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Goldilocks07
04-30-2011, 10:00 AM
Did we make the right choice? I mean, can anyone give me HONEST reviews on their stay? Would you go back? Or is it one of those "I'm glad we did it once but I would stay at another resort next time...." kind of places?

My DH, DD (will be 8 months at the time of travel) and parents are going to Disney the first week of November- we are staying at Bay Lake Towers-
We are excited to stay on a property with access to the Monorail. :yay: Typically we stay at AKL- (in the Main Lodge, not Kidani Village), which we are EXTREMELY happy with. Our only issue, is that we like to try all the other restaurants around Disney, and as you all know with AKL, it's a royal pain in the U KNOW WHAT to go off property to dine. We've spent a fortune in cabs getting back and forth (we don't rent a car while down there).

After reading reviews on TripAdvisor.com & other sites, it seems that BLT has gotten some negative feedback. I really don't want to go to Disney disappointed with our lodging experience (GASP!)-

Can you all please give me some honest feedback?
FYI- we will probably only hit the parks one day, and plan on hanging poolside and walking around the rest of our stay.
Thank you in advance!
:dance3:

CathieArms
04-30-2011, 10:31 AM
Did we make the right choice? I mean, can anyone give me HONEST reviews on their stay? Would you go back? Or is it one of those "I'm glad we did it once but I would stay at another resort next time...." kind of places?

My DH, DD (will be 8 months at the time of travel) and parents are going to Disney the first week of November- we are staying at Bay Lake Towers-
We are excited to stay on a property with access to the Monorail. :yay: Typically we stay at AKL- (in the Main Lodge, not Kidani Village), which we are EXTREMELY happy with. Our only issue, is that we like to try all the other restaurants around Disney, and as you all know with AKL, it's a royal pain in the U KNOW WHAT to go off property to dine. We've spent a fortune in cabs getting back and forth (we don't rent a car while down there).

After reading reviews on TripAdvisor.com & other sites, it seems that BLT has gotten some negative feedback. I really don't want to go to Disney disappointed with our lodging experience (GASP!)-

Can you all please give me some honest feedback?
FYI- we will probably only hit the parks one day, and plan on hanging poolside and walking around the rest of our stay.
Thank you in advance!
:dance3:

I have never stayed there, but the decor isn't really to my tastes. But, I can't imagine that you'd be UNhappy there. It's the newest villa and it's on the monorail. What's not to like?

If you're not "sold" on it, how about Beach Club villas? I love that you can walk to Epcot in minutes, or to DHS in just a bit longer. I love the pool. I love the decor. The buses aren't too bad, I didn't think, to MK and AK.

Just a thought.

Goldilocks07
04-30-2011, 10:43 AM
I have never stayed there, but the decor isn't really to my tastes. But, I can't imagine that you'd be UNhappy there. It's the newest villa and it's on the monorail. What's not to like?

If you're not "sold" on it, how about Beach Club villas? I love that you can walk to Epcot in minutes, or to DHS in just a bit longer. I love the pool. I love the decor. The buses aren't too bad, I didn't think, to MK and AK.

Just a thought.

I know, I was thinking the SAME thing. Is it possible to be UNhappy? I guess the reviews just scared me a little. And yeah, I agree- the decor leaves something to be desired. Not my fave. I really love the experience of the Disney-esque resorts. We are not the type of Disney people to be out all day- we really like to explore where we stay, and take advantage of what is on property.
We've stayed at the Boardwalk- that was ok, we enjoyed walking to EPCOT for sure.
I guess I am just excited to stay on the Monorail, but if that is the only reason to stay at BLT, is it worth it? ho hum.....

beccasmom
04-30-2011, 10:47 AM
We stayed there once in a studio and really disliked it. But that was because the studio is very small IMHO. We liked the resort and would stay there again, but not in the studio.

The resort itself is very nice. We did not mind having to go over to the CR for meals and activities; we are CR fans and the bridge is convenient. We did not have a chance to check out the pool because we were only there for 2 nights.

The furnishings in the units are very modern but seem appropriate given the theme. The views are mostly good; we were in a 9th floor lake view room and were able to see EC fireworks and the Electrical Water Parade. And the convenience to the MK (and less so, EC with a monorail change) is excellent.

chalee94
04-30-2011, 11:02 AM
stayed there in a lake view studio that had a partial view of the castle. i've never stayed on the monorail before. i thought it was great. i loved being able to see the fireworks from my balcony and hear the train whistles in the morning. (i'm a DVC owner so i was able to visit the top of the world viewing area and enjoyed that also.)

only used the monorail to get to the TTC (to get to epcot) or another monorail hotel such as the GF...too easy to just walk to the MK.

i probably won't stay there again any time soon since it's expensive point- wise. but definitely had a great experience.

Deb & Bill
04-30-2011, 11:11 AM
If you got a two bedroom villa, you will be fine. If you got a one bedroom villa, someone is going to be sleeping in the living room. But you will have two bathrooms - one in the master bedroom and on at the entrance.

BUT, if you are in a studio, you will be horribly crowded with four adults and one baby. You will have one queen bed and one double sleeper sofa. There will be almost nowhere to put the pack and play for the baby to sleep. Cancel the studio and get something larger.

AND, please, please don't plan on moving the furniture around. That's one of the reasons why there are negative reports. There has been multiple reports of damage to the villas.

By the way, it's Bay Lake Tower (there is only one tower).

Magic3forme
04-30-2011, 11:14 AM
We have stayed at AK twice and BLT once. ( have 3 mini trips booked at BLT for this year.)

BLT for us was just better! We liked the layout of the rooms better. (had a 2 bedroom and 1 bedroom stay... 2 bd was Magic K view , the 1 br was Lake view, but we could see the castle from our balcony).

