Hotels during our 44 days in the bubble

Sorry, this is a really long post so I’ll break it up.

We had 10 resort stays over the period 11/19/18 – 1/1/19. DH posted room tours and daily trip reports with photos on the Liners FB page and I put photos on Instagram.

Quite a few people asked which resorts we liked best or which room we were staying in at specific resorts, so I thought I’d do a rundown of all of them. As always, these are just our impressions and opinions and I’m sure there will be things that others feel totally differently about.

We honestly couldn’t pick one resort that was our absolute favourite. Our top four were BC for convenience to Epcot and HS, Poly for theming and convenience to MK and Epcot, AKL for theming and animals, and WL for theming. We loved the overall feel of AKL, WL and Poly. The friendliest staff were at Poly and AKL, there was nothing wrong with the staff at the other resorts, but they seemed to go out of their way to make us feel welcome at those two.

We called Bell Services to transfer our bags each time we changed resorts and we never had any problems with our bags. We tipped the CMs at both resorts each time.

We left notes in the bible at each resort, but didn’t find any.


Pop standard view 11/19-11/20, room 2412
We got in around 1am so we requested a quiet room in the 50s. Our room was up the top far corner of the building which was perfect because hardly anyone walked past (we were all exhausted after 31 hours of travel so we probably would have slept anywhere). We stayed at Pop on our first night in 2016 as well and we loved the newly renovated room this time. The beds were comfy and there was heaps of storage space. We didn’t spend much time here, just had breakfast at the food court before heading to HS which was fine.

I’m blaming jet lag for forgetting to take a room view photo here.


BC garden view 11/20-11/26, room 1542

We had a standard room booked so this was an upgrade. The view wasn’t exciting, but the room was super close to Epcot and only a few doors down from the laundry which was perfect for us (I think they initially had us in a king room which wouldn’t work with four of us, so they had to change it). We had a rocky start here because billing tried to charge $1800 to our Amex twice even though we had already paid in full for the room. Amex flagged the charge and blocked my card. Omar at the front desk eventually sorted it out with billing, was really apologetic and gave us a substantial credit to our account. We hadn’t asked for anything and I actually thought he’d just offer us a few anytime FPPs, so it was a lovely surprise and fantastic customer service.

We really liked the room and the resort overall, but surprisingly this wasn’t DD14 or DS13’s favourite pool; they preferred the Poly pool. We really enjoyed walking into Epcot at night to see Illuminations and being back in our room 10 minutes after it finished and also being able to wander over to the boardwalk at night. We ate at Cape May and Beaches and Cream, both were fine but nothing special.


Poly standard view 11/26-12/1, room 1816

We wanted to be close to the main building and were hoping to be able to see the monorail, so we asked for Rarotonga which is exactly what we got. The room was great; it was really big and was also convenient to the laundry, the bus and the TTC. We have stayed DVC at Poly before and I actually preferred the DVC room because it had an extra shower, but this room had more floor space which was nice.

All of us like the feel of the Poly and it’s so easy to get to both MK and Epcot. We watched both HEA and holiday wishes from the beach which was amazing. We ate at Kona which none of us liked much and ‘Ohana which we all loved (we had a castle view and they did not rush us through the meal).


BWV preferred pool view studio 12/1-12/6, room 5050

This was the exact room we requested and we could see the HS fireworks from our balcony. We liked this resort, but all of us apart from DD14 preferred BC (she felt that BW had a more relaxed vibe). The room was nice and was a slightly odd shape so there was some extra space around the entrance area.

Like BC, it was great to be able to walk to HS and Epcot. We had breakfast and dinner at Trattoria al Forno and weren’t very impressed with either meal. Both times the appetizers were better than the mains. We also ate at ESPN which was OK.

One annoying thing about the Epcot resorts is that all five of them share the DS bus. Coming back from DS when it was busy was not much fun and the poor drivers were squeezing as many people in as possible.


AKV Jambo savanna view 1 bedroom 12/6-12/12, room 5205

We booked standard view so this was an upgrade. There aren’t many standard 1 bedrooms so I was hoping for the upgrade. The room was above the lobby, but we never found it noisy. Walking out of the room one evening to hear the carolers in the lobby was really cool. We enjoyed having the extra space in the one bedroom. It did feel like the room was due for an update, it was showing some wear and tear, but was still nice.

