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  • Author
    • thekid_1

      Registered: September 2014
      Posts: 3
      Review Date: Sun September 7, 2014 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 9 

      Positive aspects of the product (pros): Clean, pools, food, affordable, themeing
      Cons: Mousekeeping but minor,no cell service in room

      We stayed in a Little Mermaid room 8/23 through 8/31. I was concerned based upon other comments that room would not be big enough for two adults and two children. The room size was never an issue for us. I was disappointed we did not get the building we had requested through our travel agent. I am not sure why because the resort was not that busy. I was pleasantly surprised the room was ready when we arrived at 11:30 am. Pools were nice and well-guarded.
      Mousekeeping kept the room clean but they kept throwing out our cups and did not leaving any new ones. This happened continually and became frustrating. I was sick and did not want to share cups with anyone.
      There is no cell service once you enter your room.
      Buses to the parks and downtown went well with one exception. While waiting to return to Epcot for dinner the wait was well over 30 minutes for a bus. That in itself is not horrible but we watched two buses arrive and depart for MK, AK, and downtown. Three buses for HS came and left in that same time.
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      Registered: May 2007
      Posts: 8
      Review Date: Fri August 22, 2014 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 10 

      Positive aspects of the product (pros): Great pool. Great Atmosphere
      Cons: Food court crowded

      We stayed here with a family of 4 in the cars suite from aug 14th to aug 19th. Great location to and from the food court and buses. We had a small pool the cozy cone right out side of the building we were in. Breakfast and dinners are tough because of the crowded food court. House keeping was great. Room always clean. Themed Cars room was awesome. kids loved sleeping in the pull down bed. Overall it's a great room for the space you get.
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      Registered: May 2014
      Posts: 1
      Review Date: Fri May 30, 2014 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 8 

      Positive aspects of the product (pros): Cost, Space, Theming
      Cons: Bus travel to all parks

      Stayed in a Nemo suite from May 10-16 with my DH and DS. Room was themed wonderfully. There was plenty of space for us. We had food delivered and ate breakfast in the room most mornings. My 4 year old loved the pools, especially the Nemo pool. Taking towels from your room to the pool was not a big deal. Most days there were towell carts in the lobby by the elevators. Food court was good. The kid macaroni and cheese was baked and not like the "blue box" so not a big hit with my son. The resort is large, but it did not take more than 5 minutes to walk to the busses. Be careful of a Nemo themed room that faces the pool. The pool is really loud and the resort shows movies at the pool each night starting at 9. The only thing we did not love was taking the busses everywhere. We have always stayed at the Beach Club and been able to walk to the Studios and EPCOT. I missed walking, but the price differential was also great (AOA much cheaper). I would not hesitate to stay here again. It all comes down to, is the convenience of walking to the parks worth the price hike? (I should point out that the busses ran smoothly and we never waited more than 20 minutes for a bus)
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      Registered: February 2014
      Posts: 5
      Review Date: Mon February 3, 2014 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 9 

      Positive aspects of the product (pros): Awesome themes, good food, great bus schedule, affordable
      Cons: housekeeping

      Two adults stayed in a Little Mermaid room. We had two double beds which was great for our girls trip. Check in was a breeze and our Magic Bands were waiting for us, all customized (could not ship to Canada). We were in the Ursula building and it was only about a 6-7 minute walk to the main building and bus stop. It was also a shorter walk to the buses if you cut along the sidewalk by the parking lot.
      Breakfast pastries were excellent. Make your own pasta was also really good, as was the french toast for breakfast.
      The themeing of the room and the entire resort was really well done. Really lifelike and you could tell a lot of thought and detail was put in to it.
      The only real con was the housekeeping. We had to request cups one night since we had none, and it took over an hour for them to arrive which was annoying. It also seemed like they did a real rushed job as the garbage cans were only dumped out once during our stay.
      Regardless, I would not hesitate to stay here again and would hightly recommend it!
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      Registered: May 2009
      Location: 1,194 Miles from Disney World
      Posts: 220
      Review Date: Sat January 11, 2014 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 8 

      Positive aspects of the product (pros): Adorable theming, plenty of space, friendly cast, transportation
      Cons: MagicBand disaster, HORRIBLE in room WiFi

      I stayed here last July with two friends in a Lion King suite and loved the resort. When my mom and I decided to take my brother for his first trip and 19th birthday, I recommended this resort for the extra space. We gave him a choice of the rooms and he chose a Cars Suite. My CM friend was able to book us at a 60% discount.

      I checked in online and requested a top floor room with a lake view. My friend went to the resort the morning of 1/6 to pick up our welcome packet and told us we would just have to stop at the desk to have our MagicBands activated when we arrived.

