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Old 07-14-2013, 02:20 AM   #1
lindanj
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Help me decide between ASM or AoA please

Headed to disney in April with 2 adults and 4 kids. Trying to stay as budget friendly as possible. ASM is about $500 cheaper for a family suite than AoA. I have mixed feelings as to whether AoA is worth the $500 more because it is newer and nicer. Does anyone have any opinions on this? Also, if I decide on AoA, need to decide between Lion King rooms and Nemo. Any advice on this would also be appreciated.

thanks,
Linda
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Old 07-14-2013, 03:17 AM   #2
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Hi What are the kids ages & have you thought about sleeping arrangements? At AoA the kids would have to share in 2 doubles. But at AsMu, you get 2 single convertibles (chair & ottoman), and 1 double. Will sharing the extra bed at AoA be a problem? Do any of the kids have a strong preference to The Lion King or Nemo that they would want to stay at AoA?
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Old 07-14-2013, 05:57 AM   #3
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How much time do you plan on staying at the resort? The pools and the grounds are enough nicer if you are going to be there a great deal of time.

$500 is alot of money. As much as I love AoA I would most likely go with ASM. Overall the values are pretty much the same.
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Old 07-14-2013, 01:02 PM   #4
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I think the living room is significantly larger in ASMu with more comfy seating; there are real hotel style closet spaces with a full long bar and shelf for bags, etc. overhead; the kitchenette is out of the way at ASMu vs. being in the middle of the living room at AoA.

AoA has 2 separate sleeping areas for kids; a larger dining table for eating meals in the room. There is no TV in the dining room, so the kids who get that room may complain LOL.

ASMu is a smaller resort in general, and the walk from either Calypso or Jazz to the food court is very quick. Less people trying to get on the bus, or eating at the food court too. The pool at AoA is certainly nicer.

Good luck deciding!
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Old 07-14-2013, 01:08 PM   #5
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If you were deciding on standard rooms at ASM or AoA, I would go AoA. But since you're looking at family suites and trying to stay on budget, ASM might be better. I would assume prices at AoA might level out a bit in a few years once the newness wears off, so you could always try AoA in the future.
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Old 10-23-2013, 05:39 PM   #6
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Ok! I am trying to decide between the two resorts as well. We are going in January for 4 nights and the cost difference is $240 for our entire stay.
Here are my concerns:

1. I am interested in the food choices in each of the resorts - one of my DDs is a vegan and has food allergies. As a family, we tend to look for healthy choices whenever possible.

2. We will be a party of 5. The master bedroom reserved for DH and I (obviously) and then I have 3 grown kiddos going - DD (18), DD (19) and DS (20) sharing the other room. The DS is 6'5" but the DDs are only 5'5". Where will they be most comfortable?
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Old 10-24-2013, 01:16 AM   #7
monique5
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We enjoyed our stay @ AoA Cars Suite in February. We were there for 8D. We decided on the Cars Suite.... To us quicker to main bldg since less traffic compared to Nemo area. That's where everyone hangs out. Cars area has its own pool. It was chilly @ night but very pleasant in day time. Lion King area is where the nightly movie is-loud at times.

AoA has dedicated buses, All Star share b/t all of the All Star resorts.

ASM IS worn down, IMHO.
AoA Landscape of Flavors had a nice veggie selection.

All of the beds were very comfortable. The Innova bed is very comfortable. Master suite gas queen bed, other 2 areas full size beds.
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Old 10-24-2013, 07:17 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monique5 View Post
We enjoyed our stay @ AoA Cars Suite in February. We were there for 8D. We decided on the Cars Suite.... To us quicker to main bldg since less traffic compared to Nemo area. That's where everyone hangs out. Cars area has its own pool. It was chilly @ night but very pleasant in day time. Lion King area is where the nightly movie is-loud at times.

AoA has dedicated buses, All Star share b/t all of the All Star resorts.

ASM IS larger but IMHO worn down.
AoA Landscape of Flavors had a nice veggie selection.

All of the beds were very comfortable. The Innova bed is very comfortable. Master suite gas queen bed, other 2 areas full size beds.
Thank you so much for the info!

It's funny, I keep reading on the boards that people think the suites at ASM are bigger than the ones at AOA. On the website it says AOA suites are 565 sq. feet while the ASM suites are 520 sq.feet. Maybe ASM has a better use of space?

I think my kiddos would love the theming at AOA and I like that it is newer. I just can't decide if that is worth the extra $60 a night.
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Old 10-24-2013, 08:55 AM   #9
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Good luck deciding.
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Old 10-24-2013, 02:27 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by CNYDisneyFan View Post
Good luck deciding.
Thanks!

