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View Full Version : I'm intrigued...CR VS Swan/Dolphin


meredith1
04-27-2011, 09:53 PM
I currently have a MK view/club level room booked at the CR. It's our first time to visit and we're taking our 3.5 yr old.

I noticed my favorite all time restaurant, Il Mulino, is at the Swan/Dolphin Resort and it prompted an immediate search of the resort. The rooms look very nice and I like the idea of a suite with a separate living area and bedroom for when our daughter goes to sleep in the evening, we don't have to tip toe around after 8 or 9 pm. The price of a standard room is half the price of the CR I have booked.

Please tell me about the S/D resort and the suites. I did a search and wasn't able to book a suite at S/D for wk after Thanksgiving.

What would the price difference of a suite at S/D be compared to the CR? Please tell me anything about this resort and would you be tempted to switch.... :goodvibes

Carrie in AZ
04-27-2011, 11:01 PM
I have no experience with Swan/Dolphin, although I'd like to stay there one day. I have, however, stayed at CR MKView (not CL) and I think you'd be hard pressed to find anything more magical than that! LOVED IT! We loved every single thing about the resort, the room decor, the view, the service and the short walk over to MK cannot be beat. :thumbsup2

Good luck with your research and decision. If you decide to stick with CR MKView, you will not be disappointed!!

collegejunkie
04-27-2011, 11:50 PM
i don't know where you checked the price, but going directly to starwood.com versus through the disney website is usually cheaper. you can also get 40% off every other night if you go to starwoodpromos.com/bettertomorrows

hope that helps

crazygoalie39
04-27-2011, 11:53 PM
Personally, I would never stay at the Swan or Dolphin, especially if I could stat at CR MK view. They just don't have that Disney "feel." However, they do still have all of the perks of a Disney resort, other than DME.

mydisneyobsession
04-28-2011, 04:29 AM
We stayed at the Swan over Thanksgiving last year, and were really impressed. We have stayed at the Contemporary (although admittedly not a MK view room.) and enjoyed being close to the Magic Kingdom, but liked being in the Epcot area even better.

We have young kids, so we still spent quite a bit of time at MK. I had heard about bussing issues before we went, but the buses were flawless for us that week. We go back to the room for midday breaks, but found on previous trips that we often didn't make it back out. At the Swan, the easy access to two parks or the activity on the Boardwalk was wonderful for evening trips out of the room.

Our room was very nice, and we could see the friendship boats coming and going from our window. The staff at the hotel was great. No Disney name tags, but top notch service. We certainly still felt like we were at Disney. We even ate at a character meal inside our hotel.

We loved it, and we'll most definitely return. I've started thinking about our next trip, and would love to have a different Disney kind of experience, but am having a hard time justifying Disney rates when I know what's available at the Swan Dolphin. Even with a pin code, S/D rates are hard to beat!

carmiedog
04-28-2011, 05:15 AM
Dolphin is my family's favorite resort (well, mine is POR/POFQ, but I'm outvoted 4 to 1). It's a very nice hotel - more "deluxe" but at reasonable prices. The beds are super comfy! And I guess the only thing non-disney was not having hidden-Mickeys on the bedspread or Mickey on our soaps. Loved the friendship boats over bus transportation. As for view, you can get rooms facing Epcot and watch the fireworks. Or, a room facing DHS where you can see ToT - pretty cool watching it change colors from your room at night. We didn't do any sit-down restaurants there, but enjoyed the Dolphin's quick-service line and the closeness of restaurants at Boardwalk and Yacht Club. The only deal-breaker worth considering is no WDW dining plan (we're used to not having it now) and no Magical Express (my family loves having a personal car and driver).