      We drove up to the resort around 8:30pm. There was a short wait for the online check in desk. My mom asked the cast member how the MagicBands were working and the CM responded they were working great, she'd used them herself, things were wonderful, etc. And then the trouble started. There was some problem. We were repeatedly told "oh, just give us 5 minutes". After about 30 minutes they suggested we go eat dinner and by the time we returned the problem would be fixed. I said we were on the dining plan and they told us to just pay out of pocket and they would reimburse us and deduct the credits later.

      We checked back about 30 minutes later. Still not done. After dinner, still not done. We were all tired and cranky. Finally, after 2.5 HOURS they managed to fix the problem-by canceling and rebooking the reservation. Then it was another 25 minutes to refund the money for dinner to the two credit cards and deduct the dining plan credits. They were also nice enough to credit us $50 for the inconvenience. This wasn't really the hotel's fault but it was still a horrible start to our vacation.

      Finally, we made our way to room 1816. This was the Mater building, right next to the parking lot, which was great since we had a car. We were on the 4th floor as requested but had a view of the Port Cochere and not the lake-not a big deal. Our room was right next to the elevators but we hardly ever heard any noise at all. One night there was a child squealing and running down the hall but that was it.

      We had plenty of space. My mom took the master bedroom. She felt the bed was a little on the hard side but loved the shower. My brother was enamored with the InovaBed and I slept on the sofa bed. Despite several people telling me the sofabed was the most comfortable due to the memory foam mattress, I found it thin and not super comfortable. I liked sleeping on the InovaBed last summer a lot more.

      We used the fridge to store bottled drinks and snacks. There was enough drawer space for all of us. My brother liked watching the Disney channel at night before bed. We thought the Cars details were adorable.

      Mousekeeping was fine. They left a bottle of cleaner in our room on the second day but I set it out in the hall and it was gone in the morning. They brought us a sharps container and replaced our broken blow dryer within an hour of us asking. On our last day, the mousekeeper knocked on our door around 9am, just minutes before we were ready to leave. We told them they'd be right out and there was no problem.

      The in room WiFi was atrocious. I couldn't load anything at all despite having a five bar signal. Also no cell service, which I had come to expect, but the WiFi was not this bad over the summer.

      Food court and transportation were fine and I've posted about those in their respective sections.

      We went to the Nemo pool on our last day but they were just starting the pool party and it was way too loud for my brother (he has autism and intellectual disability). So we went to the Cars pool instead and he hung out in one of the cone cabanas. The pool wasn't crowded despite it being a warm and humid day.

      Cast members throughout the resort were great. Everyone was friendly and my brother greeted everyone. They all treated him with respect and that was awesome to see.

      As long as they work out the kinks with the WiFi and MagicBands I wouldn't hesitate to return.
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      Registered: December 2010
      Location: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
      Posts: 8
      Review Date: Fri December 20, 2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 9 

      Positive aspects of the product (pros): Wonderful theming, friendly staff
      Cons: thin curtains

      First off this resort is great visually, the colors and theming are the best as only Disney can deliver.
      We stayed in the little mermaid room in building 9. It was just myself and my niece (9) so there was more them enough room for us. The details in the room where wonderful. I think however if there was more them two of us there would never have been enough room for our clothes. Because the dresser has the fridge in half of it you only have 3 small drawers. I used the hangers and hung a lot of my clothes as we where there for 10 nights and had lots of clothes.

      I did notice there seamed to be a lot more noise from others here then in any other resort I have stayed in, including the Pop and music resorts. Bathroom noise, doors slamming and babies crying well into the night.

      The other major thing that I notice was the room never got dark. The curtains where thin so the light from outside would shine though. I am used to a dark black room at night and I had a hard time sleeping with all the light

      The walks to the rooms does not seams long at first but gets longer as the days go on. LOL Smile

      The pools are wonderful. We used both the mermaid and the big blue pool and we loved them.

      The food left something to be desired, We loved the breakfasts, we tried both the standard Disney waffles but really liked the yogurt parfait. We tried dinner a couple of times but found it not very good. The staff however were very nice and service was fast even at busy times.
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      Registered: January 2010
      Location: miami, florida
      Posts: 10
      Review Date: Wed December 18, 2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 10 

      Positive aspects of the product (pros): great accomodations, spacious suites at a great price
      Cons: none

      This is our send visit. This time we stayed at the CARS, and last visit we were at FINDING NEMO. These are the best locations, since they are close to the main entrance, and right next to the large pools! We had 3 adults this visit, and having the seperate bedroom was very convenient! having the small refrigerator and microwave is a plus...and definitely with the price to have a 2nd full bathroom!!! LOVE this hotel! You will not be disappointed!!
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      The Hendies

      Registered: February 2008
      Posts: 30
      Review Date: Tue November 12, 2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 9 

      Positive aspects of the product (pros): Price, buses, helpful staff
      Cons: Long walk from Little Mermaid Rooms to buses, cell service.