My kids all like the pool better at BLT. being able to see the fireworks from our balcony.. another huge bonus.. this summer we are going to the roof.

Being able to walk to MK.. major bonus! :) and at night it is the first stop on the monorail. walking over to the Contemp to get breakfast was really easy too. (and we were in the section closest to the lake...furthest from CR).

Also my sons favorite place to eat is Chef Mickeys.. so again, another bonus for us.

Everyone has their own opinions.. but we are thrilled with BLT.

the only thing we do not like is BLT does not have its own check in desk, it has to be done at the Contemp.

I like AK, but I just dont "love " it. The rooms were a little dark for me..and I just like the feel of BLT better! :) ---I have always loved the atomsphere of the contemp.. .the shopping etc on the 4th floor.

brenbrady
04-30-2011, 11:17 AM
We stayed in a 2 bedroom last July with my DH, DD, DSIL,Grandchildren 5 and 14. We loved it, a 10 minute walk to MK, and the monarail was a five minute walk to go to Epcot. Bus service was fine. The pool was good, could be bigger, but was easier to watch my youngest grandchild. The older one like the slide in the pool. The lounge at the top was great, quite but very nice.
Plenty of places to eat between contempory, MK, Polynesian, Wilderness lodge.
We stayed at AK last december and we really like it but did find the bus service was slow, could be the time of the year. Really liked Boma. stayed at SSR and we like that also, we are off to BayLake in 8 days, and BWV for a couple of days, we are trying all of the resorts.
The reason we bought into Bay Lake was for the convience of MK, after a long days a 10 minute walk is great.
I'm sure you will enjoy your stay afterall it is Disney.:dance3:

Aurora Belle
04-30-2011, 11:47 AM
I have never stayed at BLT, but sometimes it is good to try something different. My husband and I consider WL our second home, but on our last trip we decided to switch it up so we stayed at BC. For that particular trip BC worked out well since we were there for Food & Wine, and were able to walk to Epcot (we went there 3 out of 5 days). However, after our trip we agreed that we still loved WL more, despite the more convenient location of BC. We would have never figured this out though if we hadn't tried a different resort. At some point in the future we want to try out the Contemporary, but probably not until we have children when the location and convenience are a lot more important.

CathieArms
04-30-2011, 12:07 PM
I know, I was thinking the SAME thing. Is it possible to be UNhappy? I guess the reviews just scared me a little. And yeah, I agree- the decor leaves something to be desired. Not my fave. I really love the experience of the Disney-esque resorts. We are not the type of Disney people to be out all day- we really like to explore where we stay, and take advantage of what is on property.
We've stayed at the Boardwalk- that was ok, we enjoyed walking to EPCOT for sure.
I guess I am just excited to stay on the Monorail, but if that is the only reason to stay at BLT, is it worth it? ho hum.....

In our case, we decided that if the ONLY reason we were staying at BLT instead of BCV (which we really loved) was because of the monorail, then it really would NOT be worth it for us. The truth is that - for us - there's something so nice about being able to wind down a busy day by just leisurely strolling World Showcase at night after having dinner in one of the countries. We tend not to close the park down at MK so the transportation to MK wasn't as important to us as the transportation to Epcot and DHS.

I just think the (visual) lines at BLT are too severe and cold to me. I prefer a warmer decor.

brockash
04-30-2011, 12:09 PM
I have never stayed there, but the decor isn't really to my tastes. But, I can't imagine that you'd be UNhappy there. It's the newest villa and it's on the monorail. What's not to like?

If you're not "sold" on it, how about Beach Club villas? I love that you can walk to Epcot in minutes, or to DHS in just a bit longer. I love the pool. I love the decor. The buses aren't too bad, I didn't think, to MK and AK.

Just a thought.

I agree about Beach Club. We're staying at BLT in Sept., and while we really like it there, if we were only doing 1 park day, we'd def. stay at Beach Club. The pool at BLT or CR are just very basic pools. There nice enough and my kids like the slide, but we only use the pool twice during our stays. If we were going to hang more at the resort, I'd def. pick Beach club- plus there's more to look at/walk around on the Boardwalk.

ETA: It's worth it to us to stay on the monorail, but we do parks basically every day. If we were only doing parks 1 or 2 days, then no, it wouldn't be worth it.

Goldilocks07
04-30-2011, 12:31 PM
If you got a two bedroom villa, you will be fine. If you got a one bedroom villa, someone is going to be sleeping in the living room. But you will have two bathrooms - one in the master bedroom and on at the entrance.

BUT, if you are in a studio, you will be horribly crowded with four adults and one baby. You will have one queen bed and one double sleeper sofa. There will be almost nowhere to put the pack and play for the baby to sleep. Cancel the studio and get something larger.

AND, please, please don't plan on moving the furniture around. That's one of the reasons why there are negative reports. There has been multiple reports of damage to the villas.

By the way, it's Bay Lake Tower (there is only one tower).

HA. Yes, sorry about that. TOWER, not TOWER(S). Duh. Sorry, I have mommy-brain with an 8 week old. Funny, I actually typed it right the first time and then second-guessed myself.

Also, I should have pointed out that my DH, baby and myself are staying in a one-bedroom lake view, and I got my parents the same thing. So we will be in 2 separate rooms- total waste of points, maybe- but I can't have us in a 2 bedroom, even with the separation between the living room. It's a husband-inlaw thing. Ugh. :scared1:

Deb & Bill
04-30-2011, 02:03 PM
...Also, I should have pointed out that my DH, baby and myself are staying in a one-bedroom lake view, and I got my parents the same thing. So we will be in 2 separate rooms- total waste of points, maybe- but I can't have us in a 2 bedroom, even with the separation between the living room. It's a husband-inlaw thing. Ugh. :scared1:

In that case you should be fine. Enjoy your trip at BLT, you'll have a wonderful time.