We love AKL, the animals and theming are amazing, the food options are really good, the African CMs are all happy to talk about their countries and there is a lot to do at the resort.

We had breakfast and dinner at Boma and both were good. We also ate at Sanaa a couple of times and it was nice too. The resort felt a bit isolated to me, but I think that was mostly in my head because the buses were good and never took too long.


VGF standard view 1 bedroom 12/12-12/16, room 1303

This was one of the rooms on our request and we had a good view of the monorail again. We couldn’t see the fireworks, but we could see the reflection on the windows on the other side of the building which was interesting.

This was probably the nicest room we stayed in and we had plenty of space again in the 1 bedroom, but overall we don’t think we’d stay at this resort again. The gingerbread house was amazing but the lobby was chaotic all the time and the monorail security line could take ages because so many people visit the resort. I’m not sure what it’s like at other times of year, but at Christmas it’s not a peaceful place to stay. While it’s convenient to MK, it’s not convenient to Epcot at all.

We ate at 1900 Park Fare which was fun. We also ate at Narcoossee’s which was good and we watched the fireworks between main and dessert.


BLT lake view studio 12/16-12/20, room 8106

This was one of the rooms on our request and the CM at check in actually said that they had been able to meet our request. We could see the castle and the monorail from the room and we watched the fireworks from the balcony with the music playing on the TV. The room was very small but we were expecting that and we had an airbed since no one can share a bed with DS13. We moved the small table to the space near the connecting door and put the chairs out on the balcony.

While we loved the views from all different parts of the resort and the convenience of walking to MK, we probably won’t stay at BLT again. For us it didn’t have the Disney feel that we like and the Christmas decorations felt like an afterthought. The decorations at the other resorts and at the parks were amazing and we enjoyed checking out all of the different trees, wreaths, garlands and other details. Like GF, BLT is not convenient to Epcot.

We had dinner and watched the fireworks at Cali Grill. They put us in a corner in the back room of the restaurant and it was extremely noisy, so we asked nicely if there was another table available. After apologising they asked us to wait a couple of minutes and then moved us to a window table with an awesome view of the castle. I didn’t like my main very much, but the others enjoyed theirs, the desserts were good and our server was fantastic.


BWV preferred pool view 2 bedroom 12/20-12/26, room 5080 and 5082

This room was on the opposite side to our request and was my least favourite room location of the whole trip, but having the space of a 2 bedroom more than made up for that. Again we enjoyed this resort and we loved having so much space over Christmas. It was lovely to have a living space with no beds in it.

Earlier in the month the walkway from the resorts to HS went right around past the bus stops, but by this stay they had reopened the more direct route, so that was a nice surprise.

We had Christmas dinner at Flying Fish, the food was excellent and our server was great too. Unfortunately we had to cut it a bit short because DD14 started feeling sick, but she was fine the next day.


WL nature view bunk beds 12/26-12/31, room 2020

We booked a standard view room, but when we arrived they had given us a nature view with two queens. We asked the CM at check in if there were any bunk bed rooms available and she found one for us. She was really nice, unlike her supervisor who was almost rude. We had another billing issue where they wanted to charge us an extra $831. Even after showing the supervisor the email confirming the full payment, she insisted that we had an outstanding balance that she suggested could be tax owing and she wanted us to call our travel agent. We had given up and were going to call the TA once we got to our room, but the nice CM said that she thought she knew what the problem was and that she’d try to sort it out and let us know. Around 15 minutes after we got to the room, she called and said it had been fixed.

The room and location were great, we could see the monorail through the trees behind the cabins and we could see the fireworks from inside our room. Catching the boat over to MK was really nice and it was quick getting back to the resort at night – when the monorail and ferry lines were really long, there was never much of a line for the resort boats.

A couple of mornings the buses took a bit longer to arrive, but I think that was because they had to get past all the cars lined up to go into MK since it was such a busy week. The only morning it really took ages was on NYE when we went to HS. The poor driver had a lot of grumpy people waiting by the time he got there, but the traffic heading to MK was insane so there probably wasn’t much he could have done about it.

We loved WL and will definitely look at staying there again. The whole resort is amazing and at Christmas it was just magical. We ate at Geyser Point a couple of times which was good.


BC water view 12/31-1/1, room 2521

We booked a standard view and didn’t make a room request because it was just one night. When we got to the room we realised there was no day bed, so I went back down and asked if there was another room available. The CM was great and while he was checking he asked if we’d be happy with a roll away bed if there wasn’t another room. I didn’t even know this was an option, but we didn’t need to use it since they found another room for us.

