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by Debra Martin Koma
AllEars® Senior Editor
This article appeared in the June 22, 2004 Issue #248 of ALL EARS® (ISSN: 1533-0753)
Completely different from the Crystal Palace character breakfast (see the ALL EARS® review HERE), but equally as good is the character breakfast at 'Ohana in the Polynesian Resort. Breakfast here is not a buffet, but is served family style, with terrific results.
As you're waiting to be seated in the tropical-themed lobby of the Polynesian, you're directed to an area framed by exotic Tiki gods. A Disney photographer takes your group photo, which will be ready for purchase later in your meal. (They bring the photo to your table in pre-made packages of 5x7 and wallets, as well as key rings and fridge magnets. Cost $25.00)
While the menu at 'Ohana is much less imaginative than that of the Crystal Palace, it is no less tasty. 'Ohana's signature pineapple bread, coffee or tea, as well as your choice of juice are brought as soon as you're seated, followed by an array of fresh fruit. A lazy susan is finally brought out, stocked with savory sausages, breakfast potatoes, bacon and scrambled eggs, all prepared and seasoned well (although the bacon was a bit too crisp for my taste). There are also light, flaky biscuits, and the ever-popular Mickey waffles, with a generous supply of whipped butter and warm syrup. If you run out of a particular item, you just mention it to your server ("We need more eggs!"), who will restock your table as many times as you want.
This breakfast is hosted by Tropical Mickey himself, and he circulates through the room about once every hour. At approximately 15-minute intervals, he's followed by the chipmunks Chip and Dale, wearing native headbands and wooden bead skirts, and finally Goofy, attired in a wild tropical print shirt like Mickey.
Did I mention how relaxed this breakfast is? Maybe it's because, instead of repeatedly running up to a buffet, the food is brought directly to your table, but the atmosphere seems much more low-key than it is at many other character breakfasts. Well, except for when, once an hour, they have a rather noisy character parade around the restaurant, recruiting all the willing children (and some adults) to march to music from the Disney movie "The Lion King." But you can forgive them that hourly disruption, since here, as at the Crystal Palace, characters spend plenty of time with guests in an unhurried manner. In fact, during our visit we had guests from Japan who were starved for character attention (seems they don't get much time with the characters at Tokyo Disneyland). Each character took the time to look at the small photo album our Japanese friends shared with them, signed multiple autographs and posed for several pictures before moving on to the next table. We had such a good time with the characters that we lost track of the time, spending nearly two hours at breakfast!
So, which character breakfast should you choose? It depends on what you're looking for. But if you decide on the character breakfast at 'Ohana, you can't go wrong.
Editor's Note: This story/information was accurate when it was published. Please be sure to confirm all current rates, information and other details before planning your trip.