Sunday, August 31, 2014

Festival of Fantasy: the Little Mermaid

Darling, it's better - down where it's wetter!

So why don't we head under the sea to dance with Ariel and her friends in the Festival of Fantasy parade?

The fish dancers swimming and sashaying in front of Ariel's float are absolutely fabulous - just look at those crazy costumes!


These characters feel like they stepped straight out of Tokyo Disney!  I LOVE the vibrant lion fish girl - look at those yellow eyelashes!  The spiky, spandexed pink and purple coral dancers I'm not so much a fan of, but the Sea Shell girl is just charming! 


Some close-up shots...that pastel and princess-y piscine gown!  Gorgeous.  And you can see the long, fiery, flowing fins of the lion fish from miles away...

...they seemed to be photobombing in quite a number of my pictures. ;)

Here are the dancers rounding the corner of Town Square, following the Tangled float.  Behind them is the mermaid herself...

ARIEL!  I love that her shell throne is so high up - you can see her easily over all the heads!

Some colorful can can ladies are breakin' it down on this float.

And Sebastian leads the way in his own chariot!  His "horses" look a little harried...but then Sebastian can be a bit of a worrywart!


Ariel is singing and dancing and combing her hair...with her dinglehopper of course!  I like that Flounder's up top, but somehow I feel like they could've come up with a more comfortable-looking seat than a treasure chest.


Following Ariel are the psychadelic seahorses!  I would get dizzy operating those costumes...they spin so fast!


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Grand Floridian Room Review: New vs. Old

The Grand Floridian Resort and Spa - Walt Disney World's flagship resort hotel - recently got some renovation pixie dust with a big room redesign.  I was excited to take in all the new decor and details on our recent trip, and today I've got a tour for you!

I did a comparison post when the Polynesian Village rooms got a face lift, and I thought it'd be fun to see the new room and remember the old room for the Grand's makeover too - with plenty of photos from past and present!

So are you ready to check in and LIVE GRAND??


We stayed in the main building at the Royal Palm Club for one night earlier this August.  The newly renovated rooms had just reopened the day before, so it was very exciting to check out all the new style...

The carpets and wallpaper in the hallways are new as well!  Check out the bright pops and curls and billows of color on the floor.  I feel like Mulan would approve!  It reminds me a bit of the carpet color palette at the Grand Floridian Villas.


I do really enjoy the new carpet design; but I'm also very sad to say goodbye to Minnie Mouse and her roses.  I think I prefer the old colorful wallpaper with the exotic fruits and hidden mickeys to the new generic beige swirls.  Change, however, is an inevitable part of life...and Disney World decor. ;)  Are you ready to see the room?

Monday, August 25, 2014

Kilauea Torte at the Kona Cafe

This week's Disney World dessert comes from Polynesia...

It's the Kilauea Torte from the Kona Cafe at the Polynesian Village Resort!

This eatery is on the second floor of the Great Ceremonial House, and it is open in the midst of all the construction going on.

That gorgeous waterfall feature is gone and all walled off.  Sniff.  I know, I need to be patient, and I'm sure it'll be cool when it's done...y'all know how I feel about the changes at my beloved Poly. :(


The whole central space of the GCH is walled off on both floors, and the back door leading out towards the pool is blocked off.  You can see the pretty stream is all dug up.  I know it'll only be like this during the construction, but it felt so enclosed and dusty and sort-of sad and abandoned.  lol...maybe that's me projecting, but it was depressing walking around.  I was glad to escape into the Kona which is still pretty and cheerful...

This is such a restful, tropical space...

Funky fruit chandy candy!

There are tiki gods on the walls!

Whenever I have a whole meal to myself, I'm always too full for dessert!  So Athos and I decided to split the Pan Asian Noodles: Yakisoba Noodles, Wok-seared with Vegetables and your choice of Chicken or Tofu in a Ginger-Garlic Sauce.  We got was a huge bowl, plenty to share!

I ate every was delicious!  I loved the sauce, and the veggies were very tasty: brocollini, mushrooms, peppers, onions, peas.  But the best part was still to come...


The Disney World website describes this as an explosion of warm liquid chocolate inside a chocolate volcano.

The inside is soft and melty and SUPER chocoaty, but not quite liquid.  The outside cake is the perfect consistency - moist and not too dense.  The whipped cream on top is real (I hate it when they use fake can always taste it) and light as air.  And the fruit sauce and raspberries added the perfect tart tanginess!

My brothers sampled the Kona Cone...which really ought to be called a Kona Waffle Bowl!  It's fun with the cotton candy base and all the Mickey sprinkles, but I miss the days when this came in an actual cone - they would stand it up by adhering the point to the plate with melted chocolate!

It had been awhile since we had last visited the Kona, but I would definitely like to make a return trip soon just for the kilauea torte.  It's up there as one of my favorite chocolate Disney desserts!

Have you visited the Kona Cafe?  Share your thoughts in the comments. :)

Friday, August 22, 2014

Festival of Fantasy: Tangled

Happy Friday!  We've been admiring the Magic Kingdom's new Festival of Fantasy parade over the past weeks, and continuing with the princess theme (Beauty & the Beast first and the Frozen sisters last Friday), it's RAPUNZEL's turn today!

How sweet is she, standing at the front of the Snuggly Duckling boat?

My brothers were just contending that Rapunzel is the best Disney princess because she carries a frying pan, which made me realize there must be a frying pan on that float somewhere.  See if you can spot it in the above photo. :)

Before the main float come the DANCERS!

The Tangled maiden costumes look like a rainbow exploded in the designer's studio, and I am totally a fan.  I love the all the lace and flowers and ribbons and flounces!


I like the faux's like a spat for your entire leg!  Y'all know I love my spats.


I'm on the fence about the mime.  He's kinda nightmarish.  I accidentally caught him sneaking up on one of the other dancers...creepy.  Even Flynn is weirded out.


Looking down the float from the front and from the back.  The swinging components make this float SO fabulous.  If I were Rapunzel I would be kinda jealous I didn't get to be on one of the giant pendulum axes.

She's up hanging with Pascal instead.  One of my brothers just observed that she used to have a pet insect named Voltaire, but Pascal got hungry...sooooo... ;)


Flynn Rider - excuse me, Eugene Fitzherbert - is avoiding the watchful eye of Maximus the horse.

I'm sorry, I'm just not a fan of that cupid.  Just look at him., don't.  Look instead at the lanterns and Rapunzel's CAHrazy magical hair looping all over the place!

Why is this a viking ship?  I like it...I'm just not sure why.  Also there are a lot of weapons.  I guess for all the ruffians.  It seems like Rapunzel might have borrowed a vessel from Merida, but Merida's float is shaped like a giant bagpipe and comes later.  It's a mystery.  Rapunzel's not Norwegian, is she?

What do you guys think of the new Tangled float?  Share your thoughts in the comments. :)  And don't forget to check back next week for some under the sea action!