It is that time of year again! Christmas in July! While you are taking your awesome Summer vacations and enjoying time with family and friends, it is a great time to thing about going away for the Winter Holidays. If you prefer to stay local during that time, it is also the perfect time to thing about a magical adventure that you can gift to them this holiday season.
Why It’s A Great Time to Reserve
Whether it is a room at your favorite Disney or Universal Resort, a specific cruise itinerary, or availability at your favorite all inclusive, reserving further in advance is best. It gives you the greatest chance at getting the room or itinerary you prefer.
Often (especially for cruising) the rates are lowest when they are first released. Plus, even if a lower rate or promotion does come out after you reserve, it is something we can take advantage of even after you have booked.
There are currently great promotions running for Disneyland, Disney World, Disney Cruise Line, Universal, Virgin Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean, Sandals, and more – just ask about the destination you are interested in!
Whether you are considering gifting a vacation to your loved ones this holiday season or actually traveling during the holiday season, booking now will take care of a chunk of your shopping – and it is only July!
You will have this trip to look forward to for months. I can help you think of fun and fantastic ways to gift this to your family and we can have extra time to plan and perfect.
I am currently running a Christmas in July Giveaway. If you book a qualifying vacation with me in the month of July for travel between now and the end of 2023, you will be entered to win a $50 gift card to your destination.
If you can’t travel but know friends or family who might be, I also do a referral giveaway. Refer a guest to me in the month of July and you will receive one entry for every reservation referred for a $25 giveaway to Amazon or the coffee spot of your choice!
Contact me today for pricing & details. Let’s get you reserved for your next adventure and turn your dreams into memories!
The Flower & Garden Festival is one of the most beautiful times to visit EPCOT each year. In addition to all of the gorgeous plants, gardens, and topiaries, the Festival offers a great concert series that you can enjoy as you travel around the World Showcase.
Beginning March 4th, guests will be able to hear musical talent ranging from internationally recognized artists to local Orlando bands. Best of all, this is included with admission! Who are you most excited to see?
Here is the schedule per Disney:
March 4-5 – The Guess Who
March 6-7 – Rick Springfield
March 11-12 – Melina Leon – NEW to Garden Rocks
March 18-19 – Mike DelGuidice, currently on tour with Billy Joel – NEW
March 20-21 – Kool & The Gang – NEW to Garden Rocks
March 25-28 – The Orchestra starring former members of ELO
April 1-2 – The Spinners
April 3-4 – The Pointer Sisters
April 8-9 – Blue October – NEW to Garden Rocks
April 15-16 – Tommy DeCarlo, singer of the band Boston – NEW
April 17-18 – Don Felder, Formerly of The Eagles
April 22-23 – STARSHIP featuring Mickey Thomas
April 24-25 – Claudia Leitte – NEW
April 29-30 – Berlin
May 1-2 – TobyMac
May 6-7 – Blood, Sweat & Tears
May 8-9 – The Commodores – NEW to Garden Rocks
May 13-14 – Ambrosia with Peter Beckett – NEW
May 20-21 – A Flock Of Seagulls
May 22-23 – Collin Raye – NEW
May 27-28 – Thelma Houston – NEW
May 29-30 – Little River Band
June 3-6 – Simple Plan
June 10-13 – Herman’s Hermits starring Peter Noone
June 17-20 – Plain White T’s
If you would like to guarantee your spot, you can reserve a Dining Package that will gain you entrance to the show. All others will be first come, first served and as long as you get there early enough, there are usually seats.
The music can also be heard through many of the surrounding countries.
If you are interested in visiting during the Flower & Garden Festival, contact me today! I am happy to offer my complimentary planning services and we can start planning your Spring getaway!
All things Disney Genie, Disney Genie +, and Lightning Lane
There are 3 parts to this whole program- Disney Genie, Disney Genie+, and Lightning Lane
Disney Genie is a new service provided by Disney that will assist you with park touring. While I as your Travel Specialist can plan your vacation for months and try to fit in all the fun, surprises, and memories that we possibly can, things do happen. Sometimes a ride will go down, sometimes you will sleep through your alarm, sometimes someone will need a nap or you will decide you really want that mid-day break that we didn’t plan for. Genie is your day-of planning service. It will help you with which rides have the shortest wait, where to get your favorite snacks, and it will also be where you will book your Lightning Lane times. This service is complimentary.