The room we got was not one I’d put on a request, it had a view of the quiet pool and one of the tiny balconies, which didn’t worry us but would have been less ideal for a longer stay. Again it was nice and close to Epcot; when we heard the early NYE fireworks we popped down to the bridge on the way to Epcot and watched most of them. When we got up the next morning there were people asleep on the pool chairs; they must have had a really big night!

We caught the boat to HS to see the NYE and SW fireworks (we booked a last minute dessert party which was lots of fun) and then we walked back to BC. One good thing about HS fireworks is that it’s a straight line to get out of the park, so even though there’s always a crowd it moves quite well.


Wow! Thanks for the post! At first I bookmarked the BLT view for my upcoming stay. Then I decided I needed to just bookmark the whole thread! What great information! Thanks!


Thanks for all the great information:) loved following along

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I feel like we got some great rooms, even when they weren’t what we requested. What I really liked was that the couple of times we asked for something different (the bunk bed & day bed), they were happy to try and make it happen. Both times I was expecting them to say it wasn’t possible because we were there at such a busy time. I want liners to get some of these rooms and find our bible notes. DD14 started drawing pictures on them in the last few rooms.


Holy bananas. That has to be some kind of record for the longest time spent at Disney. How did you decide what to do every day? I’m imagining creating a touring plan for all those days and just… :heart_eyes::heart_eyes::heart_eyes:


All I can say is WOW!!! THANK YOU so much for your reviews! It really helps to have a bunch of info (and maps) in the same thread @LandDownUnder - you are my hero!


I agree… I bookmarked it too!! This is a great post to come back to.


It certainly beats our previous record of 5 days onsite, but I’m sure there are people out there who are crazier (or richer) than us! I know there are liners who spend months at a time staying near WDW, just not onsite.

We didn’t follow a touring plan at all this trip (shocking I know). We had FPPs for every day which we mostly used, but sometimes changed and occasionally ditched completely. Most mornings we went to a park, even if it was just to use our FPPs and do a couple of other things. When we had an ADR booked in the evening in a park, or we knew we’d be out late the night before, we booked later FPPs.

We didn’t rope drop much because we didn’t need to race to get things done. Sometimes we got more FPPs in the same park, often we went to another park in the afternoon or evening and picked up FPPs there.

I think we rode FoP 15 times with either pre booked or same day FPP. We never did standby. We didn’t book any FPPs for Navi so we did that at rope drop. At all the other parks we had FPPs for all of the main rides multiple times. We always had FPPs for RnRC at HS and Everest at AK because we all love those rides.

We had spreadsheets for each week showing which resort we were at, which park and FPPs for each day and any ADRs and parties (also crowd levels and EMH but we didn’t pay that much attention to them). We kept many of the ADRs, but modified several along the way and sometimes just completely cancelled them and did QS, dinner in the room or Disney Springs instead. A lot of the ADRs were planned to be convenient to where we were staying and that worked out well.

Sometimes we didn’t fell like going to the park we had planned, so we’d decide to go to a different park and we just changed the FPPs to what we could get there. We never waited in long lines because we could always come back and do something another day.

A few times we didn’t feel like going to a park at all, so we didn’t. Sometimes the kids went in without us.

We had two MVMCPs booked, but the first one was so busy we changed it to the HS after hours when it was announced, which was great. We also did MK after hours which was good but Space and Seven dwarfs were both down for almost the entire night.

We did two dessert parties at MK, one of those was for the Dec 30 fireworks which was awesome.

The NYE dessert party at HS was fantastic, we were so happy to see the SW fireworks since that was the only night they were on during our trip.

The kids swam at every resort except Pop and we did some other activities at the resorts.

I haven’t really posted before about how we planned because we didn’t treat this like a normal trip. We were very relaxed and fairly spontaneous. Things like the Void, Christmas tree trail, and watching Mary Poppins at DS we decided the day of.

We never got around to doing 4 parks in a day, but I think we did 3 a couple of times (not deliberately it just happened).

There are still plenty of things we didn’t get around to doing and at some point we’ll make a list of things we want to do when we come back for a more sensible length trip (maybe 4 weeks) in about 3 years.


That sounds just incredible!!! Keep posting it’s fun to read!


Did you never get bored? Serious question.