We just got back from a week at the Bay Lake Tower - four of us - me, my girlfriend (who turned 40 on this trip), her 16 year son, and her best friend.
I needed a suite that would sleep four so I wouldn't have to get two rooms. The Bay Lake Tower has one- or two-bedroom suites (villas) that work perfectly for families or groups without kids.
We got a one-bedroom suite which had a King Size bed and a very nice master bath with walk-in shower with had two nice shower heads, including a waterfall type overhead. The suite contains a pull out couch *and* a pull out lounge chair, so it slept two adults no problem.
Since the Bay Lake Tower is usually for Disney Vacation Club time-share owners, it comes with a full kitchen - dishwasher, stove, refrigerator, microwave, sink and counter - and a washer-dryer combo. Also included is a island counter that seats two, and kid-height table surrounded by an L-shaped padded bench that seats six. There's a 46" flat-screen HDTV with a DVD player and an input port for your iPad, iPod, iPhone, or Android.
The 5th floor of the Bay Lake Tower has an open-air connecting bridge to the Contemporary Resort, so with a quick elevator ride from any floor you can walk over to the Contemporary and grab the Monorail to the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, and the WDW Transportation Center. There is a grocery store delivery service if you don't have a car, or you can stop in any of the supermarkets on the way in form the airport if you have a rental car. You can stock the fridge and cabinets with breakfast cereal, eggs, milk, fruit, and portable drinks and save a fortune (and lots of time) by having breakfast in your room.
If you get bottled water and boxed or foiled fruit drinks (Capri Sun works best) and freeze them, you can stick them in your kid's backpacks and by the time they are thirsty, the drinks have melted but are still ice-cold and you've saved yourself at least $2 per drink from buying them at the park, plus the time to stand in line to get them.
There's also a convenience store right off the walk-way in the Contemporary if you need to re-stock - very convenient (although pricier than the supermarket obviously).
The pool at the Bay Lake Tower is very nice if not very deep (4.5' at the deepest point). It is perfect for kids, with two cool slides and plenty of room. There's also an awesome hot tub for the adults, and it's open 'til midnight, which is nice if you want to get away for some couple time.
If you ask for a Magic Kingdom-facing view room with a balcony, you can watch the MK fireworks every night at 10:00 pm, which is great. You can also watch them from the veranda just off the exit to the walk-ver bridge on the Contemporary side.
Some of the reviews here have complained that there is no service or amenities at the Bay Lake Tower, and this is true except that the Contemporary Resort is literally a 3 minute walk from Bay Lake Tower, and like most hotels with a tower (think Las Vegas), the main building has all the restaurants and luggage carts and lobby niceties and staff. What the rooms at the Contemporary do NOT have are the in-room kitchen and laundry facilities. To me, the trade off is nil - it's a matter of knowing what you are getting into in advance, and adjusting your expectations accordingly.
As for restaurants - the Contemporary has Chef Mickey's, which is loud and boisterous nut a great place for a character dinner (or breakfast) and the food was pretty good. Downstairs on the first floor is The Wave - a really nice restaurant feature locally sources, sustainable and organic food. The service is good and the food is exceptional.
Transportation is a snap - you can walk to the Magic Kingdom effortlessly, or grab the Monorail to the MK (after going through the Polynesian and the Grand Floridian). Take it one stop, hop underneath and up and around and grab a Monorail in the other direction right over to Epcot.
You can use a combination of the Monorail, the Disney Bus transportation system, and their boat ferries to get anywhere you want to go. We all loved the Bay Lake Tower and would stay there again without hesitation.
- Also Known As:
- Bay Lake Tower At Disney`s Contemporary Hotel Orlando
- Bay Lake Tower At Disney`s Contemporary Hotel
- Bay Lake Tower At Disney's Contemporary Resort Orlando, Florida
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Bay Lake Tower at Disney's Contemporary Resort—balances a modern and luxurious experience with warm and innovative features and delivers some of the most dramatic views available anywhere at Walt Disney World Resort. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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