So we purposely set no alarm for the morning and hoped to get a good rest. I slept pretty well but with the time change, I was awake by 7 am. I laid in bed for a bit but then decided I might as well get up and get the workout at the gym over with. The gym at the hotel was nice enough. Small but clean. There were individual screens on each machine but the TV function didn’t seem to work. I had my Ipod just in case there was no TV so I was fine.
After we were both showered and ready for the day, we headed down to Preston’s, the hotel’s restaurant. Now when we checked in yesterday, the woman at the desk said breakfast was included every morning of our stay. I didn’t think that was correct because we had added a pre-night before the official start of the ABD trip. So we asked at the hostess station and they confirmed that our included breakfasts didn’t start until the next day. No big deal though. We decided to order off the menu since we knew our other mornings would be from the buffet. I had a breakfast sandwich with egg whites, arugula, tomato and pesto and potatoes on the side. It was very good. Chris, who isn’t a big breakfast out person (which I can’t understand!), had a toasted bagel with cream cheese.
After we were done with breakfast, it was time to meet our guides, Jason and Summer Rose! They were set up right outside the restaurant at a table to great everyone throughout the day before our official dinner that night. We got to meet them briefly and they gave us some Adventure by Disney treats, 2 water bottles and a duffel bag. There was also a welcome letter with some logistical information and a list of the names of everyone on the trip. We found out that we were with a group of 27 adults. We also needed to pre-order our lunch for the next day. The choices were prime rib (which is the specialty of the restaurant), beef brisket and a vegetarian pasta dish. They told us to meet back right at that table at 5:30 for the welcome dinner.
We had the rest of the day to ourselves so we headed out onto Hollywood Boulevard on a mission to find the stars for Walt Disney and Mickey Mouse. It wasn’t easy. We had tried searching for exact locations on the internet but we never could find the exact locations and there was even some conflicting information. Mickey Mouse ended up being pretty close so that was the first one we found. Walt Disney was harder. We ended up walking all the way to the end of the Walk of Fame on one side and then found it on the way back on the opposite side of the street. Again, we found the people trying to sell you things or panhandling to be pretty aggressive and I had had about enough of walking around there. So once we found the stars and took pictures, we headed back to the hotel to relax.
We found lounge chairs by the pool and spent about 3-4 hours there. It was a really nice day, warm in the sun and really comfortable in the shade. We stayed until around 4pm and then went back to the room to get ready for dinner.
At 5:30 we met again with our guides and now all of our fellow travelers. The first order of business was to take turns with various Hollywood props and take a picture. Some families got more into it than others but it was good way to start out with a Hollywood theme. We then were lead to a separate conference room that was set up tables for dinner. Once everyone was seated, we went around the room and introduced ourselves, how many ABD trips we had taken before and what we were most looking forward to our this trip. There were several people that had taken at least 1 ABD trip before. There were also a lot of couples celebrating anniversaries and/or birthdays.
Then we enjoyed a buffet dinner. Everything was very good. Wine was included with this meal and they told us it would be included in the last dinner as well.
At the end of the dinner, we got a time to meet back up in the morning. And they announced a surprise optional activity for right then. I don’t want to give it away but it was a nice surprise and a fun evening. Great start to the trip!
I have been a huge Disney and travel fan since childhood. I love going to new places and, of course, heading to Disney as often as I can.