CR Resort Fan 4 Life
04-30-2011, 02:37 PM
To the OP don't forget that the Monorail station is located on the 4th floor of the Contemporary, so you need to use the skybridge from Bay Lake Tower when going there. Plus the Contemporary is where you also check-in, Bell service, Valet service, their bus station is located there and all their restaurants and stores are located there.

mathgeek
04-30-2011, 03:04 PM
I stayed at BLT last year for spring break and told myself it was a one-time thing (especially since it was the week before Easter, and oh my how many points I used on that). While I was there I did miss my walking access to Epcot and DHS from my usual BWV, but then I got home and realized that I really had a good time there. Good enough that I'm going back this summer! :goodvibes

I loved being able to walk to MK, watching the EWP from the room every night, and watching Wishes from the 4th floor observation deck or TOWL every night that I wasn't in the park watching them. I did however spend more time at the CR pool than the BLT pool. I liked the slide better over there, and I liked their "quiet pool," which was close enough for me to lay out there and then go over to the main pool and use the slide (like I do at BWV too).

I have stayed at BCV too, and for me I'd say it's a toss up between the two. I really like both.

kaffinito
04-30-2011, 03:37 PM
I bought DVC there, and stayed there right after it opened.

Now I'm afraid of heights, so I would go down the elevator to the ground floor and then walk over to CR, then go up for the food court and the monorail.

So until I get over my fear of heights I won't be staying there for a while. It was a royal pain to do that every time I wanted food. :upsidedow

The one bedroom is really well done though - I loved the decor, the master shower, the extra bathroom, and the comforter on the master bed. It's a great resort IMO.

deej696
04-30-2011, 03:47 PM
We have stayed there twice, and enjoyed both visits. We didn't find crossing the bridge to be too much of a hassle, in fact one time we were actually on the same floor so it was great. We will certainly return...

gatormom2tots
04-30-2011, 06:55 PM
We LOVED the 2 bedroom we had, especially the way they have the living area between the bedrooms. Also enjoyed the 3 compelte bathrooms, and our view (standard) was a bonus because it opened up to the fountains outside and the sound was so peaceful as we looked out over the courtyard in front of the pools.

As long as we have little kids (and seeing as I am 32 weeks pregnant we got awhile!) we will continue to stay here for the space, convience to MK, and convience of having more of a condo with the amenities rather than a "hotel."

Goldilocks07
04-30-2011, 07:11 PM
Thank you all SO very much for all the tips, pointers, and your very honest opinions!

I am definitely keeping my reservations- I mean, GEEZ...I know I'm going to have a good time! :love: I just get myself all worked up over the accommodations. :surfweb: (especially since I came across so many negative reviews).

I am looking forward to going there to relax- and being able to dine at my favorite restaurants without the hassle of paying for a cab. :yay:

Hey, and you know what? If it's not my cup of tea, I'll try another place next time! :dance3: And you KNOW there will be a next time!!!!

mellvswdw1
04-30-2011, 07:26 PM
I will give you an honest opinion from a DVC member who owns points at BLT. It is not our favorite, in fact, it is our least favorite so far. You may be wondering why do we own points there....plain and simple we bought points due to location, location, location. We purchased into BLT before it ever opened, and we wanted the ease of being able to get to the MK with our future children.

We did stay there last October in a studio, and I was less then impressed. However, that is due to us always staying in 1BR, and I wanted to conserve points. Lessons learned, we will NEVER do that again. We had a room that was considered a Bay Lake View, but we could still see the fireworks every night. I know that I will probably get flamed, but you asked for an honest review. Our personal fav's as far as DVC is OKW or SSR. Crazy, but we enjoy not feeling any stress and like a home away from home, but that is just our tastes.

Even though it does sound like I am being harsh, we didn't have a new child, and I think you will really like the close proximity to the MK. No matter where you stay, at least you are at the happy place!! Have an awesome vacation!

mkoerner
05-01-2011, 07:38 AM
I agree with the PP. We also bought DVC at BLT purely for location. It's not my taste either, but you can't beat the location with a stick, especially when traveling with a stroller! Also, with owning at BLT I was able to get my son a New Years Eve theme park view studio a while ago, instead of 7 months out. Have fun and if BLT is not to your liking, then you just know not to return there next time.

beebeeryan
05-01-2011, 08:00 AM
I've never stayed at BLT so can't comment on the choice, although we are trying CR this summer for the first time, but keep in mind those TA and other site reviews are almost all predominantly negative. Any Disney resort you look up, you'll see nothing but negative reviews. People don't tend to take the time to review when they had a good time and loved the place as much as when they didn't like it and want to vent.

Deb & Bill
05-01-2011, 08:26 AM
I've never stayed at BLT so can't comment on the choice, although we are trying CR this summer for the first time, but keep in mind those TA and other site reviews are almost all predominantly negative. Any Disney resort you look up, you'll see nothing but negative reviews. People don't tend to take the time to review when they had a good time and loved the place as much as when they didn't like it and want to vent.

That's why you need to sign up for Trip Advisor or other sites and give your comments. I was really apprehensive about staying at a hotel where I was going for business based on the TA reports. Well, it turned out very nice. So I wrote a TA report refuting all the negative reports.

tinkerbellmagic
05-01-2011, 11:47 AM
Three of us stayed in a studio on a cash reservation when BLT first opened in Aug 2009. Honestly? We loved it there. While I usually go for resorts with lush grounds and BLT is mostly concrete, being able to walk to and from MK was the very thing that made me forget about the greenery and flowers I enjoy so much seeing on vacation. To me, that walk was worth it's weight in gold. :)

The only negative, imo, was having to use the food court at CR. I found the Contempo Cafe to be dark, dreary, and dated. I never looked forward to going there. My kids didn't mind it at all, though. I would add that I am not a fan of the looks of CR in general.

