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Old 08-23-2012, 05:39 PM   #1
shburks
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Quick Pop Century Review

Having just returned from three nights at Pop Century, I thought I would write a quick review.

Let me preface this by saying that we stayed at Pop Century for 9 or 10 nights in December 2009 and found it to be perfectly fine. At that time of year, we did not utilize the pools (too cold) and spent most of our time in the parks but often came back for naps. Stayed in the 70s building last time and it was quiet. Buses were fine, food court was fine but loud. In general, we found it to be perfectly adequate and had no reason not to return.

Arrived on Saturday in the middle of a thunderstorm. I had requested 60s building, lake view. I had done on-line check in. The computer was extremely slow and Lydia from Erie, PA, was lovely making conversation. After a ridiculously long time of waiting for the computer, she rebooted or something and offered to upgrade us.

We ended up in 60 building next to Ballew in room 5408 (4th floor). Lake view from outside the door to our left, splash area straight down.

Outside of the lovely experience at check-in, we found nearly everything else to be lacking. The rooms are small (which we knew--we've stayed there before) but VERY small! There were bugs in our room...I know it's August in Florida, but mousekeeping didn't even bother cleaning the bugs from the windowsills or even our counters. Mousekeeping seemed lacking all around--washcloths not even picked up off the counters one day, odd things on the floor.

The towels are very thin. If they were that thin at my house, they would become rags in the garage! Also, I HATE that you have to take your bathroom towels to the pool and then call for more. Why not just have towels AT the pool? Seems like it would cause so much less work for mousekeeping.

Beds are full-sized beds. I knew that going in. We've stayed there before, but they seemed uncomfortable and the pillows were a bit flimsy. Neither dh nor I slept well.

Worst of all were the people staying below us. While I realize that's NOT the fault of the resort itself, the people were loud and rude very late at night. Had my dh and ds not actually slept through the noise, I would have called the front desk the first night. Comments about "Natty Light and Weed in our room..." set very badly with me at 10:30 pm. It just left a bad taste in my mouth, so to speak.

Food court was just as loud as I remembered, so we walked over to Art of Animation for one lunch and two breakfasts where it was much calmer and quieter and more options.

Then they play movies every night at 8:00. I realize not everyone goes to bed at 8:00, but to start a movie at 8:00 that plays at the pool in the middle of the resort made a very loud night. Kids screaming/squealing until at least 11 pm every night. At several other resorts, the outdoor movie is far away from the rooms...wish that was the case here. It made it very loud every night.

Everything Pop (shop) was fine...except that I asked about the 2013 Disney calendar which I wanted to purchase. I was told that it wasn't out yet...but I thought I had just seen it on the ship! I thought I was mistaken until I found it at the Boardwalk Inn/Villas gift shop the next day.

On the plus side, the grounds are well maintained and the areas around the lake were lovely. The girls at the pool who did the afternoon pool activities did a nice job of involving the children; I was impressed with them. Lydia at check in was lovely and kind.

We have also stayed at All Star Movies and found it to be fine although it has been a few years!

All in all, it's our last stay at Pop Century. We booked it because we wanted an inexpensive Disney resort (booked with military discount) to finish out our WDW trip after a Disney cruise. As much as I wanted to love it, I just didn't.

I strongly believe that different resorts are right for different people and I've always been an advocate for the Value Resorts. After this trip however, I think we'll be doing something different next visit.
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Old 08-23-2012, 06:21 PM   #2
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Thanks for the honest review. We have stayed at Pop Century for the past 6+ years and while it is busy and loud, we're not at the resort long so it works for us. If I wanted to stay in a relaxing resort I would definitely choose something else though.

One day we'll probably want something quieter, for now...with 4 kids still traveling with us the Pop Century fits the bill .

