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Old 06-01-2013, 08:54 AM   #2596
kimmar067
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Leaving tomorrow
......sooooo, I guess you are DRIVING there......
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Old 06-01-2013, 08:56 AM   #2597
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Originally Posted by chocovrdmicears View Post


*Disclaimer: the following opinion may not be super popular - you have been warned.
While we were so grateful for the upgrade and very much enjoyed our view - I would never pay the extra for it. We saw giraffes maybe 4 or 5 days out of the 9 we were there. There were many afternoons and mornings that we saw no animals at all. Now before I get in trouble - I am by no way complaining! Again- we were grateful! I only say this for those thinking about spending the significant extra to stay in a Savanna view.
When we go back, we will definately book a Pool View.

We visited a few resorts to check them out for our next potential stay (we didn't swim!) - While they were very nice, none of them felt like *home* to us like AKL. Not sure what resort will be up next for us but AKL is once again at the top of our list!
Thanks for posting the lengthy review! Congrats on the upgrade, and I'm glad you liked the trip so much. Also ducking, neither my wife nor I were crazy about the zebra domes, either, but we also LOVED the other desserts at Boma!! Funny, isn't it?

Regarding the Savanna view, I think that is also where people's opinions will vary. First off, I always say if you have to break the bank to pay for the upgrade, then don't. I say the same thing about MK view at the CR, BW view at BWV/BWI, etc. But if it is within your price range, I think it is really incredible. BUT, maybe it is because we had the Arusha view at Jambo? I think Sunset at Jambo has less animals? We saw giraffes every day. Lots of them. Same with the zebra, gazelles, antelopes, etc. This was a normal pic from our stay in April. I will say the best viewing times started around 2 or 3 pm and ended at 6 or 7pm. If you're not in the room during those times, I would NOT even think of booking the Savanna view!!!

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Old 06-01-2013, 09:01 AM   #2598
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My favorite meal at The Mara is the Falafel with Couscous! (Oh, and the Butternut Squash Soup! )
....whiie at dinner at Boma, the chef, Arol, instructed our waiter to bring out the recipe for it, along with recipes for two other soups.....I've already made it once since we got back [6 weeks ago] and it turned out really good!
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Old 06-01-2013, 09:42 AM   #2599
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Originally Posted by chocovrdmicears View Post
Hi everyone! Just wanted to stop in and give a report ~ We just got back last night - Spent 5/22-5/30 at Jambo.
The specifics:
We booked a Pool View room - did not do online check in - checked into AKL on Wed morning about 9:00am!!!! - Got upgraded to a Savanna view!!
First time in 9 years we have ever received any upgrade! This was our 3rd stay @ AKL - the last 2 times were Pool View Rooms.

The room was ready at 9:00am - it was 3136 facing the Sunset Savanna - same floor at the lobby. Excellent location in terms of proximity to the lobby, food court and pool. We love the AKL rooms and ours was super clean and kept that way during our entire stay thanks to the fabulous Mousekeepers. The only 1 small thing that bugs me a bit is the bathroom area is so dark.

The resort - AKL never ceases to amaze me. It is simply beautiful. We love the relaxed atmosphere and the beauty in all the details. There is simply nothing like stepping out of the HOT sun into that amazing lobby and hearing "Welcome Home".

We spent quite a bit of time at the pool. Unfortunately I can confirm that Pool hopping is alive and well at AKL. There was a very loud gentleman on the phone next to us with his girlfriend, soaking up the sun in a lounge chair, telling whomever he was on the phone with, that he was staying at the Swan, but loved the AKL pool. My kids also encountered several kids during our stay who asked my kids "what resort are you staying at?" - I really, really wish they would implement a wristband policy at all pools. Especially over a holiday weekend. Many times we had a trouble finding one empty lounge chair.
That being said - we love the pool! Our kids enjoyed the Pool activities several days and one night watched Wreck in Ralph while swimming.

We had several meals at the Mara and enjoyed them all. Nothing stands out - but no complaints. In addition to the regular breakfast menu, the *Special* that was offered all week was Waffles with Caramel Apple topping.
We gave Boma another try this trip after a 4 year break. We didn't love it the first time - but we absolutely LOVED it this time! I think it was my favorite meal of the trip (close second was Via Napoli). I am not a huge lover of Zebra Domes but they had little coffee chocolate tarts at the dessert table that were to DIE for. (I refuse to say how many I consumed).

We had a car so I can't comment on the bus system.

*Disclaimer: the following opinion may not be super popular - you have been warned.
While we were so grateful for the upgrade and very much enjoyed our view - I would never pay the extra for it. We saw giraffes maybe 4 or 5 days out of the 9 we were there. There were many afternoons and mornings that we saw no animals at all. Now before I get in trouble - I am by no way complaining! Again- we were grateful! I only say this for those thinking about spending the significant extra to stay in a Savanna view.
When we go back, we will definately book a Pool View.

