So, we went back. If you haven’t read my post about our 1st visit during the soft opening, you can find that HERE.
Before I get into what was different in the 2 week time between soft-opening and now, I wanted to tell you what happened. As mentioned in our previous post, I thought there were a few kinks that needed some attention. When we left the 1st time, Little A was actually in tears. This broke my heart for several reasons, but mostly I was sad that we had forked over the money for this awesome experience, but she was heart broken. It all came down to the Princesses.
The day was supposed to follow a certain timeline: Arrive and meet Rapunzel in the lobby, have 4 princesses visit your table, and then carry-on outside for a special experience with 3 more princesses. When we arrived, Rapunzel was not there (super disappointing because I worked really hard on her hair and she was so excited to show Rapunzel how she looked), but we were assured that she would be back. During breakfast, only 2 princesses came to our table. Normally, I would not have stressed about this, but we actually saw Jasmine and Pocahantas at other tables, but somehow they missed us. And again, we were assured by everyone that they would be back. Unfortunately, they never did. But, the real reason Little A cried was because Ariel was not in the last room outside. Now, she may have been dressed as Rapunzel, but Ariel is her true love. We had caught a glimpse of her on our way to the restroom, so we knew she was there. But, a very sweet server (who would have NO IDEA that she loved Ariel based on her costume) asked that Ariel and Rapunzel switch out because he also knew that she hadn’t seen Rapunzel. It honestly was the sweetest gesture and I completely understand why he did it. But Little A was so sad.
All the staff were actually so wonderful. They tried to get Ariel back, but she had gone (we had one of the last reservations of the day) So we left and while it was all very magical and beautiful, I just felt a sort of sadness about how it ended. To be perfectly honest, I wasn’t sure if I was going to write a blog post or not.
That same afternoon, we were still at Disneyland and I got a voicemail from the manager of Napa Rose. He had heard about what happened and felt terrible. When I spoke to him, I told him that the food and service were wonderful, but I thought there were a couple of things that could be improved and the Princess situation had to be worked on. I realize that Princesses are people too (ha) and I know they need breaks but there had to be a better way to make sure everyone got to see all 8 princesses as promised. He assured me that he had already spoken with the entertainment division and they were going to make this better! He then said that he would like us to come back so he could show us what the experience was meant be! I couldn’t believe it. I actually started crying on the phone.
So, that is how we found ourselves back at Napa Rose! The morning came and I was a little nervous. I was REALLY hoping that the flow had been fixed and that we would get to see all the princesses as promised. As soon as we arrived, I knew this time was going to be different! Rapunzel was waiting in the lobby to greet guests as they arrived, just as I had hoped! Little A had an adorable conversation with her about Max and Pascal, about adventures they had both been on and of course about hair! It was very cute!
As we were escorted to our table, one of the 1st things I noticed was that everyone was being sat in one corner of the restaurant. As time went on, they were seating each block of reservations together in a section. I knew immediately that this was to fix the princess issue. As the Princesses started to come out, they would start with our group of tables and then, once they had visited everyone, they would move on to the next group! Genius! It ensures that no table gets accidentally skipped over. While seated for breakfast, we saw all 4 princesses! Tiana, Aurora, Jasmine and Belle! It was perfect!
There were a few other things that been changed as well. They had replaced the plain white napkins with beautiful pink florals folded into roses. Seems like a small thing, but the difference was very beautiful as it’s the first thing you see on the table and really sets the mood for the experience you are about to have.
The next thing I noticed was something that I had suggested to the manager that I am VERY happy they implemented. When you are 1st seated, your server brings you a specialty drink menu. During our 1st visit, not a single person mentioned that these drinks were an additional cost. I don’t believe they were intentionally hiding this fact, but still, nobody said anything. I knew before our 1st visit that these were extra, but the menu didn’t have prices, so the average person would naturally assume that these delicious drinks would be included in your breakfast price. I am pleased to report that the specialty drink menu now includes pricing so there will be no confusion. It also takes the pressure off the servers to have to bring this up! It’s a win win and I’m so glad they did this.
They also added kid’s cups with lids! Hooray! Nothing worse than cringing every time your child picks up a real glass of water and praying they don’t spill it everywhere. My mama heart was happy about this!
Finally, they changed the “appetizer” breads for the better. Instead of the sweet conchas, on our second visit, we received a delicious morning bun, scones and the most decadent lemon monkey bread! Seriously, it was so good!!
The food remained just as incredible as you would expect from Napa Rose. VERY happy to report that both the service and the food were impeccable!
After our breakfast, we were escorted outside for the second half of our adventure. This time, Mulan was having storytime and Pocohantas was teaching us how to say hello and goodbye. I believe the princesses rotate outside so your breakfast may vary. AND we finally got to see Ariel and it was just as magical as I had hoped. The smile on Little A’s face was worth every dollar spent!
All in all, I think that our second visit was absolutely perfect! Napa Rose has fixed everything that needed to be fixed. Small changes here and there that make for a better experience and BIG changes to how the princesses interact with guests. But, I would say, if you go and for some reason you miss a princess at your table, ASK! Ask your server, ask your adventure guide! Don’t be embarrassed, don’t be timid. This is the most expensive character dining option in all the Parks around the world. You deserve to see every princess and you shouldn’t be afraid to ask.
I am SO grateful we had the opportunity to go back for a second time. For me, this breakfast was a one time thing and the fact that I was able to have a second chance at it is truly unbelievable. Disney magic is real! If you have been thinking about booking, I encourage you to do it.