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Old 05-03-2012, 05:19 PM   #227
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Old 05-03-2012, 06:21 PM   #229
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Ok...seriously considering going in november and switchin portofino to may. I've been reading about both hotels and trying to figure out which one to go to. It looks like dolphin has quick serve restaurant and most of the pools. So what are the benefits of the swan as opposed to dolphin. Our hotel time will be used for swimming and lunches and we definitely like peace and quiet. There is only one pool at the swan, correct? And that is a lap pool. Can you hang in that pool or is it just for people to swim laps? How long of a walk is it between swan and dolphin? Do the pools at the dolphin get crowded. Which hotel pool can you see illuminations from? Can we walk to flying fish (our favorite) easily? Will pools stay open late at beginning of november? Will water be warm enough to swim late at night? Have I asked enough questions?
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Old 05-03-2012, 06:30 PM   #230
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I thought that the swan shared a great pool with the dolphin, no? I recall a waterfall... and both hotels had access to it. Not sure where the flying fishbone is, so can't help you there...

I love all the on site hotels at Universal, so if u are giving up Portifino for Swan Dolphin... I am not sure about that... I did like the Swan and I am going back to mix things up... but I think the standards at Portifino Hard Rocky and Royal Pacific are higher...

I did love the beds though and the Italian Restaurant at Swan/Dolphin... I just missed Emeril's Chop Chop, the RP lobby, and Islands dining restaurant. Easy access to city walk doesn't hurt! Still if Epcot is your thing and we know its great--- the local of Swan Dolphin is great!
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Old 05-03-2012, 06:31 PM   #231
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MickeyNicki View Post
Does the Swan and Dolphin decorate for the holidays? Never thought to tour them at that time....
Hey Nicki, here's the picture I took at the Dolphin back in 2010. It's all poinsettias.



We've booked the Swan for our Anniversary trip this year during Food & Wine! I'm super excited!
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Old 05-03-2012, 07:21 PM   #232
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Originally Posted by peaches00 View Post
Ok...seriously considering going in november and switchin portofino to may. I've been reading about both hotels and trying to figure out which one to go to. It looks like dolphin has quick serve restaurant and most of the pools. So what are the benefits of the swan as opposed to dolphin. Our hotel time will be used for swimming and lunches and we definitely like peace and quiet. There is only one pool at the swan, correct? And that is a lap pool. Can you hang in that pool or is it just for people to swim laps? How long of a walk is it between swan and dolphin? Do the pools at the dolphin get crowded. Which hotel pool can you see illuminations from? Can we walk to flying fish (our favorite) easily? Will pools stay open late at beginning of november? Will water be warm enough to swim late at night? Have I asked enough questions?
Each resort has a lap pool. The main pool area, the Grotto, is shared by both resorts. Depending on your room location in the Dolphin, you could be somewhat closer, or a lot further than if at the Swan. Main benefit to me of the Swan is it is smaller, more compact to get around in, get in to and out of. YOu can hang at any of the pools. It is about a 1 to 2 minute (tops) walk from one resort to the other. You can walk easily to Flying Fish, a bit closer from the Swan. Not sure about water.

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Old 05-03-2012, 07:49 PM   #233
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What is the area across Epcot Resorts Boulevard sort of "behind" the Swan near the tennis courts? It has two big buildings that look almost like tents?
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Old 05-03-2012, 08:14 PM   #234
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I think those might be for corporate (or other) party functions.
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Old 05-03-2012, 08:45 PM   #235
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Originally Posted by onelilspark View Post
Hey Nicki, here's the picture I took at the Dolphin back in 2010. It's all poinsettias.

We've booked the Swan for our Anniversary trip this year during Food & Wine! I'm super excited!
Gorgeous! Thanks so much, so sad that our trips are not overlapping...looks like we leave when you get there
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Old 05-04-2012, 06:57 AM   #236
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booke it

officially booked the Swan last night with AAA. 178 plus resort fee and tax.

If the rate change between now and than, hopefully I can rebook!

Happy dance... the worst part is always just making the decision... now I don't have to stress.

About how much is a tax from the airport to the Swan? I recall Mears shuttle took forever last go round....
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Old 05-04-2012, 07:33 AM   #237
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Originally Posted by chrisf21 View Post
officially booked the Swan last night with AAA. 178 plus resort fee and tax.

If the rate change between now and than, hopefully I can rebook!

Happy dance... the worst part is always just making the decision... now I don't have to stress.

