Photo Credit: Dennis Brown, NDU 5
I am often asked by many friends how to get the best deal on buying in to the Disney Vacation Club. Over the past year I have become a huge proponent of buying DVC points through the secondary (resale) market and in fact bought my first resale contract this past winter.
Posted in Disney Company, Disney Vacation Club, Lifestyle, Planning, Vacation Also tagged Adventures by Disney, Disney, Disney Cruise Line, disneyland paris, DVC Resale, Hong Kong Disneyland Resort, planning, Tokyo Disneyland
Photo credit: Dennis Brown, NDU 5
Amenities! These are typically what makes a resort one of your favorites! This review of the amenities is broken down per Resort Level as follows:
1. Campsite – All campsites are found at Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground. In addition to rooms in the Campsite Resort Level, you will also find that the Fort Wilderness has rooms at the Moderate Resort Level. As such, the amenities found for this least expensive Resort Level are great for the price!
Photo Credit: Dennis Brown, NDU 5
One of the most precious memories of my childhood was my first trip to Walt Disney World in the summer of 1990. As the son of Los Angeles natives, I grew up going to Disneyland, but, to me, that was nothing compared to being able to visit three parks and surround myself in the world of the Mouse for a whole week. I had to be the luckiest kid on earth and could not wait to go back.
Photo credit: Dennis Brown, NDU 5
Beginning last week, our teacher, Natalie H from http://MeetTheMagic.com, began our lesson on Disney Room Levels by getting an understanding of Resort Seasons and room location. You may remember that these two variables help determine the room rate per night. You can attend this lesson by clicking here.
Posted in Disney Reviews, Resorts Also tagged Campsite, Concierge, Deluxe Resorts, Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge, Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground, Hotel, Meet the Magic, Moderate Resorts, Natalie H., Square foot, The Walt Disney Company, Value Resorts, Walt Disney World Resort
D23, has extended their opportunity for Disney Vacation Club® Members to receive a 10 percent discount off the purchase of new Gold and Silver D23 Memberships! The best part? No new end date has been given for this promotion.
D23 gives fans a look at all things Disney, on everything from Disney Theme Parks to Disney film, television, and stage productions to the legendary Walt Disney Archives. Gold Members receive the quarterly Disney Twenty-Three magazine — plus a special gift with each magazine! For those members who aren’t close enough to take advantage of D23 special events, the magazine is the highlight of membership, and its stunning archival quality makes each issue a joy to behold. D23 also maintains a feature-filled website, offers the member the ability to attend a variety of special events, and, perhaps most importantly, the opportunity to meet new friends who share their affection for Disney.
Posted in D23, Disney Company, Disney Reviews, Disney Vacation Club, Finance, Lifestyle, News, Shopping, Vacation Also tagged D23, Discount, DVC
Photo credit: Dennis Brown, NDU 5
The Walt Disney Resort includes 24 resorts! To get an understanding of how Disney prices their rooms, consider the following Resort Level lesson:
Each of the Disney Resorts is included in a Resort Level. The Resort Levels include the following: Campsite, Value, Moderate, Deluxe and Disney Vacation Club (DVC). These Levels denote the differences in price ranges to be expected, accommodation room types, and amenity differences. For each Level, room rates vary based on the season of travel and the location of the actual room.
In Part Two of the Disney Dream Cruise Preview, we talked about food, but what about entertainment? Disney again is the leader. There’s a place for every age group. On board, Disney has the most comprehensive child-care venue on the high seas. For infants and toddlers, parents can drop their kids off at It’s a Small World Nursery where experienced counselors will keep the little ones happy while mom and dad grab some adult time. You can even check on the children through a one-way mirror. For kids aged 3 to 10, The Oceaneers Club is the place. They have a 103 inch plasma screen for watching movies, a magic play floor, and Andy’s Room where the Toy Story films come to life. In addition, kids can play in Pixie Hollow, Monster’s Academy, and the Explorer Pod. All of these areas can be found on deck 5, midship.
Times Square is generally regarded as the “Crossroads of the World,” but the same could be said about Disney World. Over the years, I have bumped into neighbors, former neighbors, cousins, friends, and people I knew but couldn’t quite place. When you travel 1,500 miles to a place as vast as Disney World, you simply do not expect to see anyone you know.
One of the strangest encounters, or series of encounters, occurred during a week-long visit back in April of 2007. The beginning of the National Hockey League playoffs coincided with one of our non-park days, and, as Buffalo Sabres fans, we headed to the ESPN Zone at the Boardwalk to catch the Sabres’ first playoff game against the New York Islanders.
A very interesting rumor has been brought to my attention in the last week, and I have been trying to shed some light on the subject. The rumor began around spring of 2010 and has been floating its way around Disney forums since, popping up now and again on almost all of the major sites. This rumor? A new DVC is being planned. While this is pretty cool, the biggest part of this rumor is the possible location – the land that once was River Country.
Two weeks ago, you may recall that I mentioned that I rented points for our stay at Saratoga Springs from a DVC owner. The price for the point rental for the room was much less at $700 for the 5 nights versus the cost of over $1800 if we booked through Disney.com with an annual pass discount for the same room type, days, etc! Last week, I detailed the accommodations found in the Studio rooms at Saratoga Springs Resort and Spa. Today, I wanted to give you some insight into my family’s personal review of the DVC rental at Saratoga Springs.
Last week, you may recall that I discussed renting points for a stay at Disney’s Saratoga Springs. My family stayed for 5 nights in a Studio there at Saratoga Springs. This resort is one of Disney’s Vacation Club properties with 6 sections—The Springs, The Paddock, Congress Park, The Carousel, The Grandstand and the Treehouse Villas. The accommodations include those that meet the needs of one visitor in a studio to the needs of a family traveling with up to 12 guests. The grounds cover 65 acres and is located in the Downtown Disney area. In fact, Downtown Disney is an easy walk from the Congress Park section!