I would go back to BLT in a heartbeat, if it were not for the high cost of the rooms.
Have fun!
tink

Amy&Dan
05-01-2011, 11:57 AM
I haven't stayed at BLT, but I can tell you the one bedrooms at the newer DVC's (we stayed in one at the Grand Californian at Disneyland in CA) are beyond nice with the two bathrooms. Even with just two of you in there using the bathrooms, having two is priceless. While the decor may not be the warmest, that set up of those one bedrooms will spoil you!

All Disney resorts get bad reviews on Trip Advisor. I like TA and use the site and always put my own reviews on there after our WDW and DL stays. However, I find many TA users are all about the "what you get for your money". Many people like a resort fine, but since one of the critieria for ratings is for value, they honestly put that for the money it wasn't a great value. That brings the overal reviews down. Bottome line, many people who post on TA stay at Disney rarely or just once and they compare Disney resorts to other chains and can't over the "no free breakfast, no free wi fi, small rooms, high prices" issues and find them lacking.

To me and most other Disboard regulars, Disney resorts are so in a class all their own, that the issues that make them rate low on TA, don't bother us!

You will love the one bedroom, the closeness to MK and all the nearby dining at the other monorail resorts.

Say no more about needing your own unit, I loved my fil dearly but when we went to WDW with him, I spent more points and put him in a studio next to our unit, no way could we share. We had a great time because we had our own space!

Have a great trip!:goodvibes

blessedby3
05-01-2011, 01:34 PM
We stayed there last May and it is hands down our favorite resort:cool1: I cant say enough good things about BLT. We were in a 1BR Bay Lake view on the 14th floor (I believe--highest floor we could). The 1BR is so roomy and the views were great. Make sure to ask for a high floor as I have heard others say the lower floors have obstructed views.
The walkway to the MK is wonderful. Especially with a stroller and little one. I have a link in my signature with pics of our BLT trip. We were also given the title of family of the day at check in, but we got access to the CL lounge in the CR for the whole stay...felt like family of the week instead:lmao:

Pig Pen
05-01-2011, 05:29 PM
We stayed in a lakeview studio in October 2009 and loved it. The studio was definitely tiny, but fine for just 2. The location and views were fabulous. Our view was looking out to the old Discovery Island. We enjoyed watching the boats and the EWP every night from our balcony. While everyone touts the "short walk" to MK, we ended up taking the monorail most of the time...just because we could!

jking6
05-01-2011, 05:45 PM
We stayed last Aug and we LOVED it. The view was amazing and I loved the balcony. I have stayed at the Poly club level and by far BLT was much more amazing..

goofylovers
05-01-2011, 07:05 PM
Me, DH and DD9 stayed at BLT in October and are staying there again in July for 10 days. The trip in October was a 1br MKV and this will be a 1br Lake View. We loved it. I gave my DD a choice of any of the resorts since last time we make a point of bringing her to all of them so she would know what each one offered and she chose BLT again. She loved it. Loved the pool. Loved walking to the Contemporary. We had a rental car and never used it the entire time we were there. We found the transportation with the choice of the monorial, park buses and walking to MK or monorail was very easy. We took the boat the VWL. My DH does not even want to try other resorts. We have stayed at BWV and I wanted to stay at BV this trip but DD & DH won out. I think you will have a great trip. Enjoy. :goodvibes

joeytdog
05-01-2011, 07:18 PM
we are not dvc owners. we are renters however. we have stayed at BWV 2x and BCV 1x. We are staying next month at BLT for 9 nights.

Always stay in a one bedroom since there are 4 of us

SO EXCITED for BLT

Have read some bad reviews as well. Seems to be made up of mostly too many points (we booked a LV) and studios (which I hear are SMALL)

I have a feeling I am going to be blown away or at least hoping to be

Havent been to Disney in 2 years so Id probably be blown away and happy anywhere!!!! lol

Have fun on your trip!

goofylovers
05-01-2011, 07:19 PM
We stayed there last May and it is hands down our favorite resort:cool1: I cant say enough good things about BLT. We were in a 1BR Bay Lake view on the 14th floor (I believe--highest floor we could). The 1BR is so roomy and the views were great. Make sure to ask for a high floor as I have heard others say the lower floors have obstructed views.
The walkway to the MK is wonderful. Especially with a stroller and little one. I have a link in my signature with pics of our BLT trip. We were also given the title of family of the day at check in, but we got access to the CL lounge in the CR for the whole stay...felt like family of the week instead:lmao:

I have never heard of this. How did you get that? Would love for that to happen to us in July.

Goldilocks07
05-01-2011, 08:42 PM
Thank you thank you THANK you for all of your stories and input!

I agree with what everyone says- most of what you all told me is what I thought I would hear. But you all really made me feel much better about our trip.

And yes, it's a lot of points (thankfully, we have some to burn- because of my pregnancy we weren't able to travel as much, so I don't feel AS bad using them up for this trip)-
And yes, I am going to LOVE walking to MK. :wizard:
I will be happy with our LV one-bedrooms (score on the double bathroom! DH can stink his up all he wants :rotfl:) and as you mentioned, will request an upper level room. :woohoo:

I can't say I'm excited about the decor- but whatever.

I am super psyched to see both pools.

I LOVE DISBOARDS! Thank you so much! :dance3:

Sinderelly
05-01-2011, 10:32 PM
It's so nice reading so many positive reviews.:thumbsup2 We are really looking forward to our first stay at BLT in October.

fla4fun
05-02-2011, 03:28 AM
I stayed there opening week, and I loved it. I got a really good deal on a one bedroom, and it was huge compared to the other one bedroom villas I've stayed in. I loved the open kitchen and the huge windows and having two full bathrooms.

I would stay there again in a heartbeat if I could get a similar deal on a one bedroom. However, when thinking about a studio I tend to end up at CR instead, because I can get a bigger room for the same (or less in the garden wing) cost.

