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Thread: What's your favorite Disney Resort hotel in FL?

  1. #91
    Elite Member LynnieD's Avatar
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    Alright, let the games begin again! Hub and I had some friends over yesterday and they are leaving soon for Disney (All Star Sports Resort) and we got to talking and it looks like we are going to possibly go again in early 2013.

    So Bella--please let me know how you liked Animal Kingdom, because that is on the short list for us. Also: The Boardwalk and maybe even The Polyneisan. Not sure though....

    Might have to visit the Disney boards and laugh a bit today.
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  2. #92
    Elite Member Bellatheball's Avatar
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    Lynnie,

    We've stayed at Kidani Village before and it was amazing. It makes up one half of the Animal Kingdom Lodge. The other have is the Jambo House (where we're staying this time). They each form a (loose) semi-circle with the animals in the middle.

    The lobby to Kidani is amazing. It's all warm wood tones, really fantastic African art work, and enormous, beautiful lights. It's small and intimate. The overlook out into the Savannah is awesome. The resort is intentionally laid out in a way to maximize the views but that also means it can be a really long walk from the lobby to your room. We didn't have an issue with this but a lot of people ding the resort for this.

    Kidani is all DVC villas. We stayed in a studio which was a bit bigger than a regular sized hotel room. The finishes are all really nice though. Every room has a balcony. It was worth every penny to wake up in the morning and watch zebras and giraffes walk by while you eat your pancakes.

    The pool at Kidani is fine. It's good for small kids. It might be boring for bigger kids. You can use the pool at the Jambo House though.

    There are tons of quiet places all over the resort. They light a fire outside at night and there are several fireplaces that are perfect for nighttime conversations, reading a book, or trying to watch the animals.

    We didn't eat at Kidani because our kids are sometimes picky eaters. We did eat at Mara which is one of the quick dining places at Jambo House. They had the best falafels ever!

    The other ding is that it can be a long bus ride to the parks. We actually rented a car last time and could park for free all over Disney. If you go that route, there is almost no downside to Animal Kingdom.

    I'll let you know about Jambo in the fall. Art of Amination is doing staged openings of its resort. All of the rooms should be open by this fall and I've heard they are great.

  3. #93
    Super Moderator NoDayButToday's Avatar
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    If your kids are adventurous eaters, check out Boma at Animal Kingdom Lodge. It is their African buffet restaurant and actually pretty good (although not what we expected initially). When I was visiting BF down here before I moved, my friend who works in the park recommended it to us, and it's a little pricy (but what Disney food isn't?), but very good.

    The not what expected part: we both expected the food to be spicier, but it all tended towards the sweet side. It wasn't bad though, and very good once expectations were adjusted.

  4. #94
    Elite Member Bellatheball's Avatar
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    NoDay, I hear they have some sort of dish that has all kinds of breads with dipping sauces. Is that what you had? Everyone said the same thing, it wasn't spicy but very good.

  5. #95
    Elite Member LynnieD's Avatar
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    Bella, thanks for the Animal Kingdom info. And you too NoDay!

    I just spent some time on the Disney boards and I am not sure I can even see straight....they all talk in these abbreviated ways when it comes to the resorts and popular things/attractions and for someone who doesn't know what the hell they are, its a bit overwhelming. And half the time they don't even really give any decent info....

    Its all so great all the time, its hard to get a damn straight answer out of em.....

  6. #96
    Super Moderator NoDayButToday's Avatar
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    Bella, I remember there were some breads and dipping sauces, but a pretty big variety of other things. There were good cold salads (I remember a cold pickled watermelon rind thing that was really good, almost like pickled ginger), some meat on the bone that they carved, some things that were like casseroles (I remember something that was almost like a slightly sweet shepherds pie that was really good), some things that had the consistency of a lot of indian foods without the spice (the kind of simmered so long everything breaks down and serve it over rice type of thing), some good warm side dishes. They also had a good dessert buffet.

    There is so much crazy on the Disney boards....the first time I went on there it took me awhile to figure out half of the abbreviations and I'm (somewhat obviously....) a pretty big disney fan. I feel like you have to read through so much just to get to the little nuggets of good info. The one tip I pulled from there? Next time we go to Magic Kingdom I'm dragging my BF to get a Dole Whip before we leave, they talk about that ice cream like it reinvents the food.

    Don't know if I can trust them though because they also really seemed to like the "gourmet" hot dog stand in Tomorrowland. We went there for lunch when we were there last week and it was pretty gross with a really bad quality hot dog (Chicagoan though....there is no way they can compare to Portillos), a really dry, way too large bun, and some nasty processed beef product on top because it was a "philly cheese steak" hot dog. Ew. I also couldn't help but wonder how many people eat those and then lose it on Space Mountain, they're right next to each other....