We visited a few resorts to check them out for our next potential stay (we didn't swim!) - While they were very nice, none of them felt like *home* to us like AKL. Not sure what resort will be up next for us but AKL is once again at the top of our list!
Thank you for your report. Congrats on the upgrade
We have pool view booked in a couple of weeks I would definitely rather have a good pool view than a mediocre savanna view. But trust me, if you ever stay in a primo Arusha View room, you will be awestruck

Terrible about the Swan guests using the AKL pool. . I hope they'll crack down on that one day

Glad you gave Boma another try and loved it (Add me to the list of those who don't care for Zebra Domes)

Do you have any pics to share?

Thanks!
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Old 06-01-2013, 10:29 AM   #2600
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See.. I am just crazy enough to report that person... Cause I wouldn't ever try that.. It's rude!
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Old 06-01-2013, 10:32 AM   #2601
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See.. I am just crazy enough to report that person... Cause I wouldn't ever try that.. It's rude!
....you're not alone....I would too.....
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Old 06-01-2013, 10:35 AM   #2602
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....what I don't understand is, the Swan/Dolphin [they share a pool] grotto pool is AWESOME! Why wouldn't they just stay THERE?
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Old 06-01-2013, 10:37 AM   #2603
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See.. I am just crazy enough to report that person... Cause I wouldn't ever try that.. It's rude!
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Originally Posted by kimmar067 View Post
....you're not alone....I would too.....
The thing is, I'm not sure anything would be done about it. They don't seem to do anything at the Polynesian when people with resort mugs from other hotels and large coolers and set up shop on the beach!
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Old 06-01-2013, 10:42 AM   #2604
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The thing is, I'm not sure anything would be done about it. They don't seem to do anything at the Polynesian when people with resort mugs from other hotels and large coolers and set up shop on the beach!
.....wow... ......and I was just thinking, would't someone notice you walking into a lobby wearing a bathing suit and carrying towels, beach stuff, etc and you are obviously not coming from a hotel room [at that particular hotel]?
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Old 06-01-2013, 10:44 AM   #2605
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.....I'd be afraid to do anything like that.....I'd probably be the one caught and would be SO EMBARRASSED!
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Old 06-01-2013, 10:47 AM   #2606
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.....wow... ......and I was just thinking, would't someone notice you walking into a lobby wearing a bathing suit and carrying towels, beach stuff, etc and you are obviously not coming from a hotel room [at that particular hotel]?
I think they don't want to risk offending people or throwing them out - or misjudging. But some people think the rules don't apply to them. They ruin it for the rest of us. It's terrible that paying guests might not be able to find a chair b/c a visitor is taking one (or ten). Grrrr.

I am glad to hear that the lifeguards around WDW are starting to remove towels people use to "save" chairs. I won't hesitate to ask a lifeguard to do this.
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Old 06-01-2013, 11:07 AM   #2607
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I think they don't want to risk offending people or throwing them out - or misjudging. But some people think the rules don't apply to them. They ruin it for the rest of us. It's terrible that paying guests might not be able to find a chair b/c a visitor is taking one (or ten). Grrrr.

I am glad to hear that the lifeguards around WDW are starting to remove towels people use to "save" chairs. I won't hesitate to ask a lifeguard to do this.
.....what they SHOULD so is have someone give out those towels, along with someone who is in charge of chairs, and ask for proof of staying at any particular WDW resort....mebbe by showing their room key...that way, anyone who is SUPPOSED to be there will....all others will be politely reminded of the 'rules' of resort pool-hopping....
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I've been BOO'ED!!!
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Old 06-01-2013, 11:26 AM   #2608
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Old 06-01-2013, 11:50 AM   #2609
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I'm at 29 days today until we leave on vacay. We will be stopping in Ga to visit new nephew. Then to Jax for a wedding on the 5th then on to Kidani for a great time. That means I have 29 days to heal from my emergency gallbladder surgery I had last week. Here's hopping for a speedy recovery because I will be sad if I can't ride my favorite rides.
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Old 06-01-2013, 12:56 PM   #2610
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Oh my gosh - your first trip to Florida....... AWESOME!! Congratulations! You have lots of time to prepare and we will be happy to help! If you haven't already started a Pre-Trip Report, please do!

http://www.disboards.com/forumdispla...ysprune=&f=144

You will get lots of great advice and it will help you plan an awesome trip for your family! You can start off by giving a little information about your family and ask those important questions: must dos, restaurants, etc.

For your room at Kidani, I would request just what you said "low floor and close to buses" I would also add a "Celebration" -- First Trip!

In 5 - 6 days, with proper planning, you will be able to see and do so much! Make sure you don't over-plan! Build in "relaxation at the resort" time and also be flexible enough to enjoy something totally unexpected that might come your way! And before you even head home, I predict you will be planning your next visit to Orlando!!
Thanks for the tips. As time gets closer I will definitely ask all of these questions. With it being 288 days away I think I will just keep reading for now and be excited that there is light at the end of the tunnel!!!
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