Discussion in 'Disney Resorts' started by candleonwater, Apr 19, 2004.

  1. candleonwater

    candleonwater The Tag Fairy has been around forever

    Sep 15, 2000
    Am I the only one who has stayed at AKL that really didn't like it? I went in, so excited, full of hope... and I can't even say exactly what it was that I didn't like... everyone was so nice, the savannah was beautiful... but we probably won't stay there again. I do know it was no fun waiting for a bus for MK... 45 minutes one morning, over 1/2 hour the next.

    Next stop - Wilderness, and then it's back to Beach Club for us!
  2. ksc37

    ksc37 DIS Veteran

    Aug 22, 2003
    I think the theme doesn't really appeal to everyone. I personally really liked the resort, but we, like you, probably won't stay there again (at least for several years, when the kids are both out of strollers).

    For us, the main reason was the location. I agree, the transportation was not that good. I was expecting it to be fine, based on what I had read here, but we also waited 30 minutes+ for a bus when leaving the MK and the AK (even though it's only 5 minutes away!). I was beginning to think I was the only one who'd had problems with the busses! Halfway through our vacation we gave up on the busses and used our car to get to and from the parks.

    We're trying the Poly on our next trip (location, location, location).
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  4. patsal

    patsal <font color=FF3399>I've discovered I don't need to

    Jul 10, 2001
    I've never found WIlderness transportation better to anywhere except MK. I don't think I ever ahd a fast bus. Beachclub transprt was effecient, and OKW, POFQ and CSR were all very good. Though I love WL, I tend to avoid it unless I want to drive becasue the transportation there has always been really lousy in my opinion.
  5. madalex

    madalex DIS Veteran

    Feb 24, 2004
    I've stayed at AKL twice and never had the transportation problems you describe. I can't recall a unreasonable bus wait (e.g., more than 10 minutes) either of those trips. I'm sorry it did not work out that way for you.
  6. LindaR

    LindaR DIS Veteran

    Oct 2, 2002
    Yep. I stayed there May 2003. Have no desire to return. I know that this resort is very popular with lots of people.

    I was not impressed by the front desk at all (long story, but she was reprimanded for her rudeness) and a waiter treated my daughter (then 14) like she was 3 (snatched her plate and cut her steak up - she hadn't asked for help). I personally felt that this resort was very overhyped for the level of service received. I stayed in a standard room.

    I'm staying this year at POFQ (so cute). For me, (and I have stayed at alot of upscale hotels) if I decide to spend more money on a hotel, then I expect amenities and service to be equal to the level of money spent. Just not impressed with this place.:rolleyes:
  7. PamNC

    PamNC DIS Veteran

    Aug 19, 1999
    although I've visited the resort when we ate at Jikos. It's so beautiful and I love the idea of the animals roaming outside. But, it seems so far removed to me. That's the only reason we haven't tried it. We like to be either on the monorail line or in the Epcot Resort area for convenience sake. Like realtors always say, Location, Location, Location.

    I would stay there for a quick weekend trip - perhaps concierge so we could do the Sunrise Safari. That would be the only way.

    We stayed at WL and felt like you do about AKL - we weren't impressed at all. Although it is lovely, it's just not convenient. Boat transporation was horrible. Small rooms, dark rooms, small pool. And, WL is probably one of the most popular resorts on this board.

  8. Tigger&Belle

    Tigger&Belle <font color=blue>I'm the good girl on the DIS<br><

    Sep 2, 2000
    I liked the resort, but don't think that I'd stay there again. We can visit and see the animals (and eat at Boma) without staying there. The rooms were a bit too dark for my tastes. The lobby, however, is beautiful.

  9. k&a&c'smom

    k&a&c'smom DIS Veteran

    May 29, 2002
    candleonthewater - Did you just stay at AKL? This is our favorite resort, we absolutely love the atmosphere, and actually enjoy the fact that it is what some describe as "dark," as that makes it seem cooler in the heat!!;)

    We have never had any problems with the bus transportation, and, in fact, I have praised it here on the boards. The fact that it only goes to AKL is a bonus, and we've always had a good time.

