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“Beautiful resort - loved the balcony view” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge

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Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   2901 Osceola Parkway, Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, FL 32830   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #30 of 328 hotels in Orlando
Sanford, Florida
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
“Beautiful resort - loved the balcony view”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 11, 2014

I surprised my husband for his birthday with a stay at the Animal Kingdom lodge. We loved it! It's such a beautiful resort and all the Disney touches made it really special. They knew it was my husband's birthday and at check in they gave him a happy birthday pin. When we got to the room there was a birthday voicemail waiting for him "from" Mickey and Minnie. Too cute. We had an Arusha Savanna room. The room with a view was so worth it since we were just staying there one night. My husband brought his camera and spent an hour after we got in the room taking pictures (he's really into nature photography). How cool to see giraffes and zebras walking around right in front of you as you relax on your balcony. There was a printout in the room that gave descriptions/pictures of all the animals. The room was very clean and a decent size. Loved the bath products.
The pool area is awesome. We had a couple drinks at Victoria Falls wine bar then went to Jiko for dinner. What a great meal!! My husband had the short ribs and I had the lamb. Perfectly prepared and delicious. The next morning we had breakfast at Boma. So good.
Everybody who worked there was friendly and went out of their way to make us comfortable.
The only complaint - the bed was horrible! (which is why I gave the resort 4 stars, not 5). I realize we were only staying one night, but I think of the families who spend a lot of money to stay one week or more and the mattresses are very low quality. Even some of the lower priced hotel chains in the area have upgraded to pillow top mattresses. Come on Disney!
We really enjoyed our stay and plan to come here again for a getaway in the near future.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (860)
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English first
Baltimore, Maryland
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 10, 2014

I just returned from a week vacation (2/3-2/8). I booked a standard room view. Our room was very far away from everything. It did have a partial view of a savanna but I did not think it was worth the far walk. Yes, I saw a few animals (big cattle and a couple birds) but I would have prefered a parking lot view closer to the food court/pool/lobby. My brother was in a room right next to us and they didn't want to change rooms, so we dealt with the long walk. Two things really stuck out (besides the distance).

1. We would come back from the parks around 10-11 p.m. and guests would place their food trays in the hallway. In the morning, when we would leave to go back to the parks, the same dirty food trays were still in the hall. I did not appreciate walking past dinner items in the morning. I'm surprised the resort does not have bugs.

2. The other thing that irritated me was that I never received any magical express information on my door. I had to call late at night the day before I left to find out what time magical express was coming. I requested that they put the information on my door (like all other resorts and like the other doors in the resort received). I was told that they should have been placed but they wouldn't put the information on the door and that I needed to go to the Bell Hop outside in the front of the lobby to pick up the vouchers needed in the morning. Never has this happened at any of the other resorts I've stayed at (Carribean Beach, Port Orleans, Pop Century).

Also, the first or second evening of my trip, my brother (who was in the room next door under separate reservations) received a tray with some pastries and a white chocolate Mickey from the front desk staff. Guess what I received.... a voicemail on my room phone from the front desk regarding my stay and my "easy check out" instructions. I had to call and ask what it was about because my trip had just started. They told me to ignore it. Kind of funny when my brother asked if I also got a chocolate tray or not. Nope! Just a voicemail that was incorrectly left on my phone. I really didn't care but I found it interesting and figured I'd share so folks are not disappointed if that happens to your family.

The Mara food court was nice but too far from my room and they didn't have as many food offerings as other resorts in Disney. It was clean and I was able to find seating, but I felt like I was in a dark basement.

The pool was fantastic and the slide was great. We enjoyed 1 day of swimming. I wish I could have had a few more days but the weather changed the temperatures dropped.

The lobby was beautiful and peaceful. I enjoyed looking at the detail. It reminded me of the Grand Califorian lobby in Disneyland.

We had dinner at Boma. I LOVED Boma! I really enjoyed trying some new things I've never had before. I wish I could have eaten there again, but we had reservations booked in the parks each night.

The buses were typical for Disney. Some would pull right up, some took longer than others. I prefer how Pop Century has chain ropes put up to keep the lines orderly and first come, first on. When they are open areas, people tend to push their way on - even if you were there first. Especially, if you are on a bench sitting.... if you see a bus pull up, you better get in front of those 45 people that just walked up a few minutes ago. They will take your spot on the bus!

Overall, it was a neat experience. I enjoyed trying something new and finally being able to stay "deluxe" but I wouldn't do it again - even with the 35% off winter discount. Honestly, I would prefer to stay at Pop Century or AoA over Animal Kingdom, Caribbean Beach and Port Orleans Riverside. Pop Century seems more condensed and easier to navigate.

Room Tip: Ask for a room near the lobby (3rd floor) or the food court and pool (1st floor). The hallways are...
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 10, 2014

My wife and I spent our honeymoon at this hotel for 10 nights. It was by far one of the best experiences I have ever had at a Disney resorts. I have stayed at a slew of Disney hotels:
Pop Century, Caribbean Beach, Port Orleans French Quarter and Coronado. This tops them all.

