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Old 08-20-2013, 09:55 PM   #1
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Polynesian Resort Review - Now With Even More Pictures!

We are just back from an amazing week at the Polynesian Resort. We stayed here once when I was a little kid but I have very few memories of that trip. I remember having a lagoon view. And I remember going to the luau and I remember all of us getting puca shells. Which is mainly remarkable because we actually got souvenirs. That was unusual in our family growing up.

Since about 2005, we've visited the Polynesian Resort on every trip to WDW, usually to have a meal at Kona and/or Ohana (which means family). On our last few trips to WDW, we've stayed at the Contemporary and recently Animal Kingdom Lodge. Both great resorts by the way. But we were interested in trying out the Polynesian primarily because we wanted a larger room than the ones found at AKL and we wanted the ease of the Monorail to/from both the MK and Epcot.

In planning our trip, we benefited an awful lot from the info we found here and on Tikiman's site (that dude has some serious Polynesian info!). Before our trip, we couldn't get enough of the pictures we found. So in the interest of paying back, I'm going to spill some of our pictures and info on other people.

I had read that online check-in was advantageous, especially if you wanted your room ready early. Having never used it, we gave it a whirl. And, indeed, our room was ready when we arrived at 11:00 am. Unfortunately, we received the exact opposite of what we'd requested. And moreover, although online check-in gives you the option of having your room ready v. your room preferences and we chose preferences over availability, that was not what occurred. It wasn't the end of the world, of course. It wasn't like losing to Texas A&M at home (which apparently didn't effect us at all!). We just explained that we'd prefer a renovated room with a balcony and we were prepared to wait for it.

Which we did.

But it was worth it. For our money, we'd rather wait a few hours for the room we wanted rather than getting right away a room we'd hate. Delayed gratification is its own reward.

I'm kind of indifferent to the room decor. We mainly wanted a renovated room b/c it would be in good working order and not all broken down and worn out. Like Notre Dame's defense.

The room felt large to us after being at AKL. There is a significant difference. But I reckon we liked the bathroom set up at the CR better b/c the toilet has its own room.

We were in Aotearoa, 3d floor facing the Monorail track.

Spent a week there and never once pronounced it the same way twice. Or correctly. I'm pretty sure it's not "air torah."

Housekeeping was amazing! The best housekeeping we've ever had at Disney World (which is not much of a compliment, is it?) It was so good, I actually stopped at the front desk to commend our housekeeper to the manager.

I'm not all that impressed with these things, but I know other people think they're like free chocolate and, therefore, essential. We had towel animals almost every day.

The pool was fantastic, if a bit warm.

We loved the water slide.

We did find the pool a little on the crowded side, but an unusual thing happened. About 2 days into our trip, we started seeing CMs asking for room IDs and then they'd hand out wrist bands. Curiously, every time that happened, the pool got a LOT less crowded. Weird, huh?

Even so, we never had a problem finding a place to put our stuff in some shade. One day, we offered half our table and chairs to another family to use b/c we were all in the pool and didn't need all that space anyway. Two days later, another family shared with us. Reaping and sowing. We sure appreciated people showing us that kindness in return.

Before we got to the Polynesian Resort, I didn't fully appreciate how cool it would be to swim in the pool and be able to see the MK. It's flippin' awesome! Especially when you're up on the top of the slide platform. There's something very Disney about seeing Space Mountain before you throw yourself into one of the coolest non-water-park slides in the World.

We also enjoyed watching the Electric Water Pageant and Wishes! from the beach, but only did that one night. Serious bugs made it all less desirable than getting run into on Mainstreet.

Capt Cooks was very convenient and the food was pretty dadgummed good. For a quick service place. But let's face it, the best part of it was the quick availability of these little beauties:

It was funny watching people build these HUGE towers of Dole Whip.

I was up early most mornings and grabbed our mugs to head over to Capt Cooks for coffee. One morning, I took the camera along with me.

If the place is beautiful in the full daylight, and it is, it's even more spectacular at sunrise. The whole place is breathtaking. Did Karl Farbman design it?

Disney World itself has a handful of issues. Magic Band. Fastpass+ The crowds. The good-for-nothing My Disney Experience App. Rides that break. Etc. But I don't think we could find one negative thing to say about the Polynesian Resort. It was clean. It was quiet. It was pretty to look at. It had really great transportation options, too. Even though our longhouse was on the opposite end of the TTC, it wasn't that bad a walk there to catch the Monorail. I just kept telling myself they had funnel cakes there, so I walked fast. (Nb. there are no funnel cakes sold at the TTC). Heck, even the bus service was good! I know that the Polynesian has nothing to do with that, but still, the two mornings we had to take the bus, we walked up to the stop and our bus came rolling in.

For whatever my opinion is worith, I'm giving the Polynesian my strongest recommendation. It really was a great place to stay and the high point of our trip was coming back there every night. Also, when you stay there, you're never too far from this little gift from God: the best dessert available on Disney property

Hope y'all enjoyed this review. Let me know if you have any questions.

"'For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the LORD, 'they are plans for good and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.'" Jeremiah 29:11

Last edited by ZZUB; 09-14-2013 at 12:54 PM.
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Old 08-20-2013, 10:01 PM   #2
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Great review! Thanks!

I hope to stay at the Poly once they are finished with all of the construction and DVC business.
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Old 08-20-2013, 10:04 PM   #3
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I for one loved your review! As a Bama fan by marriage, I appreciated the little Bama references.
Sept 2008- offsite, Sept 2010- Poly, Sept 2011- GF, Sept 2013-WL, Sept 2014- YC
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Old 08-20-2013, 10:14 PM   #4
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Excellent review! Thanks for sharing.

