By the co-author of the best-reviewed Disney World guidebook ever -- The easy Guide to Your First Walt Disney World Visit.

yourfirstvisit.net—Disney World Instructions for the First-Time Visitor





Review: Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort



By Dave Shute

DISNEY’S POLYNESIAN VILLAGE RESORT FOR FIRST-TIME VISITORS

Disney's Polynesian Village Resort from yourfirstvisit.net

While there’s some construction left that will continue through 2015 (especially a re-do of the small East Pool), in April 2015 Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort largely exited a refurb cycle. (The word “Village” was added back to the name in 2014.)

Review Disney's Polynesian Village Resort from yourfirstvisit.netCompleted as part of this refurb are the following:

  • Refurbs of the standard rooms
  • The redo of the entrance to the main services building, the Great Ceremonial House
  • The redo of the lobby and fountain
  • The addition of Trader Sam’s
  • The refurb of the main Lava Pool
  • Construction of bungalows in Seven Seas Lagoon and re-opening of the beaches near here and the pool
  • DVC refurbs of the old Rapa Nui and Tahiti, now Pago Pago and Moorea

What’s left is some walkway re-dos, completion of the conversion of Tokelau to DVC Studios, and the refurb of the East Pool.  Stay away from rooms fronting the East Pool and you’ll have a great visit to the Polynesian.

For refurb news (and all other Polynesian topics) see Steve’s Tikiman Pages website and his Facebook page for more frequent news. I’ll keep this page on renovations at the Polynesian updated as well.

Lava Pool Disney's Polynesian Village Resort from yourfirstvisit.net

Anyway, our most recent stay in one of the new Studios, plus a visit to the newly-reopened main pool, confirms what this site has recommended since the day it was launched: for those who can afford it, Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort is the best place for first time family visitors to stay.

You can have a wonderful visit at any Walt Disney World resort hotel.

Disney's Polynesian Village Resort from yourfirstvisit.net (6)

However, this site recommends that first time visitors to Walt Disney World who can afford it should stay at Disney’s Polynesian Resort, a deluxe resort, and that those who can’t should stay at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, a value resort.

(It also suggests that first time visitors should avoid the moderate resorts, while noting that these resorts are wonderful for visits after the first. See this for why.)

Compared to other Walt Disney World owned and operated resorts, the deluxe  resorts are distinguished by having (on average)  the most amenities, nicest views, best dining options, best transport options, largest rooms, best service, and highest prices.

(See this for much more on resort distinctions by price class–value, moderate, deluxe, etc.)

STANDARD ROOMS AT DISNEY’S POLYNESIAN RESORT

Floor Plan Disney's Polynesian Resort from yourfirstvisit.net
Standard rooms at Disney’s Polynesian Resort are particularly nice.

The rooms sleep five–two each in two queens, and a fifth on the couch, which converts into a daybed.  You can add to this capacity of five a child younger than three who sleeps in a crib.

Bed Side from back Disney's Polynesian Resort from yourfirstvisit.net

These rooms had their latest refurbishment in 2013. More on the rooms later in this review!

DISNEY’S POLYNESIAN RESORT FOR FIRST TIME VISITORS

Resorts are ranked on this site for first time visitors based first on their kid appeal, and then on their convenience.

On this basis, Disney’s Polynesian Resort, a monorail resort, is far and away the best resort for first time family visitors to Walt Disney World. 

Kid Appeal.

The kid appeal of the Polynesian Resort comes from its sense of exotic adventure.

Disney's Polynesian Village Resort from yourfirstvisit.net (2)

The architecture of the resort recalls the villages of the South Pacific, and is reinforced by touches such as flaming torches, spectacular gardens,  leis-festooned staff (and guests!), hula lessons,  etc.

Convenience. Disney’s Polynesian Resort is the most convenient of the Disney Resorts–at least for trips centered on the Magic Kingdom and Epcot, as they are on first time visits.

It is one of three “monorail resorts” on the Magic Kingdom resort monorail line.

TTC Monorail and Disney's Polynesian ResortIt is more convenient than the other two because it is also the only resort within easy walking distance of the Epcot and express monorails.

This means that the Magic Kingdom is two stops away when going there, via the resort monorail, and one stop back, via the express monorail.

