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Old 11-11-2012, 02:43 AM   #1
TvWatcha3
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Heartbroken about California Grille - Please Help!

Hey guys/gals...

I'm a huge fan of these boards. They've given me such great insight over the years. I've never had many reasons to post, but I have a bit of a dilemma at the moment that I'm hoping someone could help me with...

Dining at California Grille during Wishes has been an important staple of my WDW trips. It adds a whole new dimension to the vacation, with just one sitting. I could never leave it off the itinerary, EVER. Anyways, I'm gonna try to make the rest a long-story-short...

My grandparents introduced me to Disney World when I was only a toddler in a stroller. Because of them, WDW has been a source of happiness and joy my entire life. They've never really explored "The World" as much and as extensively as I have. And they haven't been back in a long while. In the past couple of years, I've lost my grandfather and my mother to cancer. My grandmother has been dealing with heart issues for a while now, and recently losing her husband and daughter have impacted her physical and emotional well-being quite a bit.

My grandmother just very-recently had heart surgery to repair a leaky valve. Before the surgery, I promised myself that I'd finally take her to Disney World should it be a success. Well, the surgery was a success and I immediately made the ressies and booked the flight.

The problem: I can't seem to get a reservation for any of our 14 days in WDW (in Feb. 2013), for California Grille, anytime during or surrounding Wishes. It may sound silly to make a big deal over a restaurant, but it was meant to be a great highlight of the trip. I've literally imagined, several times, the smile on my grandmother's face, looking down at the fireworks over Cinderella's castle from that rooftop. She's never experienced anything like that.

If anyone has any advice to resolve this somehow, I'd REALLY appreciate it. I'm pretty sure they don't take walk-ups. Definitely feeling defeated here.

And I'm sorry for drawing this all out. I just wanted to paint a picture on how much this means to me.

Thanks, everyone! =)
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Old 11-11-2012, 05:06 AM   #2
Three cats
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California Grill will be closed for a lengthy refurbishment while you are there. How about Narcoosees? You could time it to watch the fireworks from the beach.
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Old 11-11-2012, 11:44 AM   #3
Quin
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Prior poster is correct: CG will be closed for rehab for about 6 months. You and Grandmother could look at it this way - she herself has just undergone a major refurb, and CG is the same. To celebrate a whole new chapter in her life, you're going to try a whole new restaurant and make new memories for both of you. Actually, going back to CG this trip might have ended up being sad rather than happy for both of you if it reminded you more of your past and your losses. I'd agree with the idea of Narcoossees as well, because it does offer a view of the fireworks as well but from a whole new perspective.

Finally, this gives you both a chance to plan for a future visit to experience the new CG after the refurb. Looking forward rather than looking back is healthy for everyone.
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Old 11-11-2012, 12:43 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TvWatcha3 View Post
Hey guys/gals...

I'm a huge fan of these boards. They've given me such great insight over the years. I've never had many reasons to post, but I have a bit of a dilemma at the moment that I'm hoping someone could help me with...

Dining at California Grille during Wishes has been an important staple of my WDW trips. It adds a whole new dimension to the vacation, with just one sitting. I could never leave it off the itinerary, EVER. Anyways, I'm gonna try to make the rest a long-story-short...

My grandparents introduced me to Disney World when I was only a toddler in a stroller. Because of them, WDW has been a source of happiness and joy my entire life. They've never really explored "The World" as much and as extensively as I have. And they haven't been back in a long while. In the past couple of years, I've lost my grandfather and my mother to cancer. My grandmother has been dealing with heart issues for a while now, and recently losing her husband and daughter have impacted her physical and emotional well-being quite a bit.

My grandmother just very-recently had heart surgery to repair a leaky valve. Before the surgery, I promised myself that I'd finally take her to Disney World should it be a success. Well, the surgery was a success and I immediately made the ressies and booked the flight.

The problem: I can't seem to get a reservation for any of our 14 days in WDW (in Feb. 2013), for California Grille, anytime during or surrounding Wishes. It may sound silly to make a big deal over a restaurant, but it was meant to be a great highlight of the trip. I've literally imagined, several times, the smile on my grandmother's face, looking down at the fireworks over Cinderella's castle from that rooftop. She's never experienced anything like that.

If anyone has any advice to resolve this somehow, I'd REALLY appreciate it. I'm pretty sure they don't take walk-ups. Definitely feeling defeated here.

And I'm sorry for drawing this all out. I just wanted to paint a picture on how much this means to me.

Thanks, everyone! =)
I'm so sorry for everything your family has been through. But PP are correct, CG will be closed during your trip (for my late-January/early February trip too!). You have a couple of options, you could try the signatures at GF (Citricos or Narcoosees, both are excellent!). You could then either watch the fireworks from the GF beach or take the monorail and watch them from the Poly beach or the CR observation deck.

See it as a chance to make new memories! Hope you have a wonderful trip!
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Old 11-11-2012, 12:52 PM   #5
msteddom
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If you can really splurge, why not try booking a Wishes cruise? I hear viewing the fireworks from the middle of Seven Seas Lagoon is spectacular!

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Old 11-11-2012, 01:16 PM   #6
meggiebeth
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I'm sorry that CG will be closed but have you considered Citricos? If you make an ADR there and mention your grandmother's achievement they can give you special personalized menus that are yours to keep. I think that would be a touching part to the meal. You can request a window seat where you will be able to see Wishes. Just time your meal to coincide with the Wishes fireworks and you can see it right from your table. The music isn't piped in but it is still a lovely experience.

Or after your meal you could go out to watch the fireworks from the beach of the Grand Floridian.

I do think Citricos is a great option because the servers go above and beyond. We received personalized menus (which we now have framed- a great memento for your grandmother) and a celebration card signed by our waiters with a photo of us in.

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Old 11-11-2012, 02:16 PM   #7
TvWatcha3
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It's so refreshing to see such thought-out responses. Thank you all so much. =)

I had no idea that CG was being refurbished. Makes me feel slightly better, as it's officially completely out of my control.

The thought of making new memories at a new place sounds fantastic. It's truly a great way to look at it. I've been to Citricos and totally agree with how amazing it is, but if I'm going to try something new for everyone, I'd rather try something for the first time.

I've never been to Narcoosee's. A beach view could be really great. I'm definitely going to look into the Wishes Cruise. I think it might be worth it to splurge on something that has the same potential (if not more) to be a major vacation highlight.

Thank you all again! Means a lot. =)
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Old 11-11-2012, 08:24 PM   #8
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The Wishes Cruise is worth every $$$ in my opinion.
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Old 11-14-2012, 11:34 PM   #9
TvWatcha3
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The Wishes Cruise has been booked. =)
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