I think you'll have a great stay!

crcurton
05-02-2011, 05:33 AM
Just had to chime in...We stayed last year, and I would definitely stay again. It's been my favorite so far in the 20 years that we have been going to WDW. We stayed in the 1 bdrm villa and requested the floor with the skybridge and got it! It was so convenient to the 4th floor of the CR that it was like staying at the CR too. We were 2 or 3 rooms from the skybridge walkway. Loved the BLT!

LowesChevy
05-02-2011, 09:27 AM
I think it is great, not as good as the Polynesian, but we were very happy with our new home resort this past fall.

It is kind of a pain to check in at the Contemporary, but the bellman are more than happy to assist you to your room.

Getting to Epcot is a little more of a hassel than when we stay at the Poly, but being able to walk to and from the MK is fabulous.

Here was our Bay Lake view from the room

http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p265/erg48/WDW%20Resort%20Rooms%20and%20Views/canon10034.jpg

sherpasmom
05-04-2011, 09:30 AM
I love the whole vibe of the property and because I love hotels the highrise and decor was a huge selling point for me! The location and views are phenomenal and truly is it fair to judge the studios at max capacity when they're probably moreso designed for couples who don't want / need a full blown kitchen :confused3 I'm in that category?!

Anyway, I love the vibe of the resort....the food choices....and MK views are a happy place for this princess who loves travelling all over the world---Mickey's and otherwise! :cloud9:

addiln
05-04-2011, 09:50 AM
we have stayed at blt in a studio two years ago. i thought the studio was a little small but nothing that was not bearable. we were there for 7 days and thought nothing about the size once we got use to it. the little kitchenette was nice but we did not really use it. we are going back there in nov for a 7 day stay and booked a 2 bedroom since there will be 7 of us. i have seen these in the past and know this will be plenty big for us. we love love love the location of this resort. nothing better the walking to the mk. the only real downside i have found is going to epcot from this resort. you have to take the monorail to the ttc and then hop to the other monorail from there. it is not horrible on the way to epcot but at night after the fireworks the lines are huge. we plan on taking a taxi back these days. in the end we really like this resort and i think you will like it as well

Jutori
05-04-2011, 10:26 AM
We've stayed at the CR tower 12/09, did a split stay 8/10 at AKV Jambo 1 bdrm and BLT 1 bdr lakeview. We enjoyed CR itself, LOVED AKV Jambo but was OK with BLT. I think the reason is that we are resort people; meaning the DVC resorts tend to be quieter, have more of a "condo" feel rather than a "resort" feel. Yes, all the resort amenities are available but you have to go to the actual resort to enjoy them. AKV Jambo was great b/c though they are DVC units that are actually in the main lodge. We visited AKV Kidani, and while quite lovely, again, it was quieter and more "condo" like. The kids really enjoyed the activities at the resorts but at BLT they felt "nickel and dimed" b/c we're not DVC members.

BLT itself is pretty, the pool is nice and exclusive, the rooms are new but felt the furniture and construction was "shoddy". Our unit's furniture were badly scuffed, there was a nail sticking through the corner of the carpet, etc. As convenient as it is to MK, I would probably not stay there again.

LilGMom
05-04-2011, 11:29 AM
We stayed in a BLT studio May '10 and really liked it and would definately stay there again. I am not a fan of CR but oddly enough I really liked BLT. My only issues, which I think they might be fixing, is that the bathroom door was a sliding door and didn't shut all the way - there was a visible gap between the door frame and the door - and no lock on the door. I thought having the only sink be in the "kitchen part" was a little odd because you are brushing your teeth away from the bathroom. And if we wanted ice or drinks for our room we had to go up or down a few flights. There also seemed to be a big problem with lovebugs getting into the building and hanging all of the hall ceilings. Every morning we saw CMs vacuuming the ceiling. We live in FL so are used to lovebugs so while it was a little odd it wasn't a big deal.

We had a room that faced the lake and CR and on the same floor as the elevated walkway so we had a decent view. The kids (4 & 8 at that time) loved watching a movie outside on the grass and being able to watch the fireworks and then be back in our room within minutes was great. The kids loved the pool (it is a little small but the curly-q slide makes up for it) and, of course, being able to walk to MK was great.

Invisable89
05-04-2011, 04:19 PM
I think it comes down to what you're looking for in a Disney Hotel, do you want a Hotel that's got alot of grounds/surroundings that you can walk around & look at? Do you want an impressive pool? Do you want it to be themed a certain way? Do you want alot of children activities? Etc etc.

I personally LOVE the theming, i love modern/contemporary! So i can't wait to stay there in the near future. :yay:

My Uncle who's been going to Disney World every few years since he was about 10 years old (he's now 44 years old) loves BLT! Mainly because of the modern theming/style & the proximity to MK & Epcot. He doesn't have a problem with being in a seperate building to everything else, he personally feels it's more relaxing/quiet because of it. & he also doesn't mind the short walk to the CR, he said it's lovely at night as the CR is all lit up & he takes SO many pictures when he's walking over the Sky Way Bridge, he said it's very peaceful. & ofcourse you can't beat the views! Especially if you have a MK/Bay Lake view, both amazing! If you have a 1br, 2br or gvilla the kitchen comes completely stocked (apart from plates i think?) & you get a washer & dryer. The master bedroom bathroom is great, a decent size shower & whirlpool bath. He said that yes because it's more 'out the way' it does take a little longer to get to the other Parks BUT at the CR you're always the first to board & get off the buses. But as others have mentioned you have to check in at the CR which for some people might be a little annoying, but i don't think BLT intention is to be completely seperate maybe just an 'add on'. (This paragraph is my Uncle's wording btw).


