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Old 10-04-2012, 07:27 PM   #1
JennyDrake
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AoA-my thoughts

Just returned from Saturday night-Thursday morning at at AoA in Little Mermaid (regular) rooms.

The theming and landscaping at his resort are INCREDIBLE!! Disney missed no details!! Photos do not do it justice--you simply have to see it. We had rooms in building including a HA room.

This resort is big and it is a hike to the food court and bus stops. We had a senior with mobility issues, so it it was more pronounced in our situation.

There seemed to be more "room noise" at this resort than AS. Very aware of babies crying in rooms and doors opening and closing all around. We were on the second floor. In the furture, I will ask for a top floor room.

Bus service was good to/from parks. We did not go to DTD. All the CMs were super nice.

The only negative is the food court. It has a terrible layout and it is just BEDLAM. The queing lines are not nearly as long as they need to be. Service was sluggish and I can't tell you why. It seemed a bit understaffed, but not terribly so. It took 10-15 minutes (one time 20 min) to get through the lines and get food. Then you have to get silverware, drinks, find a table, etc. The noise level is HORRENDOUS even at non-peak times. And the traffic flow design (WHAT traffic flow design??) is very poor. There is no real flow pattern.

Seating is ample, which is nice. You get real plates and silverware which is good news/bad news. I found that I bristled at having to so bus my own table. You have to try to get the trash and remnants into a trash receptable with a too small door that is spring loaded to close. Then you sort of recycling and the dishes in one bin and flatware in another. It reminded me WAY too much of bussing tables in a restaurant.

Food quality was OK but not remarkably better than AS, which is what I had hoped for... The food "looks" better than it tastes. Naan bread is VERY good and I really enjoyed the build your own fruit bowls and yogurt/granola bowls for breakfast.

Mousekeeping was fine.

I am currently booked there again in December, but I may switch to Pop and just walk over with a friend to show it all to her. The food court put a damper on the overall experience for me.

Any questions?
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Old 10-04-2012, 08:17 PM   #2
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I would reconsider staying at Pop if you don't like noise, etc. in the rooms. If I remember correctly, the Little Mermaid rooms at AoA are layed out just like Pop's. Originally that section of AoA was supposed to be the classic years section of Pop. Disney changed the design, but the room layout is supposed to be the same or similar.
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Old 10-04-2012, 08:24 PM   #3
Ktharee
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I was just at Pop for the first time for one night only on Saturday. I had never stayed in a value resort before and I gotta tell ya, it didn't suck. We walked over to the AoA to check it out and ended up with resort envy though. It's amazing! The theme makes you feel like you are at a park. We took so many pictures. Thanks for the mention of the noise. Maybe it's because of the sound being contained in a hallway that it seemed very loud??

I didn't notice any loud noises at all and our room was on the first floor, facing the bowling pin pool. I'm a light sleeper, so unless it was just a quiet crowd, I didn't see an issue. All in all we were very impressed with the Pop Century and it is aptly categorized as a value...what a great way to stay inside WDW on a tighter budget.
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Old 10-04-2012, 08:52 PM   #4
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I have stayed at Pop before (3x?) each time with a 50's lakeview top floor and I don't recall any noise issues other than Turbo Toilets. The building that we were in @AoaA had OUTDOOR walkways, not indoor hallways. The appeal of Pop is to walk over so my friend can see AoA (we won't have a car) and the lovely running/walking path around the lake.
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Old 10-05-2012, 07:37 AM   #5
MacFam4
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OP, I just returned as well and pretty much agree with everything you said. I think the landscaping is wonderful too! Imagine how nice it will look in the LM section once it has a little more time to grow.

I wrote a short review yesterday and forgot to mention something that you addressed....room noise. We arrived on a Wednesday and the first couple of nights were very quiet. Except for hearing the turbo toilets But once the weekend hit, we had quite a bit of noise from our neighbors. Woke us up at night on several occasions. When we visited Pop, we didn't have that kind of noise. Maybe we just had quiet neighbors?

I also agree with statement you made about the food court...it feels alot like you're busing your own tables. I don't really care for that at all. Imagine how much silverware was thrown away by accident? The door you put your food in is waaaaay too small! But the food court was very roomy, tons of seating, and we found the drink stations to be kept clean.

Overall, we enjoyed our stay though, and these were really the only negatives for us. (other than slow buses). The resort itself and our room was lovely. Staff was very friendly.
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Old 10-05-2012, 08:26 AM   #6
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When we were there (9/15 - 9/26) the food court was never too busy - which shocked me given the size of the resort. The OP is right the lines are not designed well and if it got crowded I would not want to be in there.

The food system that worked best for us (DH, DD age 12 and myself) was for everyone to order their food from whatever station. They generally give you a little printed slip with a barcode on it. One of us would collect drinks/ desserts and those slips and go pay and grab a table. That person would also get drinks from the drink station, silverware, napkins etc. The other person (adult) would take back the slips and the paid receipt and collect the food. They never seemed to mind that we were paying while the food was being made and it did make the whole process a lot more efficient IMO.
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Old 10-05-2012, 09:18 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Good Morning Dewdrop View Post
When we were there (9/15 - 9/26) the food court was never too busy - which shocked me given the size of the resort. The OP is right the lines are not designed well and if it got crowded I would not want to be in there.

The food system that worked best for us (DH, DD age 12 and myself) was for everyone to order their food from whatever station. They generally give you a little printed slip with a barcode on it. One of us would collect drinks/ desserts and those slips and go pay and grab a table. That person would also get drinks from the drink station, silverware, napkins etc. The other person (adult) would take back the slips and the paid receipt and collect the food. They never seemed to mind that we were paying while the food was being made and it did make the whole process a lot more efficient IMO.
We also had food court issues. I can't wait until our kids are old enough to help get their own meals! When you have 1 person coralling kids and one getting food it is miserable!
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Old 10-05-2012, 10:18 AM   #8
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I really think it depends on your neighbors. Our first few days at POP were crazy, our neighbors were loud, kids knocking on walls. But after they left it was very quiet other than the turbo toilets.

We stayed at CBR in a pirate room and the people next to us were not quiet at all. They let their little one play with the connecting door at all hours of the day and night. We often heard them returning late in the evening after we had already been to bed.

Our other stays have been uneventful noise wise. We have been able to sleep without issues. I am a light sleeper, I would notice.


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Old 10-05-2012, 04:25 PM   #9
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We were so confused by the whole trash/dishes set-up that we couldn't figure out if we were supposed to take our own stuff or leave it on the table! It looked so much like a bussing station it seemed the CMs would do it?
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