This better than either of the Contemporary (4 stops to, 1 from) or Grand Floridian Resorts (1 and 4), the other two resorts on the resort monorail.

Moreover, at the Contemporary and Grand Floridian, going to Epcot means taking the resort monorail to the Transportation and Ticket Center (TTC), and then the Epcot monorail.

From the Polynesian, you simply walk to the TTC and the Epcot monorail.

Boat Dock at Disney's Polynesian Resort
There’s also a boat from the Polynesian to and from the Magic Kingdom. Shared with the Grand Floridian, it’s more fun than fast.

BEST PLACES TO STAY AT DISNEY’S POLYNESIAN RESORT

This site suggests that first time visitors stay in standard rooms, not preferred rooms. This is because they won’t be spending much time in their rooms. The single exception is visitors to the Animal Kingdom Lodge, who should always pay for savanna views.

Map of Disney's Polynesian Village Resort

Rooms in Disney’s Polynesian Resort are found in eleven 2 or 3 story “longhouses,” each with an elevator (or access to an elevator in a nearby building). (See the map.)

What used to be the best options–Rapa Nui (now Pago Pago), Tokelau, and Tahiti (now Moorea)–are now DVC rooms.

Among the rest, the most conveniently located is Raratonga–close to the Great Ceremonial House and its restaurants and resort monorail, to the quiet pool, to the bus stop, and to the walkway to TTC and the Epcot monorail. Like the rest of the non-DVC longhouses, second floor rooms at Raratonga don’t have balconies.  First floor rooms have patios, and third floor rooms have balconies.

Luau Cove Beach Disney's Polynesian Village Resort from yourfirstvisit.net

However, during the refurb of the East Pool, views and noise may be awkward at Raratonga.  A west side longhouse, though a longer walk to the bus stop and Epcot monorail, may yield a more peaceful vacation. The west side longhouses are Tuvalu, Fiji, and Aoetearoa.

Ideally, you’d request a third floor room for both better views and more quiet.

Polynesian Room Request FormBut the current room request form looks like this (click to enlarge).

You can request any longhouse, and request a balcony (handy for the older longhouses)…but not the third floor…maybe because some of the longhouses have only two floors…

BEST FOR:

Any first time family visitors who can afford it.

WORST FOR:

Families too large to fit into even its 5 person rooms. See this for more on large families at Walt Disney World.

PHOTO TOUR OF A STANDARD ROOM AT DISNEY’S POLYNESIAN RESORT

This review continues here.

TOPICS IN THIS REVIEW OF DISNEY’S POLYNESIAN VILLAGE RESORT:

Follow yourfirstvisit.net on Facebook or Google+ or Twitter or Pinterest!!

RELATED STUFF

76 comments

1 Kuleen @ TheDisneyKids { 06.17.13 at 2:53 pm }

We got married at the Poly way back in 1995. It is still my sentimental favorite resort at Disney.

2 Dave { 06.18.13 at 7:05 am }

Hiya Kuleen, what a great place to get married!

3 Jennifer M { 06.18.13 at 5:56 pm }

Hi! We are booked to stay at the Poly in October. Do you anticipate any pool, beach, or longhouses being closed?

4 Dave { 06.19.13 at 12:23 pm }

Jennifer, I’m not now anticipating that anything important will be closed then–a longhouse or two may still be undergoing renovation, but if so, no one will be booked into it…

Follow yourfirstvisit.net on Facebook!

5 New girl { 07.29.13 at 8:56 pm }

Hello! Love your site…I want to stay at The Poly 10/22-10/27 but they don’t have a standard room available for the 24th. Would you suggest moving to the standard club level for one night (24th) or stay at The Wilderness Lodge? I can’t seem to justify spending the extra $$ on the lagoon view for all 5 nights…help!

6 Dave { 07.30.13 at 8:01 am }

Heya New Girl and thanks!

I don’t think the value is there for for club rooms compared to the cost, and like your WL option. However, with a 3p check-in and 11a check out…there’s an argument to stay in the cheapest room that fits your family for that first night–e.g. one of the values–since you just won’t be there that long…

Follow yourfirstvisit.net on Facebook!

7 Raul { 08.02.13 at 12:40 am }

Just reserved stay @poly. For beginning of dec.2013. First timer to Disney with wife and 3yo. Concerned of all the comments on how old resort is. Which longhouse would u suggest if my main concern is updated room? Will Tahiti be updated/renovated as nice as Tokelau ?

