Thursday, April 7, 2011

Practically Perfect Opinion: The Contemporary

On my most recent trip to the World, my little sister took the redeye from LA while I flew in from NY.  She was passed out on a couch in the Kamehameha Lounge (that's....another story).  So I decided to take some time to ride the monorail and explore another Magic Kingdom hotel, The Dated.  Oops, I mean, The Contemporary.

On almost all of our prior trips, the most experience I've had with The Dated (gah! it happened again!) The Contemporary was a fleeting view through a monorail window.  We'd grab a glance at the five-legged goat and be on our way to the TTC.  So this time I decided it was time to get to know a little bit better this resort which my parents often described as looking like a federal prison.

My parents are not wrong.  The buildings are ugly.  1970s architecture and interior design almost never stands up to the test of time does it?  They tried, in the 1990s, they really did, to make it more modern and aesthetically pleasing.  But the exterior still looks to me like there should be barbed wire fences surrounding the buildings.  And the way the halls and rooms are set up in the interior - over looking the mess that is the level 2 lobby - remind me of a Vegas hotel.  I feel like there should be slot machines where Fantasia is located.

And speaking of, let's talk about Fantasia.  First of all, can we all admit that 95% of the time, the merchandise offered in ANY store on property can be easily gotten at ANY OTHER store on Disney property?  That rarely do we find on a WDW store's shelves an item that we cannot also get at MouseGear or Boutiki or the Emporium or Everything Pop or.....

So we're on the same page with this?  Ok good.  So while Fantasia's merchandise is nice, it's still more or less generic.  So WHY then does Disney feel the need to destroy the flow of the 4th floor with this store?  Before Fantasia was there, the 4th floor lobby felt cool and open (still weirdly '70s, but breezy and comfortable nonetheless).  Now it feels cluttered and claustrophobic.  All in all, I am not a fan.

And yet, I will still return to the Dated.  Because I still haven't tried Chef Mickey's (although I suspect I won't like that either) and I need to try the cupcakes at Contemporary Grounds (which I will probably love).  And dammit, because I will - every time and always - need to find that five-legged goat.