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“Great Disney Resort with 4 kids! I have included transport & how to use Disney app tips, too”

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Disney's Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa
Ranked #81 of 337 Hotels in Orlando
Certificate of Excellence
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
83 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
“Great Disney Resort with 4 kids! I have included transport & how to use Disney app tips, too”
Reviewed 11 April 2012

Okay, in my long review I have included info on this resort, on taking the buses to get to the parks, info on using the app to save time with lines and find meals, a description of our villa and proximity to pool, and some other info. Sorry it is long, but now you know what you are getting in this review! We planned our Spring Break trip to Disney about 2 weeks before Spring Break as we had to wait on our son's High School sports schedule, but were able to get a great package directly through Disney and this resort was just perfect for us! It was like being in a great condo, well-located with great proximity to transportation (the buses to the parks), a pool, restaurants, etc. It was quiet, spacious, and a lovely setting! And for those not wanting constant Disney stuff everywhere, it was a nice break, in that it had great Disney service, but no characters running around, more of a condo setting. When our kids were really little and we were still in strollers, it was worth paying more to be just one or two stops away on the Monorail, but with 4 teens between 13-18, this was a much better choice for us this trip! We stayed in a 2 bedroom villa (with a pull-out couch in the living room area, so could potentially have slept 8, though we were a family of 6), and asked to be in a building near the main pool, as we had heard that there could be a lot of walking if you were further away. This advice was perfect - we were a 1-2 min. walk from our villa to the bus stop and never waited more than 5-10 min for a bus to whichever of the Disney Parks we were going to each day. And BTW, the buses drop you CLOSER to the front entrances of the parks than the monorail does! We never encountered a bus that was too full and had to wait - and they were great with people in motorized scooters and with strollers - the buses were wonderful! The rides to some of the parks and back could take 17-20 min, so make sure to leave enough time, but they are air conditioned and relaxing rides. In addition, if you had a car, it was easy to park right in front of the building you were staying in. But head's up, if you drive to the parks, you will have to pay to park and then still take a tram or other method to get to the front gate. Also, if you take a cab to the Magic Kingdom, they have to drop you at the transportation center and then you have to take the Monorail to the entrance, so...leave some time and take the bus! Our 2 bedroom villa had 2 great bedrooms - one with 2 double beds and it's own full bathroom, the other with a King bed and it's own full bathroom, too, and there were shutters that opened from the bathtub into the bedroom area, so it felt spacious and was easy to move and talk, etc. The living area wasn't huge, but it had a great fold-out couch and kitchen, eating area and there was a stackable washer/dryer. We had daily maid service and she did the dishes and ran the dishwasher for us! So nice! We packed cereal and snacks and picked up some more at the resort so we just ate breakfast in our villa each morning and headed out early to the parks. I recommend doing the Disney meal plan - everyone says you save money and you get a free refillable mug that you can use at this resort so when you are by the pool, you can drink free pop all day. The main pool was nice - no problem getting chairs, even when busy, you could find some and move them around - lots of towels (hate when they run out!) - the main pool is kind of loud with lots of organized games and music, but you can put on headphones and ignore it if you don't like that - if you have small kids, there is a ton of fun stuff to do. It is not a huge pool and it is not fancy, but it was fine and relaxing after being at the parks. So, why this over a condo that might cost less and not be a part of the Disney Resorts? Well, here is the best part, since this property is a Disney Resort, you are entitled to take part in all of the perks that go with that - early entries to the parks and late hours. We had thought with teens we might use the late hours more (midnight until 3 am sometimes), but we actually found it was better to get up early and go to the early entry hours and get a fast pass first thing for a busy ride like space mountain and then actually get in the low line for it and go on it and do some other rides and then return for a second ride on that ride. By about 10:30am the parks get crowded and you will have done all the hard to get rides with little to no waits and then you can relax and enjoy, eat an early lunch, head back to the resort and relax at the pool for the afternoon (like 12:30 or 1pm-4pm) and then go to another resort for the late afternoon, dinner and evening. We found the early hours to be the best and during the hot seasons, it was cooler, too. I recommend getting the park hopper passes and doing early hours and then going to more than one park in a day, also, best tip I can give: DOWNLOAD THE DISNEY APP - THERE IS A FREE ONE CALLED MOBILE MAGIC WHICH IS PRETTY GOOD, BUT THE BEST ONE IS THE ONE THAT COSTS MAYBE $4.99? OR LESS AND IT IS DISNEY WORLD MAGIC GUIDE!!! This is not an add for that app, it is just a tip from parents of 4 kids who found that app made our trip go SO much smoother. We saw the app advertised on the video and thought we would check it out - and it really helped us to plan our time and make things go smoothly - AND, it got the kids to quit whining "when are we going to .....ride?!" You could look the wait time up and tell them "not until the line goes down" - saved us a ton of time going back and forth to check the times at the lines. The app has all the wait times for the rides, so you can track them and decide when to go over to the ones you want to do - also, it has great maps and features where you can type in "where is the closest hamburger place" and it will tell you "150 yards to your left" - very helpful! It also has all the menus for the restaurants at the parks and tells you if they take the Disney meal plan (which like 99.9% do!) - they make this app for Disneyland, too, FYI.

