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Old Aug 5, 07, 9:38 am   #1
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Disney Hotel Advice

My family (wife and 2 children 16 months and almost 3) are going to do a quick trip to Disney world in October. We will be driving up on Thursday afternoon (during kids nap times) and going to the Magic Kindgdom on Friday. What I'm looking for is a Hotel near the park that has a nice pool for kids for that Thursday late afternoon. I would also like a view of the fireworks at night...Starwoods properties would be a bonus, but it doesn't have to be...can anyone help me here?
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Old Aug 5, 07, 1:08 pm   #2
 
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If you want to stay on site, both the Dolphin and Swan are starwood properties. Off site, there's the Sheraton World Resort. Ask for a room in the tower - they are the newest. Hotel is very kiddie friendly. Don't know about the fireworks. If you do see them, they'll be from Seaworld which is right next door.
www.sheratonworld.com
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Old Aug 5, 07, 3:03 pm   #3
 
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Not really much to see for the fireworks at the Disney properties, unless you are there I would guess. I stayed at the Marriott World Center lookign toward the parks. Got a few minutes of the Epcot show, but most is below the tree line. Never saw anything from another park. They do have a movie pool side on Saturday Nights for the kids.

I just got back from a Saturday night at the Renassiance Sea World. If you get a room facing Sea World and clear the trees, you see the fireworks and water show fairly well. Does not last long, but only thing between you and the show is a road and the parking lot.

Forgot to add - now in August the fireworks are at 10 PM
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Old Aug 5, 07, 10:42 pm   #4
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The very best would be Disney's Contemporary Resort. It's across the street from the Magic Kingdom (it's a 5 minute walk) and also on the monorail line which connects it to the Magic Kingdom, MK Resorts, and Epcot.

Any room facing the Magic Kingdom will give you at least a decent (if not a good) view of the fireworks. They also have 2 fireworks viewing areas. One is open to the public on the fourth floor, the other is on the 15th floor in the California Grille (tip- if you don't want to eat there, just get a drink from the bar and step outside to the observation deck).

And it also has a pool

Here's a link to the resorts website.
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Old Aug 6, 07, 1:07 am   #5
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Originally Posted by FLgrr View Post
Not really much to see for the fireworks at the Disney properties, unless you are there I would guess. I stayed at the Marriott World Center lookign toward the parks. Got a few minutes of the Epcot show, but most is below the tree line.
If you can get a room at the top of the World Center Tower you should be able to see the fireworks fairly well. Also, this property has a very nice pool with a big water slide, water falls, etc. It is all very kid friendly. (Of course I'm sure that there are quite a few 'kid friendly' hotels in Orlando. )
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Old Aug 6, 07, 8:19 am   #6
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The easiest for you, as MKT said, is to stay at the Contemporary. You can walk into the Magic Kingdom, which is a big bonus, particularly if you're there at night.

My second choices would be either the Polynesian or Grand Floridian. They both have a small launch type boat to get you to the Magic Kingdom as well as the monorail. An upside is the pools are nicer than the Contemporaries.

No matter which of the 3 you pick, they're all good and you can see the fireworks from all of them, as well as a light parade on the lagoon that goes from hotel to hotel.
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Old Aug 6, 07, 10:55 am   #7
 
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The Contemporary is the oldest Disney Resort hotel but it does have the best fireworks view. I would reccomend the Grand Floridian or the Polynesian. I always stay at the Grand Floridian and it is very nice. You can see the fireworks from your balcony (request Magic Kingdom view). Grand Floridian Pics

The monorail connects the Grand Floridian, Polynesian, and Comtemporary to the Magic Kingdom and Epcot which is nice.

If you decide to stay at the Swan or Dolphin book the room on starwood.com as it is cheaper than disneyworld.com
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Old Aug 6, 07, 6:46 pm   #8
 
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Great advice from others here. For such a short trip I absolutely recommend staying at a Disney hotel so that you can avoid wasting time driving, parking, etc.

The Polynesian has perhaps the best pool on Disney property but I had a pretty disappointing experience with my last stay there regarding guest service overall. Both the Grand Floridian and the Contemporary have never failed to knock my socks off.
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Old Aug 6, 07, 7:02 pm   #9
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I was at the Poly for a week in June and didn't have any problems. But I also wasn't expecting much. Heck, I've learned never to expect more than 2 star treatment at 4 star prices at Disney.

