Disney’s Boardwalk Resort Review ~ My thoughts!
As with all things Disney, it’s all in the details. Pulling up to the front doors of the Boardwalk Resort at Walt Disney World will immediately transport you back to the turn-of-the-century eastern seaboard. The resort was designed by architect Robert A. M. Stern, who also designed the Yacht & Beach Club Resort, who used elements of Atlantic City and Coney Island, with more nods to Coney Island, as inspiration for the design of the resort.
This Epcot resort features a stunning lobby is filled with memorabilia reminiscent of Luna Park, a real amusement park that operated from 1903 – 1944 in New York. Replicas of the Flip Flap Railway, a wooden roller coaster that was a leading attraction at Coney Island, as well as a scale model carousel, designed in the 1920’s by M. C. Illions are just some of the hidden gems located in this resort.
With 378 total rooms set on the shores of Crescent Lake, Boardwalk opened on July 1, 1996. The rooms are approximately 371 sq. ft. and have 2 queen beds and a daybed or one king-size bed and a daybed. Each room is decked out furnishings reminiscent of the 1900’s and offers an armoire with a flat screen TV and drawer space, a desk with a small table, a chair, a spacious closet, a chest of drawers, and a private balcony/patio. The rooms are also equipped with a small refrigerator, ceiling fan, coffee maker, and individual climate control. The vanity is located outside of the bathroom and has two sinks and a full-length mirror. Room options include Standard View and Water View.
In addition to the standard rooms, the Boardwalk also has Concierge Rooms and Garden Suites. The Concierge service offers standard, deluxe, Boardwalk View, and Garden Suite rooms that all boast amenities such as nightly turn-down service, food offerings throughout the day, TV speakers in the restroom, robes, and a DVD player. Concierge level has a private lounge and guests can view Epcot’s IllumiNations nightly from the balcony. The Garden Suites are one of the most unique resort experiences on Disney property. These two-story suites have private entrances, yards separated by a white picket fence, are perfectly landscaped, and have a gated entrance. With 14 in total, the Garden Suites were originally designed for Honeymooners but are now used to accommodate others as well.
The dining options at Boardwalk Inn are endless, and many options are within walking distance.
In addition to the offerings on the boardwalk itself, the Swan/Dolphin, Yacht & Beach Club, and Epcot are all nearby.
Bell Vue Lounge:
Serving a dual purpose, this lounge offers a continental breakfast, serves coffee, espresso, tea, milk, and juice during the morning hours and after 5 p.m. is a full service bar.
Ample Hills Creamery:
Straight out of New York, this creamery is known for its imaginative approach to all things ice cream (think Ooey Gooey Butter Cake Ice Cream) and is the first location outside of New York City.
Leaping Horse Libations:
This watering hole is located right by the pool area and features drinks and food selections, such as hot dogs and sandwiches. Enjoy outdoor seating while watching over your little ones in the pool.
The Boardwalk Resort offers three pools to its guests. Centrally located, the main resort pool, known as Luna Park, features a 200ft waterslide called “Keister Coaster” that resembles an old wooden roller coaster. There is also a kiddie splash pool and a separate hot tub for adults to enjoy and relax. There are two ‘quiet’ pools at the resort. One is located next to the Community Hall in the Villa area and the other with the Inn’s Rose Garden Courtyard.
Located just outside of the pool fence is a playground area where kids can release some energy in a safe environment that features turf-style grass, swings, slides, and tunnels. There are also benches around the playground so adults can rest while the kids are playing.
Muscles and Bustles Health Club:
While fitness is not always on the forefront when on vacation, Boardwalk offers a 24-hour health club with free membership for the length of the stay to guests at the resort. With free weights and other exercise equipment as well as a tanning bed, steam room, and sauna, guests can ensure their fitness goals can be met. Guests from other Disney resorts can use the facility for a small fee. There is also an Epcot resort jogging trail. Maps are available in the health club.
Located on the villa side of the resort, Community Hall offers rental bikes, tennis racket rentals, ping pong, croquet, DVD rentals, and noodles/tubes for the pool.
In addition to the activities at the resort, there is always a wide range of activities happening on the boardwalk itself. From jugglers to magic shows to food carts, there is always entertainment abound! Just be on the lookout and listen for the bells of the surrey bikes, which can also be rented on the boardwalk. And don’t forget about the bars, restaurants, and nightlife! There are many options for all ages!
Located just off the main lobby, Dundy’s Sundries is a gift shop that has a small selection of resort logo merchandise as well as basic necessities and toiletries.
Thimbles and Threads, Disney’s Character Carnival, Screen Door General Store:
Located on the Boardwalk, these three stores are combined to form one large store. With a wide range of character merchandise, clothing, food and snacks, all needs can be met in one store.
Disney Bus Transportation:
The Boardwalk Resort offers bus transportation to the Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom. The buses also transport guests to Blizzard Beach, Typhoon Lagoon, and Disney Springs.
Guests wishing to go to Epcot or Hollywood Studios have the option to walk (5 minutes to Epcot and 20 minutes to Hollywood Studios) or catch a ride on a Friendship Boat. Taxies are also available from the valet station.
Overall, the nostalgic feeling created by the Boardwalk Resort is second-to-none, followed by the proximity to the parks and excellent dining, making this resort a fan favorite.
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