I am not a DVC (Disney Vacation Club) owner. I have always wanted to stay in a DVC property but have found the Disney prices for the DVC resorts to be unattainable. I had frequently priced out staying at various DVC properties but could not justify the costs.
In recent months, I had read that some people rent points in order to afford staying in these rooms. I am always looking for ways to save money, yet have the Disney vacation of my dreams. As a result, I found a board that had members of DVC that were renting out their points. I had never frequented the boards prior to this, so do not feel that you must be a “board regular” to rent using the boards. I emailed the owner of the requested number of points needed after doing some research on the accommodations I wanted to request: I found online “calculators” that helped me determine the number of points I would need for the days of travel for the defined accommodations.
Posted in Disney Reviews, Disney Vacation Club, Finance, Lifestyle, Resorts, Travel Reports Also tagged Disney World, Disney's Saratoga Springs Rep, DVC, DVC Member, DVC point rental, Walt Disney World Resorts
(WDW is a place for families and so is my blog. I write with my brother and father and posed this question to my team to get you several perspectives.)
Knowing that not everyone has the luxury of going to WDW every year and have grandparents along to babysit, how old should a child be before you take them to WDW for the first time?
Amy: This is a question where the right answer varies for each family.
For the 40th straight year, many of the best golfers in the world descended on Walt Disney World to spend at least part of their family vacation playing in a PGA Tour event. Beginning in 1971 as the Walt Disney World Invitational, now the Children’s Miracle Network Classic, the Disney-hosted tournament was played on Disney’s Palm and Magnolia courses from November 11th through the 14th. Not surprisingly, the tournament is popular among professional golfers with families.
I did not notice the email when it arrived that Tuesday evening. In this junk-mail infested era, the subject line “Congratulations!” simply did not grab my attention. It was not until Wednesday afternoon, during a routine “social network” check, that I saw congratulatory messages to those advancing to the second round of the Disney Moms Panel search.
My heart sank. How could I not even make it past the first round?!
Usually, I am able to acknowledge the superior knowledge, dedication, and passion of other Disney fans. Deep down, I knew that there were thousands of applicants who were, most likely, more qualified to serve as members of the Moms Panel. But at that moment–a moment defined by pure selfishness–I thought the Moms Panel Selection Committee had made a huge mistake by failing to choose me.
The greatly anticipated Aulani Resort is set to open the Fall of next year. The resort is located on the island of O`ahu, about 17 miles from the Honolulu International Airport in Hawai`i. The property lies beachfront on 21 acres of property in the Ko Olina Resort & Marina development.
While this property is being marketed as Disney’s third DVC property outside of a Disney park, everyone is invited to stay with Disney at this resort. Disney has recently opened a website dedicated to Aulani. Through the magic of pixie dust, Disney apparently already has photos on the site of an unfinished resort! The Disney company is so amazing!
Recently, my 18-year-old daughter, Lauren, returned from college for her first visit home. The highlight of the visit was our family’s first viewing of the re-released Beauty and the Beast DVD. The Disney version of Beauty and the Beast was released in 1991, roughly one year before Lauren was born. It quickly became her favorite movie–at least until the release of The Lion King in 1994.
Quite a few of the Disney resorts have boat service to the parks and attractions. You can get to the Magic Kingdom by boat from the Wilderness Lodge as well as from the Contemporary, Polynesian and Grand Floridian resorts. Downtown Disney is accessible by boat from the Port Orleans resorts, Old Key West and Saratoga Springs. The whole EPCOT resort area is connected by boat to the Boardwalk, Disney’s Hollywood Studios and EPCOT. This includes the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin resorts, the Boardwalk Inn and the Yacht and Beach clubs. Naturally, each of these boat-accessible resorts has a dock. I think the prettiest dock by far at Walt Disney World is the one directly in front of the Yacht Club. In the distance, the Boardwalk and the manicured banks of Crescent Lake make for a pretty backdrop.
Often times Saratoga Springs gets a bad rap. It’s big. Bus service isn’t good. If I book my DVC trip last minute I’ll only get Saratoga.
But my firm opinion is that you have to look at the good values to realize how the resort can benefit those who stay there overall.
I wanted to take a quick glance at a new offering that will hopefully make Saratoga more appealing to many. And to digress for a moment, I truly love this resort. I have said it before and I’ll say it again, Saratoga really does have a ton to offer DVC members and those who have booked it with a great rate on cash. You just have to know how to maneuver the resort. If you understand that you can experience the gorgeous setting and location, as well as have a chance to catch the otter family that lives on Saratoga property!
This time of year is always overwhelming for our family. Joel works steadily around the clock at his office to meet pressing deadlines. This leaves me to solely manage the affairs of our home and children. Therefore, I am always on the brink of insanity, but these past seven days have been unusually stressful.
Last week I quit my job due to a precarious situation that was worsening in nature daily. Since then I have been tense as I search for a new source of income to pay for our Disney Vacation Club membership. Our failing economy hasn’t done much for my job search or my nerves with the “doom and gloom” that is now a regular part of the news, but this is not the full extent of my recent anxiety.
Posted in Disney Vacation Club, Lifestyle, Relationships, True Confessions of a Neurotic Disney Mom Also tagged bad economy, bikini, birthday, cellulite, death, Disney's Beach Club Villas, EPCOT, jellyfish, job loss, poolbathing suit, potty-training, relaxation, Stormalong Bay, stress, Walt Disney World, weight gain