Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Our Disneyland expansion: the hotel

Hong Kong Disneyland has often been criticized for being too small a park, too few big rides, not enough to do. For over a year now, we have laughed off these complaints, loving the small crowds and enough rides to fill an hour or two. But recently, we have started to feel a bit bored. While we enjoying walking around the park with no traffic, Tori really rides one ride over and over again (Space Mountain of course) and the twins have one or two rides they enjoy. So in a bold move we launched our own Disneyland expansion. Prompted by a free night’s coupon, we stayed at the Disneyland Hotel and loved it. We are recommending it to everyone, neighbors, friends, and maybe even visitors.

The hotel itself was lovely, very much a resort type place. Our kids ran around on the grass (huge lawns of it) and a maze made of shrubs into Mickey’s likeness. The hotel is connected to the Disneyland park via wide paved walkways. On a friend’s advice, we took the kids’ bikes and scooters and rode and rode along these pathways. Typically, our kids ride their bikes in a circle about 15 feet wide, dodging smaller kids, bigger kids and balls. For them to ride all by themselves for as far as they could see was huge. The Disney theme music playing over loudspeakers made it seem that much more dramatic.

Beyond biking, there was the pool. Since the weather was warm (upper 80’s), we swam outside, tearing down a large waterslide. Some lifeguards made the kids follow basic rules on the slide, while others, foolishly charmed by their western ways, let them reach top speeds on their descents. Staff at the pool asked us hopefully is we were going home after our trip, how far away did we live. Everyone was a little disappointed that we were only from Hong Kong, as was the other family in the pool that we recognized from our south side of the island. I think the staff has seen a lot of the free night coupon visitors as of late.

Being our big Disney weekend, we signed up for the character breakfast. We were not sure what to expect but were not disappointed. Various characters came by our breakfast table. Adam and Royce were overjoyed. Adam hugged Mickey and to Mickey’s credit, he picked up Adam and swung him around in the air multiple times. Tori was a little subdued around all the characters but quickly became excited when she discovered a bowl of M & M candies in the breakfast buffet line. For special effect, she drizzled chocolate sauce all over her breakfast of Mickey Mouse waffles and candy.

As we were leaving, a cleaning lady stopped us and quickly made pipe cleaner rings for each kid in the shape of mouse ears. Of course, everyone wanted different colors and she ended up making two rings for each kid but it was a nice touch. Everyone counted it as their highlight of the weekend until we reminded them of everything else we did. Still, on Monday morning each kid took their pipe cleaner ring to school to show friends. Proof yet again that it really is the little things that count.


Post a Comment

<< Home