      First, I must mention that the staff were AMAZING when my husband lost his cell phone. We are still not sure if it fell some where as we were walking, or on a bus, but my husband stopped every day to see if it was found, and the staff was soooooo patient with him! It was found and returned after 3 days.

      We ended up driving from near our room to nearer the bus area each day, because it was quite a haul from the room (building 9) to the buses.

      Lastly, there was NO cell service at all, anywhere in the room. To make a call, check messages, or use the internet, we had to stand outside our room.

      However, I wouldn't hesitate to stay here again! The theming is wonderful, the room was plenty big for 2 of us, the beds were comfortable, and the bus service was great!
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      Registered: October 2013
      Posts: 9
      Review Date: Mon October 21, 2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 10 

      Positive aspects of the product (pros): vey colorful, music everywhere!!
      Cons: scratchy TP

      The resort was wonderful!! We had plenty of room for 4 adults and 2 children. The kids and I adored our stay and would stay here again. I loved all the colors and music. CMs were very helpful and friendly. It was handy to all of the parks except AK.
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      Registered: October 2012
      Posts: 19
      Review Date: Sat October 19, 2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 9 

      Positive aspects of the product (pros): Exciting, fun atmosphere
      Cons: Loud Food Court

      We love this resort! We stayed here last year and returned this month as part of a two resort trip. Our family liked our second resort(a deluxe) but all agreed that Art of Animation is our favorite. We stayed in the Cars area both last year and this year. Great theme and the colors are not overboard. The only negative is that the food court can be really loud and confusing during busy periods. However, it would not prevent any of us from returning!
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      Registered: July 2007
      Posts: 9
      Review Date: Sun October 13, 2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 8 

      Positive aspects of the product (pros): Theme, pool, size of suite
      Cons: Food, parking, cell service

      We arrived around 1:30, and had a room by 3. Check in was quicker than I expected, given the amount of people in the lobby. It was crazy, but Disney kept it moving. The suites are the perfect size for our family of 5, and we loved having our own room and bathroom. The sofa bed, and murphy bed were easy to ready. You could hear noise from the hallway, but not from other rooms. It was very quite, not like our stays at Pop in the past. Mousekeeping was great, always clean. There was a towel fish and Mickey when we arrived, those were the only towel animals we had all week. The Big Blue Pool was great for all of our kids, ages 5,10 & 13. We didn't get to use it as much as we would have liked to because it was cold at night.
      I was not impressed with breakfast. The eggs were just disgusting. DH & DS didn't like the hashbrowns either. And if you order the platter with the yellow sauce, it does not come in a bowl as pictured. It is put on the plate, and gets on everything else. By time you get through the lines, your food is cold. This is the worst food I've ever had on Disney property. We did get pizza one night, and it was good.
      We also had problems with phone service in and around the buildings. We had to go to the lake, or out front to use our phones. Another problem was the parking. The closest parking to the Finding Nemo rooms is in front of the main building.
      Overall, we were very happy with our stay, and will probably want to stay there again on our next trip.
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      Registered: December 2009
      Location: Niceville, FL
      Posts: 80
      Review Date: Mon September 23, 2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 9 

      Positive aspects of the product (pros): new, theme, layout of suites
      Cons: parking not near Nemo building

      We have APs and usually stay at the All Stars, but have tried 3 moderates. This was by far our favorite Disney Resort! Will not be staying anywhere else from now on.

      Loved the theming. The suite layout worked well for our family of 6. My husband and I got a queen bed. So quiet in the back bedroom. Didn't have any hall noise - although we were close to the elevators. did hear some noise at night from pool but our room was looking over it directly. Don't know that I would recommend this type of room for a family with more than 2 adults. I definitely wouldn't want to be the one sleeping on the murphy or the sofa bed. But they were perfect for our kids. Theming was fantastic! A step above the other values and really, even the other moderates where we have stayed in the last 5 years.

      Only down side was that we drive and Nemo suites were not close to parking. Next time will pick Cars or Lion King.
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      Registered: September 2012
      Posts: 3
      Review Date: Mon September 23, 2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 4 

      Positive aspects of the product (pros): Buses,Mousekeeping,Cast Memebers
      Cons: Food court

      Pros= Size of suites. Cast members were very friendly and helped out when needed. Bus service was fantastic and never had to wait a long period of time for a new one to get there.