:)

papertraveller
05-04-2011, 04:33 PM
We are DVC owners, and have stayed in 1BR and the studio (and yes, it is small). We have had only lakeview, and loved it. It's so wonderful to end the day on the balcony gazing out at Bay Lake with a glass of wine in your hand -- you could be in cottage country somewhere.

The pool is nice, DD loves the waterslide, but then having the option of enjoying the CR's pool just a very short stroll away is an added bonus. The bridge to the CR is much more convenient than it is walking from some of the Poly buildings to the main building, or just about anywhere at Kidani for that matter.

We love being able to eat around the monorail, but have found that the food at the CR (California Grill, The Wave) is terrific. The flatbreads in BLT's lounge are also yummy.

You'll have a great time.

macnodos
05-04-2011, 04:33 PM
I am not a very big Contemporary or BLT fan myself except for the monorail access. Have stayed at Poly twice and GF and many others including Wilderness Lodge and now have DVC at Saratoga. Really do not like decor even a little bit. Good Luck!

JandT'smom
05-04-2011, 04:43 PM
Just back from a split stay at BLT and Beach Club Villas. Have always loved the BCV area but Bay lake is a big winner hands down. Counter service food so much better at the contempo Cafe then Beach club market place and the convenience of monorail and walk to the Magic Kingdom can not be beat. Service at the resort was outstanding. Now my kids are older and the recreation choices at the Bay lake /Contemporary were great. Boys loved renting jet skis and the boats are faster at Bay Lake. The really big downer of the trip was BED BUGS at Beach Club Villas. ( yes problem was addressed and we were moved but what a pain)

mickey&minniealways
05-04-2011, 05:13 PM
[QUOTE=Goldilocks07;40937661

Also, I should have pointed out that my DH, baby and myself are staying in a one-bedroom lake view, and I got my parents the same thing. So we will be in 2 separate rooms- total waste of points, maybe- but I can't have us in a 2 bedroom, even with the separation between the living room. It's a husband-inlaw thing. Ugh. :scared1:[/QUOTE]

Wish I could do the 2 different units. With us it would be me-inlaw thing. Somehow I am always on trial and we have been married for almost 27 years so I hear your pain. Unfortunatley DH would be highly insulted if I even suggested seperate livingspaces. Fortunatly they are only comming for 2 or 3 days of our trip.

Donnyduck
05-09-2011, 11:56 AM
Just wanted to jump in and add my two cents.

My family and I are DVC members for 6 years now and we have stayed at BLT 3 times already. We have stayed in 2 studios and a 2 bedroom. The studios were actually revamped a bit ago to move the sink into the bathroom where it was part of the kitchen previously. Definitely a little on the small side, but not too much.

For the 2 bedroom, the rooms are extremely spacious. One trip we found out that requesting a standard view could still give you a Magic Kingdom view. Rooms facing Magic Kingdom but 4th floor or below are standard view. We were able to watch all the fireworks from the balcony on our 4th floor 2 bedroom standard view room. Great deal and you might want to request when checking in.:rolleyes1

Nothing beats the location to Magic Kingdom and the 10 min walk to the park, but BLT feels like a completely different resort from CR.

gonesaleing
05-09-2011, 12:08 PM
We stayed 1BR, lake view, top floor in November 2009. Below is my trip report. My whole family loved the BLT... even my picky husband.

2 adults, 2 teens, 7 days, 1br.villa @BLT, NJ week, 2009. The pictures you are see posted on line are deceptive. Some places look better in pictures and some photos just don't do the place justice. The lobby is much smaller than it appears in most pictures. Ditto for the pool. The views, on the other hand, are way more spectacular than most photos show. Rooms are large with a subdued modern touch. Wooden doors are heavy, level of finish in bathrooms is fabulous. Second bathroom has retractable clothes line for drying bathing suits. Overhead Ďrainí shower in master bath was really nice, as was steam shower in general. Master bath has drawers and cubbies for storing things. Jacuzzi was wonderful after a long day at the parks. Sometimes the nozzles came off but would snap back into place. Bring plastic cups to hold toothbrushes, as there isnít a lot of extra glassware. Not enough places to hang things, so bring 3M removable hooks for things like backpacks/purses/robes. Canít use over the door shoe holder for organizing bathroom as the doors are too thick. We attached it to a hanger instead and kept it in the closet.

Closets are small but there is plenty of drawer space. Kitchen is adequate outfitted but bring plastic bags for leftovers. Appliances are all wonderful.
Pull out couches are very comfortable to sleep on but awful to sit upon. TV remotes are temperamental. DVD works fine. Bedding is heavenly, balconies are small and lighting is dim. Bath products are adequate, plenty of towels. Overall the place is very cleanÖ I had no problems walking barefoot and allowed the kids to do so as well sit on the floor. Loved the large kitchen table, plenty of room to spread out and eat.

Hospitality suite offered varied activities for kids. Many activities had a cost associated with them, so we avoided those. Kids loved pin trading. Movies on the beach in the evening with símores were also a nice treat.

If you have teens and they can go down to the Contempo to refill their mugs, then itís a no-brainer. If you have little ones that you always need to be with, itís a drag to constantly have to go to the CR for everything. We were on the 16th floor and I timed itÖ 10 minutes up and back to refill mugs.

If you are staying on points, I highly suggest viewing the fireworks from the deck at the top of the world. Breathtaking. If you are an early riser, grab a cup of coffee and go up to watch the MK waking up. Very relaxing way to start the day.

Getting around was easy. Never a problem with buses or monorail or walking to MK. Can never leave your room without your room key, so make plans to always have it handy. Staff was all very helpful, though we didnít interface with them much. We rarely saw people, to be honest. Never had crowded elevators, no noise from hallways and rarely even saw people in our hallways.
We donít eat in restaurants, so I canít speak to the crowd levels there.