The Poly is my absolute favorite place in the World!

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Old 08-20-2013, 10:16 PM   #5
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Loved your pics and review . Poly is our favorite too

me dh ds

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Old 08-20-2013, 10:19 PM   #6
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OMG, we were there the same time as you.

How do I know that? In one of your pool picture there is a lady to the right with a red white and blue cover up. She was there for a week and her week ended on Saturday the 10th. We were there from the 3rd thru 12th.

And in both pool pictures I see my husband. If you look at the poles surrounding the pool closest to you (the bubble fake hot tub area), go to the second pole from the right and he is just to the right of the pole. Like his face is touching it.

In the second pool picture he is between poles 3 and 4 from the right. Smack dab in the middle of the poles and rope. He isn't the guy with the shirt on but it is blurry but his hair, well what hair he has on top is dark and the sides are gray. My youngest dd is right next to him to the left with goggles on. And I think my oldest dd has her face in the water right by them and my ds must be on the slide. I may be the girl with long brown hair sitting in the fake hot tub. But I am. It 100% sure.

Oh and my dd had towering dole whips. She quite a few comments made to her as to how big and how great of a job she did.
June 1975 Golf Resort & Polynesian August 1977 DL off site April 1990 WDW off site May 1981 Polynesian July-August 1985 Polynesian July-August 1987 Polynesian/Floridian July-August 1990 Beach Club May 1994 All Star Sports/Polynesian June 1995 Wilderness Lodge/Dixie Landings February 1997 off site/Wilderness Lodge March-April 1999 Engagement Trip February 2000 Polynesian August 2002 Polynesian July 2005 Polynesian August 2008 Polynesian August 2013 Polynesian and I think there were a few more trips here & there but I have lost track.
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Old 08-20-2013, 10:24 PM   #7
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I have a question, What was the score of the A&M game? (Gig 'Em) My wonderful uncle gave my cousin, me and our DH's his tickets for the game this year. We are thinking of selling to pay for our Disney trips.

Loved the review and your picures are breathtaking. While we are not staying at the Poly, we do have reservations at 'Ohana and Kona which we are very excited about. Any recommendations for Kona?
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Old 08-20-2013, 11:01 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by ZZUB View Post
We are just back from an amazing week at the Polynesian Resort.

For whatever my opinion is worith, I'm giving the Polynesian my strongest recommendation. It really was a great place to stay and the high point of our trip was coming back there every night.

Hope y'all enjoyed this review. Let me know if you have any questions.
Thanks for your great review as well as the pics, they are all beautiful . I'm glad you loved the Poly and had a great stay. The Poly is our favorite resort for many reasons and we could not find one negative thing to say about the resort or our stay. We are looking forward to being back at the Poly in December (even with construction) as it's that amazing of a resort .

Country Inn & Suites LBV June 2001 - CBR July 2002 - BC December 2003 - WL CL Oct/Nov 2004 - WL September 2006 - All Star Vacation Homes March 2007 -Poly September 2007 - All Star Vacation Homes March 2008 - AKL/GF SL/WL January 2010 - AKL/GF December 2010 - GF RPC May 2011
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Old 08-21-2013, 06:05 AM   #9
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Your pictures are beautiful. We were just at the Poly the first week of August. Everything about our vacation was perfect. The new rooms were beautiful, we had no issues at all. Miss it already!!!
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Old 08-21-2013, 06:36 AM   #10
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Fantastic review. We are heading to the Poly on Oct 1 for the first time and can't wait.
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Old 08-21-2013, 07:34 AM   #11
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We stayed there in the spring!

Love the pics!

I was just at CBR and came to poly 2 of the 3 days we were at Disney.

Love Tambu lounge, and CC's. dole whips a must!

Thanks for taking time to post
WL CL 1/18-22.

CBR,DL1996CBR1997ASmo1999ASmo2000CBR 2002POP AKL 2004 POP GF 2005WLCabin OKW 2006POP Poly POFQ Asmo2007 POP ASMo CSR POP CSR2008 POP WL Poly CSR2009CSR CR BLT Poly YC2010 POR CR-cl BLT2011 CSR POFQ CBR GF-cl POP BLT2012 CSR-bc Poly-CL CR, Poly-CL CBR GF-RPC 2013GF-CL VGF CR-Atrium Club MKV,CR Hospitality Suite Poly CL 2014 Cr Atrium Club and GF RPC , poly CL , WLcl 19 17
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Old 08-21-2013, 10:14 AM   #12
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Love this review! Have yet to stay at the Poly but it is on my resort bucket list. Someday!
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Old 08-21-2013, 10:25 AM   #13
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Great review!
For the love of Disney...
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Old 08-21-2013, 10:33 AM   #14
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Thanks for a great trip report May I ask if you had a garden room? Was there any construction going on? Going back & forth with the CR & Poly. DH is not sure due to the construction. Thanks !
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Old 08-21-2013, 11:14 AM   #15
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Great review and pictures.

I'm curious, did it rain while you were there? Our stay was marred by the afternoon showers every day. Having to walk from our longhouse (Tokelau) to the main building in the rain was not fun. Carrying back food from Captain Cook's in the rain was worse (family liked eating in the room).

It really made me appreciate the resorts that have most of their facilities in one building.

The new decor would probably have helped as it's much brighter and cheerful than what we had in 2001.
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