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Old 01-14-2013, 10:04 AM   #1
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BWI or AKL - 4 day trip

Trying to decide between BWI (standard view) or AKL (Savannah view) for a 4 day trip. Never stayed at BWI, but have been to AKL and LOVE IT.

I'd say at this point AKL is our favorite hotel in terms of atmosphere and dining options.

But, we also spend a lot of time in Epcot (especially for snacking/meals), and I feel like for a short, 4 day trip, we should be some place that is closer to the parks (like BWI).

The price difference is relatively minimal (AKL Savannah view is about $200 more in total for the duration of our stay). AKL standard view would actually be the cheapest deluxe option for us ($200 less than BWI - $400 less than Savannah view), but I feel like I'd be so disappointed to be at AKL and not see the animals outside our window.

We would likely have a car, so theoretically getting to the parks is going to be simple for us because we will have the additional freedom of our own car. But, there is something very appealing about just taking a boat or walking to two of the four parks (from BWI). We stayed at BC on a prior trip, and loved how easy it was to get to World Showcase.

Just looking for some thoughts -- feeling really indecisive.
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Old 01-14-2013, 10:35 AM   #2
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IMO you will love the convenience of BWI. It is also a LOVELY hotel.

I have only done the standard-view at AKL and was VERY disappointed. If you have always done the savannah I think you would not be happy in a standard-view.

It would have to be a BIG savings for me to stay at AKL again over BWI, but that's just my opinion.
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Old 01-14-2013, 02:23 PM   #3
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We've stayed at both BWI and AKL and enjoy both. At AKL, the lobby is beautiful, Sanaa and Jiko are both great restaurants and we absolutely LOVE both the AKL pool and the Kidani pool. So nice to have two pool options. I think AKL wins for lobby and pool.

But BWI is definitely my favorite of the two. The ability to walk to two of four parks is a huge advantage. I just love not having to rely on the bus - even if it doesn't take long or make lots of stops, it's still not as relaxing as a walk along the water to the park. There is nothing like just walking out the international gateway back to your room after dinner. No trek through Future World or wait for the buses. It's like the Epcot atmosphere just follows you "home." So relaxing.

As for dining, while I prefer Sanaa and Jiko over Flying Fish, ESPN, etc., I think BWI wins for dining overall because of its proximity to all the Epcot and Epcot resort dining options. Also - and many may disagree - we actually like that there is no food court-like location at BWI. There's nothing like the Mara at BWI. You'd have to stop at one of the many (but smaller) Boardwalk CS locations if you want CS. I do wish BWI had something similar to Captain Cook's and a self-serve refill mug station (refills are available, but not self-serve.) Again, the proximity to all of World Showcase and great restaurants like Bluezoo, Yachtsman, Il Mulino and (for ice cream treats) Beaches N' Cream gives BWI the edge.

I also prefer the room decor and the white down comforters at BWI - bedding is just far more comfy there than at AKL.

As for views, the Boardwalk view at BWI is wonderful! (Admission: I'm not an animal fan and prefer the pool view at AKL, so take this with a grain of salt.) But that water view is just amazing. And if you book "standard" CL you can request a Boardwalk view - one of the best deals on a water view at WDW!

Finally, I like how BWI is connected to so many other resorts in the Epcot area. It's easy to walk to BC/YC, Swan or Dolphin for shopping and dining, or just for a walk. We enjoy a quick walk around AKL in the evening, but you can only get so far.

Good luck with your decision!
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Old 01-14-2013, 10:18 PM   #4
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Thanks for the tips. Since this is a shorter trip, I am leaning towards BWI at this point for convenience to Epcot & DHS, which both have most of our favorite dining options.
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Old 01-14-2013, 10:52 PM   #5
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We just stayed at AKL savanna view last week. View was great, the resort was quiet, and we had great food. When comparing to our BW stay, which was a standard view CL room - actually not a great view, DD would choose the BW due to the theming and food. I loved the quietness of the AKL and the animals, but the in/out ease for Epcot has me, and DH as well, leaning towards BW too. For a short trip, BW would be our choice.
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Old 01-15-2013, 08:33 AM   #6
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We've stayed at AKL, but not BWI (which is on our list to try). Since you've already stayed at AKL and will spend most of your time at Epcot, I think BWI would be the better choice. BWI is a beautiful resort and you can't beat the convenience of walking to Epcot.

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