Disney Genie+ is basically this day’s virtual FastPass. It will be an add-on to your ticket and will be $15/day/guest. You will have the ability to make your first attraction selection at 7am for a time that day. When it is your return time, you enter through the Lightning Lane and should have a very minimal wait. When you have redeemed that selection or once that time window passes, you can make another selection for another attraction. This will be available for over 40 attractions throughout Walt Disney World. For those with Park Hoppers, you can make selections in other parks as well.
In addition to the shorter wait times, Disney Genie+ does offer you special photo pass lenses that will expand your options for your Memory Maker. There will also be Audio Tales available through the app that will inform you of special behind-the-scenes hints, tips, and stories during your visit.
Lightning Lane Pass
Yes, this is the actual Lane that you return to when you have Disney Genie+ but it is also the term being used for a select few attractions that will not be a part of Disney Genie+. Some of the most popular attractions will be available at an extra cost. This cost will vary based on the attraction and the day you are visiting. Anyone can purchase these Lightning Passes – you do NOT have to have Disney Genie+ in order to get one. You can purchase up to 2 attractions per day. Disney Resort Guests can make their selection at 7am. Guests staying off site can purchase when the park opens.
Individual Lightning Lane Options:
Magic Kingdom: Seven Dwarfs Mine Train & Space Mountain
EPCOT: Frozen Ever After & Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure
Hollywood Studios: Mickey’s Runaway Railway & Rise of the Resistance
Animal Kingdom: Flight of Passage and Expedition Everest
Disney Genie+ can be added on to an existing ticket or be added to a package going forward. Contact me to find out how and to reserve your Walt Disney World Vacation. Let me help your turn your Disney Dreams into Magical Memories!
There is no free way to wait in line?
-You can still use Standby/virtual queue for all of your favorite attractions! There is no additional cost for this.
Starting October 1st, Walt Disney World will take on a whole new shine! They will throw the world’s most magical celebration in honor of 50 wonderful years of guests, memories, & celebrations. During the celebration, each of the 4 parks at Walt Disney World will take on a new “Ear”idesence that will make some of your favorite iconic structures shimmer & shine. I am sure the castle will sparkle beautifully during the day, but I am even more excited to see it shine at night!
This new Earidesence will also be transforming Spaceship Earth, The Tree of Life, and the Hollywood Tower of Terror Hotel.
Some of our favorite characters will also get a little sparkly with new outfits for the celebration.
The celebration will run for 18 months starting on October 1. If you are interested in being one of the first to see the amazing transformation and celebration, you will want to book soon. Many others are having the same idea and now that more and more people are traveling again, the fall and early winter of 2021 are going to book up very quickly!
Contact me today for a quote on your vacation and to receive my complimentary planning. I cannot wait to help you plan your dreams!
Stay tuned for more announcements about the celebration as we get closer to October 1!
Disney has opened up the window for us to reserve 2021 vacation packages a few days early! There are so many things to look forward to and be excited about when planning a trip to Walt Disney World – even more so in our world today!
Here are a few important things you will need to know:
Available Resorts – With the start of the reservations for 2021 opening today, not every resort will be an option. The initial launch will roll out with the following hotels for you to choose from:
Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort
Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort
Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground
Copper Creek Villas & Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Jambo House
Disney’s Old Key West Resort
Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Kidani Village
Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort
Disney’s Art of Animation Resort
Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows
Disney’s Beach Club Villas
Disney’s Pop Century Resort
Disney’s BoardWalk Inn
Disney’s Riviera Resort
Disney’s BoardWalk Villas
Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa
Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort
Disney’s Yacht & Beach Club Resorts
Disney’s Contemporary Resort
The Villas at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
Park Reservation System – as of now, Disney will continue to utilize the Park Reservation System. This means I will be checking to see if there is park availability during the dates you want to stay before we even check to see what resorts are available. We will want to get your reservation finalized so that you can get in your My Disney Experience and choose which days you want to go to which parks and get those reservations.
