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Old 01-17-2011, 02:35 PM   #1
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Old Key West or Saratoga Springs Resort

We are seriously considering DVC and are torn between Old Key West and Saratoga Springs Resort so please help us out.

We have read so many posts that we are driving ourselves crazy. We have been on both properties in the past but not as a guest or even considering DVC. While at CBR in April we plan to look at each property a lot closer.

Any suggestions or comments would be greatly appreciated.

We like the grounds, look and size of both, we like the water taxi offered by both and we know the contracts end in 2042 for OKW and 2054 for SSR and there are different annual fees. It is most likely we will only travel once a year to our DVC resort.

We also like the idea of booking 11 months out at a home resort.

But what else should we be looking for?
74 OffSite,78 FW, 88 FW, 08 POFQ, 10 POR, 11 CBR, 12 OKW, 13 Bonnet Creek (BC), 14 BC, 15 BC

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Old 01-17-2011, 03:19 PM   #2
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Do you like being next to Downtown Disney? You can walk from Saratoga.
For us when we bought in my husband only wanted Wilderness. It was closed at the time but some points were "magically' found and we got our wish. We added on at Baylake because I've always loved CR and Pr being on the monorail. For me it was sold as soon as we heard the first whisper of blt. I have stayed at both resorts and like both. Obviously kw has more of an oceany feel and theme whereas ssr has more of an upper New York horsey theme.
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Old 01-17-2011, 03:22 PM   #3
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OKW and SSR are very similar in many ways--both are big and as a result tend to have availability longer than the smaller resorts. Both are condo style, with parking right outside your villa. Both are "walking resorts," with lovely strolling options ...Neither has a hotel attached to it, and neither is walking distance to a park. But here are some differences that may help you favor one over the other.

The themes are quite different, and one may appeal more to you than the other...OKW is tropical while SSR is built around an upstate NY horse-racing theme. Neither theme is, to my eye, "overwhelming." Both resorts are "pastel," but they do look very different...

1. SSR is easy walking distance to Downtown Disney--either West Side or Marketplace. You can walk to Downtown Disney from OKW, but it's a longer walk (about a mile), and at night the path is not lit...

2. SSR has the Treehouse Villas, which are few in number and popular, and you may want home resort booking for them...

3. The points cost per night at OKW is considerably lower, making longer stays (or stays in larger villas) more "cost-effective" (fewer points). OKW grand villas are among the best points bargains at Disney--and are hard to get w/out the 11-month booking advantage.

4. As you noted in your post, SSR has the longer "life" (2054), except you can buy OKW contracts that have been extended to 2057...

5. It's worth checking maintenance fee cost...it may be that one of the two resorts has lower maintenance fees than the other (I own at SSR and BCV, so can tell you the MFs there--but don't know what they are at OKW)...

6. The villas at OKW are MUCH bigger than the ones at SSR, regardless of the villa size--e.g., the OKW one-bedroom is very, very spacious, whereas the living room-kitchen-eating area in the SSR one bedroom, while very nice, is considerably smaller.

7. The OKW studio has two queen size beds; the SSR studio has one queen bed and a sleeper sofa

We love both resorts. And unless you think you'll want an OKW grand villa or an SSR treehouse, you may not "need" the 11-month booking advantage at either one, since they are so big...of course for some times of year (New Year's Eve, for example), you need to think about making a reservation at 11 months out at whatever your home resort is because all of DVC fills up quickly for that holiday...

Good luck w/your decision!
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Old 01-17-2011, 03:25 PM   #4
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If you buy OKW from Disney, it will be an extended contract ending in 2057.
If you buy OKW resale, it could be either a 2042 end date, or an extended 2057 end date, so be sure you find out.

eta: looks like I was typing while the above were being posted
Disney parks visited to date:
Magic Kingdom, EPCOT, Animal Kingdom, Disney's Hollywood Studios, Disneyland Park, California Adventure, Disneyland Paris, Disney Studios Paris,
Tokyo Disneyland, Tokyo DisneySea, Hong Kong Disneyland

DVC nights stayed to date:
AKV 15, ARS 8, BCV 61, BLT 17, BWV 83, HH 64, OKW 198, SSR 30, THV 9, VB 28, VGC 20, VGF 4, VWL 52

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Old 01-17-2011, 03:29 PM   #5
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OKW is my home resort but I have been having trouble booking it for quite some time. Rooms are bigger and I love the OKW theme. I have stayed at SSR many times because they always seem to have rooms available because of it's size. It's far from a second choice resort and we have loved staying there.
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Old 01-17-2011, 03:33 PM   #6
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At SSR there is the possibility of getting a THV at 11 months and get the extra 12 years ownership. Bus service is also better, but more crowded. The water play area is pretty cool.

