Disney // Is Art of Animation the right resort for you?

Disney // Is Art of Animation the right resort for you?

{Joint written by my long suffering husband!}

The first time we visited with children, we stayed in the relatively new Art of Animation, we loved it, but is this the resort for you?

The Art of Animation Resort is fantastic, you are immersed in a world of larger than life characters. There are four areas to the resort: Cars, Lion King, Finding Nemo, and the Little Mermaid. Each area is themed perfectly. There is a cozy cone motel, Big Blue Pool, and gadgets and gizmos a-plenty. So what exactly makes this resort special?

The rooms – We stayed in one of the Little Mermaid rooms during our vacation. It was clean, it had beds, it was perfectly formed. And the theming was such that you felt that you were ‘under da’ sea’! It was a good size for two adults and one baby in a crib, but for more than this it may feel a bit cosy. The rooms are the smallest on site and if you were to have two adults and two teenagers in there, it may feel a bit congested. However, it is a base for sleeping and getting ready so you won’t need to spend too much time there. The Art of Animation resort also offers suites in the other 3 areas of the resort: Cars, The Lion King, and Finding Nemo. These are ideal for guest numbers of up to 6 and sport an individual bedroom and sofabeds. A little bit more space for the family. However, they do come with a bit of a price tag, which can make them more expensive than some moderate resort options. They are new, and interesting and shiny, so you pay the premium for that.

(Photo Credit: Expedia)

The food – There is a great choice of food available at the World of Flavors foodcourt in Art of Animation. It is situated in the main building of the resort and is only a 5 minute walk from the furthest point of the resort (Little Mermaid section is the furthest). You could grab pastries, smoothies or cereal for breakfast, or go for the full ‘American’ breakfast. Lunch and Dinner was grab and go: Pulled Pork sandwiches, pizzas, burgers, pasta, all freshly made and really yummy, with plenty of seating available. There is enough choice if you didn’t have an Advanced Dining Reservation, or you simply wanted a quick bite. There is no Table Service restaurant at this resort, but you are linked so well to the parks, Disney Springs and other hotels that this is not an issue. World of Flavors is widely known as one of the best quick service restaurants in the whole of Disney World, so to have it on your doorstep, you can’t really go wrong!

The service – The cast members give such good service that it makes you think that they do it because they want to, not because it’s their job. Whether it’s bus times, or dining reservations, or getting a US-only item posted through to the hotel, it is on point. They help to make the whole holiday more special. It is not just the front desk staff, but the pool staff, the mouse keeping and everyone else you encounter. Top drawer.

The transport – Similar to other resorts on site you get access to complimentary buses throughout your stay. They are very regular and will take you directly to most points of interest in WDW. Some buses may have a joint destination, but they are great, comfortable, air conditioned and the best way to get around! There may be lines during busy periods but we never waited more than 10 minutes for a bus, and anyway – time flies when you’re having fun (as our daughter shows!). And of course, there is the magical express to and from the airport, a definite perk or staying at a WDW resort. Plus, Art if Animation is one of the resorts that will be getting the new gondola system, connecting it to Hollywood Studios and Epcot, a major advantage to staying at this resort in the future.

The lobby – A simply stunning area. You are surrounded by huge sketches of your favourite Disney characters. It’s bright and airy and when you first walk through the doors your jaw hits the floor. It’s gets your Disney juices flowing from moment one! On our last day, as we awaited the Magical Express to take us back to the airport we sat in the lobby around a TV and watched some Disney cartoons, little touches that give you that nostalgia of being a kid again! It also offers animation drawing classes at a small extra cost.

The surroundings – It is outstanding. The landscaping is impeccable, everything is so well kept. You are flanked on one side of the resort by the Hourglass Lake, which looks over to Pop Century resort. It’s a great place to be. The resort is split in to 4 areas and are amazingly well themed. The Little Mermaid section has larger than life models of Ariel, Ursula and King Triton. There are whoosits and whatsits galore, it’s fully immersive. There is a mini prideland in the Lion King area of the resort, accompanied by favourite scenes from the film. The Finding Nemo wing of the resort houses the Big Blue Pool and beautiful blue buildings which contain some more of the suites. And then there’s cars land, or Radiator Springs, complete with the cozy cone motel and even the footpaths are asphalt roads with power pylons hanging overhead. You are in Cars! Say hi to Lightning too… Ka-Chow!

The Big Blue Pool – The big blue pool is one of three pools at the Art of Animation, and is the biggest pool on the whole of Walt Disney World property. The thing that makes it extra special? You can listen to your favourite Disney songs UNDERWATER. Yep, pretty amazing.

The outdoor cinema -A little known perk of some resorts, of which AofA is one! An awesome way to spend an evening. Movies Under The Stars run for most nights of the week. You can watch Disney classics like Cinderella or newer releases like Moana in the open air. Blankets are provided for you to sit on or warm up with on cooler nights. Grab a hot chocolate or chilled coke (using your bottomless resort mug!) and enjoy your favourite film with your nearest and dearest.

So there we have it – Art of Animation! A complete all-round resort, for all ages in the family, and offering everything you could really want from a Disney hotel. If you want to immerse yourself into the world of Disney, then this is definitely the resort for you! Check out our ‘Resort Hopping’ post that will be coming soon for snapshots of some of the other hotels on offer, and watch this space for further in-depth reviews on each hotel, as we stay in them on our trips!




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