A few weeks ago, I ran through a 3-part series about DVC basics. (Click Here for part 1!) I absolutely love being a DVC member! I aim to someday stay at each of the DVC resorts, and was so happy to check off the Polynesian when I last visited Disney in November! Let me tell you all about it. Spoiler alert: it was fantastic.
There’s something especially magical about staying at a resort on the monorail loop. Even though the monorail could use a good sprucing, it’s inherently “Disney,” and the easy access it gives to my favorite two parks in WDW makes it particularly appealing to me. Staying at the Polynesian gave me walk-up access to the highway in the sky. It was actually uniquely convenient when it came to the monorail because we had direct access to Magic Kingdom on the resort loop, and we could walk to TTC to hop directly on the Epcot monorail without having to worry about transferring lines. The Polynesian also offers boat access to Magic Kingdom, but since it was particularly chilly during our visit, we didn’t take advantage of that option. Guests of the Polynesian can use the Disney buses to access Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom. We never experienced a particularly long wait for the buses (to get to the parks, or to get back home).
The Polynesian is a gorgeous resort. The lobby was recently re-themed (in connection with the DVC expansion at the resort), but since I don’t have any memory of having seen the old lobby, I can offer no opinion in the form of a comparison, unfortunately. I can say, though, that the current lobby is whimsical, colorful, and extremely fun. I mean, who doesn’t love that tiki man right in the center? (Does he have a name? I feel like he should have a name.)
Since our visit was the week after Thanksgiving, Ben and I had the distinct pleasure of enjoying the Christmas decorations sprinkled all over the resort. Because this lobby is in the two-story-tall Great Ceremonial House, it offers multiple smaller trees rather than the enormous Christmas trees you can find at resorts like the Grand Floridian and the Animal Kingdom Lodge. We were pleasantly surprised to find PhotoPass photographers ready to snap some shots in front of those trees during our stay. Each tree, as well as the garlands and wreaths, was sparkly with glittering lights but kept with the theme of the resort with tropical flowers and orange and purple baubles tucked into the greenery. The result was a beautiful melding of holiday cheer and Polynesian flair. To wrap up the whole package, the resort played Polynesian holiday songs all trip long.
In addition to these special decorations, the lobby is full of bright, tropical flowers that made me feel as if I were visiting a warm island getaway, even when it was 40 degrees outside (It was COLD). Theming continued seamlessly outside where a babbling brook with a waterfall framed the front door entrance. I wish the weather was more conducive to pool time, because the pool looked like a blast. I also loved that each walkway was lined with torches topped with real fire. This small detail gave even walking on a sidewalk an exotic feel.
Ben and I used our DVC points to book a Deluxe Studio, but it’s important to remember that you do not need to be a DVC member to book any of the DVC rooms. Some DVC rooms are available for anyone to book. DVC rooms are nice because they tend to be a bit more apartment-like than the standard hotel rooms, but guests should remember that DVC rooms don’t offer daily Mousekeeping service. Since I don’t change my sheets every day at home, nor do I swap out towels after one use, I didn’t find this change to be at all inconvenient.
A Deluxe Studio offers a queen-size bed, a queen-size pull-out couch, and a single-sleeper pull-down bed. If you did some counting, you’ll note this studio offers comfortable accommodations for five guests, though the single-sleeper may be a bit small for some adults (but it’s a really fun sleeping space for a kid!). Because of the pull-down bed, this room does not offer a full bureau of drawers, but there are two large drawers located under the bed for storage, a closet, a table with two chairs, and a trunk-like coffee table for more storage.
The room also offered TWO bathroom areas (one with a rain-water shower and a sink and the other with a traditional tub/shower, toilet, and sink) and a balcony with two chairs overlooking the beautiful and peaceful grounds (the other side of our building would offer guests a water view of Bay Lake). I can’t say much about the tub, because, I mean, RAIN SHOWER. It might just seem like water falling from straight overhead (maybe because it is…), but I absolutely loved this feature of the room. The dim lighting along with the blue tiles made this shower extremely relaxing. There was even a built-in seat to let me stretch out my shower as long as I wanted — and I definitely did. After a long day at the parks, this was the perfect way to unwind.
The theming from the lobby, and really across the entire Polynesian property, continued seamlessly into the rooms. Our tiki man buddy popped up on our table-top lamp, and Lilo and Stitch lounge on a hammock in a hidden mural behind the pull-down bed. Our room’s decor (on the outside of the pull-down bed and on the bed runner) included brightly-colored plant prints, and our walls were adorned with framed paintings of birds that could have flown out of the Enchanted Tiki Room
Disney calls the Polynesian a village because it truly is. This resort houses Kona Cafe, ‘Ohana, Tambu Lounge, Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto, Capt. Cook’s, Kona Island, Barefoot Pool Bar, Pineapple Lanai, and two merchandise locations (with one including those basic food items offered at all DVC properties). ‘Ohana offers character dining and the resort has the Spirit of Aloha Dinner Show — so it really has something for everyone. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to take advantage of all of these locations on this trip, but we did get dinner at Kona Cafe and had the pleasure of meeting up with the Drennons at Tambu Lounge to share some Lapu Lapus! I feel like it’s a great place to come together with your Disney ‘Ohana.
Have you been to Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort? How did you like it? Is it on your bucket list still? Let me know in the comments, and let me know if you have any questions about my stay!