8 Dave { 08.02.13 at 10:20 am }

Hi Raul, right now the renovation of Tahiti seems ot be on hold. Check back with me in a month or so..

Follow yourfirstvisit.net on Facebook!

.

9 Bill { 08.26.13 at 1:12 pm }

Just booked a Dec 16 thru 23rd trip for family of 5. Our third time to Disney but first inside the park. I am a little concerned about the renovations being an issue while we are there. Are both pools open? Any suggestions on getting a renovated room even though we booked a standard unit for 5 people? If we can request an area when we check in where is the best? Any additional tips appreciated. Thanks in advance for your reply.

10 Dave { 08.27.13 at 7:59 am }

Hi Bill, the rooms will be pretty much done by your visit. I recommend requesting Tokelau, for the reasons noted at the end of this page. There’s no official word on any other renovations in December–they may be going on, but it isn’t known for sure…

Was this even remotely helpful? Then mosey on over to the home page, and like it on Facebook or pin it on Pinterest!

11 kt { 09.03.13 at 7:02 pm }

Can you elaborate on the room renovations, ie are they being gutted or just updated with new furniture? I’m going during Halloween week and just received the same letter everyone else is getting. I was initially annoyed, but the idea of a new room is nice, as I love new/clean bathrooms. However, I read something on another site that mentioned only furniture was being updated, not hardware items such as bathroom fixtures. This was specifically concerning Tokelau renovations (which I requested). Can you help clarify?

12 Dave { 09.04.13 at 7:20 am }

Kt Tokelau is done, I stayed there in August, and will be posting a photo tour of the new room tomorrow.

13 Lindsey { 09.09.13 at 7:29 pm }

Hi Dave,
We are going January 25th-February 1 and are booked at pop century. However this is our third time going and I’ve always wanted to stay at the Polynesian. It’s significantly more expensive but this go round I will have a 2 year old and 5 month old in addition to my 6 year olds. I’m thinking the convenience of the monorail might be worth the money. What are your thoughts?

Thanks as always!!!

14 Dave { 09.10.13 at 9:42 am }

Well, Lindsey, I’m not gonna try to talk you out of the Polynesian! That’ll be just about the least expensive time of the year, and there may also e a room rate deal out,making it an even better time to stay there. On the other hand there may be some construction–see this: http://yourfirstvisit.net/2013/09/04/renovation-and-construction-at-disneys-polynesian-resort/

Was this even remotely helpful?

Well then mosey on over to the home page, and like it on Facebook or pin it on Pinterest!

15 Lindsey { 09.10.13 at 10:23 am }

Thanks Dave!

I feel that consulting you,( my disney expert), I might be able to justify the cost for staying there. I’m gonna keep my reservation and hope they come out with a room deal. Thanks for you help!

16 Dave { 09.11.13 at 6:38 am }

You bet Lindsey!!

17 Morgan { 09.19.13 at 9:43 am }

Hi, Dave! Have loved doing research for our first trip on your site. We’re thinking of taking our 2 children next Oct (’14), and we had decided on the Poly. However, our planner just notified us that there will be renovations (I believe two or three of the longhouses will be turned into villas, as well as new construction of villas over the water?). So, now I’m worried that this might not make for a pleasant stay. Now considering the Contemporary. What do you think about our 1st and possibly only trip to Disney, staying at the Poly while renovations/construction is going on? Thank you!

18 Dave { 09.19.13 at 1:14 pm }

Morgan, I myself don’t think the construction will much matter to the quality of the overall Poly experience. But if you want to avoid it, I’d put the Wilderness Lodge well ahead of the Contemporary as the next best choice. See http://yourfirstvisit.net/planning-your-first-family-trip/where-to-stay/next-best-resort-choices/

Was this even remotely helpful?

Well then mosey on over to the home page, and like it on Facebook or pin it on Pinterest!

19 Morgan { 09.19.13 at 2:16 pm }

The WL looks wonderful, and we did consider staying there. I even got rates, etc. Since our kids will be 4 and 5 when we go, however, I decided we needed the monorail for the stroller and overall convenience. I actually just got off the phone with the planner and reserved our room for 10/2/14-10/7/14 for the Poly. I asked for the Tokelau longhouse! Just praying for no pool closings. Again, have loved perusing your site. Thanks!