Niki in NJ
04-28-2011, 07:58 AM
CR CL MK view would be a very magical experience. Since it's your first Disney trip, if you can afford to stay at CR CL with the MK view, I would definitely go for it! You can watch Wishes right from your hotel room at night. Plus, you will have an easy walk or monorail ride to MK. Chef Mickey's, which I know is a must-do for many people, is right in your hotel. Since it's your first time and you have a 3.5 year old, I assume you will spend the majority of your time at MK, and you can't beat the ease of getting there from a monorail resort.
I love the Epcot resort area, but I don't think we would stay Swan/Dolphin because we really do enjoy the theming of disney hotels. It is just soap, towel animals, and mickey's placed throughout the room, and CM's ... but that's part of the disney experience we enjoy. Others are happy to be in a hotel that looks like a standard hotel because you still do overlook disney when you look out your window, and for some, that's fine. As someone else posted, you can't take part in ME or DDP, so if you were planning on either, that's something to consider too.
I'm not sure, but if the CR rooms have a balcony (does someone else know if the CL rooms have balconies?), that might be a nice way to have somewhere to be when your child goes to bed. You can grab some snacks from the lounge, some wine/beer, and hang out there.

jnfr2424
04-28-2011, 08:07 AM
Since it is your first trip and you have a 3 1/2 yr old you made the right choice by staying at CR. It's the closest resort to MK, and it's great to sit outside on the balcony watching the castle change colors in the middle of the night. (I once "camped" out on the balcony just because I could not sleep) Also the great added bonus of staying club level. Walking to MK is great especially at the end of a MK day when the monorails can be overcrowded plus I get to find our family brick along the way!

Because we have been to WDW over 75 times since 1979 we are more resort people than park people. We like to spend time at resorts and being AP holders we don't have to worry about using passes in a timely manner.

We are going to be staying for the first time in an Executive Suite in October From what I understand we have a Parlor suite with a bedroom and a murphy bed we also got a connecting room with 2 double beds as well and there are also 2 full bathrooms. The price can vary depending on if there is a promotion going on.

There really is nothing wrong with S/D we do split stays between there and BLT about 4 times a year. I have never felt that S/D did not have a "Disney feel" as others have suggested. You can see Boardwalk, Epcot or Hollywood Studios from your room depending on your view and you have the added bonus of being able to walk or take a boat to either parks as well as The Boardwalk. I have stayed at almost all of the Disney resorts and have enough of my share of Mickey Mouse soap that I can give them out as gifts.

Some pros and cons to consider are:
S/D does not participate in ME or DDP.
They also charge a daily resort fee of $11.25 which includes 2 bottles of water and internet access
If you drive, you have to pay a parking fee as well
The Dolphin has a 24 hour eatery which most Disney resorts close at 11pm
S/D always have discounts on rooms so always keep an eye on their website.

Good luck with your final decision I am sure you will have a magical time no matter what you decide!

Also check this board for more information about S/D
http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=2566726

billfatora
04-28-2011, 09:27 AM
CR CL MK view would be a very magical experience. Since it's your first Disney trip, if you can afford to stay at CR CL with the MK view, I would definitely go for it! You can watch Wishes right from your hotel room at night. Plus, you will have an easy walk or monorail ride to MK. Chef Mickey's, which I know is a must-do for many people, is right in your hotel. Since it's your first time and you have a 3.5 year old, I assume you will spend the majority of your time at MK, and you can't beat the ease of getting there from a monorail resort.
I love the Epcot resort area, but I don't think we would stay Swan/Dolphin because we really do enjoy the theming of Disney hotels. It is just soap, towel animals, and mickey's placed throughout the room, and CM's ... but that's part of the Disney experience we enjoy. Others are happy to be in a hotel that looks like a standard hotel because you still do overlook Disney when you look out your window, and for some, that's fine. As someone else posted, you can't take part in ME or DDP, so if you were planning on either, that's something to consider too.
I'm not sure, but if the CR rooms have a balcony (does someone else know if the CL rooms have balconies?), that might be a nice way to have somewhere to be when your child goes to bed. You can grab some snacks from the lounge, some wine/beer, and hang out there.

"CR Fan 4 Life" would know for sure, and it would be listed (some where) on the "CR Thread", but I believe the quick answer is "YES" ! :idea: You are also afforded a fantastic view of the nightly fireworks - with piped-in sound - in the club lounges. :thumbsup2
The Swan and The Dolphin are both beautiful resorts, and a fantastic stay at WDW, :) and as previously stated - depending on availability - you can get "balcony" rooms (suites) with a view of EPCOT (and some of "Illuminations") :wizard: and some others that will give you a view of "The Studios" and the "Tower of Terror". :3dglasses
They are both great, but they can not offer any of the "Disney Dining Plans", and, for me, that's the deciding factor (maybe that's why my clothes don't fit ! :laughing: LOL !)
Bottom-line, IMHO - and with a 3.5 year old - CR/MKV/CL is the absolute way to go ! :banana:

JimmyV
04-28-2011, 09:40 AM
I am a Dolphin regular. But that is mostly because as I got older (and my daughter got older), we found ourselves spending more time in the Epcot/Studios/Boardwalk area as opposed to the MK. But back in the day...(1972-1980) we stayed almost exclusively at the CR. Of course, with only one park open, why would you stay anywhere else.:confused3 Still, the magic of going to sleep with the castle in view and waking up to the sight of the park view was unbelievable. As our family outgrew a single hotel room, we transitioned to the LBV Treehouses and Villas. I loved staying at the villas, but always missed the CR. With a 3 year old, I wouldn't give it a second thought. Keep your room at the CR. As she gets older, there will be plenty of opportunities to stay elsewhere.

Curious. How is it that Il Mulino is your all time favorite restaurant if this is your first visit? If you are familiar with the original in NY, be advised that the one at the Swan is nothing like the original. Much more casual, but in a good way.

CR Resort Fan 4 Life
04-28-2011, 12:26 PM
To the OP I would keep your reservation at the Contemporary and yes all their Tower rooms come with a full balcony. Besides that you would also have the Resort Monorail access and walkway to the Magic Kingdom. Plus since the Contemporary is a WDW Resort you get all the perks that comes with staying there, even though you still get Extra Magic Hours at the Swan/Dolphin. However you won't have access to Magical Express, Disney Dining Plan (even though on Club Level I don't think it's worth it) and being able to charge items to your room from any WDW owned store across property. Finally I have to say the Contemporary has a much better theme and atmosphere. Now in the past people have said how the Contemporary lacks a theme and the conventions they host. Well the Swan/Dolphin host just as many conventions or maybe more. As for their themes personally I thought the Swan lobby and everything else about it was nothing special, although I did think the Dolphin was nicer if I was to choose between them.

meredith1
04-28-2011, 01:12 PM
I am a Dolphin regular. But that is mostly because as I got older (and my daughter got older), we found ourselves spending more time in the Epcot/Studios/Boardwalk area as opposed to the MK. But back in the day...(1972-1980) we stayed almost exclusively at the CR. Of course, with only one park open, why would you stay anywhere else.:confused3 Still, the magic of going to sleep with the castle in view and waking up to the sight of the park view was unbelievable. As our family outgrew a single hotel room, we transitioned to the LBV Treehouses and Villas. I loved staying at the villas, but always missed the CR. With a 3 year old, I wouldn't give it a second thought. Keep your room at the CR. As she gets older, there will be plenty of opportunities to stay elsewhere.

Curious. How is it that Il Mulino is your all time favorite restaurant if this is your first visit? If you are familiar with the original in NY, be advised that the one at the Swan is nothing like the original. Much more casual, but in a good way.

Yes, Il Mulino in New York. It's my favorite restaurant in the US. : )

Thank of you for the helpful information. We will keep the room at the CR. As all of you know, it's one step forward and ten steps back before time dictates that you make a final decision about something WDW. Thank you so much for all the information! It's very appreciated.

meredith1
04-28-2011, 01:20 PM
I am a Dolphin regular. But that is mostly because as I got older (and my daughter got older), we found ourselves spending more time in the Epcot/Studios/Boardwalk area as opposed to the MK. But back in the day...(1972-1980) we stayed almost exclusively at the CR. Of course, with only one park open, why would you stay anywhere else.:confused3 Still, the magic of going to sleep with the castle in view and waking up to the sight of the park view was unbelievable. As our family outgrew a single hotel room, we transitioned to the LBV Treehouses and Villas. I loved staying at the villas, but always missed the CR. With a 3 year old, I wouldn't give it a second thought. Keep your room at the CR. As she gets older, there will be plenty of opportunities to stay elsewhere.

Curious. How is it that Il Mulino is your all time favorite restaurant if this is your first visit? If you are familiar with the original in NY, be advised that the one at the Swan is nothing like the original. Much more casual, but in a good way.

Yes, Il Mulino in New York. It's my favorite restaurant in the US. : )

Thank of you for the helpful information. We will keep the room at the CR. As all of you know, it's one step forward and ten steps back before time dictates that you make a final decision about something WDW. Thank you so much for all the information! It's very appreciated.