Cedar Point: 6/22-6/26

We spent 4 nights on America’s Roller Coast. The good and the bad, below.

Hotel Breakers
Being a family of 5 we opted for a lakeview suite. Nice room, nice view, and pretty quiet. The screened in balcony is a nice touch.

Unfortunately the service here could use some improvement. The first night we checked in there was no bedding for the pull out sofa. Quick call down to the front desk, I let them know we’re leaving for the park, and they said that’s fine they’ll drop it off the bedding right away. Well, returning to the room 3 hours later and no bedding. I go to the front desk, and the woman says “I can get you sheets, but we may be out of blankets.” WTF. Sure enough, she doesn’t have any blankets. Said she’d had to call housekeeping to see if they have any “to bring up later.” It’s 11:00pm, hours have passed since checking in, and I’m paying $400/night to beg for bedding? In the end we got our blanket after escalating to a manager who brought one up to the room. But why does it have to be that difficult? On the plus side I asked for some kind of concession for the hassle and he comped us a one-day meal plan for all five of us, which was pretty damn generous.

A used towel on the back of the bathroom door wasn't a good start either.

At the pool, sometimes there’s drink and food service around dinner, sometimes there isn’t. Nobody seems to know. I asked three different people, and got three different non-answers. Apparently Friday is one of those days, and Saturday isn’t. Why I couldn’t just get a yes or no answer is a head scratcher.

It's pricey, no doubt. And while I never stayed there before the renovation, the hotel looks great. The breakfast service at Perkins was fast, and we had a great time at Tomo Hibachi. Decent pools and hot tubs, and the beach is extremely well kept. No rocks to be concerned about in the sand or water, and powdery soft sand. It was simply pristine. And the convenience of walking in and out of the park, can’t be underestimated.

Park Food
I haven’t been to CP for a few years and the food game has definitely stepped up. It’s still grossly overpriced, but the difference is at least now I’m really enjoying the food. The new Farmhouse Kitchen in Frontier Town was excellent. We ended up eating there twice during our stay. It really is very good, and with five of us I was able to sample different meats and sides; pro tip: the roasted potatoes are killer!

Rides
My wife isn’t an aggressive rides junkie like the rest of us; her favorite ride is Rougarou, and the largest she tried was Gatekeeper and that was a one and done. I splurged for FL+ with our platinum pass on our full day in the park (we went 9:00am to after closing); that way she wouldn’t be sitting around waiting for us on the biggest rides. That was in part due to our experience waiting 70 minutes for SV the Wednesday evening before (including a 10 minute breakdown) in a line that moved painfully slow. Plus, that would in turn open up more time to explore the flats and family rides. All in all we rode 31 rides that day, including rerides on SV, Maverick, drying out after water rides, and spending time in the petting zoo. We went on plenty of rides that I would normally skip otherwise, including Skyride, which I realized I’ve NEVER been on before. Surprisingly, it was quite a bit of fun to see the park from above like that.

Operations are definitely a mixed bag. Most notably The Magnum crew was busting tail like the old days while the MF and Raptor crews were just awful. One day SV is piss poor, then next day they were doing fine. Speaking of SV… my goodness. Everyone talks about that outerbank but for me, riding near the front of the train, the double up into the MCBR has insane ejector, as does the drop into the structure under the lift hill. Those are my two favorite moments on the ride.

In the future, I’d like to see a quality family coaster installed, and believe that would go a long way to pleasing families with a variety of thrill tolerances. Something along the lines of Firechaser Express intensity.

Waterpark
Love the slides, but my word do those lines move at a snail’s pace. We only went on a few because of that and spent most of our time in the wave pool.

All in all while there are aspects of CP that need improvement, we had a great trip. 5 rides on Maverick and 4 on SV during our time there. We met people from all over... Philadelphia. New Orleans. Boston. Families that were spending a week there. I don't always realize how lucky I've been to have grown up going to CP every year.

The weather was simply perfect for our whole stay. For my two youngest (9 years old) it was their first trip and they were blown away by the rides and everything there is to do there. The looks on their faces when they got their first glimpse of the park from the causeway? Simply priceless.

Last edited by Danimales,

Breakers can sometimes be disappointing as you are paying top dollar for the location, but outside of the niceness of the hotel everything else tends to be lacking. It’s probably my least favorite of the park hotels I’ve been to recently (DreamMore, Portofino USO, Caribbean Beach DW) because of that. These others actually operate like an actual upscale resort/hotel whereas breakers feels more like a Hampton Inn at an amusement park (the price points aren’t that much different either). Little things like lack of beach loungers, cheap pool loungers, stiff towels and bedding, no bell service, etc, add up.

Pool service is one of those things too. I’ve never seen that at Breakers and surprised to hear it even existed (though it sounds like it's pretty random). I remember at the Portofino pool the attendant asked which seats were wanted and set up towels for us on the plush loungers. Right away the server came over for a drink order and within 10 minutes were relaxed with drinks in hand. Spent $50+ every trip to the pool easy.

Breakers is still a nice place, but after visiting the others I can see room for improvement. We tend to stay at Lighthouse Point Cottages now because that’s at least somewhat unique with the private deck, and if I have to get my own drink anyway it might as well be something I like.

Last edited by Joe E.,

I'd say Hampton Inn service is a step up, and half the price. I've never had an issue getting bedding for a pull out sofa. I almost forgot... one morning while getting ready, housekeeping knocked on the door to ask if we were on our way to check out. Uh... we don't check out for two more days. That's not a huge deal, but how do they not know that (a younger me worked in the hotel industry)? It's a microcosm of their overall operations. And the indoor pool... tried it late one night during a mufflehead swarm and the chlorine smell/fumes burned your eyes so bad you couldn't stay in there.