20 Dave { 09.19.13 at 5:20 pm }

Great, Morgan! Let me know how it goes!

21 Matthew { 10.21.13 at 12:52 pm }

Hi Dave! We went to Disney in Feb. 2013 (our first trip, planned with significant help from you) and stayed in Tahiti, 2nd floor with a MK view. We LOVED every aspect of our room, including the view, the quiet (except for the ferry horn) and especially the 4 minute walk to the TTC. (we have stroller age kids and we spent most of our time at MK) We are planning on going back in May 2014 and I was bummed to see that Tahiti is being converted into a DVC. Do you know if it will be under construction in May? If so, where which longhouse would you recommend if we wanted MK view and close to TTC? With Tahiti out of the mix, is it even worth paying for a MK view? Thanks very much for your help!!

22 Dave { 10.22.13 at 7:43 am }

Hi Matthew, I’m so glad the site helped! I suspect Tahiti will be out for quite a while–well beyond May. That doesn’t really leave any great choices for an MK view and close to TTC except for the concierge rooms in Hawaii…which are quite expensive…

23 Matthew { 10.22.13 at 10:22 am }

Hi Dave, thanks very much for your response! After scouring Steve’s Polynesian FB page, I’m strongly leaning toward booking at the Contemporary. The good possibility of the pool being closed and reasonable possibility of the walking path to the TTC being closed are probably going to be deal-breakers for me, MK view or not. We really loved the Polynesian, but just don’t think we can risk no pool and maybe no path to TTC. With kids who will be ages 5, 3 and 10mo. at the time of our trip, monorail/MK convenience is top priority. We are also looking for something that is reasonably quiet, although I understand that Disney properties are fairly noisy 18 hours/day. This is our second trip, and we’ll likely make more. Any thoughts on the Contemporary, and requesting rooms that are quieter than others (particularly at night)? In your experience, is the Bay view much quieter than the MK view, given no parking lot/buses/trains? Would you still recommend the Polynesian to us given our circumstances and the construction issues? I guess I could always change reservation closer to the time, but I need to book soon so I can get my castle dining reservation in 180 days beforehand. Thank you very much for your help! PS – planning on using your recommended travel agent, so hopefully they’ll sprinkle some extra pixie dust your way! :)

24 Dave { 10.23.13 at 7:06 am }

Matthew–just a quick not on the Poly before I turn to the Contemporary–the quiet pool (at minimum) will still be open!

Noise in the Contemporary comes from the interior, and equally affects both views. In the tower, the way to limit it is to ask for a high room on the opposite of the Chef Mickey side. The Garden Wing is also worth considering–while a bit of a hike, these rooms are very quiet! They also cost less.

25 Mike { 11.12.13 at 9:14 pm }

Hi Dave-
My wife and I are taking our two children (3 & 4) to DW from 1/4/13-1/7/13 and all of the talk about renovations has made me think twice about the Poly. We’d love to be on the monorail, but if it’s not the Poly, we’d probably go to the Wilderness or Art & Animation. As of today, do you have an idea of what renovations will be happening? If it’s significant, it might not make sense to spend the extra $. Many thanks for all that you continue to do.

26 Carol { 11.12.13 at 10:05 pm }

I am a grandmother bringing my daughter and two children ages 7 and 10 girl and boy. We were thinking of staying at the poly., but now rethinking. We were liking the location and the kid appeal. Now I am wondering with construction, etc…. We should maybe think of another spot. One child will want to go to MK, the other to Epcot, Yankee game and universal. Any advice would help a ton. Thanks in advance.

27 Carol { 11.13.13 at 9:12 am }

Forgot in the above msg. Dates we will be able to be in Disney: arrive March 22 at 10:30 am and depart Friday at 9:40 am.
Thanks for your help, Dave.

