DIS Contributors review meals, resort stays, and entertainment that they have paid for during their own vacations. They only utilize discounts and offers if they are available to the general public, such as annual passholder discounts, or DVC membership discounts. They receive no additional compensation for dining experiences or events, so that they may give their honest opinions about price and value.
Walt Disney World is home to over two dozen resort hotels that serve as a guest’s “home” for their vacation. Three main categories (value, moderate, and deluxe) as well as Disney Vacation Club resorts, separate each hotel based on the price and level of overall amenities. I have had the opportunity to stay in multiple resorts in each category and have had both poor and excellent experiences. I had struggled to pick a favorite for some time; that was until my last stay on property at the Boardwalk this past September.
Disney’s Boardwalk Inn sits along Crescent Lake. The lake also surrounds Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club as well as Swan and Dolphin resorts. Each hotel in the area has its own unique charm and theme. But I’ve always loved the entertainment and serene environment the Boardwalk provides.
The lobby perfectly captures the theme in grand style. High ceilings and ornate chandeliers light up the room and create a relaxing atmosphere. On one side of the seating areas is the line of check-in desks where cast members stand ready to welcome guests. On the other is an exit to a porch with a great view of the Boardwalk and Crescent Lake.
I was not a fan of the old rooms prior to their refurbishment over the summer. The darker color scheme throughout did not appeal to me. When I first stepped into one of the newly-refurbished rooms, I was very impressed. I was concerned the rooms would fall victim to Disney’s recent trend of de-theming their rooms, completely stripping them of any association with the rest of the resort’s theme. The new rooms are a bit of a modernization, but are much more bright and welcoming while still including many touches well in-theme with the rest of the resort.
Imagineers opted to continue the current trend of installing vinyl hardwood floors rather than carpet. Soothing, soft pastels on the furniture and headboards create an environment reminiscent of the turn-of-the-century Atlantic City time period. The living room area includes many Disney details as well, including Mickey silhouettes on the lampshade and Mickey and Minnie silhouettes on the curtain.
The pieces of artwork included in the room were by far my favorite touches. These pictures of Minnie, Mickey, and Pluto in their Victorian-style attire are a fantastic theming element.
A cartoon picture of Mickey and Minnie having a picnic on the Village Green behind the Boardwalk lines the back of the kitchenette. I was even informed by a cast member that the artwork featuring the Boardwalk are real pictures of the resort turned into cartoons with characters being added as the finishing touch.
The icing on the cake was the stunning view. Seeing the hustle and bustle of the Boardwalk, the Friendship boats cruising along Crescent Lake, and the Yacht and Beach Club resorts from the balcony was incredibly picturesque.
The true highlight of my two-night stay was something I have never experienced before: club level access. The Innkeeper’s Club has its own wing of rooms on the fourth floor and a concierge team dedicated to guest’s individual needs. The club lounge is open from 7am – 10pm and offers a full breakfast, snacks throughout the afternoon, and hors d’oeuvres in the evening that could easily serve as a meal. The lounge has a beautiful design with a color and furniture scheme similar to the rooms. Food was available all day and Disney movies played on a large TV for entertainment. The service was also phenomenal, as cast members made every guest feel welcome regularly checked in on how my stay was going.
I had high expectations going into this stay at the Boardwalk, but did not expect to have a new favorite resort and a potential go-to for future trips. It gets my highest recommendation.
I am a lifelong Disney fan and have visited the parks my entire life. I was lucky enough to have been a Cast Member as well, spending over two years in Tomorrowland merchandise. I'm excited to share my passion and thoughts on Walt Disney World.