The Life of a VIP - Adventures By Disney Backstage Magic
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So glad that the weather has has been good. Can't wait to see your photos and read all about your adventures.
Oct '99: CSR ~ May '02: CR ~ Nov '04: SOG ~ May '06: SOG ~ Dec '07: Solo @ Pop ~ May '08: Pop w/friends ~ Oct '08: SOG ~ Dec '09: Pop w/LeAnn ~ Sept '10: Solo @ Pop ~ Spring '11: AKL ~ Jan '12: Pop for 1/2 Marathon ~ Sept '12: 1st trip for DL 1/2 Marathon? ~ Feb '13: Pop w/pals? ~ Mar '13: Tokyo Disney w/PP's?
OK, so I fell asleep watching tv last night, so my plan to stay up late didn't work. I'll try staying up late again tonight. Anyway, here's an update with some photos.
My flight was nice and smooth. We took a route which flew us over the snow-capped Rockies. Beautiful.
Once I'd landed and checked in, I headed to Griffith Park to see the Merry Go Round. It needs some attention, but it was a special moment for me.
I then went to the Griffith Observatory to check out a bunch of cool stuff, including the Tesla Coil
Wireless electricity (which is frightening to me!)
After watching the Planetarium show, I headed back to the LSMBH. I was going to visit the Santa Monica Pier that night, but it was a little cold, so I decided to save that for another night.
The next day, I started bright and early at Universal Studios. I got to see everything on my "must do" list and more, and I also got to meet Shrek and Fiona.
The weather was iffy, so I wasn't sure I'd get my helicopter ride in, but aside from some clouds, the weather was fine and I did it. I was nervous about flying in a helicopter (especially when I saw how small it was ), but once we took off, it was fine. I had the same (cute) pilot my BFF Sam had.
I got to see practically everything in L.A. It was amazing! I told my pilot where I was staying (not because he was cute, but because we were flying right by it). He flew us right over top of it so I could get a good picture.
Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel
We also flew over a bunch of celebrity homes, including (the late) Aaron Spelling's ginormous mansion.
We flew right up to the Hollywood sign.
My pilot pointed out the Bat Cave (which was used in the 70's Batman tv show).
I know my oldest DB will geek out when he sees that picture. He wore out 6 Batman costumes as a kid.
We also flew through the downtown area, including right between a bunch of skyscrapers.
And for a Disney connection, we flew by the Walt Disney Concert Hall.
And, one of my favorite celebrity homes, Johnny Depp!
He lives in the penthouse of the green building that says Eastern
I loved, loved, loved that helicopter ride and feel like it's the only way to see L.A. Waaaaay cooler than a tour bus, and a lot more fun. Plus, I got to see the actual homes of celebrities (I also saw the homes of Bill Cosby, Tom Cruise, Madonna and the Playboy Mansion, among others - more on that in the actual TR). If I'd done a bus tour, it would've been like "Behind this huge fence is Madonna's house" or "These are the 8-foot hedges in front of the Playboy Mansion."
After that, I returned to Santa Monica and spent the rest of the evening shopping and hanging out on the Pier.
Yesterday I did the VIP tour at Warner Bros. Studios, and I can highly recommend that as well! We got to see a lot of the backlot, we got to visit a couple of sets (including Chuck, The Mentalist, and Two and a Half Men). Sometimes we were allowed to take pictures, sometimes not. Here are a few of the cool things we got to see (and photograph).
A painted backdrop (they hang these outside "windows" on sets, so it looks like they are in a particular location).
Why is this so cool? Well, I think I'll leave something for the actual TR, so I know you'll keep reading.
I'm a big Austin Powers fan, so I really loved that!
Then they forced me to work in Central Perk! The nerve!
Don't let my smile fool you. It was highly traumatic.
When the tour was finished, I went to the Farmer's Market and did some shopping. I also checked out the Grove shopping mall right next door, which was really nice.
Then I returned to Santa Monica and watched a lovely sunset on the beach.
So today, I'll be checking out of the LSMBH and I'm going to Hollywood! The Adventure officially starts today!
Fun with friends! Read about it in my Trip Report. Final thoughts added 4/9. NOW COMPLETE!
Great update Sharon. The pictures from teh helicopter are amazing. What a great view and I agree a view that you would not get from a bus tour. Glad the weather stayed ok so you were able to take the tour. Have a great time in Hollywood....