28 Dave { 11.13.13 at 10:10 am }

Mike the material renovation (at least to me) would be the main pool. That is widely rumored, but not confirmed…we won’t know for sure til it starts…

29 Dave { 11.13.13 at 10:11 am }

Hi Carol, the next best choice would be the Wilderness Lodge. See http://yourfirstvisit.net/2010/08/25/review-disneys-wilderness-lodge/

30 Carol { 11.13.13 at 7:19 pm }

Many thx. Your site has been so very helpful. Cd

31 Amy { 11.23.13 at 8:56 pm }

Leaving for Poly on Dec 7th. Any updates about the construction going on? I have requested the Tokelau long house for our 8 day stay. Any suggestions if the construction will affect our stay?

32 Dave { 11.24.13 at 3:34 pm }

Amy, no real news–just some work on the shore near Tahiti, and between Rapa Nui and the TTC…It doesn’t look like it will affect much…

33 Viki { 11.24.13 at 5:34 pm }

Hi, I’ve just (by accident ) stumbled onto your site we’ be traveling w/ 7 people, I’ve booked 3 rooms (price not an issue ) that are supposed to have a view of the castle & lagoon ( actually I’ve been working with my travel agent) we’ll be cruising on the Fantasy from Dec 21-28 & checking into the Polynesian on the 28th – Jan 1 2014 but as I was reading I ran across a lot of worry about construction issues , do you happen to know if there will be issues during the time we’re there ? Also I haven’t received my reservation # so I don’t know where they have put us & wouldn’t know if it is what I’m paying for or not thank you for your time. viki PS just for my personal info what rooms are the best for the view of lagoon & castle

34 Dave { 11.25.13 at 6:34 am }

Hey Viki, the Poly has both Lagoon View and Theme Park View rooms. The theme park views also include lagoon views, but not vice versa. If you can, avoid Tahiti–where a lot of these view types are to be found. It’s right in front of the construction, and has not been renovated. The Poly is perfectly livable right now–the construction is having only a aminor impact.

35 Melinda { 12.30.13 at 11:58 pm }

We are planning on staying at the Poly during Christmas week of 2014. Will the renovations to the resort (pool area/beach access) be complete?

36 Dave { 12.31.13 at 7:10 am }

Melinda, sorry, but no one knows.

37 Kara { 02.12.14 at 1:08 pm }

Hi Dave, We stayed at Parc Soleil Hilton last year, here is our post http://peekabootravel.com/blog/?p=91 and it had separate rooms from the living space which was awesome for our napping kids! However next time I go back I want to try this resort because driving to Disneyworld,parking, tram, monorail with a little kids is ridiculously time consuming! Thanks for the review!

38 Patricia { 03.11.14 at 1:54 pm }

Hi. Coming to Disney and staying at the Polynesian second week of May 2014 for our honeymoon! Will the construction make it worth staying here? Want to be sure it is the place to be for this special celebration! Please advise what unit we should try to request to still have the best location and if this will affect the monorail going to the Magic Kingdom. Thank you for any tips and comments about our stay in May!

39 Dave { 03.12.14 at 6:03 am }

Patricia, there will be construction then. The monorail and pools should be fine–although there’s some minor pool work that will be going on whose schedule is unknown. The overall look and feel, especially on the west side of the resort, should be fine. If you don’t like construction, don’t stay there…Tokelau is still the best longhouse, but Raratonga has some of its advantages but is further from the construction. The west side longhouses are even more isolated from the construction–but also further from transport.

40 Candice { 03.19.14 at 7:34 pm }

Hi, Just wanted to thank you so much for your site. I used it to schedule our trip. We visited the Poly the first week in March, it was great. 1st visit for us and Lilo and Stitch is our family Fav so it only made sense:-)The construction was not a big deal at all, didn’t really notice. The monorail schedule didn’t make a difference. I wouldn’t have had it any other way, sure makes it easy to take a sleepy 2 and 10 year old back “home” quickly by the monorail. We stayed at Tokelau. It was a good location for us, the standard room was perfect , larger than I had expected for the four of us. Ohana was awesome at dinner. We almost couldn’t get a reservation because I didn’t make it soon enough. I got a tip from the cast member taking my phone reservation to try again 2 days before I want to make a reservation and there are always people who make changes and an opening will come up. It worked! We watched the MK fireworks through the window from our table while enjoying our meal, Awesome! My only regret is not hanging out more at the resort by the pool. Next time! Thanks again!

