Disney Art of Animation Resort and trip review — The Bump
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Disney Art of Animation Resort and trip review

For those that asked :-) Overall, I loved this resort. Definitely the best Value Resort, hands down. I'd even rank it higher than some Moderates. The theming is over the top awesome. We stayed in a Cars Suite- that whole end of the resort is decorated like Radiator Springs with Cars characters lining the path to the Cozy Cone pool. The "Big Blue Pool" is in the center and it's Nemo themed. It's a huge zero entry pool. Very cool but CROWDED all the time. It also has a splash pad nearby that Sophie loved. The resort was nearly full, but it didn't feel like it walking around. It's a very large resort so be prepared to walk a good distance to get to the food and bus stops.

The Cars Suite was awesome. Loved the pull down table/murphy bed- it was very comfy- DH slept on it. The bathrooms were well done- basically, the whole thing was just great design. My IL's went with us so we gave them the bedroom and Gavin slept in his sleeping bag on the floor in there. DH and I each took a fold out in the main room and Sophie slept in her sleeping bag or with one of us. It was enough room but since we are all spoiled and used to a 2 bedroom villa at Old Key West, it did feel a little cramped at times. The kitchenette is a mini fridge, sink, and microwave. Wished there had been a toaster for bagels in the morning, but we made do. There is also a coffee maker with the little pods- nothing special but it did the trick. I liked the indoor corridor vs the outdoor ones at other value resorts. Was afraid it would get loud, but we rarely heard anyone else. Oh and one other thing- you need your key card to get into the pool areas. Not a huge deal, but a lil annoying at times when your hands are full!

I only had 2 complaints the entire stay... 1. There are NO TOWELS at the pools. You are supposed to bring them from your room or go get them from the front desk (not convenient at all). I have no idea what Disney is thinking here... everyone was annoyed by this and I even complained to a cast member because it is so inconvenient. She agreed that it needed to be changed but so far, not happening. I don't remember this being an issue at any other Disney Resort but maybe I'm just forgetting? So if we go back, we will bring our own beach towels.

2. The food court is one of the best in all of Disney World as far as selection, BUT... it is chaos with kids. Even with 4 adults, it was terrible. DH stood in line for 30+ min for the kids food and then had to switch and get in a different line for his own. I took the kids food and went to go pay, only to find out that he was supposed to have gotten 2 sides instead of one. When I told her to just charge us- we didn't want the extra side, she got all confused. Finally, she just gave us free drinks instead. If I had it to do again, I would probably not go back here. Either eat in the parks or go to Downtown Disney or off-property.

As for the parks, this was our first visit to the new Fantasyland. Very well done, can't wait to see it completely finished. Tried "Lefous Brew" at Gastons Tavern. It was ok. This is their competition with butterbeer at Harry Potter and I don't think it comes close. Its a frozen apple juice with a toasted marshmellow aftertaste. A lil too sweet for me. Even the kids only had 1 sip. We ate lunch at Beast's tower. This one needs some work. The food and theming was excellent and really is quick service once you sit down, but we stood in line for 30+ min in the baking sun and they really didn't explain the ordering process well at all. They could have kept that line moving much faster if they just explained "You go up to kiosk and order your food. Then go find an empty table. Get your own silverware and drinks. Your food will be delivered shortly." We will go back at dinner for "fine dining" some time but for now, I'm glad we tried it for lunch. We didn't do Belle's enchanted story time. The line was too long and I don't think my kids would enjoy it enough. Once Sophie is older, we will give this a try. We had done the new Dumbo before but the kids really loved it this time with the indoor play area. That is one of Disney's best ideas ever.

Oh and DH and I had dinner at the Yachtsman's Steakhouse this time. We have a mission to try the 10 best steaks at Disney and this one is going to be tough to beat. Le Cellier doesn't come close. I totally overate here and was miserable for the rest of the night, so don't make the same mistake!

