Starting yesterday, I headed out on my annual band trip, this year to Mackinaw Island. While I'm super excited for next year's trip, which will hopefully be at Disney, this year promised to be just as exciting, even if it is only for three days. But either way, today we spent a large portion of our day at the Grand Hotel, and I felt that I would share my thoughts, and how the entire thing related to Disney for me.
The Grand is a wonderful hotel. Now, it certainly isn't Disney quality by any means, but it has it's unique characteristics and little things that do make it special. Is it, in my opinion, a four star hotel, no, not by any means. I'd much rather pay the four to seven hundred dollars to stay at the Grand Floridian. I had some favorite things about the Grand though, like how it is built and still decorated similarly to how it would have been when it was built. I mean, you get a real key as your room key, much different from the cards and now wristbands that Disney has. Both are unique in their own way, so you can't really compare much there, other than the fact that both are awesome for different reasons.
Also, the basis that every room is different is a great aspect to the Grand. Now, I didn't say that I liked the rooms themselves, only that it's cool that every one of them is different. Honestly, I was very fortunate to get the best room out of anyone on the trip. The four of us staying in it had a handicap room, so everything was giant sized, and there was plenty of space for everyone. The colors on the walls were beautiful, and the entire room just worked. I can't say the same for others though, as most of our guys ended up with rooms covered from head to toe in pink.
Dinner was good, not amazing, but I think it's great because a lot of people really enjoyed it. I have experienced some of the best food in the United States, so I can't really compare it the same as others do. For many on the trip it was the best food they've ever had, just because of how complicated and fancy it was. But like I said, it wasn't the best food I've ever eaten. I think there's more hype than what's really there, but once again, I had a great time at dinner because I was fortunate enough to have the closest table to the live jazz ensemble, which was absolutely my favorite thing about dinner.
But I think my favorite part of the evening was how we were all dressed in our finest. I actually Disneybounded as Sorcerer Mickey, as you can see below. I wore my red dress, got some navy blue heels, a navy bow and my brown satchel. And then I had a necklace that I made out of a pair of earrings that were the stars from Fantasia. But there was also another live jazz group that played in a lounge where we all had a chance to dance. I've never really done something like that before, like live dancing, so I think that was honestly my favorite part of, not just the grand, but of the entire trip (since I'm technically typing this up after the entire thing is over). It's a memory I'll hold forever just because it was something that I just leaped and did it. I was adventurous!
Overall, I think the Grand is a nice hotel, but it isn't as nice as people say it is, or at least from my perspective. The Island itself, which I'll talk about a bit more tomorrow, was nice, and I loved the entire experience, but I don't have a wish to return. Now, to put it into some perspective, I traveled with my band and another band to Colorado several years ago, and I would really like to return, but I don't really have a want to go back to Mackinaw Island. The same goes for Boston and New York, I'd love to go there too someday, and while that was a bigger trip, there was still a lot I didn't see at Mackinaw. I don't know. I think that from my perspective, I'd rather spend the money to go somewhere else, not even just Disney, but like New Orleans, or Colorado or New York, than to go back to the Island. It was nice, it just didn't really appeal to me.
Still, the trip was a great time and I really enjoyed it, so it's not to say that it was the fault of my band. I love band trips, and I really am glad that everyone else enjoyed it! Or at least it has sounded like everyone else enjoyed it! I'm happy that I could help bring these new experiences that were probably amazing to every other member of the band, and honestly, I'd rather have myself be unhappy than everyone else unhappy. That way they have a positive experience. If I don't have one, I'm still going to make the best of it. =)
Here's today's Disney History: 1955: Disney's 15th animated feature film, Lady and the Tramp, has its world premiere in Chicago. It is the first Disney cartoon feature filmed in CinemaScope (A widescreen film process). It will be generally released 6 days later.
Have a magical day!