41 Dave { 03.20.14 at 7:57 am }

Hi Candice, and thanks for the follow up! I’m so glad the site helped, and it sounds like you had a wonderful trip…

42 Ginger { 03.21.14 at 3:26 pm }

Hey Dave,
We are going to Disney last week of April. We have a club level room (is this worth the food)booked at the Rara Tonga. I will be taking my three children (5, 3, 14mos) and wanted something close to MK. As I have been reading your site I am second guessing my plans and thinking about changing our reservations? I visited three years ago with my two year old and one on the way, we stayed at the Caribbean resort. I did not like how long it took to get back and forth to the park due to us leaving for naps. I was thinking of the pools at the poly would be a great resource during my one year old’s afternoon naps, but if they are under construction I might try to book another resort.
So my question is pay club level( we are not doing meal plan) and stay there or go to the art of animation , even though it take longer to get to the parks?
Pool and RaRa Tonga rooms under construction?
Thank you so much for your site!

43 Dave { 03.22.14 at 2:42 pm }

Hi Ginger! A couple of responses. First I thought that all the club level rooms were in Hawaii, and the views from Hawaii are the most affected by the construction. Second, major pool construction won’t start til late July at the earliest–though there’s always the chance of minor rehabs. Third, if you decide no Poly, I’d go to the Contemporary as an alternative, not AofA. The Contemporary is even more convenient to MK than the Poly…

44 Joy { 05.19.14 at 8:38 am }

We are planning to go to Disney in Sept 2015, and are considering staying at the Polynesian Resort. We want a Standard Room, and would like to know what building would you recommend. We would like to be in the middle of everything if possible, with a amazing garden view with balcony. Thank you so much for your help.

45 Dave { 05.19.14 at 11:51 am }

Joy–2015 right, not 2014? There’s a lot of construction going on at the Poly between now and March 2015. Check back with me much later this year and I’ll have a better point of view…

46 Steve { 07.29.14 at 4:55 pm }

Great site Dave. June 2015, 3 kids b/t 2 & 7 yrs old. 7 days. 1st but not last visit to WDW. Poly or AoA suite? Split? Thanks!

47 Dave { 07.30.14 at 7:00 am }

Steve that’s a really tough call. AofA has more kid friendly theming and much more and more livable space. Poly wins on convenience and dining. I’m a fan of split stays–I’d start with the Poly and and the MK and Epcot focused part of your trip, then AofA and the rest of the parks.

48 chris { 07.30.14 at 6:24 pm }

my family of four kids ages our 9,11 to disney and want to stay at the polynesian restort in may 2015 for four days this will be our first time my kids love disney i know construction will be going on do you know what will be closed off and restricted at that time and what room would you recommend with out a lot of walking with two kids will they still have the dinner entertainment g0ing on thank you

49 Dave { 07.31.14 at 1:32 pm }

Chris, by then the construction should be largely complete. For those dates I’d recommend Samoa and Niue

50 Andreas { 08.22.14 at 10:59 am }

Is this also your recommended Hotel for couples or mainly for families? We are planning for the second half of 2015 coming from Germany and we are just getting started 😉 Love your site.

51 Dave { 08.22.14 at 11:50 am }

Hi Andreas–it’s a fine choice for couples, but not number one. For couples I’d put the Epcot resorts higher for many, especially the BoardWalk Inn and the Beach Club. See this: http://yourfirstvisit.net/2012/02/16/the-epcot-resorts-at-walt-disney-world/

52 Denise { 09.13.14 at 11:37 pm }

Thinking of planning first family trip with 2 girls (5 & 8) either sept or oct 2015 . Suggestions on where to stay in poly. I went there when I was a kid about 25 years ago.

53 Dave { 09.14.14 at 6:56 am }

Denise–Raratonga, Samoa, Niue!

54 Janet { 10.17.14 at 11:13 pm }

Hi Dave! Love this site! I had never really considered staying at the Poly for our next trip. I’ve been to WDW many times but this is our first time with a child, who will be 2 when we are there. I’d like to stay at an on-property resort that has a separate room for our toddler to sleep in. Since she’ll need a nap and a much earlier bedtime than us, I’d much rather her have her own room so my husband and I aren’t prisoners in the dark silence of baby bedtime. Is there something at the Poly that fits this description? Before now I had been thinking about the Bay Lake Tower at the Contemporary. I’d love your advice!