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Re: Disney Art of Animation Resort and trip review

  • Awesome review!
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    Nothing is more discouraging than unappreciated sarcasm. 
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  • great review! thanks!
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  • K&P414K&P414 member
    Awesome, thanks for the feedback! 
  • Great review!  Question: is Beast's tower different than the Be Our Guest restaurant?  If not, would the reservation help with the line at the kiosk at all?  We are trying to decide to do dinner vs. lunch there later in the year.

     
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  • imagemingaling2:
    Great review! nbsp;Question: is Beast's tower different than the Be Our Guest restaurant? nbsp;If not, would the reservation help with the line at the kiosk at all? nbsp;We are trying to decide to do dinner vs. lunch there later in the year.


    Yes, it is Be Our Guest. Reservations are not available at lunch only dinner. For lunch it is quick service, dinner is fine dining. If taking little kids, lunch is the better option. If kids are old enough to behave at dinner mine aren't!, I would do dinner.

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  • Daisy22Daisy22 member

    Thanks for the review. I think we'll do the cars suite the 1st 2 nights of our vacation in December. I think the boys will love it.  

     I would not consider Be Our Guest dinner fine dining at all. It's just a sit down restaurant. We ate there in February. It's really loud so even if your kids are a little loud no one will hear it. To us it felt like a quick service restaurant but that had higher prices and a waiter. I'm pretty sure we were in and out of there in an hour and thats with 7 people. The food was okay. Really its for the atmosphere more then anything. The boys loved it though and really loved seeing the Beast at the end for pictures. I don't think we'll do it again anytime soon though

    BFP 12/23/07, M/C 1/25/08 Lilypie Fourth Birthday tickers Lilypie Third Birthday tickers Lilypie First Birthday tickers
  • imageslwprincess:
    Yes, it is Be Our Guest. Reservations are not available at lunch only dinner. For lunch it is quick service, dinner is fine dining. If taking little kids, lunch is the better option. If kids are old enough to behave at dinner mine aren't!, I would do dinner.

    Ah, good to know - thanks!

     
    EDD 1/8/10 - our sweet sunshine DD born 12/30/09
    EDD 2/15/14 - Stillbirth at 21 wks 10/02/13
    EDD 8/12/15 - MMC 1/12/15
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  • imageDaisy22:

    Thanks for the review. I think we'll do the cars suite the 1st 2 nights of our vacation in December. I think the boys will love it.  

     I would not consider Be Our Guest dinner fine dining at all. It's just a sit down restaurant. We ate there in February. It's really loud so even if your kids are a little loud no one will hear it. To us it felt like a quick service restaurant but that had higher prices and a waiter. I'm pretty sure we were in and out of there in an hour and thats with 7 people. The food was okay. Really its for the atmosphere more then anything. The boys loved it though and really loved seeing the Beast at the end for pictures. I don't think we'll do it again anytime soon though

    Have you done Cinderella's Royal Table? That's the other option we're considering if we can get reservations. 

     
    EDD 1/8/10 - our sweet sunshine DD born 12/30/09
    EDD 2/15/14 - Stillbirth at 21 wks 10/02/13
    EDD 8/12/15 - MMC 1/12/15
    EDD 12/24/15

      
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  • Daisy22Daisy22 member
    imagemingaling2:
    imageDaisy22:

    Thanks for the review. I think we'll do the cars suite the 1st 2 nights of our vacation in December. I think the boys will love it.  

     I would not consider Be Our Guest dinner fine dining at all. It's just a sit down restaurant. We ate there in February. It's really loud so even if your kids are a little loud no one will hear it. To us it felt like a quick service restaurant but that had higher prices and a waiter. I'm pretty sure we were in and out of there in an hour and thats with 7 people. The food was okay. Really its for the atmosphere more then anything. The boys loved it though and really loved seeing the Beast at the end for pictures. I don't think we'll do it again anytime soon though

    Have you done Cinderella's Royal Table? That's the other option we're considering if we can get reservations. 

