Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort is a Walt Disney World hotel near Magic Kingdom. Sitting along the monorail loop and a short walk away from the Ticket and Transportation Center, the Polynesian is one of WDW’s marquee resort. The hotel is a deluxe resort and takes it’s theme from, you guessed it, Polynesia. In this post, we’ll review the hotel, sharing photos of the resort and room while offering our thoughts on Polynesian Village Resort’s value.
In reality, the Polynesian Resort is themed a little more broadly than just Polynesia. The resort plays up the tropical beach theme and does execute it well. From the volcano themed pool, to the beach to the spacious lobby, Polynesiand Village Resort is one of Disney World’s most relaxing, yet interesting resorts. If the three monorail resorts (Contemporary, Polynesian, and Grand Floridian) are connected to Tomorrowland, Adventureland, and Fantasyland then the Poly is the laid back resort on the South Pacific that you’d want to stay in after adventuring down a raucous river all day.
In that regard, the Polynesian Village Resort is the most successful or ‘on theme’ resort, not just out of the monorail resorts but, in all of Walt Disney World. That’s no small feat for a resort that opened along with Magic Kingdom in 1971. Like the classic attractions, some themes are able to transcend time.
Of course, theme alone wouldn’t make a rather luxurious hotel great. Polynesian Village Resort earns its great reputation for a variety of other reasons, including the location. Directly across Seven Seas Lagoon Magic Kingdom, the Poly is a quick boat or monorail ride away. That gives beach dwellers a beautiful and distinct view of fireworks and the Electrical Water Pageant every night. The TTC is also a short walk away from the resort and that provides direct monorail transportation to Epcot. I know the monorails haven’t been the most dependable form of transportation in the last few years but they still beat a resort that requires taking buses everywhere.
If a wonderful theme and location weren’t enough, the Polynesian has a great pool and excellent dining options. The former is well themed with a volcano as the centerpiece to the pool. That volcano houses one of the best resort water slides at Disney World. While the main pool is a little small and can get crowded, there are a few other quiet pools if you’re looking to get away from people for a while. Or you could just sit on the beach and take in the views.
The Polynesian offers Ohana, one of Disney World’s most successful and adored table-service restaurants as well as Kona Cafe. Capt. Cook’s is a very strong counter-service option for a resort. Along with those solid options, the resort also offers the Pineapple Lanai for all of your Dole Whip needs and Trader Sam’s, an excellent tiki bar. The amenities are stronger at the Polynesian than just about any other hotel at Disney World.
If I had to pick one area in the Polynesian that doesn’t completely nail it for me, it would be the lobby (Grand Ceremonial Hall). I know others miss the waterfall but that’s not my big complaint. Really, I just think the bottom level of the lobby is a little plain. While there are some nice details, there is nothing striking about the area. To be fair, I think Disney pretty much nailed what they were going for. The lobby does look sleek and modern while still fitting in with the South Seas theme. It’s just missing something for me – whether that be a waterfall or something else entirely. It’s a minor complaint and doesn’t really knock the hotel down in my book.
Moving on to the room, we stayed in a studio. Here’s a look at the main room.
I love this design. There’s a bed runner, which Disney World has all but abandoned. There’s color mixed with plenty of modern design. The detail in the artwork and lamps is uniquely Disney without hitting you over the head with it. The room is also quite spacious and the bed was very comfortable.
And the other side of the room. I like just about every aspect of the room. If I was to pick nits, the orange and red chairs aren’t really my taste but I do think they work in this room’s setting. The chest under the TV is a murphy bed.
These have become common place at Disney World. This room could feasibly hold five. Five adults may get a little tight but it’s doable, more so than any other studio room we’ve seen at Disney World. Part of the reason for that is there are two bathrooms.
Now, there is only one toilet. But having two showers is great if you’re staying with four or five in the room. Above appears to be the newer bathroom and it is easily my favorite bathroom I’ve seen in a WDW hotel. The rain shower is fantastic. The colors and counter tops are gorgeous.
The other bathroom isn’t quite as nice but it is pretty large and functional. Having two bathrooms is somewhat odd but we definitely enjoyed it.
There’s also a little kitchenette and it’s fine.
Overall, we loved the room. It ranks among our favorite at Walt Disney World and is definitely our favorite in terms of studio rooms.
With our nearly universal praise of the Polynesian, what’s the drawback? That’s simple, it’s the price. Staying at the Polynesian costs over $300/night generally. Simply put, that’s just too much for us when there are other good options and muich better prices. While the price can be more a little more affordable when you’re a DVC member or renting points, the Poly is still very expensive. Despite being an excellent hotel, the value at the Polynesian just isn’t there.
If money isn’t much of an object or if you’re looking to splurge for a night then guests would be hard pressed to find a better place to stay than the Polynesian Village Resort. The theme, location, amenities and room are all fantastic making the Poly one of the best resorts in Disney World.
Overall Rating – 9.5/10
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Categories: Hotel Reviews