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Practical travel advice
|Lani Teshima, editor|
The Baglady's Mailbag
My last column about upgrading your Disneyland Hotel experience to Concierge Level resulted in a big stack of mail. The mail fell into two basic categories:
The following are good examples of the kind of feedback I got:
Just wanted to thank you for the wonderful article regarding Concierge Level at the Disneyland Hotel... we have upgraded and can't wait for our early September (after Labor Day) trip.
My husband will be attending a conference at the convention center for three days and we have decided to pull our kiddos from school (16-year-old high school junior girl; 14-year-old son and 11-year-old daughter) and attend with him. Unfortunately, convention housing at the Disneyland Hotel (DLH) sold out [quickly] and we were booked at the Radisson. Because this may be our last big "family" trip to the park, I decided to splurge -- I canceled Radisson and booked a three-day package with Disney's travel agency. [This alone was hard for me - by nature, I'm quite cheap and have to know to squeak when I walk.]
I have been nothing but happy with Disney so far, however, they did not tell me about Concierge Level. And being native of Ventura, CA, we usually don't even stay in town. So coming across your article and the "perks," I decided that it was time to be "treated like royalty." Changing to the "C" level was no problem with Disney Travel - they even agreed to waive the $25 fee for reservation changes (told you I squeak - all I had to do was ask).
We are very much looking forward to our visit - Mouseplanet.com has been most helpful - and though I noted quite a few people are concerned with the condition of the park, (our last visit was six years ago) perhaps having that knowledge in the forefront will be helpful.
Stacy P. via email
My husband and I were upgraded to a Concierge room in June when I took him to stay overnight at the Disneyland Pacific Hotel, but we were not told of any of the things you mentioned. It would have been nice to know about these things -- why don't they give you a list of your "benefits"? I feel ripped off!
Beverly S., via email
I just read your article on the Concierge rooms at Disneyland, and I thought you might find our story interesting.
The first year of the program, we had heard about the deal but it wasn't really economical because we didn't spend much time at the hotels to use the amenities. When we checked into the Disneyland Pacific Hotel, we had arrived a few hours before the check-in time. Although rooms aren't guaranteed to be ready this early, they assured us there was a room ready for us to check into.
When we got upstairs, the room hadn't been touched. It was still very dirty and not made up from the last family that stayed there. We phoned the front desk, just to inform them about what happened. When the bellman arrived, he said to follow him to a new room. He then told us that we had a full and free upgrade to the Concierge Level.
We ended up taking full advantage of the lounge. We got our free Rice Crispy treats with our name in chocolate, mints on the pillow every night, newspapers at the doorstep every morning, and of course the lounge. The breakfast wasn't particularly filling for my big appetite, but the refrigerator was the crown jewel. We took numerous sodas and basically stocked up for our day at the park. This was with the encouragement of the Cast Member.
Throughout the trip when we forgot something at the hotel or needed to change clothes, we would always stop by and pick up some sodas and water. The Cast Members were very friendly and helpful. We also were able to check out in the lounge and bypass the line downstairs.
All in all in was a great benefit for FREE. I would recommend it to anyone who thinks they'll spend a few hours a day at the hotel. The money will then be justified. That's just my opinions and experiences! Thanks for listening and keep up the good work,
Mike, via email
I just wanted to thank you for giving all the information on the Concierge-Level services at the Disneyland Hotel and Disneyland Pacific Hotel. I have stayed at both hotels but never had the pleasure of that experience! I am planning on going in late August 2001 for my "big" birthday and splurging on the Concierge Level . I was considering getting an annual pass or joining the Magic Kingdom Club to get a discount on the hotel price; do have any advice on which would be better?
Rhonda E, via email
Lani, I just read your piece on Disneyland Hotel Concierge upgrade. My family and I have splurged twice on suites and do think it's worth it. My question is, and it might sound silly, but we have never seen the toothpaste, toothbrush or mouthwash you mentioned. Is that something they just started in the last year or have we been gipped? Thank you for your time.
Vicki S., via email
I liked reading your article about Concierge-Level service at the Disneyland Hotel and Disneyland Pacific Hotel. Although I can't say that I will ever justify that expense (just staying there, much less upgrading), it was very interesting to read.
When we went to Walt Disney World in Orlando in March, we stayed at the Polynesian Resort and had Concierge privileges as part of our package. It was nothing short of wonderful!
From a birthday cake for my daughter -- delivered secretly to our room (complete with balloons) -- to the instant presto "e-nights" reservations, to more instant presto reservations for the kids to go to places like the Neverland Club, to the wonderful spreads morning, noon, and evening... one of my very favorite perks was the package delivery direct to my room! And the fabulous view rooms!! Spoiled, heck yes! and we loved every second of it. Would I do it again? In a heartbeat.
One resort perk seems that package delivery to hotel guests went from being a "sent to your room" to a "sent to your resort" kind of affair where you have to go to one of the resort shops to get your stuff. Not so if you're one of the concierge pamperees. Direct to your room. Takes a day to do it, but still!
I wondered if the same applies to the Disneyland concierge guests??
Mary Kraemer, via email
Well, I called. We're not staying there. All the suites are sold out for the dates we're going in October. The room rate for three nights at the Disneyland Hotel was $747.50 ($937.25 for Concierge) and $667 at the Disneyland Pacific Hotel ($925.75 Concierge). However, that's the per room rate, and we'd have to have two rooms, and well, honestly? That's just beyond what I want to pay in order to have that nice breakfast.
C. recently emailed me about a change in policy for using military Stars
& Stripes passports for admission into Disneyland:
Contact Lani Teshima if you have any travel tips or questions about trip planning.
A Hawaii ex-patriate, Lani is a technical writer for a San Francisco Bay Area software company.
When Lani is not managing the copy editing tasks here, you can usually find her at the gym, slogging away those slow miles on the treadmill as she trains for the WDW Marathon (held in January). She also maintains her internationally recognized Travelite FAQ.
In the occasional spare moment, Lani and her husband, Alexour MousePlanet CEO and MouseAdventure event coordinatorattend baseball games, and drive down to Disneyland in their 2003 Honda Civic Hybrid (which gets 50mpg).
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