Thanks,
Janet

55 Dave { 10.18.14 at 8:56 am }

Janet, not really. As you suspected, a One Bedroom Villa at Bay Lake Tower is the closest fit to what you are seeking. It also has the advantage of being a short walk back and forth to the Magic Kingdom.

56 Amy { 02.02.15 at 11:42 am }

You may have mentioned it before but can you list which buildings have been renovated? We check in on 2/7 and have never stayed at the Poly. I wanted to be sure to request a building where the rooms have been renovated.

57 Amy { 02.02.15 at 1:28 pm }

I just re-read the description on your site and saw that all rooms renovations have been completed. Which building would you suggest then for a family traveling with 2 small kids, ages 5 & 2? We would like to be close to the lobby and the walk-way to the TTC? I assume the walk-way is still opened and not affected by the construction.

58 Dave { 02.03.15 at 6:38 am }

Amy, Rararatonga. The walkway still exists, but has been moved to the front of the resort while the buildings it used to go through are being converted to DVC.

59 Peggy { 02.12.15 at 10:56 pm }

Hi, I have 3 children, but two of them are grown. My Daughter is 11, and my boys are 19 and 20. My daughter loves Disney, and we also like Disney, but also want to see Universal Studios. My concern is that with older kids, we should stay somewhere less kid oriented? What is your opinion on this? We are kind of food snobby, and will probably spend a lot of time away from the Hotel. Thanks for any advice. I’m so happy to have found this page! :)

60 Dave { 02.13.15 at 8:09 am }

Hi Peggy! First, on your Universal days, stay at a Universal hotel. You get special privileges from that– see this http://yourfirstvisit.net/2009/12/17/where-to-stay-during-your-visit-to-the-wizarding-world-of-harry-potter/ (Note that much of my other Universal stuff is out of date–this page is OK, and I plan to fix the rest by the end of the month.)

For your Disney days, with the ages I’d check out the Yacht Club or Beach Club. Links to reviews of them are here: http://yourfirstvisit.net/2010/04/26/walt-disney-world-resort-hotel-reviews/

There’s some pretty good dining at WDW. See the right column here: http://yourfirstvisit.net/planning-your-first-family-trip/where-to-eat/dining-alternatives/the-comprehensive-guide-to-walt-disney-world-dining/

61 Nadeem { 02.24.15 at 1:29 am }

Hi Dave ,

Me and my wife have planned a vacation in Disney world with our 6 year old twins. Our travel dates are 2nd May to 12th May and we have booked in Disney Polynesian resort. After reading the current negative reviews in trip adviser , I am concerned and confused whether it is a good decision. I still have the option to cancel the booking and take up Disney Wilderness lodge. This is the first time we are staying in the Disney resort and since Polynesian was the most recommended I had decided on this. But with construction , the main pool being closed , I am beginning to doubt , need you advice.

Looking forward to your reply.

62 Dave { 02.24.15 at 2:30 pm }

Nadeem, in general my advice is if you have doubts, switch.

63 Stephanie { 04.21.15 at 8:19 pm }

Hi Dave!
We are staying at the Poly November 16-21.
You have already given me great advice! Next question is not sure which long house to request .
My kiddos are 6 and 4, and would love to have a castle view!! We booked a lagoon view, but not sure what is what there right now! Can you offer your advice on what is the best option? We would like to be on the quiet side if possible…
Thanks for this amazing site!!!

64 Dave { 04.23.15 at 8:04 am }

Hi Stephanie and thanks! You want “Theme Park View,” in Tuvalu!!

65 Stacy { 04.28.15 at 2:31 pm }

Hi Dave, Thanks for this amazing site. My family is heading to the Poly the last week of August. A room with a balcony is important to us and I’d like to be close to the lobby. Which longhouse would you recommend that would not be overlooking the East Pool construction? Thanks :)

66 Dave { 04.28.15 at 7:35 pm }

Stacey, all the all-balcony buildings are now in the DVC buildings. Of the regular buildings, Fiji and Aotearoa are closest without being near the east pool. Right at the 60 day mark, get onto on-line check in and request both the building and a balcony–or just book a DVC studio for cash in Pago Pago

67 Holly { 04.29.15 at 10:47 pm }

Love this site! We’re traveling in Nov. 2015 with our kids who will be 4 and 2.5. Is the Kids Club firm on the age minimum? I think the kiddos would love the Club but If you MUST be 3, we may have to go with in-room babysitting versus the Kids Club.

