Finishing the comparison of each resort class, today’s in depth look is at deluxe villas. These resorts are typically located in close proximity to most of the deluxe resorts, but there are a select few that have their own location. They are typically smaller than the moderate and value resorts. These locations have options of studios, 1-bedroom, 2-bedrooms, and some 3-bedroom with limited availability. The studios have queen beds and there are various bed sizes with the other bedrooms sizes. 1-bedroom and up have a full kitchen and all have washers and dryers available. All have multiple dining opportunities including quick service and table service options. Pools also have water slides and kiddie slides. Once again I’ll start with my opinion of “the best of”…
Best Pool: Stormalong Bay at Disney’s Beach Club Villas. This pool is more of an experience than a pool. There’s a whirlpool, deep end, “quick sand” a little mini beach with a zero depth entry and more. This is a shared pool with Beach Club & Yacht Club resorts so it’s often busy, but based on its size, I don’t think it’s overwhelming.
Best Grounds: Animal Kingdom Villas wins this race! With animals roaming the Savannah and the lush, green trees, it’s beautiful! Animal Kingdom Villas have 2 locations: Jambo House (the main building) and Kindai Village. Kindai Village is a little bit more quiet and serene but away from most dining.
Best Location on Disney property: Bay Lake Tower or the new Villas at Grand Floridian. Bay Lake Tower is in close proximity to Contemporary which is within walking distance of Magic Kingdom. The only reason Villas at Grand Floridian might have the edge is that Bay Lake Tower has a skywalk to get to the monorail, while Grand Floridian Villas is a little less of a walk to the monorail platform.
Honorable mention goes to Beach Club Villas which is within walking distance to both Epcot and Hollywood Studios.
Best Bus system: Each one has their pros and cons as at times bus service is shared (especially depending on the time of year). Some guests have complained that the bus to Magic Kingdom from Yacht/Beach Club is slow and monorail area resort guests have said that the buses are slow to Hollywood Studios. The only resort of the group that is ALL bus: Animal Kingdom Villas has good bus service and Kindai Village is the first stop!
Best Dining options: If we’re going based solely on dining locations in the villas, the winner is Animal Kingdom Villas with Sanaa at Kindai Village and all the same great dining locations – Jiko and Boma in Jambo House.
Best rooms for kids: Villas at Wilderness Lodge. The woodsy atmosphere and fun activities for kids are probably a big reason. Plus, this resort has boat access to Magic Kingdom which is a fun and different mode of transportation for kids. For the animal lovers, Animal Kingdom Villas have great activities and a fun pool area. Kids can be entertained for hours at this location at no additional cost. The only downside is the travel time to three of the four parks.
Best rooms for adults: Any of these resorts are great for adults! If it’s just a small studio for two adults, or an extended family trip with a private bedroom for adults, you can’t lose! I think I would most enjoy the quiet of Villas at Wilderness Lodge or Animal Kingdom Villas for the quiet and cozy accommodations.
The good, the bad, and the ugly. Once again, it’s really about what is important to you for your vacation. If you’re thinking of staying deluxe, you really can’t go wrong with any location on property. With all the available dining, amenities, great service, and locations, close your eyes and pick one. You can either go based on theme or location.
There are current some minor renovations happening around the Villas including some intermittent construction on Villas at Wilderness Lodge and future plans for Beach Club Villas.
If I’m stretching to find something “ugly” in these resorts it would be that Saratoga Springs doesn’t really have a great Disney theme and it is quite large. Old Key West is also a large, sprawling resort, but the DVC owners that call this location home truly love their location.
Ready to get started planning your 2015 Disney World vacation? Please contact me at any time for a free quote. The benefits to using an authorized Disney vacation planner include saving time before and during your vacation with itinerary planning which can help save you hours of standing in line each day. Plus you won’t have to watch for available discounts, research resorts, wake up early for dining reservations, or stay up late for FastPasses. The best part about using a travel planner instead of planning yourself? It’s totally FREE! Plus I’ll take away some of the stress and confusion of planning a Disney vacation (especially if it’s your first one!)It’s also a worry free cruise opportunity. I’ll walk through through all of the steps to the process with a few little insider tips along the way! If you already have your vacation planned and are interested in transferring your vacation, ask me how!