I am also glad Wilderness Lodge won, being the hotel I stayed at four years ago when I visited WDW! Amazing rooms, a beautifully designed and very large lobby, and fun restaurants and atmosphere. It truly is a great resort, plus not the most expensive!
Also like the new picture in the website banner with the WWOHP!
As from Bistro, I kinda disagree with that one too, but I could understand how it could win. I just do not think it is as accessable as the others.
I agree with Wilderness lodge which boasts good resturants, good food, good pool, and the most breathtaking lobby of them all!
So 2 out of 4 for me. I think that might be a better record of agreement than in the past!
Anyway, congrats to you Robert for bringing another fantastic year and season of TPI!
I mean, it looks great, but it would be nice if it went through a couple of banners! Good idea for the winners though and the picture is pretty good anyway!
My personal favorites so far this year (keep in mind that I will ride I-305 in about two weeks, so this list could change):
Kringla Bakeri Og Kafe - a hidden gem at Epcot!Disney's Port Orleans (Riverside) - the best moderate resort at WDW, and the only one that caters to a family of 5!Sum of All Thrills - another hidden gem at Epcot.Epcot - a precious diamond despite its many flaws.
I continue to be stumped why Epcot doesn't get more love in the awards. (Remember, I am the person who just about jumped off a Web server when y'all voted Impressions de France out in the first round of the tournament this year.) Still, the restaurant awards are a nice honor!
I used to really hate Impressions, but now after being to Paris and actually understanding what is going on in the movie with the music and scenery, it is the most subdued and underrated attraction there.
The awards rarely go to my favorites, except for hotels. I am personally suprised that Wilderness Lodge doesn't beat the rest every year. It literally has something for everybody including two fine resturants in Disney style: one family, one adult!
James, I agree with you fully on your pick of Port Orleans. I feel that its the perfect middle resort, but I also have love for the Carribean Beach!
As far as the other awards, I think the restaurants are a bit tricky, especially since the top two are right next to each other. There are TONS of great theme park restaurants, and I would say at least 3-5 that are better just in EPCOT including LeCellier, Coral Reef, and Restaurant Marrakesh.
If it is not that, I don't know what it is. The ride is amazing from what EVERYONE has said. By the end of the year, probably near half of America will have been down to experience Harry Potter, and the only complaint about it is the weight issue. An attraction should not accommodate to the heavier standards, the heavier standards should loose weight and accommodate to the attraction, doing much more good than vise versa.
So to challenge your statement, I went to Internet Movie Database(IMDb.com) and looked up these facts. For All Time Box Office Movies here in the USA, the first Harry Potter movie ranked is Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone and sad to say it's ranked #25 for all time movies.
It's only when you look up for ouside the USA do you find the fisrt movie ranked in the top ten and that's HP and the Sorcerer's Stone ranked at # 6. And World Wide the first movie ranked is the Sorcerer's Stone at # 7.
So you can see Nick, by those stats, Harry Potter is not so hot here in the United States as you stated. Granted, he's very popular overseas, but not so much here. Zachary and I may go see FJ next year when we go down to Florida but after going to Universal last year, I may not go just for one ride even though we are fans.
Star Wars with it's six film series made over 2 billion in the USA but only 4.6 worldwide. And if your just talking money and popular movies, look what James Cameron did with just two films. Over 1.3 billion here and over 4.5 worldwide.
Harry may have a large fan base overseas, but to have his top rated movie ranked 25th here speaks volumns to me at least. I can understand the rush to Universal right now, but I think it will cool down quite a bit in the next few years. Once all the first timers get their taste of Potterland and butterbeer, you'll see the drop off,imho.
Best HotelI once stayed at the Wilderness Lodge. Though the lobby and restaurants are beautiful, we were very disappointed in our rooms. They were dilapidated and cramped. Paint was peeling off of the walls in the room and hallways. We could hear everything our neighbors were doing. Maybe we were unlucky and ended up with one of the old rooms requiring refurbishing, but we felt pretty ripped off. My personal favorite theme park hotel is the Saratoga Springs Resort. Like Bistro, it is calm, quiet, and accommodating. The rooms are nicely arranged and appointed. The views, particularly at sunset, are gorgeous. We loved the kitchenette and balcony. We were walking distance from Downtown Disney and a short bus ride from most of the parks. I'd like to see more love for Saratoga.
Best New AttractionNo complaints here. Haven't ridden it, but if Universal outdid Spiderman, then it must be amazing.
Best Theme ParkMany complaints here. IOA is a half-day park. Too many of the attractions are dilapidated and malfunctioning, especially considering how young the park is. The locker system is inconvenient. Most of the queues feature very little theming. The loading platform employees are inefficient. It's still a great park, but the greatest? I'm with James on this one. Epcot is my favorite, followed by Universal Orlando. I was happy to see Animal Kingdom as a runner-up. I had a near-perfect day there on my last visit. Great attractions, theming, and service.
Hotel: Once again i have not been able to stay here but it looks great. My choice would be Polynisian.
New Attraction: haven't been to IOA this year so can't say i've ridden it but it looks great.
Theme Park: IOA? really? this park won't deserve it even if they add 2 more rides on par with spidy and harry p. IOA is too choppy. Many parts haven't had maintenence for years(or so it seems). If the whole park had the consistantsy of Harry potter world(from what i've heard) it would be a great park. Epcot and Animal Kingdom have themeing throughout the park that makes IOA look like an abandoned themepark. Even DHS is better than IOA because of the great details throughout the whole park. IOA is great, but not great enough.