     Yes we've done it for breakfast back in December and dinner in February.  There are not as many choices here on the menu as Be Our Guest but my food was better at the castle. And you get all these princesses. My boys were in awe of the princesses and the princesses were really good with them. It's definitely not as loud and crowded as Be Our Guest but it is a set price. Be Our Guest is a regular menu at dinner so you could possibly eat here cheaper then the castle. I would say they are both on the same level. Better then quick service but not like a good sit down restaurant here. There are definitely better restaurants at disney but for the atmosphere and see the boys love the princesses its worth it. I know I don't have much longer of them wanting to go to places like this so I'm eating it up now before its over. 

    BFP 12/23/07, M/C 1/25/08 Lilypie Fourth Birthday tickers Lilypie Third Birthday tickers Lilypie First Birthday tickers
  • K&P414K&P414 member
    imagemingaling2:
    imageDaisy22:

    Thanks for the review. I think we'll do the cars suite the 1st 2 nights of our vacation in December. I think the boys will love it.  

     I would not consider Be Our Guest dinner fine dining at all. It's just a sit down restaurant. We ate there in February. It's really loud so even if your kids are a little loud no one will hear it. To us it felt like a quick service restaurant but that had higher prices and a waiter. I'm pretty sure we were in and out of there in an hour and thats with 7 people. The food was okay. Really its for the atmosphere more then anything. The boys loved it though and really loved seeing the Beast at the end for pictures. I don't think we'll do it again anytime soon though

    Have you done Cinderella's Royal Table? That's the other option we're considering if we can get reservations. 

    are you going to Epcot? I like the princess meal in Norway. 

  • Good to know its not really "fine" dining at dinner. Maybe we will try it next time. Their filet is on our top 10 steak list so we have to try it at some point. Cinderella castle is on my to do list but Sophie is still scared of characters/princesses so I need her to be older. We did the Disney Jr breakfast at Hollywood Studios this time and she liked them from a distance but she had to be on the far booth side safely between Daddy and Grandpa!

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  • imageK&P414:

    are you going to Epcot? I like the princess meal in Norway. 

    No, unfortunately not this time.  It is my favorite park, but I think MK is much more suitable for Mia and I can really only tolerate one park per trip at this point ;) 

     
    EDD 1/8/10 - our sweet sunshine DD born 12/30/09
    EDD 2/15/14 - Stillbirth at 21 wks 10/02/13
    EDD 8/12/15 - MMC 1/12/15
    EDD 12/24/15

      
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  • We've done breakfast twice at Cinderella's Royal Table and lunch once at Be our Guest.  While I love the concept of eating in the castle and seeing all the princesses, I am not impressed with their food at all.  Would we go back? Definitely, but for the atmosphere, princesses, and not waiting in line bit. To me it's an efficient use of time to multi-task eating (even if the food is so-so) and meeting the princesses. Be our Guest was cool. We ate there for lunch the second day it was open. We waited in line about 20 ish minutes to get in. It was a little chaotic waiting in line, doing the kiosk thing, finding a table etc. I also thought it was not explained well, but thought it was bc it had just opened.I am sad to hear that it has not changed. The atmosphere was cool and we thought the food was pretty good actually. It's fun to walk around inside and check out all the rooms. The kids loved both places so I don't think you can really go wrong with either as long as you have the proper expectations.
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  • imageAugustaBride04:
    It was a little chaotic waiting in line, doing the kiosk thing, finding a table etc. I also thought it was not explained well, but thought it was bc it had just opened.I am sad to hear that it has not changed.

    This is what surprised me the most.  Such a simple thing to fix- they have plenty of cast members working the line so it would be super easy for them to just give a brief explanation so people knew what to expect.  I even asked the cast member outside about what to expect when we got inside so we could move it along and he said he "didn't want to tell me too much becuase he didn't want to ruin it."  WTH?  There was nothing to ruin!

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