Disney – Fanatic Family Series Post# 5

Walt Disney World Hotels

Today I am going to talk about 4 of our most recent hotel stays on Disney Property and tell you why we personally chose these stays and why we would stay there again.

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Hilton Buena Vista Palace

The Hilton Buena Vista Palace is an official Hotel Partner of Walt Disney World and is located across the street from Disney Springs. There are two Hilton Hotels at Disney Springs and both are directly across the street from Disney Springs and both have walkways to Disney springs. If you chose to book this one make sure you are booking the Buena Vista Palace.

We love this hotel in the summer time because it has a fantastic pool and a great pool in the Florida summer time heat is important to us. In the summer time heat we usually leave the parks around 2:30 or 3 in the afternoon to come back to the hotel and refresh before heading back to the parks in the evening when it is a little cooler. While back at the hotel we love to take a dip in the pool to cool of and then maybe have a drink at the pool bar before getting ready for dinner. The pool at the Hilton Buena Vista Palace actually includes a lazy river. Just get on a float and float around. It jut doesn’t get more relaxing than that. There is a poolside bar and cafe’ where you can have an adult beverage and a snack or even dinner if you wanted. There is also an arcade and gift shop.

The hotel rooms are very spacious for the price and our room had a balcony that overlooked Disney Springs and the pool. The hotel does have a nice restaurant but I have not tried it because we have always gone across the street to Disney Springs to have dinner. It is about a 5 to 10 minute walk down a sidewalk and up and across the street to Disney Springs over the walkway.

There is bus transportation provided to all the parks and to Disney Springs as well. The only downside to staying at a partner hotel is that they drop you off at the first gate at the Magic Kingdom and you are entering with the general public. Unlike a Disney Resort Hotel where they drop you off at the 2nd main gate which cuts out about 30 minutes getting in to the actual park.

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Hilton Lake Buena Vista

This is the other Hilton across from Disney Springs. The pool area here is very nice as well as they provide multiple pools for guest of all ages. Just a little note here about Florida winter weather because this stay was in December and yes it was warm enough outside to use the pool. You just never know with Florida winters because one day it can be 80 degrees and the next day 50 so plan for either or.

The pool cafe’ serves adult beverages, snack food and sandwiches. They do have a nice restaurant in the hotel but again we usually go across the street to Disney Springs. The walkway to Disney Springs is a little closer to the Lake Buena Vista Hilton than it is to the Buena Vista Palace Hilton so I would say about a 5 minute walk to Disney Springs. Because we had our toddler grandson with us on the last stay at the Hilton Lake Buena Vista, we did have a character breakfast and it was very enjoyable and the characters really fussed over him which made it very special. We also spent some time in the arcade which is not very big but was still entertaining to our grandson.

The rooms were very nice but did not have balconies which is something that I like to have so I was a little disappointed. The bus transportation to the parks is always very punctual at all the Disney resorts however again like I stated above because you are at a partner hotel you are getting dropped of at the first gate at the Magic Kingdom so add 30 minutes to the time it takes to get in the actual park.

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Disney’s All Star Movies Resort

This is a Value Disney resort so it is the least expensive on today’s list. The rooms are not fancy but were adequate for our needs. We wanted to spend a little less on the hotel stay on this trip so we would have more spending money for other activities so this value resort fit our budget.

The amenities at All Star Movies are definitely more than adequate and made the stay very enjoyable. The themed pool area is very cool and can be enjoyed by both children and adults. They have the Fantasia themed pool with Mickey spraying water out and The Mighty Ducks themed hockey rink pool. There is also an outside bar area for adult beverages.

Other activities for children include an Arcade and playground area and everything is themed around Disney Movies. There are huge statues of Disney movie characters from Toy Story, 101 Dalmatians, among others and each building at the resort is also movie themed.

What I liked the most about this stay was the awesome food court. Menu choices to please everyone and it was still open pretty late, so if you go to the parks in the evening and want a snack when you get back this is perfect.

Bus transportation again is very punctual and there is not a long wait between buses. This is a Disney resort so if going to the Magic Kingdom you will get dropped off at the more convenient resort bus area closer to the main entrance.

There are 3 All Star Resorts, All Star Movies, All Star Music and All Star Sports and they are very similar in set up and amenities. If you are on a tighter budget or just want to have more to spend at the parks then one of these resorts would be a good choice. These resorts are in the Animal Kingdom resort area.

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Disney’s Wilderness Lodge

The Wilderness Lodge is a deluxe resort and has all the amenities you would expect in a Disney deluxe resort. I love the set up of this resort with it’s huge totem poles in the lobby and the western wilderness decor and the chairs around a fireplace gives it a nice cozy touch. I hear that they really go all out at Christmas time decorating the lobby here but I have not had the chance to see it in person. It is definitely on my to do list this year.

Our room was extremely spacious and we had a balcony which just makes the room bigger in my opinion. We enjoyed sitting on the balcony in the evening and watching the illuminated boats go by and we also had a great view of the fireworks at the Magic Kingdom.

Transportation to the Magic Kingdom is by boat which is another nice touch to this resort and the drop off at the entrance could not be more convenient. Just easy entry to the Magic Kingdom makes the stay here worth it. Also from the Wilderness Lodge you can take a boat to the Contemporary Resort and from there take the Monorail to Epcot. Transportation to the other parks and to Disney Springs is by bus.

There are 4 restaurants at the wilderness lodge and one of them is a character dining experience. We had other lunch and diner reservations at various restaurants around the Disney property on this short weekend stay so we only got around to eating at one of them which was the Roaring Fork. The menu at the Roaring Fork is more like quick service dining but what was nice about it was having the opportunity to sit out on the patio to enjoy our meal.

There are 2 pools and a children’s water play area complete with slide. And a cute touch I should mention is old Faithful Geyser which goes off every so often. Other recreational activities available are boat rentals and fishing excursions and health club.

I wished I would have had time to book a manicure and pedicure at the salon on site but maybe next time.

Our plan is to get around to all the Disney Resorts so we can tell you all about them. So If there is a resort you are eyeing and you want to know more about it just sent us a comment. We will do our best to move that resort up on our list so we can get back to you with all the details. In the meantime stay tuned for the next post in our Disney Fanatic Family series.

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