I hope your next trip is quieter and more enjoyable
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Old 08-23-2012, 07:27 PM   #3
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This makes me a little nervous we're going to stay at POP for our first on site stay this November, be it only for 4 nights but still. A little worried now
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Old 08-23-2012, 08:46 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndiSlamberg View Post
This makes me a little nervous we're going to stay at POP for our first on site stay this November, be it only for 4 nights but still. A little worried now
Don't be worried
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Old 08-23-2012, 08:46 PM   #5
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We are staying at Pop Century for the first time next month. My brother and his family stayed there in March and the only complaints they had were that the room was small and the food court was crazy at breakfast time. The small room is okay for us cause we are only a party of 2 and we will probably only use the room to sleep and shower. I would rather have the extra money to spend on other parts of the vacation. They didn't have any issues with mousekeeping. My nephew's loved the animals they made from the towels.
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Old 08-23-2012, 08:50 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndiSlamberg View Post
This makes me a little nervous we're going to stay at POP for our first on site stay this November, be it only for 4 nights but still. A little worried now
Don't be worried! We loved POP and had no issues when we were there. Our room was super clean and no issues with noise. We were in the 80's building.

OP, sorry your stay was unpleasant. Hope it is better next time around!
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Old 08-23-2012, 09:00 PM   #7
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If you were there Saturday the 18th - that was a nasty thunderstorm! We were in Epcot that day and it just kept raining until about 1:30PM!

Sorry you had a bad experience. We did notice that it seemed to get more crowded that Saturday and Sunday. We were at MK Sunday and it was crazy. But we had an awesome stay at Pop.

I will say I saw more critters this time than our stay at ASMo but none in our room (my kids loved seeing the salamanders). And we lucked out - had quiet neighbors. We were ground floor, lakeview, 60s (room 4141).

But as my children are getting older, I think we too will outgrow value resorts. Like you said, different resorts for different folks.
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:02 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRatPack View Post
Thanks for the honest review. We have stayed at Pop Century for the past 6+ years and while it is busy and loud, we're not at the resort long so it works for us. If I wanted to stay in a relaxing resort I would definitely choose something else though.

One day we'll probably want something quieter, for now...with 4 kids still traveling with us the Pop Century fits the bill .

I hope your next trip is quieter and more enjoyable

This is how we feel too. We have four children ages 10 and under, and at this point in our lives the value resorts work out well for us for various reasons; but if I was on a solo WDW trip or if it was just me and DH, then I would probably have a much different experience and outlook
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:09 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AndiSlamberg View Post
This makes me a little nervous we're going to stay at POP for our first on site stay this November, be it only for 4 nights but still. A little worried now
Don't worry! Every single resort on the property has just as many people who enjoy staying there as don't. If everyone wanted exactly the same thing, the resorts would all be identical.
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Old 08-24-2012, 02:02 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dancing Queen
If you were there Saturday the 18th - that was a nasty thunderstorm! We were in Epcot that day and it just kept raining until about 1:30PM!

Sorry you had a bad experience. We did notice that it seemed to get more crowded that Saturday and Sunday. We were at MK Sunday and it was crazy. But we had an awesome stay at Pop.

I will say I saw more critters this time than our stay at ASMo but none in our room (my kids loved seeing the salamanders). And we lucked out - had quiet neighbors. We were ground floor, lakeview, 60s (room 4141).

But as my children are getting older, I think we too will outgrow value resorts. Like you said, different resorts for different folks.
Yes, we arrived this past Saturday after getting off the Disney Fantasy. Saturday was supposed to be a day at Typhoon Lagoon! That didn't happen! Plan B was implemented...DTD and Disney Quest!

We only have one child (7.5) who fondly remembers his first WDW trip to Pop and also enjoyed this stay. Dh and I were just less pleased.

We have also stayed at Wilderness the last two times and it may have ruined us for Pop!
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Old 08-24-2012, 02:07 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robbi129
We are staying at Pop Century for the first time next month. My brother and his family stayed there in March and the only complaints they had were that the room was small and the food court was crazy at breakfast time. The small room is okay for us cause we are only a party of 2 and we will probably only use the room to sleep and shower. I would rather have the extra money to spend on other parts of the vacation. They didn't have any issues with mousekeeping. My nephew's loved the animals they made from the towels.
I tend to agree with you...want to spend my money on other things besides a room we spend so little time. We actually spent some down time around the resort this time which probably affected our opinion!