      Con= Atmosphere over all was very average at best. Outside of buildings looked like army barracks then Disney characters slapped on. I also felt the furniture in the rooms was very average at best.

      The worst part of the resort had to be the food court. It was horrible. Thank god we only had one meal there. I could not believe the time spent in lines waiting for stuff and then getting back to the table and everything was cold. They need to really think about the way they do things and the food that they serve. It was below average. Even a late night burger and fries where not that good.

      We will never stay at this resort again. For the amount of money that we paid for a suite, it should of been a lot better.
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      Registered: September 2013
      Posts: 1
      Review Date: Sun September 8, 2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 10 

      Positive aspects of the product (pros): Great pools and spacious suites

      I stayed at Art of Animation (AoA) in June 2013 and absolutely loved my stay here.

      Having added an additional member to my party just prior to arriving, there must have been a mix up with my reservation and when I got to the front desk, they informed me that I wasn't due to check-in for another two days. This took some time to sort out as well as my own efforts finding the confirmation emails that showed I was checking in that day. However, this mistake was not the hotels, and although it took them some time to fix, they made up for this by upgrading me from a Little Mermaid room to a Cars suite. This was amazing service and was so much more than I ever expected to receive.

      From then on there were no more errors, just great experiences...

      The suite itself was spacious with an amazing living area and a large master bedroom. The fact that the room had two bathrooms really helped to speed things up on a morning or before heading out for dinner. We are big fans of tea and coffee and quickly used up our supplies, but the front desk were happy and incredibly fast at responding to our request for replacements - this was also true with a request for additional pillows.

      Our favourite aspect of staying in the Cars wing had to be the pool. The pool was themed around the Cozy Cone Motel in the Cars films and had around 8-10 cabanas in the shape of cones! This made for great shade during the day if you needed a little break from the sun. In addition, the life guards at this pool were so attentive that I never had any hesitations over safety.

      I've read a few reviews that talk of the AoA food court negatively, however, I cannot agree with this. My experience at Landscape of Flavors was only positive. For breakfast I tried waffles with bacon and sausage and yoghurt pavlova (which you personalise). Both were great - the yogurt was particularly good!
      For lunch I tried the make-your-own-pasta - this was delicious with so many options available, including some great seafood! It was a bautiful meal that I would never expect from a value resort. There were so many other options, many which I have forgotten, but I never had a bad meal. I also ordered pizza to my room one night with chicken wings - also brilliant!!

      The bus service was also wonderful - one of the main reasons I chose to stay at AoA was because it had its own dedicated transport and it didn't disappoint. My longest wait was around 10 minutes, but other than that, the busses came frequently and they didn't stop at any other resort.

      in addition, one day i got in the pool with my iPhone in my pocket (disaster). I quickly got out and visited the food court - the cast members were so friendly and helpful and quickly delivered me some dry rice and a cup to pop my phone in. Thankfully, due to the cast members speed, the phone fully recovered!

      I absolutely loved my stay at AoA, so much that I've booked to return this November and I've spent the extra money to stay in a suite. Believe me - it's worth it. i would recommend it to everyone!
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      Registered: September 2013
      Posts: 3
      Review Date: Mon September 2, 2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | | Rating: 9 

      Positive aspects of the product (pros): Theming, details, staff, pools, good value for price
      Cons: slow food court, faded swimsuit!

      Stayed 8/21 - 8/27 with my husband and two little boys (2 and 5). We've stayed previously at Pop, as well as other Moderate resorts (POFQ, CBR, and POR). We decided to take a second trip to Disney this year and chose AOA to save some money. It was a good decision. The theming at Art of Animation is outstanding -- outside and inside, which made it feel a lot less like a Value resort. We spent the entire first afternoon / evening checking out all areas of the resort, taking pictures with the characters, and playing in the different play areas.

      Our check-in was fast and very friendly. The staff there was nice throughout our stay.

      We stayed the first two nights in a Mermaid Room and the remaining nights in a Cars suite (a complimentary upgrade! We were shocked and thrilled!!!).