    This last stay, however, we experienced the transportation issues that some have mentioned. We had a wonderful stay, don't get me wrong, but we tend to leave the parks when they get too crowded and head back to the resort. And, since I have a pinned ankle, we go back and forth from parks to resort several times a day. DD and I were at AKL from April 8-10, day before Easter, and the parks and resorts were PACKED!! To my mind, Disney would have ADDED buses to the routes, due to the extra people, right?! This did not seem to be the case, if anything, there seemed to be less buses than in the slower months. DD and I always waited, it never failed, we would stand at the bus stop for 20-30 minutes each way. As it was only for 2 days (we also stayed at the Poly) it wasn't as big a deal, but for people that spent the whole week there, it probably left a bad impression. :(

    Hopefully, the posters who liked AKL, but don't want to stay again due to transportation, will give it another try. This is still our favorite resort, even with the glitches last week in transportation!!:teeth:
  10. Hollymom1229

    Hollymom1229 Art's Girl

    Apr 10, 2001
    This is DH and my favorite resort. We've never had a problem with bus service and we love the dark feel. I think part of what makes WDW wonderful is that we all can find a favorite resort due to the variety. We personally have no desire to stay at any of the Epcot resorts.
  11. jordanyosh

    jordanyosh DIS Veteran

    Jun 23, 2003
    At least you know now....we try different resorts as well...we have never stayed at one we haven't liked, but there are a few we enjoy more.

    As far as bus transportation, we always factor in a 30-45 minute wait for busses. So if it is less, we're happy.
  12. DisneyMin

    DisneyMin Mouseketeer

    Dec 10, 2003
    We stayed at AKL last Christmas and we weren't too thrilled,either. Nothing bad happened or anything,,we just weren't all jazzed about it. The buffet at Boma was great,tho. Maybe it was because it was cold and they had the plants covered,,the pool was pretty,but too cold to swim in,,we're thinking maybe we'd like it more in the summer? We've loved WL,POP,POR,,i just think its funny--before we went to WL for the first time,i was nervous(room was a little expensive),,and we had friends who had just stayed. She HATED it! Said the rooms were dark and dirty,and this and that and they'd never stay there again. I thought 'oh,no!!" well,,we stayed there and absolutely LOVED it. Everything about it. While she found the themeing "dark",,we loved the "woodsyness" of it. Thats why they have different themes,i guess. but i felt like you did,,like i was the only weirdo in the world who didn't absolutely love AKL. :tongue:
  13. Tess

    Tess DIS Veteran - 1997

    Aug 19, 1999
    Didn't like it. . .couldn't stand the smell--a cloying odor of woodsmoke and curry/cardamon or something. The smoke itself wasn't bothersome, but that curry/cardamon odor and cooking smells from the restaurant just did me in.

    I didn't like the layout and the need to go to the "basement" first floor for the restaurants, etc. Once I saw the animals, wandered around and saw the exhibits, enjoyed the beauty of the lobby--I was ready to go. One day and night was enough. I guess I felt enclosed which is a necessity given it is an animal preserve. I just like more open spaces and an ability to get outside from about anywhere.

    We, unlike almost everyone else, were not impressed with BOMA either--not our cup of tea I guess--too much sweet in the food for my tastes.

    So, count us with the minority--didn't care for it. Frankly, we've spent some time wandering around WL and didn't really care for it either. Although, to be fair, we haven't stayed there. We have enjoyed our stays at all the other resorts, GF, BWI, BC/YC, CBR, POR, and, of course, our favorite--Polynesian. ;)
  14. ..........................of life!

    We have stayed at most WDW properties and have never really disliked any of them. However, we like some more than others.

    This is one of my 2 DD's favorite resorts. We rotate our choices between the four of us and this has been on the cycle 2 times before. While we wouldn't want to stay there everytime, we like it there on occassion. (Theme, Pool, Animals, Views, Transportation)

    We have never had issues with the transportation. In fact, we have found it to be among the fastest. Perhaps due to many dedicated bus routes. ::yes::

    The beauty of WDW and this forum is the ability to share viewpoints and opinions without recourse.