  7. #97
    Elite Member Bellatheball's Avatar
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    I'm sorry, you said Portillos. What we were talking about again?

  8. #98
    Super Moderator NoDayButToday's Avatar
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    I know, right? We are going back to Chicago in October for a wedding and on the very short list of food places we want to visit again Portillos is at the top (also: Lou Malnatis and a small burrito place we used to go to in the middle of the night).

  9. #99
    Elite Member Bellatheball's Avatar
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    I worked at Malnatis for many years (high school, college, after college). My heart belongs to that place above anything else in Chicago.

  10. #100
    Elite Member LynnieD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NoDayButToday View Post
    There is so much crazy on the Disney boards....the first time I went on there it took me awhile to figure out half of the abbreviations and I'm (somewhat obviously....) a pretty big disney fan. I feel like you have to read through so much just to get to the little nuggets of good info. The one tip I pulled from there? Next time we go to Magic Kingdom I'm dragging my BF to get a Dole Whip before we leave, they talk about that ice cream like it reinvents the food.
    LOL! That's exactly what I was trying to say! Its abbreviations and Disney 'lingo' that the average person has no clue what they are saying. And I read one thread about the 'refillable mug' that you can purchase at certain Disney resports that literally made me laugh out loud, it was such total nonsense and they take it soooooo seriously. About a fucking mug!
    And then after scanning half the threads I gave up because honestly, they don't actually tell you much---but they sure as hell make sure you know how many times they've been there, at what resorts and give you the countdown to their next trip. So much ridiculousness in one board. And people give US shit.
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  11. #101
    Elite Member Bellatheball's Avatar
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    Some of those threads are insane. I had a hard time keeping up with the abbreviations too. If you're willing to wade through it, there are some good tips.

    My cousin is a DVC member and it's amazing how much time and thought they put into Disney. I can't imagine committing to one vacation destination for 10-20 years.

  12. #102
    Elite Member LynnieD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bellatheball View Post
    Some of those threads are insane. I had a hard time keeping up with the abbreviations too. If you're willing to wade through it, there are some good tips.

    My cousin is a DVC member and it's amazing how much time and thought they put into Disney. I can't imagine committing to one vacation destination for 10-20 years.
    Yea, you're right---it just made my head spin last night, that I had to give up on the boards.

    And you're also right about Disney and the little things they did/or are doing constantly for their guests. I know 3-4 couples that all belonged to the DVC and each of them have sold them or gotten out of it somehow. And most still have pretty young kids too. But as you said, that's a lot of time going to one area. You better really want it to buy into it.

    We actually considered it for about 30 seconds (stone sober too). And while you're there, it seems like a good idea! But when you're home....notsomuch.

  13. #103
    Elite Member Bellatheball's Avatar
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    Lynnie, an option is to rent DVC points. We looked into it and tried to do it but they didn't have the Animal Kingdom for the week we're there. Basically, they are DVC owners who can't use their points and want to get some of their costs back. They rent points to others for $11-13/point which is a huge savings. For instance, our stay at AK is going to be $2800 (do you hear me having a heart attack???) for 7 nights. Through DVC club rentals, it's 11 points or $1400 if you figure the high end of the price range.

    David's DVC rental is reputable and I think even Disney gave him their seal of approval. He's the middle man so you aren't dealing with individual owners who might not be on the up and up. They were very professional and easy to work with. If we could have had our dates, we'd have used them. A friend did get the week and resort they wanted and they're saving a bundle.

    David's Disney Vacation Club Point Rentals

    I waded through a bunch of crap to find this out. Hopefully you appreciate my sacrifice! LOL
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  14. #104
    Elite Member LynnieD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bellatheball View Post
    Lynnie, an option is to rent DVC points. We looked into it and tried to do it but they didn't have the Animal Kingdom for the week we're there. Basically, they are DVC owners who can't use their points and want to get some of their costs back. They rent points to others for $11-13/point which is a huge savings. For instance, our stay at AK is going to be $2800 (do you hear me having a heart attack???) for 7 nights. Through DVC club rentals, it's 11 points or $1400 if you figure the high end of the price range.

    David's DVC rental is reputable and I think even Disney gave him their seal of approval. He's the middle man so you aren't dealing with individual owners who might not be on the up and up. They were very professional and easy to work with. If we could have had our dates, we'd have used them. A friend did get the week and resort they wanted and they're saving a bundle.

    David's Disney Vacation Club Point Rentals

    I waded through a bunch of crap to find this out. Hopefully you appreciate my sacrifice! LOL
    Haven't even looked at it yet, I totally appreciate your sacrifice and time!

    We actually stayed in a DVC Villa last time---and did it all sorts of the wrong way, so this will be very helpful if we do make it back next year. THANK YOU!!

  15. #105
    Elite Member Bellatheball's Avatar
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    You're most welcome!

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