Hey guys!

If you know me well, or are a regular visitor to this blog, you'll know I'm a huge character fan! I mean I love everything about Disneyland Paris, but for me the characters, and more recently the entertainment, is what really sets Disney apart from other theme parks.

So for me when I'm in the parks I am constantly looking for ways to maximise how many characters I can meet, and one of these ways has become an integral part of my trips that I'd like to share with you all, and that is character dining.

This is something I have written about before, previously I gave my thoughts on the character breakfast currently available at Plaza Gardens. That was just after my trip in April 2017, and yet this is still one of my most read posts, and hopefully something that is proving useful to people trying to decide what experiences to spend their money on! So today I have decided to cover another character dining option, Inventions.

Inventions is a buffet restaurant located on the second floor of the iconic Disneyland Hotel. At the time of writing this review it is open for both Lunch and Dinner and does not require you to be a hotel guest or have a current park ticket. Lunch is served from 12:30 - 3 and the Dinner service is from 6 - 10:30 pm, it is priced at €35.00 for children aged 3-11, €65.00 for adults age 12 and up, and finally children under 3 eat for free!

The buffet on offer is, in my opinion, really good. There is plenty there, the range is good and in my experience dishes are replenished quickly throughout the service hours. In the times I have visited Inventions I can honestly say I've never gone hungry, and personally I think of myself as not having the most adventurous pallet, Nuggets and Pizza are just fine for me thank you. There is a good selection of cold meats, cheeses, a large selection of sea food which is always popular, and plenty of vegetarian choices, my personal favourites include the pasta and meatballs and the cod and chicken nuggets.

I have been lucky enough to have had dinner in inventions a few times now since 2016 and it's always been a really enjoyable experience. Part of what keeps me coming back again is that you never know exactly which characters you are going to see on any given night, this really helps to keep the experience fresh as there are so many that could make an appearance. So far I think I have seen; Mickey, Minnie, Chip, Dale, Pluto, Goofy, Donald, Pinocchio, Tigger, Eeyore and Rafiki over the various times I've been. Also I've known other people to have met Captain Hook, Smee, Marie and the Genie to name just a few.


Now if all this isn't sounding like an amazing experience already, if you have a trip that includes a Sunday, you're in for an extra special treat! Instead of the normal Lunch service, Sundays have a special Sunday Brunch which is an even more character filled opportunity. Brunches run each Sunday from 1 - 3pm and are €35 for children 3-11 and €79 for adults, so slightly more than a standard Lunch or Dinner sitting, a free fruit juice or champagne is also provided when you are seated.

What makes the Sunday brunch stand out from a normal meal at inventions is the range of characters that might show up. Character brunches are themed, each week has a different theme and different characters show up to represent it, where the "fab 5" characters, Mickey & Minnie etc, are present they will often have a special themed outfit. This is a great way of meeting rare and unusual characters, and if you're an avid character fan like myself, it's a great way of seeing some really unusual outfits!

Again I've been lucky enough to visit a few brunches, the themes are not announced in advance as they are subject to change at short notice so they try to avoid disappointment, but some themes are fairly easy to predict if they fall in line with public holidays such as Christmas, New year, Halloween, Easter etc. So far I have experienced 4 different brunch themes, Neverland, Champagne, Halloween and Orient Express, each has been a unique experience and I've had some really special meets.

For the Neverland brunch we saw Peter Pan, Wendy, Smee and Captain hook, as well as Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Chip and Dale who all had special Pirate outfits! Peter and Wendy were my favourite and it was my first time meeting them together, but Donald's pirate outfit was really special, and I probably wouldn't have been able to meet him in this any other way!

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The Champagne brunch had a lot of the fab 5 type characters but also Clarice, Duffy bear and Shellie May! So for me this was an incredibly special brunch, and possibly one of my all time favourites. I loved the characters gold outfits and got to spend some quality time with them and got some amazing photographs that I'll hold on to for some time to come.

Finally the Orient express brunch was again the fab 5 characters with some additional friends from the 100 Acre woods, again the costumes were absolutely fantastic and so special to be able to meet Mickey and his pals in costumes you never see around the park, my fondest memory of this brunch was Minnie, she was feeling extremely playful and really made the experience memorable.