Room Tip: I went on Trip Advisor and read a lot of the comments and they pretty much seemed to say that you sh...
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
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4 Thank opinionatedtraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Fairfield, New Jersey
Level Contributor
36 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 April 2012

We recently spent 7 nights at Disney's Saratoga Springs and loved every minute of it. I never stayed at this resort before (my wife has in the past) and we are definitely going back. We go to Disney every year and always try a different resort but this one is my favorite (so far).

When we checked in, our room was far away from the pool and we requested to have our room moved. No problem. We were within walking distance of 2 pools and steps away from the bus stop.

Our room was a 1 bedroom and found it to be immaculate upon checking in. During our stay we ate at The Artist's Pallette and The Turf Club. Both eateries were extremely clean and the staff was responsive to everything we asked for.

Will definitely stay at this resort when we return :)

Room Tip: Ask for a room near one of the pools
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
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1 Thank Tuddy21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Augusta, Georgia, United States
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 April 2012

this one bedroom villa was no biger than a motel room and it cost me two thousand one hundread dollars for three nights. i was looking for a big beautiful place for that kind of money i would have been better of to have rented a motel room. the bed was hard as a brick. it was a handycaped room and i coulding get my wheelchair in the so called liveing room because it was so small.. this is not the room i saw in the ad. the couch in the liveing had a big rip behind the pillows wish i had never rented thas place

Room Tip: dont stay here it was terrible
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with family
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3 Thank mommalove_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London UK
Level Contributor
16 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 April 2012

Stayed there September 2010 Truly wonderful time. Beautiful peaceful resort. Studio spotless and very comfortable, Pool area lovely. Perfect peaceful retreat from the parks. Walking distance to downtown disney as well. Never had to wait more than 10 minutes for a bus. Hard to find any fault. mAybe the resort just a little too spread out for the less mobile, but otherwise perfect. Going back in 2012!

Room Tip: Pick the Springs are if you want to be near main hotel facilities
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  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
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1 Thank Paul_Dickinson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Okemos, MI
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 April 2012