If you can, spend the extra money for the Savannah view....worth it. I will definitely be coming back to this place.

Highlights:
Steam rooms
Large Pool
Food - especially the Quick Serve selections
Detail of hotel

Room Tip: Make sure to ask for the Jambo House for the best Savannah views.
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hamburg, New York
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 9, 2014

We tried the buffet style restaurant Boma before deciding on staying at the resort. Upon entering you are just drawn to the spectacular lobby. Beautiful African art and decor. The vistas and porches around the lobby and on the upper floor are wonderful. I was lucky to get an upsell to concierge on our first trip...long story. If you can afford it, do it. All food served in this resort is exceptional. The "soup lady" remembered me from one visit to the next 6 months later. We had discussed soup as a meal for some 15 minutes. Staff is outstanding. Not that thinks were perfect but when we had a problem they took care of it immediately(upsell). Take advantage of story time at the fire pit.

Room Tip: If you like to sit in your room choose one with a safari view. If not don't worry there are lot...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Asheville, NC
Top Contributor
280 reviews 280 reviews
42 hotel reviews
Reviews in 66 cities Reviews in 66 cities
105 helpful votes 105 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 9, 2014

This was probably our eighth stay at Animal Kingdom Lodge. The hotel is beautifully decorated and has a nice smokey food smell when you enter the foyer. We requested a room toward the end of the wing which typically has better animal views as they tend not to come too close to the main building.

When we checked in, the room felt really small to us and we noticed there was no real technological update since the first time we stayed there in 2000. There are very few outlets in the room and no USB ports. The bathroom is tiny and dated.

Everything was clean and tidy so no complaints there. I worked out in the fitness center each morning and it too is small, but I had no problem getting on the cardio equipment, especially at about 6:00 am.

The pool used to be really cool and the water resembled a water hole. The pool floor must have been painted a greenish color. Now the water is clear like all of the other pools that you see. Probably due to safety issues I'm sure.

Staff was not as friendly as I remember. Said hi to housekeepers and got zero response. Also disappointed that I bought park tickets from concierge and was not told about new fastpass system, so we assumed ride fastpasses were all gone when we arrived at the park, only to discover late in the day that they have changed the fast pass system so you go to a kiosk and select your favorite three rides instead of the old way.

I mentioned this to the concierge upon our return and essentially got blown off, suggested it was our fault!

Probably the last time at Animal Kingdom Lodge.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, Canada
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
67 helpful votes 67 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 9, 2014

Better entrance than expected. Got an upgrade to have the savanna view rather than pool view. thanks Disney- really nice seeing the animals when relaxing on the deck. Other reviews are correct; some staff are cordial, others are real cranky. Food was above average, but service was only good in 1 of 3 visits, in fact the dining restaurant Jiko we waited 15 minutes until the manager finally came over to take a drink order, stating our waiter had issues! Not sure what that meant but the issues just continued. Pool was warm and enjoyable. Room, not matter the upgrade, was small, real tough with two kids to open luggage and not have a clothes explosion. Two plug ins in the whole living area and they use them for the lights and clocks. Cone on guys, you are trying to sell the Disney experience using apps on cells and laptops- we had to charge cell phones in the bathroom where the kids could easily sink our phones in the sinks while they used them. So for the price this only gets 3 out of 5, could have been 4 out of 5 but grumpy workers/waiters and small room took it down a notch.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 9, 2014

I have stayed at both Animal Kingdom Lodge - Kidani and Animal Kingdom Lodge - Jambo. Love them both!!! At Kidani we were in a 1 bedroom savannah view. Room was huge! Loved having two bathrooms. At Jambo house we were in 1 bedroom with savannah view but this only has one bathroom. The pools at both resorts are amazing, my kids never wanted to get out of the pools. Kidani also has splash pad area at their pool. Never had an issue with the buses at either locations.I know a lot people say the bus rides are long to all the parks but we didn't find that to be the case. They do share buses. We have dined at all their onsite locations but Boma is our favorite hands down. Quick service has a lot of good options as well. Very relaxing resort!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge

Address: 2901 Osceola Parkway, Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, FL 32830
Location: United States > Florida > Central Florida > Orlando
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Orlando
#10 Luxury Hotel in Orlando
#15 Romantic Hotel in Orlando
#39 Family Hotel in Orlando
#93 Business Hotel in Orlando
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge is an African lodge-style resort amidst a 43-acre wildlife preserve. The Resort offers authentic African-inspired architecture and the kraal African-village landscape design—a semi-circle design popular in Africa which offers expansive views of the surrounding savanna and its many animal inhabitants. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Disney Animal Kingdom Lodge
Animal Kingdom Florida
Disneys Animal Kingdom Lodge
Disney Animal Kingdom Resort
Disney Animal Kingdom Hotel
Animal Kingdom Lodge Disney
Animal Kingdom Lodge Orlando
Animal Kingdom Hotel Disney
Disneys Animal Kingdom Hotel
Animal Kingdom Hotel Florida

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