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Old 01-11-2013, 11:36 AM   #1
wallawallakids
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Dolphin or Waldorf Astoria???

Hello,
We have only been to WDW 1 time and we are thinking about planning a family trip over Christmas this year. (I know, crazy time to go). We stayed on property last time but pricing things out it seems way to high for us to stay on property during Christmas week. Even in the Values (which I do not want to stay in for Christmas anyway!). So I have narrowed it down to either the smaller suite at the Waldorf Astoria or the Alcove room at the Dolphin. The Dolphin is a little less $$ and it is walkable. I like that. But I suspect the room is smaller than the Waldorf and the service probably isn't as nice. The Waldorf has a very nice pool and kids eat free. Oh btw, there are 6 of us. 4 children and 2 adults. I priced out two connecting rooms at the Hilton but that was actually more money than the suite. Anyone stay at the Dolphin before? Was it nice? Will I get more bang for my buck at WA? Or should I go the Hilton route because of the kids? Thanks so much for any help!
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Old 01-11-2013, 12:20 PM   #2
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Dolphin is very nice, but not near as nice as the Waldorf which is a wonderful( Waldorf just made the Conde Nast Traveler list to of top hotels)

The only real Dolphin advantages would be location and the ability to use the Extra Magic Hours during the very busy Christmas season)

By the way at the Waldorf you can use the Hilton pool which your kids will like

Either one will be good. Depends on if you want luxury or location
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Old 01-11-2013, 02:47 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OrangeCountyCommuter View Post
Dolphin is very nice, but not near as nice as the Waldorf which is a wonderful( Waldorf just made the Conde Nast Traveler list to of top hotels)

The only real Dolphin advantages would be location and the ability to use the Extra Magic Hours during the very busy Christmas season)

By the way at the Waldorf you can use the Hilton pool which your kids will like

Either one will be good. Depends on if you want luxury or location
Hmm...Ok. Thank you!
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Old 01-11-2013, 03:09 PM   #4
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During Christmas, if there are park closings due to capacity, off site guests are the first that are not permitted into the parks. Guests of the Swan and Dolphin are considered "on-site" guests and will be allowed into the parks.
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Old 01-11-2013, 03:13 PM   #5
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The Waldorf is in a totally different class. It's an insanely nice hotel but it caters to the well-heeled adult more than to children. You also can't walk to the boardwalk or to epcot. So what's more important? Location or hotel? If it's hotel, the waldorf wins!
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Old 01-11-2013, 03:22 PM   #6
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During Christmas, if there are park closings due to capacity, off site guests are the first that are not permitted into the parks. Guests of the Swan and Dolphin are considered "on-site" guests and will be allowed into the parks.
Really. Well that is good to know. That might be the answer for me then.
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Old 01-11-2013, 03:49 PM   #7
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The Waldorf is beautiful. We stayed there last time (business trip). They had a shuttle that ran fairly conveniently (I want to say every thirty minutes from each park), but it was so close we took a very inexpensive cab ride back most times.
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Old 01-11-2013, 04:22 PM   #8
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Dolphin location is great and the price relative to say Beach Club or Yacht Club is outstanding for the location. Rooms are Meh. . .kind of beat up. I find almost all on-site hotel rooms Meh though.

In my opinion, there's very little "quality" in the onsite properties no matter where you stay, unless they were recently updated. You basically pay for theme and location. So if that's important to you, then I would still stay Dolphin.
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Old 01-12-2013, 07:49 AM   #9
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Yeah, if it wasn't Christmas I would go Waldorf hands down....

But it's SO busy at Christmas that the location and EMH might be worth it...

As to the "resort guests only" think about that for a minute. It happened maybe once or twice this Christmas at MK only... and it was PACKED, PACKED, PACKED... do you even want to go then? I did that privledge once, what was I thinking.. lines for the bathroom, HUGE lines for any attraction, even if you had a fast pass good luck getting there it was wall to wall people on Main Street. (I turned around and went to Epcot LOL!)
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Old 01-12-2013, 07:56 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OrangeCountyCommuter View Post
Yeah, if it wasn't Christmas I would go Waldorf hands down....

But it's SO busy at Christmas that the location and EMH might be worth it...

As to the "resort guests only" think about that for a minute. It happened maybe once or twice this Christmas at MK only... and it was PACKED, PACKED, PACKED... do you even want to go then? I did that privledge once, what was I thinking.. lines for the bathroom, HUGE lines for any attraction, even if you had a fast pass good luck getting there it was wall to wall people on Main Street. (I turned around and went to Epcot LOL!)
True! Epcot is our favorite park anyway!
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Old 01-12-2013, 05:24 PM   #11
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I've stayed at both many times, and definitely prefer the Waldorf. Of course, it's just two of us with no kids. For convenience, it is hard to beat the location of the Dolphin, but the Waldorf Astoria is one of my favorite hotels in Florida. Recently did a full review on both the Dolphin and Waldorf if it's any help
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Old 01-12-2013, 08:33 PM   #12
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I've stayed at both many times, and definitely prefer the Waldorf. Of course, it's just two of us with no kids. For convenience, it is hard to beat the location of the Dolphin, but the Waldorf Astoria is one of my favorite hotels in Florida. Recently did a full review on both the Dolphin and Waldorf if it's any help
Wow! Thank you so much for your reviews. They are great. Sounds like WA is an experience to be had for sure!
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Old 01-13-2013, 07:18 AM   #13
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This is only your second trip to WDW. Some of us have been there many more times then 2. We don't necessarily care if we see every attraction, every trip.

I suggest Dolphin, no question. You can walk to 2 parks. You might need to take advantage of EMH in order to do what you want. You might want to avoid the hassle of waiting for a bus or maneuvering the parking lot at park closing. One morning you might get a FP for an attraction at DHS near the end of the day. Easy to walk back to your resort for a break.

I have no doubt Waldorf is a more deluxe hotel. I have no doubt Dolphin will give you much better park access. Only second trip. Crazy busy time of year. Access trumps hotel.
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Old 01-13-2013, 07:46 AM   #14
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This is only your second trip to WDW. Some of us have been there many more times then 2. We don't necessarily care if we see every attraction, every trip.

I suggest Dolphin, no question. You can walk to 2 parks. You might need to take advantage of EMH in order to do what you want. You might want to avoid the hassle of waiting for a bus or maneuvering the parking lot at park closing. One morning you might get a FP for an attraction at DHS near the end of the day. Easy to walk back to your resort for a break.

I have no doubt Waldorf is a more deluxe hotel. I have no doubt Dolphin will give you much better park access. Only second trip. Crazy busy time of year. Access trumps hotel.
I think you are right. I like the ability to walk to DHS and Epcot at that time of year. Not having to wait for a bus is really nice. Thank you.
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Old 01-13-2013, 10:13 AM   #15
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I would definitely go with the Dolphin for Christmas! You want to be onsite during that extremely crowded time.
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