About how much is a tax from the airport to the Swan? I recall Mears shuttle took forever last go round....
With a AAA rate, you shouldn't have any problem re-booking if a better rate comes out. You should definitely check the Starpicks rates when they come out every Tuesday.

I think a taxi to/from the airport is in the neighborhood of $60-$70 each way, so you might be better off just using a towncar service. We always use Tiffany Towncar...$109 round trip, plus tip (-$5 if you use the coupon on their website). It's convenient (they meet you on the lower level and help you retrieve your luggage), fast (door-to-door to the hotel is less than 45 min) and includes a grocery stop, if you desire.
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Old 05-04-2012, 08:44 AM   #238
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Hello! I'm considering the Swan for an upcoming November trip. It will be myself, DH, DD7 and DD5, as well as my in-laws. I'm thinking the ILs will get a standard king room, and we'll opt for a deluxe alcove for a little extra space. DH has a SPG number and we are AAA members as well, so you can't beat the rates.

My questions are regarding:

1) Theme park parking -- is it free when you show your room card? We'll walk or boat to EPCOT & HS, but will probably drive to AK and possibly MK (ILs live in Florida so they will have a car for us to use).

2) The pool! Our last trip we stayed at the YC, and the kids loved Stormalong Bay. YC will be out of my ILs price range, so not an option for this trip. How does the Grotto compare for kids? My girls love to just splash around and will go on the kiddie slides.

3) How can I find out which characters are at the Garden Grove on each night? I'm thinking we'd like to try the seafood buffet on Friday night, and I'm hoping that Pluto will be there that night.

4) Are there refillable mugs at the resort? I think I read you can get one for the coffee shop? MIL loves ice coffee and will drink it day and night!

We've had dinner at Il Mulino, so we know that there are great dining options at the Swan-Dolphin. And we've stayed at plenty of Westins to know that the beds will be heavenly! I haven't made the full commitment yet, but am 90% there...Help sway me to the Swan!

TIA!
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Old 05-04-2012, 09:05 AM   #239
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Originally Posted by micheleq View Post
Hello! I'm considering the Swan for an upcoming November trip. It will be myself, DH, DD7 and DD5, as well as my in-laws. I'm thinking the ILs will get a standard king room, and we'll opt for a deluxe alcove for a little extra space. DH has a SPG number and we are AAA members as well, so you can't beat the rates.

My questions are regarding:

1) Theme park parking -- is it free when you show your room card? We'll walk or boat to EPCOT & HS, but will probably drive to AK and possibly MK (ILs live in Florida so they will have a car for us to use).
Yep, theme parking is free with your room card.

2) The pool! Our last trip we stayed at the YC, and the kids loved Stormalong Bay. YC will be out of my ILs price range, so not an option for this trip. How does the Grotto compare for kids? My girls love to just splash around and will go on the kiddie slides.
The Grotto pool complex, while not as diverse as Stormalong Bay, is huge and includes 5 different pools: the main pool, which has one slide and a waterfall; a spring pool; a kiddie pool; and two lap pools. Lots of games and activities poolside, as well. And there's also Dive-In Movies once a week.

3) How can I find out which characters are at the Garden Grove on each night? I'm thinking we'd like to try the seafood buffet on Friday night, and I'm hoping that Pluto will be there that night.
I'm pretty sure that Pluto and Goofy are present at most meals.

4) Are there refillable mugs at the resort? I think I read you can get one for the coffee shop? MIL loves ice coffee and will drink it day and night!
Yes, there are two different re-fillable mugs: one for cold beverages and one for hot beverages. Not sure which category iced coffee falls into, but I'm sure someone on staff can direct you.

We've had dinner at Il Mulino, so we know that there are great dining options at the Swan-Dolphin. And we've stayed at plenty of Westins to know that the beds will be heavenly! I haven't made the full commitment yet, but am 90% there...Help sway me to the Swan!

TIA!
Michele
Hi Michele...welcome to the thread!

My answers are in red above. You'll love the deluxe alcove room! So much space to spread out. Oh, and having two separate bathroom vanities/sinks is great, too.
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Old 05-04-2012, 09:16 AM   #240
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Thanks LexiC123! I appreciate all the answers.

I may be tempted if a code comes out for my time period, but there seem to be so many benefits to staying at the Swan over the Disney resorts. Our top priority is convenience to the parks, so staying either in the EPCOT area or on the monorail is our preference.
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