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Old 10-03-2009, 08:31 AM   #1
Earning My Ears
MichelleAnn25's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Essex, United Kingdom
Posts: 11

Old Key West nerves!

Hi all,

Can anyone help settle my nerves please! I am flying out to OKW on 11th Oct ( only a week to go!!) and are taking my family with me. In total their will be 8 of us, so when I booked thought as this was the biggest type of accomodation to suit us as we are to capacity. Also we did a Disney cruise last year and used some of the points, so was a bit short of points. We are in a 2 bed villa

However, the other night I was reading some of the reviews on tripadvisor and they were very mixed. A Lot of people saying that decor was dated, dirty etc... and so my nerves have been shot to pieces.

I want it all to be great for my family as they are first time visitors, I have been spouting on about how great DVC is ( we own at SSR ) and I dont want them to be disappointed.

HELP! anyone been to OKW and what did you all think? I have one more possible option and that is to buy a few extra points ( can only afford a few though) and try to get into the Board walk Villas as they seem the next spacious.

Thanks all xxx looks forward to your replies xx
Members at SSR since 2006

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Old 10-03-2009, 11:21 AM   #2
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You will not find a larger 2 bed villa at DVC. The decor is the same style as when it opened in 1991 - Key West pastels. They have repainted, put new furniture etc in but the style remains the same.

We did once have a room where some previous occupants had obviously used the main table for ironing and had left the iron there too long so there was a mark on the table. Not much disney can do about that really apart from replace the table which our dues pay for (it looked pretty new apart from the mark). Why they didn't use the ironing board provided I don't know.

Plus side - bedroom two will have 2 queen size beds in it so you will only be using one sleeper sofa in the lounge. All the other 2 beds have a bed and a sofabed.

I've read the same reports as you and everytime I go and stay I wonder why. I usually stay near Hospitality House which is the oldest section but I honestly have very few problems and no major ones.

It is a laid back and relaxing resort. It is not get up and go. There is nothing nicer than sitting on the large balcony at the end of the day with a cool drink. They have tennis courts, several pools (including a fun slide at the main one) and various other games incl bike and boat rental. You should have a great time there.
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Old 10-03-2009, 01:14 PM   #3
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I don't think you'd stand a chance of getting into BWV at such short notice during the IF&WF. Or have you already checked availability? And, having stayed there several times, I'm not sure why you believe they are "the next most spacious". After OKW was built, all the DVC villas (with the exception of the Grand Villas), up to and including SSR, have been virtually identical. They played with the layout a bit with the advent of AKV and even more so with BLT, but up to that point all the rooms were of the same tried and tested formula. Also, if it makes you feel any better, the last couple of times we've stayed at BWV, the rooms have been in dire need of a refurbishment. Ditto BCV.

I do understand your concern over OKW. It's never appealed to me thanks to its age, but the resort itself is a beautiful, sprawling oasis. Its low-level buildings give it a real neighbourhood feel and, although I've yet to visit Key West proper, it's easy to believe that the area around the Hospitality House is representative of the Key West of a bygone era.

I think a lot depends on how important the room itself is to you. For me, it's a major factor, so SSR (which is also our home resort) scores highly in my book. The two bed at SSR is identical in size and layout to that at BWV and it's possible that you could still get lucky there. For a party of 8, though, OKW has got to win out in terms of size (which is presumably why you picked it in the first place). At this stage, I think I'd just chill out and look forward to spending time with my family.

Whatever you decide, have a lovely trip!

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Old 10-03-2009, 05:39 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by mikki.young View Post

Plus side - bedroom two will have 2 queen size beds in it so you will only be using one sleeper sofa in the lounge. All the other 2 beds have a bed and a sofabed.

We have a dedicated 2 queen bed, 2 bedroom villa at BCV in a couple of weeks - they're definitely available.
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Old 10-03-2009, 05:50 PM   #5
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We stayed at OKW the first week of September. The room was absolutely fine. The only thing I had a problem with was the overflowing garbage pails down at the pool and bar area. It was disgusting you couldn't put another thing in there if you tried, but I also found the garbage in parts of the Animal Kingdom the same way. I just figured it was due to employee cutbacks and tried not to let it bother me.

