Hotel quick question

Regular reader, first post.

The wife and I doing WDW in November. We are either doing Port Orleans Riverside or Art of Animation Little Mermiad room. We know the Mermaid room is more for kids, but it’s a little cheaper.

Is it worth saving a few bucks? We spend very little time in the room or pools.

Thanks everyone.

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Congrats on your first post! How many are traveling with you? Children?

So my parents stayed in a Little Mermaid room in March (60-somethings who’ve been to WDW plenty of times)…they didn’t care for them. They’re not in the room much either, but the cartoony theming wasn’t their favorite (they’re “Pop People,” if that helps. :slight_smile: ).

Combining that opinion with mine (DH and I love POR), I’d stick with POR, unless the cost savings allows you to do something special (i.e. use it for a party ticket, etc.). I think POR’s theming is preferable to the Little Mermaid rooms myself.

Whatever you choose, enjoy your trip!

I would always move up in hotel category.

I loved POR very romantic setting. No kids with you? I would go with POR. Plus yeehaw bob is there!

Beds are queens at moderates (some kings), and doubles at Art of Animation Little Mermaid (some kings).

I stayed at Art of Animation back in 2012 when it first opened. It was fine room-wise (I was at the parks most of the time anyway). The only thing I didn’t like about The Little Mermaid rooms is that they are far from the bus stop. I had to drag around a 4 year old, so being closer to the bus stop is my #1 priority next time I go to WDW.

I concur with @sarcazm. My DW and I stayed at AoA in October. I personally loved the theming and the price, but that section of the hotel is painfully far from the bus stops – and you really feel it at the end of the day. I haven’t yet stayed at POR (but we have it booked already for our next trip), so I don’t know if they are relatively convenient to the bus stops. It looks like POR is a very large resort too, but I believe they have three bus stops compared to one at AoA.

FYI - it’s actually 4 bus stops - one at Magnolia Bend - two on either side of Alligator Bayou and the one at the main entrance to the resort. There’s also the boat to Disney Springs which is a nice alternative if you’re visiting DS. Personally I’d spring for POR, particularly for adults…

Is Coronado Springs available for your dates? I like POR, but have also really enjoyed CS, and it’s often the cheapest moderate (though it may depend upon promos, dates). CS is beautifully landscaped and there are several quiet areas to sit on a bench and watch the pond. I found the rooms large and quiet.

Thanks for all the responses. I think everyone confirmed what I already thought, it will probably be POR.

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We just got back after staying there for the first time and would definitely stay there again. We’ve stayed at several deluxes in the past so I wasn’t sure we would like POR but it exceeded expectations. Beautiful grounds, very good amenities. You won’t be disappointed. We stayed in the Magnolia Bend section. We had requested Magnolia Terrace but got Acadian House,which was further away from the pool and main building. I would request Magnolia Terrace. The other two buildings in Magnolia Bend are royal rooms only and I think a lot of the Alligator Bayou rooms have a murphy bed which you won’t need. Plus the Magnolia Bend buildings just look prettier and more grand.

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Just got back from staying at Art of Animation, Wilderness Lodge and Animal Kingdom

We stayed in a Lion King Suite at AoA and that was a far enough walk every day to go to the mess hall and the bus’s… The little mermaid is the furthest area from the front of house area and amenities.

Pro’s for the suites - Large living area, multiple rooms, 2x Bathrooms, MICROWAVE!!!, decent sized table and a couch.

Negatives - MAJOR - The lines to catch transport back to Art of Animation completely ruin the experience. At 11pm once leaving a long day at Magic Kingdom, waiting over an hour to catch a bus back is terrible. The resort was crazy busy at all hours and the mess hall was insanely loud and noisy. The room cleaning etc was not as good as the other two and they never replaced the missing coffee pods or cleaned to what I would consider a decent level.

For future trips I will always go back to a mid-high level resort and won’t be staying at the cheaper ones again.

May I ask what a “far enough walk” is exactly? We are considering AoA for our next stay and if walks are too long, we will maybe switch to another resort.

It is about 300-400 meters in a straight line.
Obviously with the walking going along path’s it’s anything but straight.
I’ve modified the google maps site below and re-copy pasted the distance marker from the bottom to give you an idea


Thank you!

To put it into time, my DW and I are pretty fast walkers. We timed the walk one morning from the LM section to the bus stop, and I believe it was somewhere between 10 to 12 minutes. It may have been longer at the end of the night on the way back when we were exhausted – or it might have just seemed longer.


So here is my two cents as a whole.
1 - I am a cheap bastard (just ask the kiddies and wife)
2 - I am a cheap bastard (just ask the kiddies and wife)
3 - I am a cheap bastard (just ask the kiddies and wife)
So I think I have now established that I am a cheap bastard. That being said. Vacation is the one time where I spend to enjoy. Never go crazy but try to get value. Now value means different things to different people. For me it is enjoyment and removal from stress. I am not a big lay at the pool kind of guy (but do try to enjoy that on occasion). For me the hotel sets the tone for the trip. It is home base and puts me in the mood for the rest of the trip. Even if I am just in the room to sleep - I like to be in a nice resort. Sure when we are traveling a Hampton Inn is perfectly fine - but once I am at my destination I like to feel like the resort is an extension of my experience.

I am fortunate that we are able to afford higher end accommodations (but it is usually due to reward point trickery and saving money elsewhere). For me, especially at Disney - I want to come back from the hectic day and detox and relax. Having stayed at Value - I NEVER was able to do that for the reasons outlined above (noise, transportation). I would, at a minimum stay at a Moderate resort (if you can afford it). The relaxation level is worth the extra $$$. With each level of resort - the relaxation level increases. There are fewer people, the venues are smaller / quieter.

So even if you “just sleep” - you will find a nicer experience as you move up.

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We got upgraded to a Nemo room and if I go back to AOA* I would pay the extra to be in the Nemo area again. We found the walking time very short from there.

*Note: We liked the resort in our general and our suite. I only say “if I go back” because we are considering a deluxe for the amenities next time.

Our next trip is when I turn 50 (unfortunately not too far from now). Deluxe or not going. The crazy thing is WDW is SO expensive. It has literally been cheaper for us to go to Europe than WDW. And that is staying in VERY nice accommodations.