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Old 06-02-2013, 07:38 PM   #1
MamaToDavis
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Looking for a FUN hotel for pre-cruise

Hi there,

We are planning our 1st Disney Cruise on 9/14/13. We will arrive in Orlando the afternoon prior to our cruise so we need a one-night stay some place that will be fun for our two boys (ages 9 & 6). We've heard great things about the convenience of the Hyatt MCO and are looking into that. However, I'm also considering a one night stay at a WDW hotel. There is a room-only discount being offered now so I can get a room at CBR for $190, which would include the Magical Express from the airport. I'm not sure how we'd get from the terminal back to the airport, so I still need to think that through.

I've never stayed anywhere but Disney property in Orlando so I'm kind of out of my element here. Are there other hotels (Dis or non Dis) I should consider that would be fun for our kids and be a good kick off for our vacation? When I say fun hotel, I guess I really mean fun pool! I'd really like to try Disney's Beach Club for SAB but can't really bring myself to pay $300+ for less than 24 hrs. I'd like to keep it under $200 if possible.

So, what do you suggest...Dis or Non-Dis hotel for one night pre-cruise? Anything else I need to consider that I'm not thinking of?

Thanks!! I appreciate all the expertise here!
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Old 06-02-2013, 08:08 PM   #2
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Never stayed at either one, but there is also Nickelodeon Family Suites and a CoCo Key water resort in Orlando.

Also, just wanted to make sure you know that Magical Express only goes between MCO and Disney resorts and does not go to the port from Disney hotels. So, you will need to either book transfers from a WDW resort to the port. You can book them via DCL as $35 pp each way or arrange private transport.
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Old 06-02-2013, 08:13 PM   #3
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I've stayed at nickelodeon and quickly realized that was a big mistake for us . But mostly because my child was shy and quiet. It would be perfect for rowdy outgoing kids. It's very noisy and very bright in colors. Not exactly a relaxing peaceful place, but great fun for kids. The pool is unbelievable, but was too much for my kid who had sensory overload back then. He's 7 now and more outgoing and would probably love it. Not sure I could take it again lol.


It's the perfect place for the right kind of family.
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Old 06-02-2013, 08:44 PM   #4
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Thanks for the ideas! I think my boys would love the Nick Hotel but I'm thinking that may be more excitement than I'm looking for. DH reminded me that he has Hilton Honors points so we can probably stay at the Hilton Bonnet Creek or Waldorf Astoria Orlando for the night. It looks like the Hilton has a nice pool area that would be relaxing for me and fun for the kids.
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Old 06-02-2013, 11:13 PM   #5
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There's a Ron Jon Resort by Port Canaveral. It's a beach resort and has a really great pool. You could rent a car for about $50 for 1 day and drop it off at the ports rental location. Then rent a car after cruise to get you back to MCO.
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Old 06-02-2013, 11:31 PM   #6
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When would you actually get in to Orlando? How many swimming hours would you really have? It's worth thinking about, especially adding in the time for ME, getting your room, etc etc.

There is a pool at the MCO Hyatt. Pretty simple, but you can watch the planes go overhead. My son, 6 or 7 at the time, really liked it, especially since we were swimming at night.

And then you could take the DCL bus directly from the airport (the $35 per person per way that was mentioned) to the port, rather than having to go from the resort (resort DCL buses start later than the earliest options from the airport) to the port, or take DME to the airport and then the DCL bus from there. (of course there are other options but I'm just talking the Disney-based ones here)
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Old 06-03-2013, 02:24 AM   #7
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We stayed at Hilton bonnet creek pre-cruise. One word: amazing. Great pool and lazy river. Small, but fun, waterslide as well! Great food and drinks served poolside. You can see Epcot fireworks if you pay for view room. We did not, but then they emailed us a week out with 15 dollar upgrade offer so we took it. My son loved it all. We took Happy Limo to port. 30 dollars per person. Highly recommend them.
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Old 06-03-2013, 02:44 AM   #8
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Beach Club

I stayed at the Beach Club last year for about $170 a night by renting from a DVC owner. Stormalong Bay is fantastic but if all you are going to get is less than half a day I'd look elsewhere like the Ron Jon, just wanted to state there are other options for Disney Resorts other than rack rate and much cheaper.
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Old 06-03-2013, 09:42 AM   #9
MamaToDavis
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Y'all have brought up good points. We will not arrive into MCO until mid afternoon. I'm thinking that it won't be worth it stay at WDW for such a short time, so that's out. I looked into the Ron Jon resort and it looks like so much fun. However, I read that the slide and lazy river closes at 5 pm in September, so that's a bummer. It still might be a good option for us.

Thanks for the advice!
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Old 06-03-2013, 10:00 AM   #10
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I second the Bonnet Creek. Stayed pre-cruise with my family of teenagers and college aged and they thought it was great. We got a special online for club/concierge level bunk bed room and for all of us it was worth it. The viewing room for fireworks is great and the convenience of the club lounge worked out well for us. (besides the food and drink offerings they had restrooms) It was close to downtown Disney and I think they had transportation available to it as well as the parks. We drove our own car, so I'm sketchy on those details. At the time we stayed they offered us free breakfast vouchers for the buffet in the restaurant because they did not have the continental breakfast in the club lounge. That alone made the upgrade worth it! I think I came out way ahead because my boys can eat!
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Old 06-03-2013, 10:05 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beach baby View Post
I second the Bonnet Creek. Stayed pre-cruise with my family of teenagers and college aged and they thought it was great. We got a special online for club/concierge level bunk bed room and for all of us it was worth it. The viewing room for fireworks is great and the convenience of the club lounge worked out well for us. (besides the food and drink offerings they had restrooms) It was close to downtown Disney and I think they had transportation available to it as well as the parks. We drove our own car, so I'm sketchy on those details. At the time we stayed they offered us free breakfast vouchers for the buffet in the restaurant because they did not have the continental breakfast in the club lounge. That alone made the upgrade worth it! I think I came out way ahead because my boys can eat!
Oooh I will have to look into that room category. It sounds perfect for us!
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Old 06-03-2013, 10:18 AM   #12
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beach baby- Which Bonnett Creek hotel are you referring to? Looking at the Hilton BC webpage doesn't show a room category for concierge/club level. Just standard rooms and suites. Maybe I'm looking in the wrong place. Thanks!
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1/12 Another Poly stay!
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Old 06-03-2013, 10:21 AM   #13
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We are staying at Disney's Pop Century the night before the cruise. We are taking Magical Express to the hotel, and then we have Disney transfers, so we will be riding the Disney Cruise Bus to port the next morning!

We are planning on spending the day before the cruise at Downtown Disney, then watching Wishes from the beach at the Polynesian that night! Even if we aren't going to the parks, we can't miss Wishes!
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Old 06-03-2013, 12:31 PM   #14
beach baby
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http://www.wyndhamgrandorlando.com/rooms.aspx

We stayed at the Wyndham Grand at Bonnet Creek. You have use of all the Bonnet Creek amenities and pools. It's set up in a circle around the lake. We kind of wish we had more time to spend there because the pools were great. I would stay there again. Check for online specials.
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Old 06-03-2013, 12:54 PM   #15
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Orange Lake Resort (owned by Holiday Inn) has a huge lazy river, water slides, and lots to do for the kids.
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