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Old 10-03-2009, 08:27 PM   #6
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I stayed there in August and I really did not like it at all, the room was big and spacious and was very clean but the air con didn't work, we would wake up throughout the night in a boiling hot room and would have to get up and put it down again, since we have been back I've heard of other people having this problem. The main thing for us though was the size of the resort, it was just too spread out, if you can get a villa that is centrally located then it would be ok but we were a long way out, this meant that if we wanted a drink or to go to the main we pool we either had to drive or get a bus and they didn't seem very frequent. I'm not sure what it was but this resort just didn't have the Disney feel to us I would stay there again but only as a last resort, personally if you can get into another I would.

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Old 10-03-2009, 10:10 PM   #7
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Been there and own there. OKW is a beautiful property -- the "original" vacation club. It is designed as clusters of villas in smaller buildings. Some like that style and others prefer the single building setting. It is a large resort, but quite walkable. I walk the entire resort every day when we stay there. And most days I walk the back path over to Downtown Disney and around Saratoga Springs as well. There is an internal shuttle and plenty of parking so getting around is really not a problem.

Only three buildings have elevators. If any of your guests have mobility problems you want there or a first floor villa. All of the villas are very spacious. I believe a 2 bedroom is 1,395 square feet. You could get a dedicated with one outside entrance, or a lock-off where the studio has its own outside entrance as well.

The A/C issue mentioned before is one that most any modern hotel or resort will have because of the motion sensors embedded in the thermostats. If there is no movement in the range of the sensor the thermostat resets just like most of ours do at home when we go out. We use the ceiling fans and it does not bother us. I know some folks like their rooms very cool and for them it might be different. Since you have eight guests you will most likely use the sofa sleeper so the sensor will probably detect movement all night and not set back.

Make sure you enjoy Olivia's - they have possibly the best hamburgers on property.
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Old 10-04-2009, 05:15 AM   #8
Earning My Ears
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thank you everyone, I think I will do as Deb says, and chill out and just enjoy the time with my family - I will just call them next week and give a few requests, you never know - I might just get them!
Members at SSR since 2006

WDW 1991 ( that was the time I fell in love with..mickey!)

WDW 1993

Port Orleans - French Quarter 2006

Disney Cruise - Sept 2007
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Old 10-11-2009, 10:44 AM   #9
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OKW is our home resort and we love it. In April we were a party of 7, 4 adults and three teenagers and our 2-bedroom unit was wonderful. Yes, we have had some problems over the years, but that is true about anywhere you stay and the OKW management are wonderful and sorted our problems out very efficiently and quickly.

My family and I really love OKW and it's spacious feeling.

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Old 10-11-2009, 10:58 AM   #10
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I have some friends who are very particular, they have never had any problems of note. If you find the accomodation is not upto scratch asked to be moved!
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Old 11-21-2009, 04:32 AM   #11
Earning My Ears
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We were at OKW this summer and like you our home is SSR. We were pleasantly suprised and quickly realised that the resort is just as nice, just not as new. The resort is VERY laid back and the side pools are quiet and ideal for an afternoon relaxing. I think you will find the two bed places are superb, the views are amazing!
We did lots of walking as its not so close to DTD. However, thats not so bad, and the walk along the canal is lovely. The only criticism we had was that the shop wasnt so good, but that isnt a major issue. The transport is far better than SSR by the way!
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Old 01-16-2010, 07:55 AM   #12
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Our home resort is AKL but we have yet to holiday here as we have an affection for OKW with it being the first Disney porperty we went to. We just love it, the feel is big and spacious not only in the rooms but on site as well. The shop is small but it has a homely feel about it. And you cant beat Olivias mashed potatoes! We go back at the end of August this year and cant wait.
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Old 01-16-2010, 07:32 PM   #13
Earning My Ears
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I love OKW and our 1 bed in December was perfect, no flaws, no dirt, no damp - all things that can happen in any room. We found the whole resort immaculate and would buy points there when we have some extra cash - that is how struck we were with the place!
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