Other themes I've seen but haven't been to include a Snow White brunch with all 7 Dwarves, Under the sea with Ariel and Eric, a Parisian style brunch with the Aristocats, a London Brunch with Mary and Bert, far too many to list all in one place. As you can see this is a fantastic way to meet some really unsual characters or get to see yur favourites in some incredible alternative outfits.

The most important thing to note at character meals is that the characters will come to you, so please don't interrupt them when they are with someone else, on the whole I think Inventions is the best restaurant for this, as well as table staff there are a number of cast members purely to support the characters throughout the restaurant, they ensure that the characters get around all the tables, and are more than happy to help if someone has missed you, they also help to ensure your character meets aren't interrupted by other guests!

Characters will generally sign autographs during meals, however it's worth noting that at peak times, and special brunches (Christmas and Halloween in particular) there isn't always time for autographs, please be prepared for this and as a cast member if you're unsure, either way you can still have a great experience.

My only issue with the buffet style character meals is knowing when to get up to get food, usually the characters will rotate in 2 groups with a small change over between groups, this is the best time to go! The buffet is in the long room in the middle of the restaurant and is easily accessible, there are plenty of plates so you can start pretty much anywhere, especially if you're only after one or two of the available dishes. My preference is usually to sit in one of the end rooms as it doesn't feel as busy, however if you're in a rush and want to see the characters quickly I would advise asking to sit in the buffet room.

Inventions is bookable 60 days prior to your stay and can be done via the restaurant reservation line +33 1 60 30 40 50 no deposit is required upfront but larger groups may need to book by E-mail. The brunches can fill up quickly so it is always worth phoning as early as possible to have the best choice of dates and sitting times.

So that's my experience with Inventions, have you been before? Who have you met? Who would you like to see? Drop me a comment below!

Hoodsie xx
Hey guys,

If you're in the know you might have seen D23 expo has been to Japan, celebrating all things Disney, the expo ran from February 10th - 12th 2018. It covers everything from games and film, to parks and resorts and is a huge event on the Disney fan calendar. Now when it comes to events like D23, and in particular the parks and resorts panel, it's hard not to be a little selfish! Of course it's great to see what is coming to all the parks, but what we really want to hear most is announcements about our home park, be that Paris, Florida, California or beyond, we want to know what's coming next to the place we call home.

Well lucky for any Disneyland Paris fans, Monday's park panel delivered and, as confirmed by DLP themselves in a press release the same day, change is coming to Walt Disney Studios park. Now I've covered the studios park before, the second gate to DLP opened in 2002 and although it has expanded in it's nearly 16 years, it's hard to disagree that the park just isn't up to the Disney standard. I asked before if it was time for a change, and even made some suggestions as to what I'd want to see, but now change is actually starting, and I for one am very excited about it.

So what do we know? Well not a huge amount actually, the press brief was very brief but what we do know for certain is that Rock n Roller coaster, featuring Aerosmith, is all set for a complete overhaul with a new Marvel theme, specifically Iron man and the Avengers. The press release didn't confirm a date for closure of the current attraction, or completion of the new attraction, but I expect this will follow over the next month or so as the extent of the change will become more clear.

Does this come as a huge surprise? Well no. When Cinemagique closed it's doors, and a marvel themed replacement was confirmed fans speculated that a Marvel themed area of the park wouldn't be out of the questiont. Next came the announcement of Marvel summer of Heroes, and the rumoured re-theme of Tower of Terror into Guardians of the Galaxy: Mission breakout, to match Disney's California Adventure. Then there was subsequent reporting of the re-theme being "shelved". So no, the announcement of an attraction closing to under go a transformation into something with a Marvel theme wasn't a bolt out of the blue.

But what about Rock N Roller? One of the opening day attractions in Walt Disney Studios it is situated in the Backlot area of the park, opposite Blockbuster café and the Spider-Man Meet and Greet, it's one of the fastest roller coasters (if not the fastest) and as the name would suggest is themed around the band Aerosmith. The DLP version has a few differences to it's American predecessor at Hollywood studios, most notably it is themed as a music video experience in Paris, and an high speed car trip in the US version.

As I'm not a huge coaster fan and don't know a huge amount about the ride or it's place in Disney parks history, I asked my friend Matty from Discovery Mountain if he could shed some light on the ride for me.

"Rock N Roller coaster Avec Aerosmith" is a Vekoma LSM launch coaster, the track layout is a clone of the attraction at Disney's Hollywood Studios and was custom designed by Walt Disney Imagineering and Vekoma. Rock n Roller continues to be the fastest Disney coaster, and is still the fastest roller coaster in France with a top speed of 57 mph!