At OKW you get to park closer and the buildings are smaller and less crowded. More of a homey feel in my opinion. More of a relaxed feelmwhen I am there.
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Old 01-17-2011, 03:47 PM   #7
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We faced the exact same dilemma when we were looking to buy into DVC with a resale contract. We had stayed at OKW twice and loved it and took the DVC tour at SSR and thought the grounds were beautiful. I really wanted OKW because of the cheaper points and huge rooms. DH wanted SSR for the THV, longer contract, and cheaper dues. We looked around, and the "perfect" SSR contract was listed. Very excited to try THV this March. I do keep my eye out for a perfect OKW contract too - I want to be able to get one of those grand villas! A girl can dream. I just realized that I've been no help to you because we were just as torn. Try to tour them when you go down in April and look keep an eye on contracts for both properties. Good luck.
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Old 01-17-2011, 05:02 PM   #8
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I have not stayed at either but from the outside looking in, I think they each a few things going for them that is different from the other that could tip the scales.

OKW has the lowest point structure and the biggest rooms. If staying in a GV or in a studio with two queen beds is important, then OKW may be the one to choose. In addition, the sleeper chair has been added to the 1 bedrooms at OKW so they now officially sleep 5.

SSR, on the other hand, has the THV, and if those are something you want to stay in, owning there would be beneficial. It also has the longer expiration date and this may be something to consider.

But, in all honesty, except for the GV at OKW and the THV at SSR, I think they are very comparable resorts and because of the size of each one, are usually some of the easiest to get in to when booking.

Good luck!

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Old 01-17-2011, 05:15 PM   #9
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Thanks for all the feedback!
74 OffSite,78 FW, 88 FW, 08 POFQ, 10 POR, 11 CBR, 12 OKW, 13 Bonnet Creek (BC), 14 BC, 15 BC

Last edited by Fundytrail; 01-17-2011 at 05:19 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 01-17-2011, 05:36 PM   #10
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Only 3 buildings at OKW have elevators.

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Old 01-17-2011, 06:04 PM   #11
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I like OKW much better than SSR. But then that's just my opinion. I think one of the biggest pluses for OKW is the parking. You're able to park closer to your room and the rooms are bigger.

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Old 01-17-2011, 09:19 PM   #12
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Room size: Studio - 376 sq ft., One Bedroom - 942 sq. ft.
Two Bedroom - 1,333 sq ft

Room size: Studio - 355 sq ft., One Bedroom - 714 sq. ft.
Two Bedroom - 1075sq ft
74 OffSite,78 FW, 88 FW, 08 POFQ, 10 POR, 11 CBR, 12 OKW, 13 Bonnet Creek (BC), 14 BC, 15 BC

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Old 01-17-2011, 09:56 PM   #13
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You have a lot of feedback. One other thing I noticed from staying at both is that the sink is in the bathroom at OKW while it is outside the bathroom at SSR. Also, SSR is adding the new pool at the Paddock, which is supposed to include a water slide and other stuff. The Grandstand has another pool and fun area for children. And, there is the main pool. OKW has a great main pool with water slide, but not at the others. Both resorts are great. Good luck with your decision.
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Old 01-17-2011, 09:57 PM   #14
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I also like OKW much better than SSR.
I feel like I could almost be in any condo community when I am there -
But that is just my opinion .
OKW I like for the same reasons many others have posted
kinda homey -large rooms and close parking -

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Old 01-18-2011, 06:00 AM   #15
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If you have a car, parking is alot easier at OKW. Literally out your front door.
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