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Old 06-24-2013, 08:30 PM   #1
dimndgal1
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Disney Veteran with new addition! Resort advice!!!

After so much help in planning our trip last summer with my family of 3 WDW vets and 4 WDW rookies, I am hoping to get some more DIS love in figuring out our next adventure: WDW with a 1 year old !

We are expecting our second daughter next month and planning a week-long trip for Fall '14 - mostly so that momma can FINALLY do Halloween Disney-style! We took our now 6 year old to DL for the first time when she was 16 months and learned a lot about touring with a little one - definitely more relaxed touring and lots of breaks, but amazing to see what catches their interest!

My problem is figuring out which resort would be best considering our new group. We are focusing on the moderates (with the hope that free dining will be offered again next fall), but I am not totally ruling out the 'cheaper' deluxes (WL, AKL). We will most likely be driving down, so will have our own car for transportation. I guess my main question is that since we will probably be spending more time in the room than previously to let the little one nap and relax, I want to make sure the resort has amenities to fill the down times.

We did a split-stay at POR/YC last year and while I LOVED YC, it's just too far out of budget this time around and I don't think we'd take full advantage of SAB. My only issue with POR was cast member related so I would definitely consider it again... but I would want the mansions if possible (I have hip issues and long walks/ stairs are NOT my thing!!!). We have looked at CSR and CB but I don't know a lot about either (other than size). And I need to rectify the cost difference of AKL or WL to hubby - he LOVED YC but still likes to know what he's getting for his $$$.

TIA!!!
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Old 06-24-2013, 10:04 PM   #2
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I would pick POFQ small size, nice pool for the little ones elevatores in all the buildings nice food court boat to DTD carriage rides and a short walk to PO use of the pool there rike rental and also boat rental. Good luck in your choice.
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Old 06-25-2013, 10:48 AM   #3
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I am a Deluxe girl, and don't tend to stay anywhere else. For access to the Magic Kingdom Wilderness Lodge is nice and close and you can see the fireworks off of the shores of Bay Lake. But one of my absolute favorite resorts is AKL. It is unlike any other resort because of the free-roaming areas. It is not near anything and bus transportation is the only option but I enjoy the bus rides and when I get back to the resort just unwinding. I also like the Mara at AKL (the food court) but that Roaring Forks at the WL. Happy planning!
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Old 06-25-2013, 02:30 PM   #4
dimndgal1
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Thanks for the recs!!! A few ?s

Quote:
Originally Posted by badgirlgiz View Post
I would pick POFQ small size, nice pool for the little ones elevatores in all the buildings nice food court boat to DTD carriage rides and a short walk to PO use of the pool there rike rental and also boat rental. Good luck in your choice.
Out of curiosity, do you happen to know how far it is from POFQ to POR on the walking trail? DD loved the pool at POR and I think to have the option of using amenities of both places would be appealing. I definitely like the appeal of elevators, which is the only reason I'm hesitant to go POR again - Alligator Bayou makes me nervous with the walking and stairs and I really don't want to pay for a Royal Room just to secure the mansions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by soarin_over_nj View Post
I am a Deluxe girl, and don't tend to stay anywhere else. For access to the Magic Kingdom Wilderness Lodge is nice and close and you can see the fireworks off of the shores of Bay Lake. But one of my absolute favorite resorts is AKL. It is unlike any other resort because of the free-roaming areas. It is not near anything and bus transportation is the only option but I enjoy the bus rides and when I get back to the resort just unwinding. I also like the Mara at AKL (the food court) but that Roaring Forks at the WL. Happy planning!
I won't lie, I am definitely intrigued by WL and AKL, but am really trying to justify the cost difference, especially since our littlest will be too young to really do much more than wade and sleep. One of the things that appealed to me about WL was that there was a boat to MK. Since we'll have a stroller and a car this next trip, we plan on using our own transit as much as possible - we did the stroller on the bus thing when DD was 3 and found it aggrivating (for us and for other passengers). Admittedly, we'll be going during a very low crowd time, but AKL being so far from everything makes me hesitate until we are unencumbered!
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Old 06-26-2013, 02:07 PM   #5
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Two things that I would think about, my recollection is that showers are not that unusual in the fall thus the indoor corridors of AKL and WL offer more weather protection. @ AKL the walkway from the bus stop to the lobby is short and covered but the Mara requires a short jaunt outside - which also is covered by a roof. Whereas WL walk to the boat is not covered. Not that this would be a deciding factor for me - just something to think about. More importantly to me would be that WL and AKL both have balconies offering a nice escape while the baby sleeps.
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Old 06-26-2013, 02:26 PM   #6
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With the choices you have presented, I would choose WL. You will be close to MK and you could also take the boat over to FW which is a lot of fun - pony rides, a playground, etc.
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Old 06-26-2013, 10:16 PM   #7
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DH and I walked from POR to POFQ for a swim. I liked that we could use both pools. I think you could also take the boat.

We also really liked CSR. It's fairly sprawling, but beautiful! We were there nearly a week and really enjoyed it!

Another option might be renting DVC, we did that last trip and are doing it next trip. It's nice to stay at the deluxes (in DVC units) for a price we can justify. Note that you don't get daily housekeeping, but that doesn't bother me considering the rates.

This fall will be our first trip with our DD who will be 2, we are really excited! We did a 1 day DL teaser in May when we were in Los Angeles and it was a lot of fun, so I'm excited for a "full" trip to WDW!
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Old 06-27-2013, 12:08 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dimndgal1 View Post
Out of curiosity, do you happen to know how far it is from POFQ to POR on the walking trail? DD loved the pool at POR and I think to have the option of using amenities of both places would be appealing. I definitely like the appeal of elevators, which is the only reason I'm hesitant to go POR again - Alligator Bayou makes me nervous with the walking and stairs and I really don't want to pay for a Royal Room just to secure the mansions.
IIRC, I think it's about 5-10 minutes (mileage may vary, I'm not quite sure ). It's a very nice walk along the river.

If you want the mansions, just put it in your request in the reservation, and make sure you include that you need to be close to the food court for mobility / health issues. If you still don't get the location you want, talk to the CM at the front desk. They'll do every effort to accomodate you.

WL is super convenient to MK. Great boat ride to MK, and you have lots of other options at FW or CR (via boat also). Plus, if you're looking for less walks at your hotel, nothing beats one central building with elevators (plus a gorgeous lobby to boot! ).
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Old 06-27-2013, 07:49 AM   #9
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Got it narrowed to two!!!

Thanks so much for all the great input!

We have considered DVC before (especially last year with our group of 7) but the discounts are so much more limited on those rooms and I am pretty sure we can swing something with the 'standard' rooms.

I think we are going to go with POR or WL. DH and I agree that the 'perks' of proximity of WL outweigh AKL (and he likes the idea of being a hop, skip, and jump from lots of food options) and if discounts don't pan out, we would be content at POR as well. We plan on doing some stuff in DtD and will probably spend more time in MK than any other park, so both have an appeal there.

I do think this trip we are going to try to do a meal at AKL just so we have a chance to see it and definitely keep it in for consideration for a future visit when we aren't trying to navigate naptimes and strollers. We're talking about maybe an AKL/YC split-stay after the YC renovation, but I just don't want to mess with a split-stay while juggling a toddler - we had some drama come up last year as we changed resorts and while rare, it took some time to resolve that I'm pretty sure the toddler will not be up for.

Now, to wait for July 10 and start planning!!!

Thanks again and I do appreciate all your advice!!!
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