I was just as surprised as you were by the poolside service. It was around 5:00pm on a Friday but we had dinner reservations and passed. The next day we figured hey, let's just eat by the pool. Nobody ever did come around nor did anyone know if they would or not, so we ended up ordering Dominoes. Which yeah, it's Dominoes but on a positive note they brought it to the pool gate in 20 minutes.

I picked Breakers for the prime location; walking directly out to the beach with two park entrances nearby is pretty nice, along with the recent renovations. But man... there's SO much more potential there that's unrealized.

I haven’t stayed at Breakers for years- my last stay was in my usual corner room in the Bon Air, so…
But in looking at the rooms I’d agree with the Hampton Inn comparison. The furniture looks like it came from IKEA or something. Nostalgic pictures on the walls are cute but don’t make up for the lack of luxury, especially at those prices. And I notice very little difference between Breakers and Express, except location. The rooms are the same.
Breakers owns challenges that are hard to overcome. It’s a seasonal hotel, and they rely on those college aged hires for staff. I imagine many of them don’t arrive expecting a back breaking short term stint in a hotel. It’s mind boggling to think of the number of hotel employees that CP requires, especially now with four huge resorts and many sleeping rooms that will be occupied most of the season. Outside of the year round resorts in other states, CP probably has collectively one of the highest requirements in the country.
I’m surprised there’s no bell service. Back in the day that was a sought-after job among the young male employees. I considered it one year but realized I didn’t have the strength or the stamina for hauling peoples crap up stairs all day long. There were no elevators then.

Brent Sullivan's avatar

Breakers is amazing... at least it was 2 years ago when we stayed there. The location, the layout, and the views were all great. But the price kept us away this year. Last month we stayed at the Cedar Point Express and later in the year when we return, we are going to use Lighthouse Point for the first time.

After all, how much time do you normally spend at the hotel anyway?

Raven-Phile's avatar

We are resort people as much as we are park people. The older I get, the more it tends to sway toward resort, especially mid-day, so we can do parks in the evening/night hours.

Breakers is alright, but it can't compare to deluxe accommodations elsewhere. DreamMore holds the title, IMO, for most rounded and well-run non-Disney resort property.

Breakers reminds me of the WDW Deluxe Resorts in the sense that you are paying for location and view versus the room itself.

Raven-Phile's avatar

Not a chance. The rooms and amenities at WDW deluxe resorts are on a different level than Breakers - and then we get into the level of service that is received at a Disney deluxe, and it's not even comparable.

Which is a shame because Disney is distinctly average as a hotelier.


Raven-Phile's avatar

Which is even more impressive, because they disguise it well.

The Grand Floridian is a prime example. It's an average-ish property (non-DVC.. the Villas are SWEET) that is themed to an elaborate Victorian resort. Some feel like they're paying for the "Grand" part, but really it's the WDW tax.

What you lose in service at Breakers compared with WDW you gain in the insanely easy access to the park. But I have stayed in moderate level chain motels on the highway with nicer rooms than both Breakers and WDW Deluxe resorts.

Raven-Phile's avatar

I would trade the insanely easy access to the park, for regular easy access to the park similar to the Boardwalk area at WDW, and a higher level of service.

Regarding the mid-level chains with nicer rooms, of course that happens, but it's also all subjective. Clean, modern and sleek will always appeal to people differently than anything else. We stayed at Swan Reserve last time and we absolutely loved it. Same easy access to the parks with an extra 10 minutes of walking, ultra modern pool and amenities, plus BonVoy benefits. I'll likely stay there again, but there is something about the Boardwalk that I can't stay away from. Their Club Level offering is the absolute best, and views of the boardwalk and lake are amazing. The 1-3 bedroom villas are something else, entirely.

Maybe it's because I have lived here since 2008, but the few times I have had friends/family stay in a Disney deluxe and I have seen the room, I have always felt let down. The Yacht/Beach and Boardwalk access to Epcot and Studios is great, but the others still require some form of transportation.

I also can't say I actually see the value in paying for Breakers. However, if I knew they had all of the advertised rides ready to go for Early Entry, had old school ride and weather operations, and the level of service in the resort to match the room rates I would consider it now that I'm no longer local.

Jeff's avatar

I like staying at LHP. Way quieter at night and in the morning. And last time we had pet snakes!


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Phrazy

Bakeman31092's avatar

If my wife saw that, we would never go back to LHP.


Raven-Phile's avatar

Lighthouse Point is definitely the way to go, for us. We love the cottages, especially if we’re close to the pool. I honestly could stay there for a week and avoid the park for more than half the time.

Jeff's avatar

Snakes have cuddle parties too.


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Phrazy

Brent Sullivan's avatar

Raven-Phile:

Lighthouse Point is definitely the way to go, for us. We love the cottages, especially if we’re close to the pool. I honestly could stay there for a week and avoid the park for more than half the time.

Good to know. We will be staying there for a couple of nights in September!

Tommytheduck's avatar

The cottages at Lighthouse were great the one time we stayed there a few years ago. I've never had such powerful AC and it was in the 90's in July! Would recommend and do again.

Word of caution though, They supply you with NOTHING! We showed up expecting at least some crappy grilling tools. Now it was long enough that I don't remember if they even supplied silverware or cups. But I remember having to make a supply run for stuff we just assumed would be standard.

Just be prepared and bring your own everything. Or stop at a Walmart on the way in.

Brent Sullivan's avatar

We are bringing our camper with us and not staying in the cabins, so we should be ok, but thanks for the heads up on that.

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