edited by Vala on 10/29/2015
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10/22/2015 3:08 AM
Vala
Cheshire Cat
Vala

Posts: 1975
Day 3 part 2: Piratepalooza


If you read last year's trip report you may have figured out why the watch checking anyway when I mentioned New Orleans Square.

The Bootstrappers. And usually on Thursdays my favorite pirate comes out to play.

With a very amused Jackie in tow Andrea and I take off to New Orleans Square. Where we wait. And wait some more. No Bootstrappers. It's pretty crowded, so we check out the usual performance spots. Still nothing. But Jack Skellington is out. Hmm... should be his first set. If we get in line now Sally may have joined him when it is our turn.

We get in line when I hear familiar screech... a familiar voice singing I mean. Looks like Pirate Time is even more off than I thought. *leaves line to check*

Yes, the Bootstrappers.

Hiding won't help, I am apparently recognizing your voice from a mile away. Big Grin



Hi Syd. Stick Out Tongue



Crow's Nest.



Stringfellow.



Crow's Nest going a little wild... the other crewmembers had to stop him.



Of course meanwhile Sally is out and we face a slightly longer line after the set.

Inspecting their picture.





Second Bootstrappers set, this time a little less hidden.





It's getting pretty hot already and the humidity is insane. We decide to skip the next set and head to get a snack, then check out the castle show - the press release said the characters would be out in Diamond Celebration outfits after the noon show in Town Square. Plus Jackie is meanwhile more than a little amused about me wanting to follow the pirates around anyway. She deserves distraction.

Snack delayed due to incoming characters on the way. Big Grin



Thank god it's daytime... enough light for Jafar to sign.







And the snack... Boysen Apple Freeze. You have no idea how much I missed this.


edited by Vala on 10/22/2015
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