Other important information-
Park Hoppers are returning as soon as January 1, 2021 – Hooooraaayyyyyy!!!
While Magic Bands will no longer be included with your stay, Disney will continue to offer discounted options and you can use your smart phone at no cost. You can still can request a Key to the World card upon check-in as well.
You will still receive your fun Keepsake luggage tag.
There will be new and enhanced Magical Extras offered to you during your stay.
Disney will continue to ensure the healthy and safety of it’s guests and castmembers.
Reserving your Trip!
All I need is a basic idea of what you are looking for your 2021 vacation to look like and we can get you started. Contact me today for a no-obligation quote & there is no charge for my planning services & expert knowledge! See ya Real Soon!
Walt Disney World is Reopening with different operations in place. What to know if you want to amend a vacation, plan a vacation, or keep a 2020 reservation.
Disney’s new Park Pass System opens to guests who currently have a 2020 Disney resort hotel reservation and valid theme park admissions. This does include Annual Passholders. If it is linked in your My Disney Experience, log in and choose which parks you want to go to on which dates. (Note: park hopping is not permitted at this time. You will only be able to choose one park per day)
The Disney Park Pass System will open to Annual Passholders
The Disney Park Pass System will open to all other guests who have park passes for 2020
By June 28
Sometime by June 28, Guests will be able to make new Disney Resort hotel package reservations and theme park tickets will go on sale for 2021
Later sometime this Summer
Based on availability and capacity, guests will be able to make Disney Resort Reservations as well as purchase tickets for 2020
If you are ready to have something to look forward to in 2021, contact me so that we can get all the details of your trip planned out. On the 28th, we can be ready to reserve and get your Park Passes.
If you would like to plan a 2020 Disney vacation, please reach out! We can discuss some options and be ready once they open the calendar back up.
Universal Studios is OPEN! If you are looking to visit in 2020 OR 2021, I can assist with that. Contact me and let’s start making some great plans so you and your loved ones can get an exciting countdown going!
The International Festival of the Arts is now in full swing at Epcot. There are several events & exhibits that returned from 2019 and there are also many new things to look forward to!
New this year are Life-sizes frames of VanGogh’s Café Terrace at Night and Sunflowers paintings that you can step right into for an amazing photo opportunity.
There are 12 Food Studios that present artful bites & sips that may be too beautiful to consume. Some favorites that are set to return include The Artist’s Table Studio for the Sipping Chocolate Flight of white, milk and dark chocolate as well as the BLT from The Deconstructed Dish Studio. There are lots of new items that have been added to these menu’s this year so stay tuned for some favorites!
If music is one of your favorite forms of art, definitely check out the amazing talent nightly at the American Gardens Theater. The Disney on Broadway concert series is comprised of wonderful arts that have been featured in Disney films:
Jan. 17, 20, 21 and 24 – Kissy Simmons and Alton Fitzgerald White (“The Lion King”)
Jan. 18, 19, 22 and 23 – Heidi Blickenstaff (“The Little Mermaid”) and Gavin Lee (“Mary Poppins”)
Jan. 25 – Special performance featuring Simmons, White, Blickenstaff and Lee
Jan. 26, 28, 29; Feb. 1, 2, 5 and 6 – Kara Lindsay (“Newsies”) and Kevin Massey (“Tarzan”)
Jan. 27, 30, 31, Feb. 3, 4, 7 and 8 – Liana Hunt (“Newsies”) and Adam Jacobs (“Aladdin”)
Feb. 9 – Special performance featuring Lindsay, Massey, Hunt and Jacobs
Feb. 10, 12, 13, 18, 19, 22 and 23 – Ashley Brown (“Mary Poppins”) and Josh Strickland (“Tarzan”)
Feb. 11, 14, 15, 16, 17, 20 and 21 – Syndee Winters (“The Lion King”) and Michael James Scott (“Aladdin”)
Feb. 24 – Special performance featuring Brown, Strickland, Winters and Scott
To secure seats to these performances in advance, you can reserve a Disney on Broadway Dining Package. This will guarantee you a seat on the day you dine in one of several Epcot restaurants and there is no additional cost for it.