    I hope you enjoy your next selection better. I look forward to your next review.

    :bounce: :Pinkbounc :Pinkbounc :Pinkbounc
  15. Tiffany

    Tiffany DIS Veteran

    Aug 17, 1999
    If the only negative you found about the AKL was the transportation I would say give it another try. We have stayed at the AKL a total of four times since it opened in April of 2001 and have never had a transporation issue. If anything I read more complaints about buses for the WL and the deluxe resorts that border EC then I have about AKL.
  16. Snowysmom

    Snowysmom <font color=darkorchid>If they say "That's interes

    May 11, 2003
    We really do like AKL but I do agree with the transportation problems. We had alot of long waits last summer. While waiting to go to MGM, a MGM bus came and just went back out through the gate. We drove and got there before the bus. We also waited 30 minutes for a bus to MK but ended up taking the one to Epcot and taking the monorail to MK. Everyone else at the MK stop did that too. It was funny to see a parade of people get off the Epcot bus and go right to the monorail for MK. Since our next trip in 3 years will probably be a budget trip, we will only be visiting AKL and staying at POFQ. It is a beautiful resort and I love the animals.
  17. goin2disneyagain

    goin2disneyagain <font color=FF00CC>AKL- A WILD place to visit!<br>

    Oct 13, 2003
    This is our absolute favorite resort. We never used their transportation because we always rent a car and this year we are driving our own car to WDW. I really didn't think the resort was that dark. Yes it is a little but it's not that bad, and like someone else said it makes things cooler. If we all like the same resort there wouldn't be a need for so many different resorts. It just leaves more rooms available for the rest of us that love AKL when others don't like it. :teeth: We'll be back to the lodge next month. Can't wait. :hyper:

    :Pinkbounc :bounce: :Pinkbounc :bounce: :Pinkbounc :bounce: :Pinkbounc :bounce: :Pinkbounc :bounce:
  18. johnnyr

    johnnyr DIS Veteran

    Feb 15, 2003
    I felt the same way when we stayed at WL an CSR. I've never been to AKL, so I can't comment. What I learned from my experiences is don't believe everything you read. Everyone has different tastes. What appeals to one, doesn't appeal to another. We have been to WDW so many times that we have our favorites and they most likley will always be, but it's fun to see and do different things each trip. Heck, it's a good excuse to go again :) Go and have a great time!
  19. hulabird

    hulabird DIS Veteran & Planaholic!

    Jul 12, 2001
    We were there 2 years ago and were disappointed as well, in fact, we split a stay between there and CBR and prefered CBR hands down. I found the rooms at AKL to be dark and boring. The bus transportation sucked big time, plus the CM's were so clueless, when we first got there and asked about the bus service it took 4 CM's before we got that answer, NO ONE KNEW! I found that to be unbelieveable. The restaurants are ok (Boma is pretty nice) but other than that it was not my cup of tea.


    Jun 6, 2003
    We will be staying there for the first time for four nights after our cruise.

    Honestly, it is not my choice (I wanted the Poly). My sister-in-law really, really want to stay at AKL so I gave in since she lets me make practically every decisison.

    I am nervous about the transportation issue and room location.

    I do not have high hopes, but I am sure the kids will love it for the animals.

    Thanks to everyone for their input.
  21. jcemom

    jcemom Official Tag Fairy Assistant

    Mar 23, 2003
    We were there for 10 days in February and never waited more than 10 minutes for a bus with one exception, on one afternoon DH waitied for about 20 minutes to get back to AKL from AK. Overall we thought the transportation was great.

    We didn't find the rooms to be too dark at all. They aren't glaringly bright, but suit the overall atmosphere, which we found to be very relaxing. I was able to read and the boys built the Lego sets they picked up at Downtown Disney with no problems.

    Of course, waking up to the giraffes just feet from our balcony every morning may have biased my perception somewhat! lol

    Funny how everyone can have differing opinions on the same resort, huh?

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