He then went on to describe the ride experience for me, which as I've never ridden it, I found really interesting!

The coaster sets off and moves into the launch position, a large LED sign counts down along with the voice of Steven Tyler 3,2,1 and you're off, the coaster travels along the launch tunnel going from 0 to 57 mph in 2.8 seconds. The ride features a half loop, followed by a double corkscrew, and then turns and twists around the rest of the show building. The ride features a full Aerosmith backing track throughout and an extravagant light show, there is one final corkscrew before the brake run.

So that's the current ride in a nutshell, it's worth noting that the ride has an on board photo op, and already has a fast pass entrance in operation, both of which it is safe to assume will carry over to the new ride.

Now that we understand what we're saying good bye to, what do I think about the change? Well to be honest I'm pretty excited, even though I have no intention of riding Rock n Roller before it departs, or it's replacement once it opens. Since it's acquistion by Disney Marvel has started to make its presence among Disney parks to mixed reviews, Tower of Terror fans were disappointed to see the tower in Califonia replaced by Mission Breakout, but once it opened there were a lot of positive reviews on the ride and the theme inside the tower.

Marvel day at sea has provided a presence of the IP on the Disney Cruise lines and is very popular, and alongside the announcement of an Iron Man/Avengers attraction for Paris at D23, an Ant man ride for Hong Kong Disneyland, which is it's second Marvel attraction following on from their Iron Man Experience, and finally, a family friendly Guardians of the Galaxy ride for Epcot in Walt Disney World. So as you can see the Marvel IP is being incorporated into many of the Disney parks and is already proving to be popular.

Walt Disney Studios has always been a park that hasn't lived up to standard, and the back lot area in particular is quite an eyesore, it feels almost baron, it lacks theme, and has very little draw, I'm lucky if I visit once a trip! The Toy Story Playland and Place de Remy areas of the park have the most draw for me, they are beautifully themed and they feel immersive, fresh and exciting. Even if the rides aren't appealing to you the area still has something worth going to see, this is exactly what I'm hoping for with the regeneration of the Back lot area, a change that starts with Rock n Roller.

So why is Rock n Roller going, can't we just have a new attraction? Well the fact is new rides are expensive. Until recently (and even then the facts are sketchy) DLP has been a loss making resort, and a re theme is much cheaper than the development and construction of a new ride. Rock n Roller also features the band Aerosmith, a license that probably has an additional cost to keep in the park, so a re theme to a Disney owned IP would potentially produce a cost saving!

But of course Armageddon has once again survived the chop and fans have been quick to point this out and question why other, more popular attractions have gone before this one. I don't have an official answer, but I do have a theory! My best guess would be that the Armageddon attraction just doesn't easy lend it's self to a quick re-theme. I personally cannot thing of a good overlay that would work with the existing show building and what's already inside. I would assume this means the intention is to rip the existing attraction out and use the show building for something else, which again would be at a higher cost, and a longer turn around time. I do believe, and for the sake of the resort I sincerely hope, that Armageddon's days are numbered.

So as I said, I truly believe this is a great step for Disneyland Paris, though I will probably never conquer my fear of coasters enough to ride it, I can't wait to see and here about the new overlay and can't wait to see the back lot area of the studios park transformed into something we can all be really proud of.
What about you? Will you miss Rock n Roller? Are you excited for an Avengers attraction? What should replace Armageddon, or will we be blighted with it forever? Drop me a comment!

Hoodsie xx
Hey guys!

So something really exciting arrived in my Inbox this morning and basically I thought it would be really rude of me not to share it with you all, so I thought I’d do a quick round up of the latest annual pass holder news coming direct from Disneyland Paris. Hopefully you’ll find this useful/interesting, at least in parts, but as always feedback is super appreciated!
If you’re an existing pass holder, you may remember that the current selection of annual passes was a new introduction to the resort last year. There are currently 4 tiers of annual pass, Discovery, Magic Flex, Magic Plus and Infinity. Each tier gives the holder additional access, benefits and discount within the resort and this makes it easy to pick the pass that best suits your needs and enables you to pay a fair price based on which benefits are suited to your park habits.

annual passes
Well today DLP have announced their first annual review of the new style passes and I’m going to try and relay that information to you guys, with a breakdown of my thoughts on each part. First of all we should probably tackle the Elephant in the room, prices.