I will say mousekeeping our third day was way better than the first two. Got a cute towel rowboat and ds's animals were rowing with washcloth oars and the room was cleaner and more time had been taken arranging towels. I think it was just that we'd had two less than stellar mousekeeping days by then and that's what you remember!
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Old 08-24-2012, 02:09 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danceintherain

Don't worry! Every single resort on the property has just as many people who enjoy staying there as don't. If everyone wanted exactly the same thing, the resorts would all be identical.
Excellent point! I also think I would still do Pop over no trip at all! However, since we now know that we prefer to vacation a little differently, I think we'll do a different resort next time.
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Old 08-24-2012, 04:28 PM   #13
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Wow, it always amazes me how different people have such different opinions. We stayed at Pop August 7-14. 60's building, rooms 5409, 10, and 11. So only 1 room away from the one you stayed in. While the beds in each room were all different from one another (two rooms had quite firm beds, the other was very soft) the pillows were all nice and fluffy (my mother even asked for a pillow that had less fluff). Our mousekeeper (Blanca) was amazing (she did not speak much english, thankfully my daughter knows enough spanish to be able to translate for us). Every day we had new towel animals, or they were arranged somehow with stuffed animals the kids had (the best was the beach blanket picnic in the middle of the bed!) She always went out of her way while cleaning our room. Things like hanging jackets left laying on a chair, folding night cloths and placing them on our pillows, and leaving a few extra towels for us.

As for the movies, with the door shut we barely heard a sound (of course when we managed to get back to our room we were usually so exhausted we could have slept through anything. lol

So for anyone that has not been to Pop before don't worry. Just keep in mind that Pop is a fun loving resort and as with most things disney is geared twords the kids. You shouldn't go there expecting it to be a quite, prim and proper enviroment. It is all about celebrating your inner child while at Disney!
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Old 08-24-2012, 04:52 PM   #14
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We stayed 1 night at POP last October after 9 nights st CBR. We had stayed there twice before with the last being when the kids were almost 2 and 5. Ds10 wanted to know why we didn't stay there the entire trip - he loved it. The room was small but it was clean and the beds were comfortable (well not quite as comfy as the bed at CSR) but after 10 full days of theme parks we all slept like rocks. Sounds like the op just had some bad luck.
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Old 08-24-2012, 05:55 PM   #15
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We stayed 1 night at POP last October after 9 nights st CBR. We had stayed there twice before with the last being when the kids were almost 2 and 5. Ds10 wanted to know why we didn't stay there the entire trip - he loved it. The room was small but it was clean and the beds were comfortable (well not quite as comfy as the bed at CSR) but after 10 full days of theme parks we all slept like rocks. Sounds like the op just had some bad luck.
You may be right. Perhaps it was just a bad combination of very loud at the pools and very loud neighbors with the beds that we found terribly uncomfortable (like, needed new mattresses uncomfortable). Sometimes that stuff is hard to overlook even when it's not the fault of the resort--it can just leave a very bad "taste" for a place.

Goofgal31--Our card said Blanca, too, but it seemed that it was someone very different who cleaned the first two days than the last day. No towel animals the first two days (not that I EXPECT them...just making an observation) and all linens/washcloths not even picked up. The third day there was a cute rowboat with ds's animals, our bathmat was tied in a bow with a washcloth and the soaps were placed "just so." Maybe Blanca doesn't work weekends or something and we had someone else for Saturday and Sunday's cleans!
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WDW: Beach Club Apr 2014 * Coronado Springs Oct 2013 * Boardwalk Sept 2013 * Animal Kingdom Lodge July 2013 * PO French Quarter (Jan 2013, Apr 2014) * Pop Century (Aug 2012, Dec 2009) * Wilderness Lodge (Sept, 2013, Oct 2011, Sept 2010), ASMo Dec 2003, off property: 1990, 1988, 1985
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