Published on August 23rd, 2010 | by Kevin Barron2
Postcards from Paradise
Walt Disney World is filled with magic. You’d be hard-pressed to find anyone that’s ever visited that would disagree. Some magic is expected, if I can use that somewhat unfitting term, but some is more unexpected and therefore all the more special.
For a foodie, treats are always on the radar, but not always presented as one would expect. For us, a bit unexpected Disney magic took the form of a what we’ll call a Postcards from Paradise.
We checked into our hotel around lunchtime during one relatively recent trip to WDW. It was late summer in 2009; hot and humid. Excitement made all of that bearable, however, because for the first time we would be vacationing at this particular “monorail resort” — Disney’s Polynesian Resort. To make our first visit extra special, we did our homework and found a great deal on a Concierge Level room, located in the Hawaii building. Each building is named for a different island and Hawaii was directly on the beach, facing the Magic Kingdom. We were home for the week and excited. Did I mention our excitement?
Our hotel room was as expected. We did our research there as well, often reviewing Tikiman Pages, so we knew it would be larger than most “on property” and that the tropical feel would have a retro feel. It was relaxing and spacious. Steve, the Tikiman himself, maintains the best guide to the Polynesian we’ve found — probably the best there is, so if you’re going or want to go, then visit his site. Again, for us, as a Deluxe Resort we expected the refrigerator, the queen-sized beds and the balcony. We didn’t expect chocolate before turn-down service, however.
As you know, part of the welcome to the Polynesian is receipt of a Lei for each guest. While not real flowers, they put you in the mood for your island adventure and set the Polynesian apart from all other Disney resorts and hotels. Part of the welcome to Concierge Level, we soon learned, is the receipt of a signature chocolate postcard. The postcard, while not unusual in and of itself, is just one of those little touches of Pixie Dust that Disney does so well. Our travel to WDW, and now to Hawaii, brought with it a unique souvenir. Our postcard was milk chocolate with an edible image of the Polynesian Resort and its logo printed in the center. While we wanted to open it and break off a piece immediately, we restrained ourselves and set it aside partly as decor for the room and partly just to savor that little bit of magic.
We later found out that these Postcards from Paradise are a tradition at the Polynesian. Some frequent guests collect them, so we were told. No, they are not a reason to book a room at the pricey-Polynesian. There are plenty of other reasons, like the grounds, the shops, the convenience of the monorail and the restaurants. These Postcards from Paradise are, however, that little bit of extra fun that you come expect (or not) from a visit to The World.