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Old 06-13-2011, 10:09 PM   #1
ColoradoDisney
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Wilderness Lodge - just returned from a 10 night stay

Our ten night stay at Wilderness Lodge was great. We checked in on June 2nd and departed on June 12th. We had reserved a woods view with bunkbeds. We checked in around 5 PM. At check in, we were upgraded to a courtyard view. Total check in time was less then 5 minutes (We did NOT check in on line). Our 2nd floor room had a great view of the pool. We didn't spend much time on the deck as one of the neighbors enjoyed smoking on theirs. Are you permitted to smoke on the decks?

Room: We liked having the bunkbeds. Our daughters slept much better this way (8 & 11). It was nice having the refrig in room. We bought juice and milk at the gift shop and ate most breakfasts in the room. Although there are flat screen TVs, Disney does not have high definition stations. Disney needs to fix this. The TV channel selection was poor. Some folks have complained about lighting but it was fine for us. There were more outlets then most hotels (nice for charging the phone, ipad, computer, etc.). We liked having the ceiling fan and the AC worked great. The bathroom was nice. No problems with housekeeping.

Pool: We loved the pool. Our kids asked to leave the parks several times to go back and swim. We enjoyed ordering dinner from Roaring Forks and eating outside by the pool. We did this several times. The lifeguards were very attentive. I didn't notice "pool hoppers" as others have observed. We enjoyed watching a movie on the beach (turn up the sound Disney, it was hard to hear over the pool).

Transportation: We used Magical Express and loved it. The transportation to the theme parks was adequate. We only park hopped one day during our 10 night stay. If you do lots of park hopping or dine at other WDW resorts, I could see how you might be fustrated with the transportation. You need to budget an hour to get anywhere. It might be faster but you just don't know. We loved taking the boat to MK. We did rent a car for one day from Alamo at the Car Care Center for a trip to the Kennedy Space Center. That worked out great. Quick and painless.

Food: We at many meals at Roaring Fork and one lunch at Whispering Canyons. Overall, we had a good experience at both. By the end of 10 days, we were ready for more variety from Roaring Fork. In addition, Roaring Fork did get quite busy.

Suggestions to Disney on WL: High Definition TV stations and improved channel selection. Expand Roaring Fork in serving capacity and menu selection. Add some type of coffee cart in the lobby (with real coffee, espresso, etc.). Improve the predictability of the transportation (sometimes you wait 2 minutes while other times you wait 45 minutes). Hotel wide WiFi. More table and chairs by the pool. The bedding was ok but for a deluxe resort, it should be better (feather pillows, nicer comforters, etc.).

Overall, we were pleased with our experience. Considering we were their for 10 nights with no major problems, we were quite pleased. We found ourselves returning early from a park or lounging at the hotel because we enjoyed it so much. It was so relaxing compared to visiting the parks. We love just how compact the resort is compared to other WDW resorts that are building after building. We've stayed at the Poly, Port Orleans, POP and others. All them require you to walk outside to get to just about anything. With the layout of the WL, you find yourself in the beautiful lobby just hanging out.
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Old 06-13-2011, 10:23 PM   #2
nickyb720
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When I stayed at Coronado Springs, they had High Def Channels there. But, you have to figure, who really spends a lot time in their room to watch tv anyway? That's probably why their channel lineup is not as large. The Wilderness Lodge is a very nice place! My wife and I hope to stay there next time! Glad that you had a good experience there!
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Old 06-13-2011, 10:27 PM   #3
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No smoking on balconies and patios, you could have reported them to the Front Desk. They used to offer coffee in the lobby, have they stopped that.

All the suggestions you made for improvements were good ones, but if they do that the price will rise. Many of what you listed can be found at the more expensive resort locations.
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Old 06-13-2011, 10:53 PM   #4
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I agree that you likely don't spend a lot of time in the room watching TV. I really noticed when I wanted to watch the NBA finals.
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Old 06-13-2011, 10:58 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Sammie View Post
No smoking on balconies and patios, you could have reported them to the Front Desk. They used to offer coffee in the lobby, have they stopped that.

All the suggestions you made for improvements were good ones, but if they do that the price will rise. Many of what you listed can be found at the more expensive resort locations.
I had a hard time determining which balcony/patio the smoke was coming from. It is ashame that people think they are above the rules. I didn't let it spoil my trip.

They should get rid of the kiosk selling pins by Artist Point and convert that into a coffee/pastry cart. I rarely saw folks buying pins at the kiosk anyhow.

Of course you could look at the suggested upgrades as necessary to keep up with competition. If they don't do these things, folks will stop staying at WL. Competition is a wonderful thing. It keeps everyone on their toes.
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Old 06-13-2011, 11:00 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nickyb720 View Post
But, you have to figure, who really spends a lot time in their room to watch tv anyway? That's probably why their channel lineup is not as large.
They want you out in the parks and spending money. Offering HD channels, additional channel selections and wi-fi does nothing to help their bottom line as the resorts have high occupancy levels without offering these services.
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Old 06-14-2011, 07:35 AM   #7
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Old 06-14-2011, 11:20 AM   #8
mickeynut1
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Glad you had a great trip. We love the WL.....it's a beautiful resort .
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Old 06-14-2011, 11:34 AM   #9
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Glad to hear the good report since we're staying there in 86 days for 8 days. I actually hope they keep WL the way it is, so the prices stay more reasonable. Thanks for the post!
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Old 06-14-2011, 04:14 PM   #10
jamie@dvcstore
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Hi ColoradoDisney,
Thanks for the trip report. WL is my favorite resort and I like to hear when others enjoy it. 10 days sounds like a nice long vacation. Glad to hear you had a great trip.
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Old 06-14-2011, 08:24 PM   #11
nickyb720
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColoradoDisney View Post
I agree that you likely don't spend a lot of time in the room watching TV. I really noticed when I wanted to watch the NBA finals.
Agree with you as far as that goes!
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Old 06-14-2011, 09:39 PM   #12
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I found the transportation at WL to be pretty good- didn't miss the monorail access as much as I thought I would.

It helps that you can travel from park to park in most cases. We also loved the boat to MK.

WL is right up there with the Poly to me.
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Old 06-14-2011, 10:58 PM   #13
larryz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColoradoDisney View Post
We didn't spend much time on the deck as one of the neighbors enjoyed smoking on theirs. Are you permitted to smoke on the decks?
No.

But.

Like other Disney policies, inconsiderate guests will violate them at will until someone calls them on it. In this case, and you saw the warning in the room, smoking in a room or on a balcony is supposed to result in a room rehab fee of several hundred dollars. That, one would think, should make someone think twice about risking that fee being added to their credit card.

Unfortunately, two things have to happen for that to occur. A. The desk has to know about it, and B. the manager has to be willing to risk a negative feedback event.

I'd hazard a guess that there's lots of A, but very little of B.

But I'm glad you like my favorite winter resort. As long as you keep going in summer, we'll get along just fine!
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Old 06-15-2011, 10:49 AM   #14
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Great to hear you had such a lovely trip - we are headed to WL for our first ever disney experience of any kind for 14 nights in September - counting the days and dreaming about it every night!!
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Old 06-15-2011, 11:15 AM   #15
jegsnakkernorsk
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DSis and I are hoping to stay there in December 2012 for her birthday. Sounds like a great place to stay.

Your check in time was faster than ours, on the same day, at Caribbean Beach Resort, with having checked in Online!
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