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INTERCOT > Interactive > INTERCOT Insider Archive > February 2005

Intercot.com INTERCOT Insider
 February 2005 - Edition Two

Brought to you by INTERCOT's network of sites:
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This newsletter and other past issues can also be read online at; http://www.intercot.com/interactive/insider/archive


<< Introduction >>

Now that Oscar season is over and Spring is just around the corner (well, it’s around the corner somewhere) what else is there to do but check up on your vacation planning skills? That’s what we do here at the Insider, so naturally we’ll share our secrets with you at no expense. This edition is packed with new goodies! Ron gives us a dose of his Trivia, Jamie and Nigel start their series of “Dining Out,” and Mikki has some great reviews of Disney books you’ll be interested in. And don't forget to take advantage of the fabulous ticket special offered by the Official Ticket Center as soon as you get done reading. Let’s get movin’.

<< Magic Your Way Ticket Special >>

INTERCOT's very own sponsor, the Official Ticket Center, is currently running a special on the "Magic Your Way" 4-Day Base Ticket with 14-Day Expiration  with a 5th Day Free. It applies to both adult and child tickets. You can view the details and purchase the passes by clicking onto their front page through the link below. The Official Ticket Center has been in business for 7 years and is Walt Disney World’s, Universal Studios and Sea World’s #1 guest service provider for the last 3 years. The Official Ticket Center sells tickets only, at a discount price.

The Official Ticket Center

<< History & Trivia with WDWdriver >>

We have all marveled at the Tree of Life at Disney’s Animal Kingdom standing 145 feet tall and with more than 300 animals, birds and sea creatures carved into its trunk and branches. And, yes, the tree is man-made for those of you who really weren’t sure.
But did you know that there is now a second man-made tree at Disney’s Animal Kingdom? Its not one that you are likely to notice. Its not even located in a park guest area. So what is it, and how did it get there? The answer is this month’s trivia.

Recently, the Cast Members at all the Disney World theme parks and resorts changed the way they communicate with each other. The old Motorola radios are gone, and Cast Members are carrying Nextel cell phones to communicate individually or on broadcast networks. This innovation required the installation of a tall cellular tower in a backstage area of the Animal Kingdom. The phones work fine, but there was a problem. The cellular tower could be seen from several locations inside the park. This was unacceptable to the Disney Imagineers, so they came up with a typically Disney solution. The tower soon sprouted metal limbs and green leaves. You can try to spot the new tree on your next visit. Chances are you wont be able to find it.

<< Dining Out with MickeysGirl & Dr_Nigel_C >>

Hello, and welcome to the first installment of “Dining Out with MickeysGirl and Dr_Nigel_C,” where you’ll get an honest and up-front review of various restaurants around the “World.” Each issue we’ll feature a different restaurant, anything from the theme parks to the resorts and beyond. We’ll give you a brief overview of each restaurant, as well as information for couples and children, in the hopes that you’ll be able to make your next trip to Walt Disney World more magical! And without further adieu, on to our main course!

Welcome to Paris, the land of lovers… and of really, really great food! More specifically, let’s take a stroll through World Showcase over to France and dine at Chefs de France, one of the many excellent restaurants offered in Epcot. Chefs de France is a wonderful restaurant that offers the atmosphere, food, and elegance of France you’re looking for in a romantic evening out. Yes, they are open for lunch as well, and both lunch and dinner will offer up a luscious meal that will leave the taste buds tingling. Admission is required into Epcot for dining here, and Priority Seating is suggested. And here’s a tip: try for a seating around 7:00pm, and you’ll most likely be finished with your meal in time to stroll out to Showcase Lagoon to catch Illuminations!

Chefs de France offers an array of authentic French cuisine, ranging from bisques and seafood to chicken and steak, depending on your taste. We can tell you from experience that the Lobster Bisque is to die for, and the Canard a l'orange (Roasted duck in orange sauce) will leave you full and satisfied. For a lunch here you can expect to spend between $15-20 per entrée and dinner will run in the neighborhood of $20-25 per. There is also a kid’s menu, specially for those smaller or pickier eaters, that offers chicken strips and steaks strips, each served with a soft drink and ice cream. Let’s not forget about the desserts though! If you have room left after all that goodness, you can treat yourself to a Cappuccino and pastries. Mmmmm, mmmm good! Unfortunately, this restaurant is not offered on the “Magic Your Way” dining plan, but it does participate in the Disney Dining Experience Program.