Price changes.
The first thing to announce is that in line with general tickets, annual pass prices will be increasing in 2018, with effect from March 21st 2018 the first 3 tiers of annual passes will see a price increase, the new prices will be;

  • Discovery pass €9 per month or €149.00 annually

  • Magic Flex pass €15 per month or €219.00 annually

  • Magic Plus pass €19 per month or €259.00 annually

I’m pleased to announce the Infinity pass will stay at the current €32 per month of €399.00 annually (monthly prices are based on an initial deposit of €55), in addition to this any special price offers such as the free 4 months at renewal and the AP referral programme will stay the same.
For me, this came as a pleasant surprise, the increases are on the whole not as large as I expected, for reference the previous prices annually were €139, €189 and €249 so for 2/3 passes only a €10 increase. Personally I still believe the passes provide excellent value for money, if you make 2 or more trips of 4 days a year there are definitely savings to be made by purchasing a pass, and I certainly don’t regret mine! I’m surprised not to see the Infinity pass increase this time round, though I would assume this is because it was already so much more than the other passes.

New Viewing areas.
Now that we’ve covered off the cost, we should look at what we’re getting for our money, and the first thing on the list is the VIP viewing areas. VIP viewing areas were introduced alongside the new range of passes in 2017 and are an included perk on the infinity pass, essentially they are roped off areas along the parade route, and in front of the castle for illuminations, that you can only access if you are an infinity pass holder who has made a reservation either by phone or at city hall. They allow you to get a great view of the parade or fireworks and also it’s a way of getting your spot without having to wait around and try to hold your space for such a long time! The changes to the viewing area are:
In late March, the private VIP areas for Infinity Annual Pass holders will be expanded so that they can fully enjoy Disney Stars on Parade and Disney Illuminations in a special way.

From 10 June 2018, a new zone will be reserved for Infinity Annual Pass holders for the new show Stark Expo presents: Energy for Tomorrow! which will be performed during Marvel Summer of Super Heroes at Walt Disney Studios Park, at the foot of the Hollywood Tower Hotel.

Now I think they both sound really exciting, and i particularly like that it's being rolled out into the studios park for the new show there this summer. However, the one change I'd like to see is the addition of an option to book a plus one for the area, in my friendship circle only a couple of us have the infinity pass and this means I haven't used this perk at all since upgrading to infinity last April as I want to watch the parade and fireworks with my friends, I'd love to be able to use it with my Niece this April to get her a better view for Illuminations, but as she isn't a pass holder I can't take her in with me.

Annual pass merchandise

In addition to this April will see the resort release its first range of Annual Pass themed merchandise, now the details on this part are a little fuzzy and I'm not 100% sure if this will only be available to annual pass holders, or annual pass holder branded. The range launches April 12th and will include a mixture of open edition and limited edition items, so far I have seen Pins Mugs T shirts and Lanyards. I will be in the resort from April 16th so hopefully can get some more info then if not before. Items will be on sale exclusively to Flora's which is on Main street opposite the emporium.

Personally I'm excited to see what they do with this, the annual pass holder merchandise offered in WDW looks really good and I like that they have them for different events like Mickey's Not so Scary and presumably the Mickeys Very Merry parties too, this could be something really special and make for some really nice keepsakes!

AP Events

The final thing to cover is possibly the most exiting of all and that's an extended calendar of events and offers for pass holders, and even better the first date is already announced.

The first event will take place on March 30th in the Studios park and on this occasion the event will only be for Infinity pass holders, however future events and offers will be for different levels of AP, so everyone should see some benefit.

The first event is a soiree to celebrate 10 years of the Tower of Terror, a themed party night will include fancy dress with a 1930's Hollywood theme, actors, photo locations and a projection show. Tickets will be €39 and go on sale February 5th from City hall, Studio services, and the infinity phone line!

Now this isn't really my sort of thing, Tower of Terror is not my kind of ride, and 1930's Hollywood isn't a style I'd feel in any way confident to pull off, however I'm really really excited about this sort of event and can't wait to see how well it goes and subsequent events that will follow on from it, should it prove to be a success.


So that's the news round up for today, a lot of information to digest, but some really positive changes, what do you guys think? Which announcement are you most excited for? Did anything surprise you? Drop me a comment!

Hoodsie xx