I think I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a fan of elevators. When people find this out about me they sometimes find it surprising, since I fly airplanes that are much higher than any elevator I’ll ever be in. It’s not the height, it’s not even the fear of the elevator dropping, it’s not being able to see outside or get out of my own free will that bothers me. If I can see outside I’m fine.
The elevators at Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel are very small. Actually, three of the four elevators are small; the fourth elevator is a glass elevator and I find that to be wonderful.
The elevators work a little differently than your average elevators. There are touch pads in the elevator area where you select the floor you’d like to go to. The touch pad then tells you “go to elevator A” and you get in the elevator and it takes you to the floor. There are no buttons to select a floor in the elevator, just a door open, door close, and alarm button. The lack of floor selection buttons surprisingly made my claustrophobia worse. It’s definitely a lack of control thing.
In this sort of situation I usually hike myself up the stairs. I don’t mind walking 12-14 floors if I have to, but Disney doesn’t let you do that. You can go down the stairs, as long as you go all the way down to ground level and depart onto the street, but you can’t leave the staircase to go to another floor nor can you enter the staircase from downstairs. The doors from the stairwell to the various floors of rooms are locked. So, I had to either suck it up and hop on an elevator with other people going to the same floor as me and just ride it out or, and this is what I did, I had to keep hitting my destination until I was told to go to elevator D, which is the glass elevator.
Sometimes it took a few spins of the touchpad lottery, but most of the time I’ve able to get elevator D in a few moments.
Every time I had to head downstairs, I take the stairs. And it is wonderful.