Archive for Disney Resorts

Reflections of the Boardwalk by David Dunkle

There is a great place at Disney that is often missed or overlooked by the average guest. Unless they are staying at the resort there or one of its close neighbors, many never think of paying a visit to the Boardwalk .
Many times if I am at the studios or at World Showcase and the lines are long, I take a Friend Ship or more often walk the short distance to the Boardwalk for some quiet time. During the day, the Boardwalk is usually very quiet as most guests are in the parks. This is an excellent time to grab a slice of pizza and a cold beer at the window and just relax waterside. (For some reason, lowest beer prices I’ve found on property)

There are a number of restaurant offerings there with varying price ranges. My particular favorite is what is now Cat Cora’s Kouzzina. The food and service are great, although like most Disney restaurants, it’s a bit loud inside. Kouzzina is scheduled to close this September to make way for a new Italian themed eatery so do try to get there before they close. The lamb shank is superb.

If you’re into architecture, spend some time in the lobbies of The Boardwalk Resort, the Swan and the Dolphin, particularly the latter. Renowned designer Michael Graves (think Target’s ergonomic line of doo dads and toilet brushes) created the Dolphin and Swan for the Tishman construction company. For the longest time, these two monolithic resort hotels were the only hotels on Disney property that were operated by an outside company, Starwood Hotels.

The lobbies are vast as are most common areas and are worth a look see. I’ve stayed at the Dolphin and can say the hotel cast members are some of the best and the restaurants are very good. The non Disney themed pool areas are a great respite from the parks and other Disney locations.
The Boardwalk comes to life in the evening. Many walk up kiosks offer drinks, snacks and the typical boardwalk kitsch you would find along any waterfront venue. Jellyrolls offers dueling pianos with sing-along style entertainment. At one time this was a popular spot for Disney cast members but I’m not sure if that’s still the case.

The Atlantic Dance Hall is a must see, just to walk in and walk out. This is an amazing yet sadly underused venue. The massive interior with stage and dance floor could accommodate hundreds but any time I have been in there I may have counted 50 or so guests. Bar service is deplorable, by the way. Originally there was live, big band and other types of music offered but more recently it’s a video DJ showing 80’s-90’s dance tunes. Wedding parties often take over the place and bring some life into what is largely a deserted space on most nights.

At the opposite end the ESPN Sports Club offers up traditional bar food, games and lots and lots of video screens to watch sports. I had a sandwich here once and it was fine, but there was nothing special about the place to make me want to go back.

The ambience on the Boardwalk is relaxing and at a slower pace. I highly recommend you take an hour or two to unwind there and enjoy a space that reflects another time and place.

Photos – Polynesian Village Resort Lobby Construction

Take a look at the latest photos of the construction going on inside the lobby at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort.  (Yes the water feature is being removed) :(

Click on the photos for a larger view.

Photo – Frog that was in our Room at Port Orleans French Quarter

We posted this last week to our twitter followers, but for those who missed it, here’s another look at the little Frog who made his way into our room at Port Orleans French Quarter.  Luckily, he just attached himself to a chair and we were able to get him outside and back into the bushes.

Let us know on twitter what “friends” have ended up in your rooms while at a Walt Disney World Resort.

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Photos of Disney’s Tree House Villas

Check out these photos of the Tree House Villas from along the Sassagoula River.

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NEW! Save up to 30% on Rooms at Select Disney Resort Hotels Through October 3

When you stay at a Disney Resort hotel, you’re always in the middle of the magic. And with this great offer, it’s easier to enjoy all of the enchantment!

Save up to 30% on rooms at select Disney Resort hotels, valid for stays most nights August 16 through October 3, 2014. Book now through August 8, 2014!

Select Disney Deluxe & Deluxe Villa Resort Hotels Save up to 30%
Select Disney Moderate Resort Hotels Save up to 25%
Select Disney Value Resort Hotels Save up to 20%
Campgrounds Save up to 15%

Contact Travel Agents, Scott and Becky Donahue, of Once Upon a Vacation to plan and book your vacation.

Club Disney Opens at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

Young Guests can discover favorite Disney stories in a new way at Club Disney at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort.

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This new children’s activity center is inspired by classic Disney Little Golden Books such as Pinocchio, Lady and the Tramp and Alice in Wonderland. Imagination runs wild as timeless tales unfold in storybook-themed play areas. Young Guests will enjoy activities including storytelling, movies, crafts, dress-up and more while parents enjoy a night out at the Walt Disney World Resort.

Reservations are now available for kids ages 3-12. Contact the Disney Reservation Center for more information.

Don’t forget! The addition of Club Disney is just one part of an overall renovation of this iconic resort, which includes a re-imagined feature pool, new food and beverage offerings and an expansive new lobby area.

Video Overview – Disney’s Art of Animation Resort

At Disney’s Art of Animation Resort you’ll feel like a character inside some of your favorite Disney and Disney•Pixar films! To learn more visit: http://di.sn/qak

Club Disney Coming to Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort

Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort is undergoing a complete re-imagining and today new plans were unveiled for one of Walt Disney World Resort’s two original resort hotels.

An all-new children’s activity center for guests, rebranded as Club Disney, is now taking reservations for next month’s opening at Disney’s Polynesian Resort.

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“In size and scope the renovation and expansion of Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort is a significant investment in the guest experience at Walt Disney World Resort,” said Tom Wolber, senior vice president of resort operations and transportation operations for Walt Disney World Resort. “Once completed, the iconic resort hotel will be completely re-imagined with a level of detail as only Disney can deliver.”

Concept Art of Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort Lobby

As Disney’s Polynesian Resort transforms into its new name, Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort, guests will begin to notice a new layout in its lobby.  By the look of the concept art, it appears the interior waterfall will be gone creating more space for guests to roam around the lobby.  What are your thoughts about this potential change?  Let us know on twitter.

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Disney’s Polynesian Resort to Get “New” Name

An iconic hotel at Walt Disney World Resort is getting a new name, actually its original name. The Polynesian Village Resort Hotel, a perennial guest favorite, continues a multi-year re-imagining with the renovation of its guest rooms, the resort’s feature pool and its centerpiece Great Ceremonial House. The “Poly” plans to add Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto with a highly-themed lounge area featuring tiki cocktails and Polynesia-themed small plates. (Disney)

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