Finding which lights go with what light switches is tricky. Others complain about the thermostat but we had no problem with it. Washer/dryer is extremely quiet. Triangular plates are silly but go with the theme. If you like to make juice from concentrate or iced tea, then bring a large pitcher, as the one they have is too small.
Benches around the table and ottoman in living room have storage inside so use it if you need it to store sofa pillows when sleeping. Black chair is uncomfortable so switch it out for the yellow chair in bedroom. Much more comfy. Bring power cord for charging cameras/ipods etc. There is one there but doesnít have enough plugs. Request outside crescent room whenever possible. Better view, less noise, more privacy. Laundry room has large shelves for storing suitcases. There are no buses to Epcot, so you must take the monorail.
Mousekeeping was efficient but came at all different times, sometimes as late as 4 pm. If you have little ones napping, it can be a problem.
Something I found invaluable was a purse with an outside compartment to hold my KTTW. I used a vera bradley mini hipster. Highly recommend it.

BBG-BLT
05-09-2011, 12:10 PM
We've been there twice and love it. Being able to walk from BLT to MK is GREAT. Even better is being able to walk from MK after the fireworks or the afternoon parade to BLT and not having to spend time in the monorail or boat line.

We really do love it there - we're trying BCV this year because we want to spend more tim eout of the park (yeah - we'll see how that works). But for young kids and parents being on the monorail and only having a walk/travel a bit to get to MK or Epcot is wonderful.

And we do like the decor - it's clean and modern. (We're from the east coast so the whole beach theme resorts don't add much to our stay (AKV might).)

The pools are great (because the CR pools are right there) and the boat to the campgrounds for Hoop Dee Do or just being able to take a boat for a ride is nice.

TOWL is great also - a neat experience to be able to watch the fireworks from the roof :thumbsup2

In June 2013 we'll be going back to BLT (3BR villa MK view) and I think the kids will be happy to be back on the monorail.

joeytdog
05-09-2011, 02:57 PM
traveling there in 19 days!!!

CANT WAIT!

zmanandshan
05-09-2011, 03:09 PM
A bit late to the post, but I'll add my honest $.02. We stayed here in Oct 2010 in a dedicated 2BR with LV. Best thing about it was the location to MK and the monorail. Contemporary is not my style so much, but I knew that going in. What I was most disappointed was that for a new resort, the condition of the room was. Dirty furniture, scratches, stains in the rug, candy wrappers in the pull-out bed... some things which really irk me when I am staying somewhere in a hotel. I travel a lot on business, and have come to do some quick cleaning esp if I plan on staying there for a week or so, and if a room irks me enough, I'll request a different room, which is usually no problem. This was one of the few occasions, where I felt a room change was warranted if available, but due to our later check-in, all the 2BR were already occupied. I requested maintenance to re-clean thinking they were from the people who stayed just before us. I thought maybe there were more people leaving, perhaps the cleaning crew was shorthanded, perhaps they were rushing to get our room ready so we didnt have to wait (all good reasons), and I was told they would send someone right up and to stay in the room until they arrived. The lady was very pleasant as was I. About two hours later, I called back saying that nobody from maintenance had showed up. She apologized profusely and someone did come shortly after. Again, I was very polite, which she was very very thankful for. Once maintenance arrived, I felt they went through the motions, and it didnt really improve things, but I didnt want it to ruin everyone's vacation, so I did some extra cleaning myself.

I think that part of the problem was in the use of black, which really showed scuffs and streaks. Overall, the room just looked beat up, I couldnt imagine how it would look in another 2 years. Not all Disney's fault, as people sometimes dont treat things like their own. This was my first DVC stay, so lets see how my second stay at BCV will be and then I'd have something to compare it to. I heard the rooms there are pretty beat up as well. I'm generally ok with beat up a bit, but as long as they are generally clean, free from garbage, visual stains which could be removed, etc.

Jungle Cruiser
05-09-2011, 03:49 PM
We have stayed in a 1 Bedroom two times over the past couple of years and have really liked it. Not my favorite decor, but the location is just so great. The short walk to the MK is wonderful and the monorail is right there. You just can't beat the location.

LJD2143
05-09-2011, 03:54 PM
Like many other PPs have stated, I am not a big fan of the modern decor either.
But remember - you're on VACATION! I love all the various theming of the Disney Resorts and how they can "transport" you to a different place and time. So although I would not decorate my house that way, I just love that I am in "another world"!

jade1
05-09-2011, 08:33 PM
It was great-stayed in our room much more than any other DVC stays, just felt like we were in the MK. The outside 1BR's are much wider in the LR than inside the ring-but with so few guests you will be fine. We split stays with BCV-much better for hanging by the pool (SAB) and walking the resort, but really like walking to EPCOT. A stroller back to BLT will be very nice after Wishes.

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/WDWXMAS2010224.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC290160.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC310081.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC290134.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/WDWXMAS2010204.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC260093.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC290157.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC290158.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/WDWXMAS2010216.jpg?

SevenSeasLagoon5
05-10-2011, 08:43 AM
It was great-stayed in our room much more than any other DVC stays, just felt like we were in the MK. The outside 1BR's are much wider in the LR than inside the ring-but with so few guests you will be fine. We split stays with BCV-much better for hanging by the pool (SAB) and walking the resort, but really like walking to EPCOT. A stroller back to BLT will be very nice after Wishes.

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/WDWXMAS2010224.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC290160.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC310081.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC290134.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/WDWXMAS2010204.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC260093.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC290157.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC290158.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/WDWXMAS2010216.jpg?

Thanks for the BEAUTIFUL pics of our "home away from home"!!!

To the OP, I don't think you'd regret BLT for a minute! ;)

thebwit
05-10-2011, 03:42 PM
Without having read the other reviews here's mine. We've stayed there twice now. Both times were Lake views. The first time we had a view of the lake and the MK which was awesome. The second time we had a view of the shoreline and weren't impressed with the view but that didn't "break" our trip by any means.