You can find a meal for the whole family here or just for the couple looking for a get away. We saw many kids here during our visit, but that didn’t take away at all from our romantic dinner. But from our experience, this is a great place to finish off that perfect day at the park for the happy couple. Add any of bottle of wine from the extensive wine list to that quiet table by the window overlooking the water and lights of the surrounding countries, and you suddenly feel like you are there all by yourself. If you’re up for a little French goodness and an elegant meal, I would take a chance and stop by. You won’t be disappointed. Bon Appetit!

<< Guidebook Review with mikki.young >>

Birnbaum’s 2005 Walt Disney World Dining Guide
Well, let’s get the worst one over with first. This book has very little to recommend in it.

Yes, it lists all the restaurants and counter service places to eat by resort and in the parks. Yes, it makes recommendations for places to go for (Burgers get 23 suggestions) a myriad of options. Yes, it even has a handful of recipes.

If you have been staying on site over the years you may remember a little free pamphlet from American Express listing all the restaurants etc. The level of detail in the free book and Birnbaum’s costing $11.95 is about the same.

It really does not tell you enough to make an informed decision on where you may like to eat. You can get better information from almost any general guidebook. A big thumbs down for this one.

The Luxury Guide to Walt Disney World
I opened this one with trepidation, as I was not sure that luxury and a trip to Disney could be met at the same time from our pocket book. I did not need to worry – this book is about far more than the most expensive things you can do.

Like other guidebooks it covers accommodations, food and the theme parks. It also goes beyond Disney looking at sporting and dining options. It gives rough guidance on cost and a better idea of dining options than Birnbaum’s dining guide.

I quite liked some of the side comments, for example this little tip about Country Bear Jamboree: “Enter the door on the left in the waiting area to sit in one of the front rows. Even though most adults would rather go to the dentist than sit through this show again, crowds can be sizeable in busy season”

Make sure you get the updated version – even at the end of 2004 Amazon UK were still shipping the 2003 version, which was showing it’s age. Overall it’s a fun book but probably not going to be the only guidebook you want.

Walt Disney World Trivia Book
This book is great fun for Disney addicts! You can use it as a mini quiz on each other or you can just read through the questions and peek at the answers. A little bit of background information is given for each answer and I certainly found out things I didn’t know. There was quite a bit my husband and I did know which made challenging each other quite fun. There are multiple-choice answers so even if you have no idea you can hazard a guess. For instance: do you know how many miles a year Walt Disney buses travel? Your choices are 90k, 200k, 2 or 12 million. All of those seem like big figures but the answer is…in the book!

Buy any of these books and help support INTERCOT

<< Conclusion >>

Remember to check out the INTERCOT store and the INTERCOT menu areas for more information and to support the site. We’ll be back in a few weeks for another edition of the Insider. Until then, happy planning!

<< INTERCOT Would Like To Thank>>

The INTERCOT Insider and INTERCOT.com are supported by the following sponsors who in turn, help us bring the Magic to you!

Magical Journeys
Magical Journeys is your Disney Vacation specialist. Start planning your Vacation Discount Dreams today!
Website: http://www.yourmagicaljourneys.com/

Radisson Resort Parkway
Right in the heart of action! Only 1.5 miles from Walt Disney World is an oasis of ponds, beautiful landscaping, serene waterfalls and relaxing options hiding in every corner.
Website: http://orlando.guestselectresorts.com?pid=INTERCOTN

All Star Vacation Homes
When you need a home away from home, look no further. From comfort to luxury, All Star Vacation Homes has it all in four series of homes to fit any taste and any budget just moments from the magic of Walt Disney World!
Website: http://www.allstarvacationhomes.com?ovchn=OTHER&ovcpn=Listing+Sites&ovcrn=intercot&ovtac=AD

Happy Limo
Providing ground transportation to the entire state of Florida.
Website: http://www.quicksilver-tours.com

The Official Ticket Center
Walt Disney World’s, Universal Studios and Sea World’s #1 guest service provider for the last 3 years. The Official Ticket Center has been servicing vacationers for more than 7 years now and sells tickets only, at a discount price.

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