68 Dave { 04.30.15 at 4:06 pm }

Holly, I don’t know but suspect so. See this: http://allears.net/pl/childfaq.htm

69 Debbie { 05.09.15 at 2:05 pm }

Hi, we are about book a club level room at the Poly and had some quick questions. What type of breakfast is included in the ‘Club level price’? Will it be like cereal or like waffles, will it hold us over until lunch? Next, we have a specific room we want to be in in, how can we suggest the room. Lastly, what other perks are included in the club level? Thanks a lot.

70 Dave { 05.11.15 at 6:55 am }

Debbie, from Tikimanpages.com: “(Morning service) 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. offering muffins, croissants, bagels, tropical fruit, cereal, oatmeal with brown sugar, granola and dried fruit to top it off with, milk, orange juice, pineapple guava juice, ice tea, coffee drinks and hot chocolate from the new coffee machine, glass bottles of water, and toasters are available. Yogurt available as well as other items by request. Just ask at the counter.”

For more on perks see this.

71 Tammy { 06.28.15 at 9:57 pm }

Hi Dave,

This will not be our first trip to Disney World with our kids. We went four years ago and stayed off property and then went last August and stayed at Art of Animation. We are planning our next trip for September of 2016 and our kids will be 8 and 6. I am completely torn on where we should stay. I considered returning to A of A, but in a standard room this time. I am also considering Port Orleans – Riverside and upgrading to a preferred room in Alligator Bayou, Wilderness Lodge and finally The Polynesian. My husband wants this trip to be far more relaxing and less “rushed” than our previous Disney vacations ( he and I have been several more time as well). What are your thoughts on what the best choice would be? Thanks!

Tammy

72 Dave { 06.29.15 at 12:48 pm }

Tammy “more relaxing and less rushed” is hard to interpret in the context of a hotel. But think about a Bay Lake view room at the Contemporary Resort. The view is relaxing, and–since you can walk back and forth to the Magic Kingdom–you are freed up a bit from some of the complexities of getting around.

Also worth considering is a savanna-view room at the Animal Kingdom Lodge–another setting that really rewards sitting on your balcony.

73 Joanna { 06.30.15 at 11:31 am }

Hi Dave,
My husband, myself and our 2 boys (6 & 2 1/2) are staying at Poly for the first time! We want to be close to lobby/pool but not super close to East pool construction. What lodge do you recommend requesting? If we request Tonga/Aotearoa how long of a walk is to TTC? Or is Figi better? Any help would be greatly appreciated. :)

Thanks,
Joanna

74 Dave { 07.01.15 at 7:58 am }

Joanna, all Tonga is suites only. The other two are both close. The TTC walk is 10 to 15 minutes

75 Tiffany { 08.09.15 at 6:47 pm }

Hi Dave,
We are planning a quick trip Jan. 14-18th. If we can get a room discount we want to stay at Poly for the first time. (I have been dreaming about staying at Poly since I was a little girl.) If not we will have to go with AoA Family Suites which we have stayed in before. As far as booking our resort would it be best to go ahead and book Poly hoping to get a discount and then switch to AoA later or book AoA now and with to Poly if a discount does in fact come available?

76 Dave { 08.10.15 at 4:57 pm }

Tiffany, booking before the discount neither helps not hurts getting a deal, as if/when one comes out you compete with everyone else for whatever inventory Disney makes available for the deal. So your best move is to book now what you are sure you can afford, then try to jump on the Poly if/when a deal comes out, cancelling AofA if successful.

Leave a Comment | Ask a Question | Note a Problem easy 15 banner

My response to questions and comments will be on the same page as the original comment, likely within 24-36 hours . . . I reserve the right to edit and delete comments as I choose . . . All rights reserved. Copyright 2008-2015 . . . Unless otherwise noted, all photos are by me--even the ones in focus--except for half a dozen from my niecelets . . . This site is entirely unofficial and not authorized by any organizations written about in it . . . All references to Disney and other copyrighted characters, trademarks, marks, etc., are made solely for editorial purposes. The author makes no commercial claim to their use . . . Nobody's perfect, so follow any advice here at your own risk.