BUT the pool is crowded. I spent all of my time at the quiet pool.

Since the OP only has 1 day for the parks, it would help us to know what else is planned.

Like I said, the easiest would be the Contemporary, and with children so young, I doubt the design of the pool matters much - water is all that counts

But the OPs time frame is lower season and I don't think he'd have those issues.
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Old Aug 6, 07, 8:27 pm   #10
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Thanks for all the great advice...the only thing we have planned is basically the pool in the afternoon/evening we check in, and then the magic kingdom on the following day...then it's back to Sarasota.
I think we will try out one of the disney hotels mentioned...now I'm going to get specific and see if anyone can help...do any of the hotels have a pool with a "beach" type of entrance? My soon to be 3 year old is going through his "independent" stage and will want to enter the pool all by himself...so this is helpful, but not an absolute must.
Also, anyone know the best place to book these hotels?
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Old Aug 6, 07, 8:49 pm   #11
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You should definately take the kids to the Magic Kingdom for the fireworks because they will miss the parade before hand which kids of your age will really enjoy. Don't worry at all about little tykes sleeping patterns. They will sleep when they are tired. I was there every year from when my oldest was 9 mos. Also, I avoid Disney hotels. I like a suites property (although I had more than 2 kids). The price was so much better and if you have AAA get the book and look at the pools. One place in particular which is an easy drive is the Carrbe Royale http://cariberoyale.com/ with fantastic facilities for real little kids and such an easy drive to Disney and included breakfast when I was there. There are many other wonderful choices too.
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Old Aug 6, 07, 9:37 pm   #12
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I'm certain the Poly and the Grand Floridian have zero entry pools. I walked passed the Contemporary, but I honestly can't recall if they put one in. I'll see if I can find you some info.

For the most current and best pricing info, go to www.mousesavers.com. You can call Disney direct and get a AAA discount if you're a member (& have the card handy). If discounts become available you can call and revise it. It may be a bit too early for Oct discounts, but mousesavers will have all the info. Watch it on a regular basis. Some people make a sport of catching all the discounts and they do sell our fairly quickly

Other than those 2 suggestions, there's not much else you can do to save $$$ on disney hotels. Just remember, the price you are paying is for access - not amenities. Though the hotels are nice, they're not what most people would expect for the price paid.
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Old Aug 7, 07, 2:19 am   #13
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If you want to stay on site, both the Dolphin and Swan are starwood properties. Off site, there's the Sheraton World Resort. Ask for a room in the tower - they are the newest. Hotel is very kiddie friendly. Don't know about the fireworks. If you do see them, they'll be from Seaworld which is right next door.
www.sheratonworld.com
FYI - The Sheraton World Resort stopped being a Sheraton/Starwoods property almost a year ago now. The closest off-property *woods hotel is the Sheraton Safari.
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Old Aug 7, 07, 7:36 pm   #14
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Originally Posted by msv View Post
You should definately take the kids to the Magic Kingdom for the fireworks because they will miss the parade before hand which kids of your age will really enjoy. Don't worry at all about little tykes sleeping patterns. They will sleep when they are tired. I was there every year from when my oldest was 9 mos. Also, I avoid Disney hotels. I like a suites property (although I had more than 2 kids). The price was so much better and if you have AAA get the book and look at the pools. One place in particular which is an easy drive is the Carrbe Royale http://cariberoyale.com/ with fantastic facilities for real little kids and such an easy drive to Disney and included breakfast when I was there. There are many other wonderful choices too.
I don't believe the contemporary has a zero entry pool, but I know that the Polynesian and Grand Floridian both have them. mousesavers.com is the best place for disney discounts, check them out.

As for booking Disney travel, you have to go through Disney directly (http://www.disneyworld.com/ or 407-824-2222) or a travel agent to book most Disney travel. For a travel agent, I recommend Kingdom Konsultants, as I've dealt with them before and have had positive experiences.
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Old Aug 8, 07, 7:44 am   #15
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I don't really think it necessary to use a travel agent for a 2 night room only stay.

If you have AAA you can save 10 or 15% on the room rate, if there are no code discounts available (you will find when they are on mousesavers).

The only time I would say to use a travel agent is if that agent is AAA. The have "disney weeks" several times a year and you might get something additional besides the standard discount.

Nothing against agents, but most of us here are savvy enough not to need their services for a 2 night stay where nothing else is required.
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