Thursday, January 01, 2015

Disney World in Review - Lodging


We elected to stay at a Disney World resort.  The last time that we went to Disney World, we got an excellent deal at an off-site hotel, but this meant that we had to drive into the park every day, pay to park our car, fold up the stroller and ride the parking tram, fight traffic on our way out of the parking lots and drive back to our hotel.  Granted it was much, much less expensive.

There are around 30 on property Disney Resorts to choose from.  We had to select a room that accommodated a party of 5, which bumped us up from the cheapest rooms.  Our options ranged from about $200 per night to upwards of $1500 per night.  Because I had already decided on staying at a Disney Resort, I wanted to go all-out and stay at a resort that had monorail access to the Magic Kingdom.  This narrowed our options down to the Grand Floridian, the Contemporary Resort and the Polynesian. There was a deal offered at the Polynesian Resort, which knocked about $100/night off from the nightly room rate because parts of the resort are under construction.

I booked our room at the Polynesian (for around $500/night, yikes!) and we were excited with our choice.  We were very pleased that they let us check into our room when we arrived at about 7:00 AM.  At check-in we were all lei'd and we walked to our room, which was in the Tuvalu building at the NW corner of the resort, right on the water.

The room was comfortable, but there wasn't really anything that set it apart from just about any other nice hotel room that we have stayed in before.  Nothing anywhere in the rooms and very little in the resort gave any indication that we were at a Disney resort.  Many guests may prefer it that way, but at the price that we paid, I would have been okay being reminded who (i.e. Disney) suckered us into paying so much...  On the downside, I was really not impressed with the housekeeping services.  When we arrived, there was garbage from the previous guests in a cupboard, the bag for the ice bucket was never replaced (which was unfortunate because I filled it with puke) and they were inconsistent in their other services.

The beds were comfortable, there was a couch that swung into a bed for our 5th guest and we slept well every night. We utilized the resort transportation every day that we were there, we ate at both of the table service restaurants (Kona Cafe and Ohana) as well as at the quick service restaurant (Capt Cook's) and we enjoyed watching the fireworks at the Magic Kingdom from the beach at our resort.

On the whole, we overpaid for a typical room in an average resort.  I loved being close to everything, I enjoyed how clean the grounds were and the South Pacific style of the buildings and being right on the water.  I give 3 out of 5 stars.

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