Sue's AKV Club Level - Plans

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Aug 30, 2022, 6:24:50 PMAug 30

Who: Sue (63), DVC Member
Holli (58), friend
Chris (35), my son
Amanda (33), my daughter-in-law
Ari (6), my grandson
Dates: August 31 – September 5, 2022
Resort: Disney’s Jambo House Resort
Experience: Very Experienced – 33rd stay at AKV

This trip is somewhat a repeat of late May – a chance to enjoy the concierge lounge at Jambo House and enjoy each other’s company. Initially I was booked to arrive Wednesday, Holli was coming in for 2 nights Thursday and Chris’ family would come in for 3 nights Friday – same as in late May. However, DVC announced Moonlight Magic would be held this year and one of the nights is Wednesday night, in Animal Kingdom. That’s perfect for a stay here, so I looked for a room for Holli but could only get Kidani Village. It’s not the end of the world – she can walk over for the lounge, then the next day she’ll be homeless for a while (like I typically am at the end of the trip. The big concern was not knowing whether or not I would be able to book it when it opens up – but fortunately it all worked fine & I’m confirmed!

For those who don’t know, Moonlight Magic is an event that takes place in a park after the park has closed to guests. It’s exclusive to eligible DVC members and is no charge to the member. Included is access to the park, 3 snack vouchers, a popcorn bucket, game tickets, character meet & greets, and whatever other entertainment. Not every attraction will be open – but since it’s free that’s not a problem. Holli doesn’t have an AP so this is an opportunity for her to get into the park for free, hopefully ride Flight of Passage, and enjoy whatever else. For me, the dates of Moonlight Magic have never aligned with my trips, so I’m looking forward to seeing how it is. Ordinarily I’d be reluctant to give up the concierge lounge, but I think we can do both – some concierge lounge for wine & food then head to Animal Kingdom. We’ll miss dessert, but perhaps that’s a good thing <g>. The park closes at 7 and the event is scheduled for 8-11 but members can enter the park at 6 without needing a park pass. It’s a shame it’s on a Wednesday night as I would have liked to include Chris’ family too. I did invite SB (he could have gone home w/Holli Saturday morning) but he decided to skip it.

Demand is still ridiculous for studios at 7 months and once again I had trouble booking Chris’ family. Eventually I was able to get enough things booked and then waited on the phone to talk with DVC member services to get things realigned. Initially I had Chris’ family in a standard (pool) view, moving to a value studio on the final night. I was booked club level for the first 4 nights then moved to standard view on the final night. I was able to get DVC to give my standard view to them and add it to their existing reservation and change their value night to me as a separate reservation. So, once again I’ll be homeless but this time they’ll be staying in the same resort, and I can use their room to shower (after the pool if that’s what I do) and store my stuff until my new room is ready.

Chris’ family will be going to the parks each day, but I’ll get to see them in the morning, afternoon and evening. In late May they still weren’t doing any of the culinary tours and they didn’t have the drums beating in the lobby. It will be nice to see those return, but I don’t know if we’ll see them this trip. I did book a park reservation for Sunday at Epcot. That’s my moving/homeless day so I may head there with Chris’ family (instead of the pool) and check out Food & Wine Festival as early as possible.

Last trip I was excited for a couple of new breakfast items at Mara and was able to try the French toast bread pudding in the lounge. The other item was the bacon gruyere quiche, which I got from Mara my last morning. That was excellent, and I’ll do that again. If someone is willing to share it with me, I may order it more than once – I hated throwing away half of it. The bread pudding, I liked but didn’t love – I wouldn’t buy it as an entrée.

In terms of Gideon’s, if the August cookie is spectacular, I’ll probably head there on arrival day – or if Holli wants to go there, I’ll go too. In July they’d brought back the banana bread chocolate chip cookie for “an extended stay”, whatever that means. I’ve never tried it and would like to – just don’t know if the “extended stay” includes this trip. If the September cookie is spectacular, I’ll stop there Monday before going home but will bring an umbrella for shade this time! With not doing the parks, I can arrive at 9 and sit on the wall reading until Gideon’s opens just before 10.

About a month before the trip a problem developed. At work I’m the director of my division but also the interim director of the clinical services division. One of the key vacancies in that division is the Executive Nursing Director. We were able to find one, and she starts new employee training 8/26. Initially I was told she’d be released on 9/1! Not being there (as her immediate supervisor) would be very poor on my part, but with concierge level and Moonlight Magic I honestly didn’t care <g>. Thankfully her training was later determined to last through 9/2, so I was in the clear!

The plans so far are:
Wednesday 8/31: Drive to AKV, Gideon’s, Concierge Lounge, Moonlight Magic
Thursday 9/01: Pool, Concierge Lounge
Friday 9/02: Pool, Concierge Lounge
Saturday 9/03: Pool, Concierge Lounge
Sunday 9/04: Epcot/Food & Wine Festival or Pool, Concierge Lounge
Monday 9/05: Gideon’s, Drive to Gainesville

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