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Which Walt Disney World hotel?

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Chelmsford, United...
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Which Walt Disney World hotel?

Hi - we're looking to visit Walt Disney World in 2015 and are undecided on where to stay.

Previously we've been to Saratoga Springs and had a wonderful time - the hotel and complex was beautiful and very relaxing compared to the previous 'value' disney hotels we've been to and everything was clean and very well organised. The staff were fantastic too and couldn't do enough to help.

This time we thought we'd try somewhere different and are considering the Animal Kingdom Lodge. However, I'm a little concerned as some of the reviews I've read are very negative and visitors are saying it's not worth the extra money. Does anyone have any help they can give me - is this truly the case or is it just that some people are never satisfied? If not Animal Kingdom Lodge, can you recommend anywhere else thats on a par with Saratoga?

Any comments or suggestions would be much appreciated. Thank you.

Lancaster, United...
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1. Re: Which Walt Disney World hotel?

AKV is a fantastic resort & location. Just remember, "you can't please everyone"

We love it there, & go every year, DVC Member, one of our home resorts, the other being BCV. If I had listened to the negative reports you find around, I would have never bought into them & missed out on some fantastic holidays:-):-)

I find it so amusing when people "complain" it's to far away, it's a long walk to our room. Please..... You can park under the resort at Kidani Village, anyway that's a side issue.

Another great resort (IMHO) far better than SS is Beach Club. Awesome pool area, stroll to Epcot 10minutes. Also in that area Boardwalk, great as well.

We have stayed at SS a number of times & yes it's lovely, but not our "home from home";-)

Wilderness Lodge is lovely, but a little more "difficult" to get to as many parks as the Epcot area resorts.

SS is more open as you know, these others are "inside rooms" if you know what I mean.

Only you can go & try to see what you like. Take complaints with a pinch of salt;-);-)

Bolton, Canada
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450 posts
5 reviews
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2. Re: Which Walt Disney World hotel?

Yes take reviews with grain of salt. All Disney deluxe hotels are nice, but pricey compared to what you can get off site for the same thing. OFF site properties are cheaper in price and some offer more amenties,and nicer room furniture and more tv channels for instance, but if cost doesn't concern you then any of the Disney deluxe resorts are nice.

Edited: 01 June 2014, 14:39
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388 posts
15 reviews
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3. Re: Which Walt Disney World hotel?

AKL is lovely and has a bit more wow-factor than SSR. However, AKL is more expensive than SSR and in my opinion probably not worth the extra $$$.

Little Rock...
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4. Re: Which Walt Disney World hotel?

My family of 4 has stayed at several WDW resorts including the Polynesian, Coronado, Caribbean, Port Orleans Riverside and Animal Kingdom Lodge. Our last 2 stays, November 2013 and March 2014 have been at Animal Kingdom Lodge and it is our favorite resort out of all of the ones we have stayed at. We are headed to Disney again in August and have decided to try the Boardwalk Inn but I wouldn't hesitate to return to AKL. I think a lot of times the most negative comments often come from those who are difficult to please.

Corona del Mar, CA
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for San Diego, Orange County, California
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5. Re: Which Walt Disney World hotel?

I think the Animal Kingdom Lodge is great, but I'd be inclined to split the stay.

Start with nights at the Port Orleans French Quarter or Riverside and then switch to the AKL for your last two or three nights. That will keep the cost down and Disney does the hotel switch for you. Just drops your bags off at the bell desk on your way out for the day, check out and then later in the day you return to the new hotel and your bags are there waiting for you.

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6. Re: Which Walt Disney World hotel?

The AKL is great, a very unique Resort


I would also check out The Wilderness Lodge, my personal favourite, it's peaceful and relaxing with lots if beautiful outdoor spaces ( which I feel is lacking at the AKL)


Are you hoping to book the current UK Resident Free Dining Offer ?

Chelmsford, United...
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24 posts
48 reviews
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7. Re: Which Walt Disney World hotel?

Hi, thanks for all your very helpful replies - I'm pretty sure I'll be going with AKL now (getting excited already!). and yes, we will be going for the dining offer which is mainly why I'm looking to book so far in advance. :-)

Destination Expert
for Orlando, Walt Disney World
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19 reviews
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8. Re: Which Walt Disney World hotel?

We stay at the AKL a couple of times a year and we love it. It has a great staff,the main pool is terrific(and actually big enough to swim in),multiple hot tubs and the best dining options of any of the hotels . Even the counter service place,Mara.is pretty good. And of course,zebras and giraffes. We don't pay extra for the savannah view;its nice but there are plenty of places to see the animals from. We are not fans of SSR. The AKL gives guests a unique experience that other Disney hotels do not.The Boardwalk Hotel is also a big favorite of ours though we usually get a villa when we stay here. Its superconvenient-you can walk to Epcot and HS-wish there was a restaurant in the hotel but there are several nearby.

Destination Expert
for Walt Disney World, Orlando, Antarctic Adventures
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9. Re: Which Walt Disney World hotel?

Some people use TA purely to complain, so more people may be inclined to sign up and write a review because something "bad" happened over signing up to report something "good" or "excellent." If you hover over a person's screen name on a review page, a pop up will appear and show you the person's rating distribution. I usually look at that if I find a review questionable. All negative reviews and I know what kind of person I am dealing with.

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10. Re: Which Walt Disney World hotel?

My sister in law stayed at AKL with her hubby and kids and she loved it. That was her one and only stay as both of her kids had cancer and it was a make a wish trip. So she did not have another Disney resort to compare it too, but she said that she loved it and she is very hard to please and very picky/OCD. She told me that we have to check it out some day.

A friend of mine stayed there and she really liked it, but said that when they left in the mornings it was dark and when they returned in the evenings after being in the parks all day it was dark, so they never really saw any animals or anything on the savannah. Just something to keep in mind. I heard that from one other person that stayed there also. We can never get out of bed that early to where it would still be dark when leaving in the mornings so that would never be an issue for us. We also like to have a day or two to chill by the pool at the resort also. Now, coming back after dark I could see. We like to stay for fireworks, etc.

Edited: 03 June 2014, 01:28