I was also wondering if ASM will be starting their food court rehab in January. If yes, it would make switching to AOA a no-brainer.
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Old 10-24-2013, 06:00 PM   #11
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A few observations and my own opinions:

All Stars MAY share buses. It is not a given, and IMHO, is way overstated. I stay at the AS at least 2-3 times per year and I would guess that we share buses 25% of the time or less. Even when we do, I see no difference in that and a moderate with multiple stops within the resort.

I was at Movies, but ate most of my meals at Music in August. I saw little to no impact on "sharing" the food court with Sports.

I'm the self proclaimed "Queen of the Value Resorts" but I was less than thrilled with AoA. I was there in October 2012. The theming is INCREDIBLE. You really MUST visit if for no other reason. But my overall review was not positive.

There seemed to be more "room noise" at this resort than AS--and I am a heavy sleeper. Very aware of babies crying in rooms and doors opening and closing all around. We were on the second floor. In the future, I will ask for a top floor room.

Bus service was good to/from parks. We did not go to DTD. All the CMs were super nice.

The REAL negative is the food court. It has a terrible layout and it is just BEDLAM. The queuing lines are not nearly as long as they need to be. Service was sluggish and I can't tell you why. It seemed a bit understaffed, but not terribly so. It took 10-15 minutes (one time 20 min) to get through the lines and get food, then stand in line again to pay. By the time you are seated, the food is tepid. Then you have to get silverware, drinks, find a table, etc. The noise level is HORRENDOUS even at non-peak times. And the traffic flow design (WHAT traffic flow design??) is very poor. There is no real flow pattern.

Seating is ample, which is nice. You get real plates and silverware which is good news/bad news. I found that I bristled at having to so bus my own table. You have to try to get the trash and remnants into a trash receptacle with a too small door that is spring loaded to close. Then you sort of recycling and the dishes in one bin and flatware in another. It reminded me WAY too much of bussing tables in a restaurant.

Food quality was OK but not remarkably better than AS, which is what I had hoped for... The food "looks" better than it tastes. Naan bread is VERY good and I really enjoyed the build your own fruit bowls and yogurt/granola bowls for breakfast.

Mousekeeping was fine.
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Old 10-24-2013, 08:04 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lindanj View Post
Headed to disney in April with 2 adults and 4 kids. Trying to stay as budget friendly as possible. ASM is about $500 cheaper for a family suite than AoA. I have mixed feelings as to whether AoA is worth the $500 more because it is newer and nicer. Does anyone have any opinions on this? Also, if I decide on AoA, need to decide between Lion King rooms and Nemo. Any advice on this would also be appreciated.

thanks,
Linda
If I had to choose I go with AoA hands down!!! We stayed there in June and loved it. We were in the cars suites and I loved having the extra space that the suite provided. We liked the theming of Lion king a lot. Think theses suites were a little closer to animators hall then some of the memo suites.
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Old 10-24-2013, 08:52 PM   #13
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We will be checking into ASMu May 2014. The first reason I chose that over AoA is because of the bigger living space and the main reason is because in Music both bathrooms are in the common areas so you wouldn't have to be concerned with the littles needing to come through the bedroom to use the second bath if needed
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Old 10-24-2013, 09:21 PM   #14
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I haven't stayed at ASMu since 1997, and that wasn't in a family suite. I just remember having a very long walk to the food court.

We stayed in a Finding Nemo suite at AoA last November. We absolutely loved it! 4 adults, no kids. Food court was busy but totally manageable with lots of great selections. I'm gluten-free, they made me my own toast and had other great options for me.

Even though it was November and not the warmest, we really enjoyed the pool and the pool bar. The pool is very large, and the underwater Nemo voices are so fun! The entire resort's theming was incredibly impressive. I really can't recommend it enough.
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Old 10-25-2013, 11:41 AM   #15
CornishPixie
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Y'all have really given me some great info and reviews on both resorts! I realize that either choice is gonna be great! I am surprising my family with staying on-site (they think we are staying at the Residence Inn) and I know they will be happy with either one.

I think I am leaning towards AOA - it seems with the over the top theming it will give me the biggest WOW value! We are Lion King lovers so that section will probably be our best bet. My DREAM resort would be a 1 BR villa at Animal Lodge overlooking savanna but it is sooo not in my budget!

I hate that neither AOA or ASM has a oven/stove top in their kitchenettes! Do you think I would be allowed to bring a hot plate and/or toaster oven? I would really love to be able to cook something if wanted. I know it sounds crazy to "want" to cook on vacation but I would like the option.
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