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In this week's feature, Mark and Mike discussed the first of their Top 3 lists for the U.S. Disney Resorts and Downtown Disney areas..
In Part 1 this week, we talk about dining, pools and other recreation. Next month in Part 2, we'll cover accommodations, theming and overall atmosphere, and nightlife. Finally, in May, we'll go over our Top 3 resorts in each lodging category: Value, Moderate, Deluxe and Home Away From Home.
As always, we started with dining. Mike's third choice was Goofy's Kitchen at the Disneyland Hotel because he really enjoys the food there, not to mention his memories of getting a lot of extra attention from the princesses because he was there alone.
Mark had a tie for his number three, between Whispering Canyon Cafe at the Wilderness Lodge and Raglan Road at Florida's Downtown Disney. He loves the atmosphere and the food at Whispering Canyon, as well as the cast member interactivity, while the food and entertainment at Raglan Road is also great.
Mike's runner up is a three-way tie between Whispering Canyon Cafe, Trail's End Buffeteria at Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground, and Storyteller's Cafe at the Grand Californian Hotel. Trail's End is one of the best values on property, he loves the atmosphere and energy at Whispering Canyon (along with the all-you-can-drink milkshakes) and he loves the theming at Storyteller's.
Mark's second choice is Boma at the Animal Kingdom Lodge. It's got great food, breat variety, and there's always something great to eat..
Mike's favorite dining establishment is again a tie, between Jiko and Boma, both at the Animal Kingdom Lodge. He loves everything about both restaurants, and they are at his favorite resort..
Mark's favorite restaurant at the resorts is the Flying Fish Cafe. He loves everything about the restaurant. However, Chef Jens Dahlmann has moved from Flying Fish over to the California Grill. Mark isn't sure whether Tim Keating has made any changes yet, but the meal that Mark had there after the changeover was still wonderful. He also now needs to go over to the California Grill to see what Chef Dahlmann has done to the menu there.
There are so many great restaurants at the resorts that we had to stick in a bunch of Honorable Mentions. Mike mentioned House of Blues (on both coasts), Petals Pool Bar and Victoria & Albert's, while Mark noted the Yachtsman's Steakhouse, California Grill and Olivia's.
Mark's number three pool area is Ol' Man Island at Port Orleans Riverside.
Mike's third choice is the quiet pools at Pop Century.
Mark's second choice is Luna Park at the BoardWalk.
Mike's runner-up was the quiet pools at the Caribbean Beach Resort.
Mark's top choice is Stormalong Bay.
Mike's number one is Uzima Springs at the Animal Kingdom Lodge. Interestingly, Mike doesn't like Stormalong Bay.
Mike picked the culinary tour at the Animal Kingdom Lodge as his number three choice. He enjoys the film, loves the message, loves the theater, and it's Lion King-based.
Mark's third pick is the surrey bikes at the BoardWalk. It's fun, and good exercise
Mike's second choice is the campfire and movie at Fort Wilderness, tied with the campfire story at the Animal Kingdom Lodge. Maybe he just likes fire.
Mark's number two is DisneyQuest. He especially likes the Virtual Pirates of the Caribbean: Quest for Buccaneer Gold and Cyber Space Mountain.
Mike's top pick is DisneyQuest. He's a DisneyQuest junkie.
Mark's number one is the animal viewing areas at the Animal Kingdom Lodge, especially when it's dark and they've got the night-vision binoculars.
Let us know what your Top 3 are for the resorts! Let us know by sending an email or calling our toll-free feedback line (1-866-939-2278) and let us know what your favorites are!
On April 27, Mark will be walking to raise money for the March of Dimes for the third time. Please consider supporting him. The March of Dimes mission is to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth, and infant mortality.
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The MouseStation crew (@MouseStation) currently consists of Mark Goldhaber (@MPMark) and Mike Demopoulos (@MPMike).