We spent a week at Disney's Saratoga Springs in March 2012. We joined the Disney Vacation Club in 2011 so this was our first stay with the points and we couldn't be happier! We stayed in a one bedroom villa with 2 adults and 2 kids (8 and 14). We asked to stay in Congress Park (3 weeks before arrival) and that's what we got - fourth floor. Easy walking to Downtown Disney which we loved. Close access to the buses. Things I was concerned about before we left: would the villa be "run down" (heard they are due for refurbishment); would the buses be so crowded we couldn't get on as it was spring break; would we have to wait a long time for buses; would we have to wait a long time for the Magical Express (complimentary bus from airport to resort - we almost rented a car over concern with the bus transportation); would the place be overrun with kids; would the resort be so big we had trouble getting to pools/main entrance area/restaurants???? None of our concerns were realized and we will do exactly the same next time. The villa had not yet been updated but it was perfectly fine - no stains or scratches. Loved the washer/dryer and the shower and jetted tub. We had garden Grocer drop off groceries that were at the bell stand (refrigerated) when we got there and taken to our room with our luggage by the bell service. Awesome! Villa was roomy - balcony was spacious and it was quiet, quiet, quiet. The buses came about every 10 minutes (actually every 3-5 minutes as there were various buses going to different parks but we never had to wait more than 10 minutes to get the bus we wanted). Buses were never overcrowded - one time a few people had to stand but usually it was less than half full. I think they had extra buses due to it being spring break. Magical Express was fantastic - we did not have to wait at all for it at the airport - in fact they had to wait for us as one of us decided to use the bathroom after we got in line. Smooth, easy ride straight to resort. Would not have been faster in a car - plus we'd have to know our way around, buy gas, pay park entrance fees and hike to the parking lot instead of taking the bus right at the park entrance. Everyone we met was SUPER friendly - true Disney spirit!! Pools were clean with tons of towels, beds and chairs available. The resort itself is beautiful. it is spread out but seriously it was only a 5-10 minute walk from our villa (at edge of Congress Park near the Downtown Disney walking path) to the main entrance/main pool and to the Paddock Pool. We are very glad we joined DVC - it has great value and we look forward to spending many trips to come with our family. Also loved the Disney Parks - did Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom and both water parks. We prefer Typhoon Lagoon over Blizzard Beach - it is more tranquil and BB has a harder stone look and it all seems hidden behind the hardscape. BB probably better for the teen crowd although the TL wave pool is a monster and the waves are really too big and scrape people across the rough floor. We saw a horrible nosebleed on a teenager coming out of the wave pool who either got swept and dragged on the ground or into another person. Also saw lots of little kids with nasty abrasions and in tears - I'm surprised Disney doesn't tone that thing down. Bottom line - Saratoga Springs is fantastic and we'll be back!

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
4 Thank 526Traveler212
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Monroe, Louisiana
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 April 2012

We just returned from a Spring Break trip with our 2 children and a friend and stay in a 2 bedroom villa. We had a wonderful time..this resort is very relaxing and a very beautiful setting. Loved the convenience of getting into the parks and downtown Disney.

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
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1 Thank lisa m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Atlanta, GA
2 reviews
Reviewed 4 April 2012

This resort has poor dining options. Tvs signal goes in and out. Artists palate is the primary dining and store. Very small few options and employees are very disorganized. In and already small space, just a disaster.

  • Stayed March 2012
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Helpful?
Thank DiAtlanta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Disney's Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa

Property: Disney's Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa
Address: 1960 Broadway, Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, FL 32830-8446
Region: United States > Florida > Central Florida > Orlando
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#18 Spa Hotel in Orlando
#31 Luxury Hotel in Orlando
#54 Family Hotel in Orlando
#63 Romantic Hotel in Orlando
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4 star — Disney's Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 1320
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Inspired by historic Saratoga Springs-a late-1800s' New York retreat famous for its spas and horse racing-this charming, Victorian-style Resort hotel is nestled between rolling golf course greens and the shimmering Village Lake. Delight in stately Studios and multi-bedroom Villas, dazzling pools and a spa. You can also explore the fun activities and exciting dining options of the Downtown Disney area, just a boat ride away. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Disneys Saratoga Springs Hotel
Saratoga Springs Disney
Disney Saratoga Springs Hotel
Saratoga Springs Resort Florida
Disneys Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa
Saratoga Springs Orlando
Disney Saratoga Springs Resort
Saratoga Springs Fl
Disney's Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa Orlando, Florida

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