Discussion in 'Disney Resorts' started by DonoMoose, Mar 8, 2013.
very good advice
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It is the opposite for me. We stayed at AS Sports for a cheer competition last week and I detested it. It just seemed cheesy and cheap. I can't wait to get back to AKL in July and am not at all looking forward to being stuck at the values for cheer next year. Disney has really covered everyone's tastes with their wide range of resort styles.
I've been very reluctant to try AKL for a lot of the reasons you mentioned. We weren't impressed with WL and AKL shares the same basic design with a different theme overlayed. IMO, they are both semi-deluxe - more amenities than a moderate resort but without the location advantages of the "true" deluxes on the monorail and in the Epcot resort area - and our stay at WL left us feeling like we should have saved our money and stuck with a moderate resort. Staying at the Beach Club, on the other hand, was a wonderful experience, worth every dime, and we'll stay there again someday.
I also understand getting spoiled by the values. I was so nervous about trying Pop because everyone on the DIS seems to agree that it is very hard to step down a level in resort choice, but I ended up really liking both value resorts we've stayed at. The smaller size of the resort, colorful themes, and efficient transportation really got us hooked, and we all enjoy the more active/fun/playful vibe. My kids loved the All Stars for the ability to pool or movie hop between the three, while I prefer Pop just on theme and feel.
I also think different trips demand different resort experiences. We aren't "relax around the resort" vacationers when we travel as a family, so the values suit us on those trips. But when I head down with DH and leave the kids at home, we'll certainly want a resort with some good lounging-around potential and are really thinking a deluxe club level room will best fit the bill.
There is a resort for every family. We absolutely love AKL. I think the resort is beatifully themed in every way. It feels like we are in Africa every time we stay there. My husband and i want to feel like we are on vacation as well as the kids when we go to Disney. After spending all day in parks that are loud, bright and full of characters we love to return to our African oasis. I dont want to return to a motel. We enjoy a glass of wine near the pool or relax around the fire. My kids 5 and 7 absolutely live the animals.
Maybe try a different deluxe resort? I can say, my DH and I have stayed at value, moderate, and deluxe. We prefer the deluxe resorts.
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Our family is weird. We love POP *and* Jambo House! We love them so much, that we have to do split-stays so we can stay at both places! We love the energy of POP, the huge icons, and the pools. But we also love the dark, tranquil, lush feel of AKL.
We do POP at the beginning of our trip, when we're all full of energy and feel like going 100mph. Then we switch to AKL after we've commando-ed the parks and feel like taking it easy for a few days.
I think the worst part of your story is that your little one got sick during your trip. That would be horrible anywhere you were staying. I'm glad it worked out and you got a sprinkling of pixie dust. I know it's hard when you get something that you're weren't expecting. We pretty much know that YC/BC and GF would never be for us. Disney has great, and very different, hotels to suit all sorts of tastes. Now you'll just have to try another one!
Ouch, I agree that cheer week is horrible in the valus.. I tried to find those out before hand lol
OP I know what you mean. Im very much like you. I love the bright and exciting atmosphere that the values offer. Mind you i've only stayed at the mods and values. Never deluxe. Even with the mods I dont feel that its worth the extra $ im spending. I hardly use the hot tub and my son hardly uses the pool slide. Im a single mom of one, so the two double beds are fine for us. We stayed at CSR last trip and although it was great, we missed the vibe at pop. Lol. I just didnt benefit from any of the extra frills that CSR offered. To each their own right.
I know it might not seem like it at times on these forums, but it's really ok, to not like a resort or love another one.
It is just a resort, not your life long mate.
OP, I respect what you've posted. We loved AKL but did not like the Poly or YC and thought BC, even SAB, were just ok. Luckily though, we loved BW,GF,CR, and CSR. We like SSR a lot. There's something that appeals to almost everyone. I saw at least one poster advise you to look at resort pictures before you book next time. It's a good idea. Next time a code becomes available, try a different place. Part of the fun for us over the years has been trying the different resorts.
Sorry AKL was not as wonderful as you expected.
You know what our family is exactly the same lol!!!
I hate it when I hear about how awful people think pop is pop was our 1st stay on site ( my wife had been going every yr since a child but had never stayed on property always I-drive, and I had never been in my life)
We took our 3 boys then aged 1,1,3 plus my mum in-law and we LOVED pop so much, my wife a Disney freak lol cried when she walked into the lobby! It was so amazing compared to the normal motel style places she had stayed at!
Our boys who we took back again when they was 3,3,5 for our wedding really enjoy pop that when we stayed at AKL for 21nights 2 years later they actually missed Pop! They really enjoyed staying at Akl "Jambo" and the pool/slide animals our view etc but they missed the fun and brightness of Pop!
We are not into split stays but we did have to go back and do 2 nights after we stayed at SSR last yr, we did SSR for 16 nights then booked AOA for 3 nights so the boys could go visit pop lol, they wanted to experience AOA because they knew they could walk to pop from it and get the best if both, we also all really enjoyed SSR but will always have to make sure we at least visit pop no matter where we stay( I thought it was only us)
It's nice to read that everyone has different opinions on this topic. It would be a very boring world if we all felt the same way.
While I'm yet to stay at any WDW resort, I've obsessively studied pics of them all and I personally think that the AKL and WL are by far the most visually appealing. For me, earth tones evoke a sense of comfort and calm - a nice contrast to a full on day in theme parks.
While I think the value resorts look like a lot of fun, I worry that being surrounded by so many bright colours day and night would feel a bit like an assault on my senses.
I so, so, SO agree with you! I visited AKL a couple years ago and my first reaction was "it's so d*** dark in here I need to hold onto the wall to feel where I'm going"! Of course, my eyes adjusted but still...dark, dark, dark EVERYWHERE! I decided then and there the only way I'd EVER stay at AKL would be if it were "free" and then I'd have to think about it!
Fast forward to spring break, 2012. DD decided "at the last minute" to take her family, inviting her sister and me...Mimi along. She's a DVC member and AK-Kidani was the ONLY thing still available. SO...I did end up staying at an AKL property..."free"...and I left with the exact same opinion! I will say Kidani was not AS dark as AKL but...I'm just NOT a fan. Give me BLT~or the Poly~or Wilderness Lodge~or Boardwalk...ANY day!
Please do not discount all the deluxes! We love beach club and wilderness lodge and feel that we could never go back after staying there!
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