      Little Mermaid Room: We were in Bldg 7, third floor. LOVE the elevators at this value resort, especially with a double stroller! We had a lake view, which we did not request, but I would recommend. It is very peaceful. Our room was adorable and I was surprised that even our boys loved it...there were ooh's and aah's I didn't expect! The details on the table (like the lyrics of Under the Sea) and the headboards, which have lights embedded in them, are just a few of the details that make the room really magical! To combat the lack of storage space (half of the dresser is a facade that stores a mini-fridge), we requested an extra luggage rack/stand from Mousekeeping (there is already one in the room). This let us leave 2 suitcases on racks, and empty the third one (shared by our boys) into the dresser. The beds are double (vs. queen like at a Moderate resort). This was fine for our family, but something you may wish to consider. We don't tend to spend too much time in our room, except for naps and sleeping at night so we found this room to be more than adequate for a family of four. We did have a pack and play in the room for our 2 year old and it fit between the bed and the bathroom wall (out of the way). As far as the walk to the Little Mermaid area, it isn't too bad (even in the August heat). If you have stayed at Port Orleans Riverside or the Caribbean Beach Resort, the walk will not phase you! Plus, there is so much to look at on the way! Finally, Mousekeeping in this area did a fantastic job...(I'm the Mom who brings Lysol along and cleans the entire room when we get there since little kids touch everything). I was extremely pleased with the cleanliness of the room --the bathtub, corners, floor, A/C vent -- it was really well cleaned prior to our arrival.

      Cars suite: We stayed on the fourth floor in Bldg 4 (Mater's building). For a family of four, the suite offered more than enough space to spread out. Once again, the details were impressive. The postcards from Radiator Springs sitting (permanently) on all the dressers and nightstands look so real and the cone lamps were adorable. We loved having two bathrooms, a larger place to eat breakfast (the table seats 4), and a couch / living area for the kids to play. The room is stocked with paper plates, paper bowls, cups, plastic silverware, etc. (which Mousekeeping replenishes). Since we eat our breakfasts in the room (cereal / yogurt) this was great. The pull down Murphy Bed was a breeze to use and my oldest son loved sleeping there, especially with Mater sleeping on the headboard and his own adjustable "night light." We did not need to use the pullout sofa. The master bathroom has a nice walk-in shower and the second bath has a tub shower. Again, more than enough space for a family of four here. We generally bring Mom / Dad and I will say we would have had room for them too, but it would have been less convenient to have to make / unmake the sofa bed each day....if you can afford the suite, go for it. Our boys are still talking about their Cars room!! If not, the Little Mermaid rooms make for a standard, but still very magical, stay.

      We spent time at each of the three pools. Based on another review, we brought our own beach towels. However, I learned part way through the trip that you can request pool towels from the front desk (they look the same as the bath towels). For a family with two small children, the advantages of the Big Blue Pool were the zero-entry area and the separate splash area. I loved being able to sit in a sun chair and watch them run in the splash area (it was nice not having to hold someone and be in the pool the entire time!). TIP: There is a mug refill station at the Big Blue Pool Bar (so you don't have to go inside Landscape of Flavors). The Cozy Cone pool is definitely the most quiet / tranquil. You can't beat the atmosphere and our boys loved swimming with the Wheel Well Motel in the background. We loved how the music played at each of the pools fit the theme (i.e. at the Cozy Cone pool, all of the songs are about cars, driving, the road, etc.). If you aren't going to the parks everyday (and even if you are), I recommend pool hopping! It really gives you a chance to enjoy all of AOA.

      Also - based on another review re: swimsuits fading....we experienced the same thing, but only with one Gap swimsuit. It was not your standard spandex / lycra, but more of a cotton swim short. Despite rinsing it in cold water after every swim (hoping to avoid what I had read) my son's suit is now a very light orange and blue plaid (previously fluorescent!).

      We didn't have any problems with the buses while we were there. The single transportation stop is laid out well, with separate queues for each park / Dwtn Disney. Yes, they are crowded on the way home if you leave when the parks close, but that is true with any resort. One night, when we left the Magic Kingdom, there was a significant line and they sent two buses simultaneously.

      Lastly, I will discuss the Landscape of Flavors food court. The theming inside is cute -- with sections of tables matching each of the different areas of AOA (Lion King, Cars, etc.). I was pleased with the selection of food, but disappointed in the wait times. Even though it wasn't crowded, the service was VERY slow. Having been to Disney a number of times, my husband and I always split up and order from two lines to avoid going from one to the next and having our meals ready at pretty much the same time. Even doing this, the first two days we found we were eating in shifts / pieces as meals from one line were ready well before meals from another line. Later, we decided the whole family would order from one line to avoid some meals being cold. TIP: There is a microwave in Ariel's Grotto (the portion of the food court that resembles being Under the Sea!). We reheated our meals a couple of times. We also microwaved our popcorn there for Movies Under The Stars!

      This is now our favorite Value resort! The theming and landscaping are perfect for children....and adults too! We had a very magical vacation and can't wait to return!
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