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Orlando, Florida Vacation (accessibility and handicap friendly)

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    Orlando, Florida Vacation (accessibility and handicap friendly)

    Just returned from a ten day vacation to Orlando, Florida and wanted to give some feed back about places I thought was good, and not so good with providing handicap accessibility. First, we stayed at the Bahama Bay Resort in Davenport. Had reserved a two bed /two bath villa and requested ground floor. We were provided with a ground floor handicap accessible THREE BEDROOM/two bath villa. The staff was marvelous there in assisting you to use all the (heated) pools, hot tubes and exercise equipment. Free long distance, wifi and movie rentals were included at a very reasonable weekly rate. Two staff members there even built us a wooden ramp, free of charge, to assist in loading my jazzy. Our ramp was destroyed in a freak accident on the way to Florida. We found all four of the Disney Theme Parks to be handicap accessible and handicap friendly. Was never asked to leave my scooter in an unprotected situation. You felt they wanted you to enjoy your experience. Was even a given a pass by customer service to by-pass the lines. This is a real plus when your not able to regulate body temp and it's 85-90 degrees outside. Universal Studios we found not to be so accessible, nor were they very handicap friendly. Many of the rides and eateries do not provide lanes wide enough to navigate a relatively small scooter. It was an extra $25 per ticket to do the quick pass and by pass the lines. Our Sea World experience was fine, no issues there. Being mostly shows, one can watch from the their W/C or scooter in areas that does not obstruct viewing. No need to do much transferring at this park. Our one HORRIBLE experience was The Holy Land Experience. I was reluctant to go anyway, just because MY OWN personal belief, I don't like it when people turn their faith into a money making business for a wealthy lifestyle. However, I went at the request of my father and found it to be a total waste of money. In my opinion, they throw down some handicap signs at each show arena and call it accessible. None of the isle spaces are large enough for a W/C or scooter and your unable to see 90% of the self-view attractions. But the worse was when in the early afternoon, my father and I went to the park's coliseum for a scheduled show. When we entered the building, I was instructed were to placed my scooter for the show. When I realized the chair in front of my scooter had a back on it higher then my scooter and would be unable to see the show, I had my father assist me in transferring to the chair, leaving my scooter in the space I was instructed to use. Just as the show started, a female attendant of Holy Land RUDELY asked why I was not sitting in my scooter. I explained to her why I had transferred to the chair. She said," If your not going to sit in the scooter, it goes out back." I objected, saying I would need the scooter if there were a fire or something that created the need for me to exit the building quickly. She shook her head, saying, "No", and pointed to another attendant to move the chair. I told her if either one of them touched that $ 5,000 dollar chair they better be prepared to pay for it. Then I asked would she move the chair I was sitting in so I could place my scooter there. Again, in her rude tone, she said, "This area is not designated for W/C's." I said, "This is absurd, I'd never ask you to put your legs "out back", while you watch the show, and further more, who watches over a scooter (not key protected) that is put outside"? She responded with, "We are not responsible for your personal items." Finally in a loud voice she said, "If you are going to sit in one of OUR chairs, this scooter goes out back." By then a security officer had approached to inquire about the disruption and when I told him what was happening, he said, "Yes, unfortunately those are management's rules here." After exiting the show, we phoned the remainder of our party to meet us in the parking area and left. A horrible waste of $30.00/ticket. I've since filed a complaint and added negative reviews to several travel sites. Just a word to the wise, don't bother with this park if your looking for any "feel good" experience.
    Last edited by Patty41; 28 Oct 2010, 5:29 PM.

    Originally posted by Paul79UF
    I'm so surprised by your experience at the holy land park. Seems like that would be the kind of place that would want anyone and everyone to be able to see their shows even when not considering the entry fee.

    They aren't part of the Disney family of attractions, are they?

    Hope you had a good time overall. I recently went to the Epcot Food & Wine Festival with my brother and dad. Besides being expensive for every little thing, it was enjoyable.
    Yes, thank you Paul. Other then the Holy Land experience, it was truly a wonderful vacation. You're correct, Holy Land is not part of the Disney theme parks. Epcot's Food and Wine Festival was still going on, as was Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween @ The Magic Kingdom. Both were fun, but as you say, expensive, especially for the mini portion size you receive.