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Old 04-03-2022, 03:47 PM   #1
a1000monkeys
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Default SoCal, Universal Hollywood VIP tour

Just a finished a spring break college tour trip with my family. Scoping out colleges for DS17.

We stayed at the Marriott Newport Coast Villas. It was a beautiful and very comfortable property. Lots of wealth in Newport. Never seen so many Bentleys in my life.

After dinner one night we went to Downtown Disney. There isnít much there these days. ESPN, Rainforest Cafe and the theater are all gone. City Walk at Universal Hollywood was so much bigger and better.

After we finished our college tours we did a VIP tour at Universal Studios Hollywood. It was our first time there and it was absolutely worth the costs. The tour last about 6 hours and it comes with VIP lounge access, an excellent ďgourmetĒ buffet lunch, valet parking and some extra behind the scenes tours on a special lot tour vehicle where we were allowed to get off and walk around sets. Our tour guide was very informative and fantastic.

The park was very crowded (and a very different demographic than Disney) yet we were able to see and do pretty much everything. The highlights were the Waterworld show (unbelievable stunts that makes the Indy show look lame in comparison) and the lot tour (which includes some ride experiences-King Kong 360, Jaws, Earthquake and Fast & Furious). Also, after the tour is over the VIP pass works as an unlimited Express Pass for the rest of the day.

We ran into a family back at our hotel who lamented about how crowded it was and the awful time they had. Again, the VIP was worth the costs.

Despite the excellent tour and the great time we had, Universal still lacks that Disney magic and there is nothing pulling us back to want to go again. Maybe in another 5-7 years.
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Old 04-03-2022, 06:32 PM   #2
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Thanks for the summary, glad you enjoyed. Iím sure those last lines mirror how Iíd feel as well.
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Old 04-03-2022, 09:24 PM   #3
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You need to check out Newport RI
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Old 04-04-2022, 09:41 AM   #4
Adelard of Bath
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Quote:
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The park was very crowded (and a very different demographic than Disney)
Just curious - "different" like what are we talking?
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Old 04-04-2022, 02:52 PM   #5
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Quote:
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Just curious - "different" like what are we talking?
Kids were older, adults were younger. Very few scooters. Heavily hispanic. They offer many studio tours in Spanish. Lots of drinking, seemed like everyone had a michelada in their hands.

More blue collar. At the register one guy pulled out a wad of 100s and 20s bigger than my fist. I pretty much never carry much cash so it definitely caught my eye.
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Old 04-04-2022, 04:49 PM   #6
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I am always reminded of the time not too long ago, I was in line at a farm store near me. A guy was buying several bags of what I assume was feed, the total came to over $800. He reached in his back pocket, pulled out his wallet, and started counting out bills.

I think last week I charged $1.26 at a gas station.
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Old 04-04-2022, 05:51 PM   #7
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I think last week I charged $1.26 at a gas station.
This makes me laugh. I do the same thing.

Way to rack up those Disney Rewards.
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Old 04-04-2022, 06:48 PM   #8
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Ditto. There was a home invasion robbery in my town recently and the thieves apparently made off with cash and jewelry. I kept thinking to myself, "who keeps cash in their house?"

I don't even have much of a change jar anymore because I never use cash. The most "cash-like" valuables I have are about $1,500 worth of Disney Gift Cards and my wife is not into expensive jewelry so thieves would be sorely disappointed at my house.
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