The location is absolutely amazing. A 10 minute walk to MK. Monorail access to the other resorts and Epcot. The only time we had to ride a bus this trip was to DHS which was awesome because we have strollers for the little ones.

The food has been good at the low end and just fantastic at both The Wave and California Grill. The views of MK with the fireworks is nice.

The pool for BLT is fantastic for our needs. It has never been over crowded and we have always found chairs there.

My wife and I dine at a lot of the TS places so that's a priority with where we stay. Staying at BLT we have never had an issue getting to the restaurant on time due to the numerous transportation options available (FYI theres a boat to Fort Wilderness if you dine there).

I cannot state enough how much we enjoy this resort. Our next trip we will probably be staying at BWV or BCV just for a change of pace, but BLT is definitely our home.

RachaelA
05-10-2011, 06:02 PM
It was great-stayed in our room much more than any other DVC stays, just felt like we were in the MK. The outside 1BR's are much wider in the LR than inside the ring-but with so few guests you will be fine. We split stays with BCV-much better for hanging by the pool (SAB) and walking the resort, but really like walking to EPCOT. A stroller back to BLT will be very nice after Wishes.

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/WDWXMAS2010224.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC290160.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC310081.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC290134.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/WDWXMAS2010204.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC260093.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC290157.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/PC290158.jpg

http://i219.photobucket.com/albums/cc149/jademn/WDWXMAS2010216.jpg?

Your pictures make me super excited that we just bought at BLT!! We aren't huge fans of the Contemporary, but I figured you can't beat the location and views!

minniebeth
05-10-2011, 08:19 PM
jade1, what fantastic pictures! Thanks for sharing! :)

jade1
05-10-2011, 08:31 PM
Thanks on the pic comments, glad to contribute.

jnfr2424
05-10-2011, 11:15 PM
In '09 we booked a studio with a view of MK How excited were we when we were upgraded to a 1 BR. We loved it so much we brought into DVC on Thanksgiving day!!

goopysolelady
05-11-2011, 12:43 AM
We have stayed at AK twice and BLT once. ( have 3 mini trips booked at BLT for this year.)

BLT for us was just better! We liked the layout of the rooms better. (had a 2 bedroom and 1 bedroom stay... 2 bd was Magic K view , the 1 br was Lake view, but we could see the castle from our balcony).

My kids all like the pool better at BLT. being able to see the fireworks from our balcony.. another huge bonus.. this summer we are going to the roof.

Being able to walk to MK.. major bonus! :) and at night it is the first stop on the monorail. walking over to the Contemp to get breakfast was really easy too. (and we were in the section closest to the lake...furthest from CR).

Also my sons favorite place to eat is Chef Mickeys.. so again, another bonus for us.

Everyone has their own opinions.. but we are thrilled with BLT.

the only thing we do not like is BLT does not have its own check in desk, it has to be done at the Contemp.

I like AK, but I just dont "love " it. The rooms were a little dark for me..and I just like the feel of BLT better! :) ---I have always loved the atomsphere of the contemp.. .the shopping etc on the 4th floor.

Totally agree with this post with the exception of AKL...we've never stayed there and I don't think I ever will. The entire resort seems dark to me...just does not appeal to me in the least. Now, DD (DVC member) has stayed there and likes it but only schedules that resort as a "fill in" while waiting for rooms at WL or BLT. We loved, loved, loved BLT. My only "negative" was having to walk to CR for morning coffee...which I wouldn't have to do if I'd use the coffee pot provided! :lmao: BUT...love getting out first thing in the morning and the walk really isn't that bad at all. We had a BAY Lake view and it was fabulous! :lovestruc I have photos posted (2 bed. villa) on Resort Photos & Videos...BLT photos only if you'd be interested in checking them out. :tink:

honeydiane1953
05-11-2011, 10:09 AM
To the OP I would LOVE to have your dilemma!! BLT is great and so is the Contemporary.:confused3

lile
05-11-2011, 11:12 AM
We stayed in a 2 bedroom last April and are going back again to BLT in two weeks! My girls are 4 and 6, so the walk to the MK and monorail are a huge bonus. We booked a mk view this time, so they could watch the fireworks in their pj's and get to bed a bit earlier than if we watched them at the park.

The pool is great for little ones too. At this age, they are not into Epcot as much, so being close to the MK is a huge bonus.

supersuperwendy
05-11-2011, 12:35 PM
I LOVED our stay at BLT! :love:

Scott MC
05-11-2011, 01:10 PM
I stayed at BLT in a 2BR last summer and here are my thoughts in random order...


Location, location, location. You can walk to the MK, grab the monorail at the CR, and easily walk to the boat dock if you need to get to FW or WL for any reason. The buses for DHS and AK were fine.
The rooms aren't overly themed. It feels like a business hotel with light, subtle touches of Disney. If you're looking to be hit over the head with a particular theme, this isn't the place for you.
The rooms were new and modern, sleek and clean. I loved that.
We had a Bay Lake view, and while I would have preferred a MK view, the view was lovely. From our room we could see all of Bay Lake and the back of the CR which looks so pretty when lit up at night.
The food choices at the CR (there are none at BLT) are great. We had cocktails at both The Wave and CG, and ate at Chef Mickeys (too many kids) and the Contempo Cafe (very good for CS).
The building was very quiet, which we liked. You weren't aware of anyone else being there....and since they have their own dedicated pool that no one else can use, the pool never seemed full.
GREAT pool! Loved the slide, the courtyard leading to it, and the lights at night....not to mention the Bay Lake view behind it. I much preferred the pool at BLT to that at CR.
My only complaint was the check-in, which took place at the CR, and I thought the gentleman who checked us in was a difficult to work with.