Guests that are visiting the festival with little artists will want to check out the Green Landing Family Play Zone. This is a great area for littles to expend some energy while you sit back and enjoy the beautiful surroundings of the Festival.
Another neat artistic addition to World Showcase for the Festival that the whole family can enjoy are images of Disney Characters that are hidden throughout the countries. Can you find Remy & Emile in France? What about Mushu in China? What other favorite Characters can you spot?
I will be visiting this festival in early February and cannot wait to come back with my experiences and photos. If you have any questions or would like to visit the International Festival of the Arts, contact me today! My planning services are free for my guests and it will save you time, stress, and possibly even money. See ya Real Soon!
This year’s Festival looks to be even bigger and better than last years. I wish I was heading there this season to join in the festivities and try all the bites and sips but it is not in the cards since I will be going in February and just left Disneyland last week. Someone will have to report back and share all the wonderful things they did and tried.
Here is a foodie guide direct from Disney:
“Feast of the Three Kings (Near the Mexico Pavilion):
Pastelón: Sofrito-marinated Beef with Sweet Plantains and Olives (GF)
Queso Fresco-stuffed Arepa topped with Shrimp, Crushed Avocado Aji and Tomato Sauce (GF)
Arepas topped with Melted Queso Fresco (GF, KA)
Tres Leches Rice Pudding with Pumpkin Seeds (GF)
Chocolate Crinkle Cookie
Coquito: Tropical Eggnog (non-alcoholic, KA)
M.I.A. Beer Company Tres Reyes Mango Golden, Doral, FL
Coquito: Tropical Eggnog with a Bacardi Gold Dark Rum Floater
If you would like to schedule a last minute trip down there for a nice long weekend, let me know! We can set you up with a great vacation package and some wonderful tips to make the most of this great festival. Happy Holidays!
Epcot International Festival of the Arts is set to return for 2020. It will kick off on January 17 and run through February 24. This festival is a celebration of Art and how different cultures celebrate it through many different expressions including visual, culinary, and performing arts.
During this event, guests can experience art through the Broadway Concert Series, different culinary kiosks where food seems to jump right off the painters palate, view many different Disney artist’s work, as well as let their inner artist show. It is a fun event and entrance is included with your admission.
Disney on Broadway
The Disney on Broadway Concert series starts off with the beautiful music from “The Lion King”. The talent for this year is bountiful. Here is the schedule:
Jan. 17, 20, 21, 24 and 25 – Kissy Simmons and Alton Fitzgerald White (“The Lion King”)
Jan. 18, 19, 22, 23 and 25 – Heidi Blickenstaff (“The Little Mermaid”; “Freaky Friday”) and Gavin Lee (“Mary Poppins”) Jan. 25 – Special performance featuring Simmons, White, Blickenstaff and Lee
Jan. 26, 28, 29; Feb. 1, 2, 5, 6 and 9 – Kara Lindsay (“Newsies”) and Kevin Massey (“Tarzan”)
Feb. 10, 12, 13, 18, 19, 22, 23 and 24 – Ashley Brown (“Mary Poppins”; “Beauty and the Beast”) and Josh Strickland (Tarzan)
Additional dates & artists still to be announced so stay tuned!
New for 2020
A new Brunch will be offered at Le Cellier in the Canada Pavilion. Reservations are required.
Purchase beautiful art throughout World Showcase
Visit and observe artists that are creating right in front of you
The “Green Landing” Family play zone where guests of all ages can explore an area dedicated to Wall-E & Eve
Several different photo opportunities where guests can “jump right in” to some of their favorite stories
Add color to a beautiful wall mural located along World Showcase Plaza
Take part in a fun scavenger hunt featuring my favorite; Figment! Travel through World Showcase and find Figment. Hint: He has painted himself into some very famous paintings
Create your own artwork!
If you are interested in visiting Disney World and any of Epcot’s wonderful festivals, contact me today! I would be happy to assist in planning your amazing vacation and my services are always free. See ya real soon!