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View Full Version : A few observances from our recent VWL visit


akasleepingbeauty
03-20-2002, 09:14 PM
We returned Saturday evening from our first stay home - a week in a 2 bedroom villa at VWL. We were in a dedicated 2 bedroom on the 5th floor with a nice "woodsy" view - room 5541. I just thought I would share a few things we loved/noticed etc. during our stay. Our group consisted of me, dh, dd16, dd's best friend also 16, and dd who is almost 2. My observations are listed rather randomly and not in any particular order of importance :)

We absolutely loved our room and cannot imagine ever staying in a "standard" hotel room again. We enjoyed our stay so much that we have already booked a return trip for next January.

Even though it was a dedicated 2 bedroom rather than a lock-off, we did have 2 pack-n-play cribs available - one in each closet. Each crib also had a Disney-themed fitted sheet. I brought our own sheets and waterproof pads so I just put our pad/sheet on and then put their sheet over it since the elastic on theirs was so nice and wide that it held even better than ours.

We had no probelm getting a highchair for our room. We did, however, have a problem keeping the floor clean underneath the highchair since there is carpet in the dining area. We did as much as we could to prevent spills and cleaned up as well as we could but decided a spill-mat would be in order next time.

We took our own fitted sheets for the beds and found them to be extremely useful - no more bare corners of the bed in the mornings! We did make sure to bring colored ones so they wouldn't be easily mixed up with the original linens.

Placemats or tablecloths would sure be nice to protect the dining and coffee tables. Ours had significant water damaged when we arrived and I could easily see how this will be a big problem in the future without any protection for the tables. We used paper napkins/towels when possible but providing coasters/placemats would certainly seem prudent.

The rooms were very quiet. We heard almost no noise at all from any of our neighbors. Occasionally, we could hear people coming and going in the halls but seldom was it bothersome at all.

The selection of movies at the VWL mercantile was poor in my opinion. They did have a decent selection of Disney kids movies (although no new releases like Cinderella II) but the grown-up film choices were really bad. The newest movie I saw was "Shakespeare in Love" which is nearly 4 years old. I wasn't expecting Blockbuster or anything but I did think there would be some decent movies from the last year or two but there was nothing. Not much of a "perk" even for free.

We stopped for groceries on our way to VWL. We told our bellman to make sure to take our groceries into cold storage and he even noted which items needed refrigeration etc. Unfortunately, over an hour later when we checked on our luggage for an unrelated reason we discovered that it had not been put into any temperature-related storage. Fortunately, we caught it in time and nothing was ruined. I would definitely suggest double-checking your grocery items to make sure nothing spoils

We did not have any mysterious check-out morning phone calls. Housekeeping did knock on our door at 8:30 to ask what time we'd be needing cleaning and we told them we'd be out around 10:30. They never knocked again.

We did leave our leftover groceries (unopened sodas etc.) for housekeeping. I checked with Guest Services who said this was fine - I felt better knowing it would possibly be used rather than just go to waste.

We really enjoyed having the washer/dryer in our room. I did 6 loads of laundry during the week and it never seemed like a hassle since it was so close. Housekeeping gave us several extra boxes of detergent on T/T day since I guess they could see we'd been doing laundry already.

We were a bit surprised that there was no hairdyer in the second bathroom. It wasn't a big deal but I did think there would be one there.

We did use our stove several times - we made slice-n-bake cookies, brownies, blueberry muffins, and cinnamon rolls. It was great to have a hot and fresh breakfast or snack without making a trip to the snack bar. We did not cook any lunches or dinners in the room but I may even do that in the future if I feel so inclined.

Well, that is all I can think of for the moment. If anyone has any questions I can help with, please let me know.

:) :) :)
Rhonda

chris1gill
03-20-2002, 10:08 PM
Thanks for the report, I always like hearing about others' experiences!!! We always cook in the villa by the way, especially with the kids! They don't sit well through three dinners a day!

SleepyatDVC
03-20-2002, 10:20 PM
Thanks for the report! Good to know about the groceries. I agree about the second bath should have a hair dryer.

Since you had a dedicated 2-bedroom, did your second bedroom have 2 beds instead of 1 plus a sofabed. I was pleasantly surprised when ours did.

Well, now the countdown begins until the next trip home!!! :D

Cris
03-21-2002, 03:25 AM
sounds like you had a wonderful trip, thanks for sharing!!! -Cris

Regina
03-21-2002, 06:22 AM
You left out the most important thing, what did your daughter's friend think of the accommodations? I always love seeing the reaction of guests who have never seen a DVC resort.

We've only stayed in a 1 bedroom at the VWL, and anticipate needing a 2 bedroom at some point. It's good to know that we'll need to bring an extra blow dryer. (But I agree, it should already be part of the unit.)

Thanks for the report!:)

PamOKW
03-21-2002, 07:47 AM
Thanks for the report. It's also nice to hear you tried your best to keep things clean under the highchair!

Your suggestion about coasters & placemats is a good one. But the odd thing is, they used to provide these at OKW and have now eliminated them. :( Two reasons I have heard are 1) Theft factor was too high and 2) the placemats were cloth and deemed a health hazard.

Johnnie Fedora
03-21-2002, 08:13 AM
DVC should consider having a small supply (6) of fiberboard coasters in all the rooms. Coasters like this are commonly used in bars, and are disposable. They could be printed with the DVC logo and website, etc. That way when guests take them as souveniers, the function as free advertisement. They also could be paid by the sales budget not from member dues.

Laurabearz
03-21-2002, 10:12 AM
Thanks for your post! I never thought about bringing our splat mat..... we will from now on!!

Janis
03-21-2002, 05:30 PM
Thanks for your post! We will be going home for our first time in June, also in a dedicated 2 BR. How did you like the fifth floor? I thought I read somewhere that the dedicated 2 BR are on that floor. Anyone here know if that's true?

akasleepingbeauty
03-21-2002, 08:05 PM
Our dedicated 2 bedroom did have 2 queen-sized beds in the second bedroom - I think all of them do as opposed to the lock-offs which have the "studio" configuration with one bed and a sofabed. This was a much better option for us since it allowed both teens to have their own bed. We, as parents, also liked that there was not a separate outside entrance in their room as well - lol!!

I do believe that most if not all of the dedicated 2 bedrooms are on the higher floors but I cannot be sure of that. We liked the 5th floor fine - never had long waits for the elevator etc. I requested a higher floor for our next visit also.

I think the disposable coasters sound like a great idea. Something should be done to help prevent the damage - it would seem that the expense down the road of replacing/refinishing the furniture would far outway the cost of coasters.

Our daughter's friend is quite low-key and although she seemed happy with their room, she did not "ooh and aaahh." She had never been to WDW before and for all I know she thinks all rooms are like ours!! The girls did have fun putting "teen" posters all over their room (with non-marring tape) in order to personalize it - we took pictures because we thought it was too funny!

We had a great trip and we are very much looking forward to returning next January. We Love DVC!!

:) :) :)
Rhonda

ohioMickey
03-21-2002, 09:26 PM
We were at VWL in early December and also shopped for groceries before arriving. We had perishables and bell services made note of which items needed refrigeration.

When our room was ready several hours later, bell services delivered our luggage. As we unpacked, we noticed all the perishables, including a gallon of milk, were warm!!!!!!

We called guest services and received a voucher from the Mercantile for a free gallon of milk. The rest of our perishables were fine... mostly fruit.

So you definitely have to watch out for your perishables. At least in our situation Disney quickly made it right with a smile.