My wife and I, after about our 10th Disney World trip (and while aboard our 3rd cruise on the Disney Magic), finally decided to join the Disney Vacation Club in October, 2011. This October, 2012, was the first time using it. Saratoga Springs is our “home resort.” Since we were able to bank the points from 2011, we were able to spring for one of the one-bedroom flats; normally our points allocation would at least give us two weeks in a Saratoga Springs studio. Though on this year’s cruise, we bought 50 more points so that sort of gives us more options.
Anyway, Saratoga Springs! First thing you’ll find on a weekend is the parking at check-in is totally inadequate. It’s a small lot. Lots of people circling for a spot; I simply commandeered a Disney “cast member only” slot and went on my way to Registration. The process was very fast, complete with the first wave of the “Welcome Home” catch phrase that we would receive for the next two weeks whenever we did anything at the Resort.
The room was great and I made a lot of use of that balcony during the days. Having a separate bedroom meant one of us could watch TV in the living room or putz around without disturbing the other. The whirl pool was great as was having the kitchen, washer, and dryer. In fact, next year we have decided to forego the Disney Dining Plan. It’s just too much food and with a freezer in the room, we can nip out to a super market and buy breakfast and lunch supplies. Most importantly, we would not be tied down to Disney dining. Don’t get me wrong, Disney dining has become very good, especially when compared to say 20 years ago. It’s good food. But there are times it would be nice to slip over to IHOP or, Lord forbid, McDonalds. We felt like we were compelled to eat lots of food every day just to use up our allotments.
The housekeeper came every few days but we waved her off a few times. We slept in most mornings and easily got tired of housekeeping banging on the door wanting to do the room. They wanted to do their jobs; we just wanted to sleep in. Generally all we needed was the trash emptied, the occasional linen change, and fresh towels. We were a bit annoyed that though they came every three days, they would only leave coffee for one or two days. I had to call Housekeeping three times in the two weeks to ask for more coffee, and we only used one package a day. But otherwise, the room was immaculate and Housekeeping and the Front Desk were very extremely efficient and helpful. During the second week renovations began in the flat above us and we were woken up one morning to the sound of hammering above us. When we were told it would continue for the duration of our stay, we requested, and received, a like room in another building.
The proximity to Downtown Disney was great!!! We could walk there or take the water shuttle from the club house. That was really handy. The quick service restaurant at the resort was fast and efficient. They brought the food to you at the quick serve. There were some log jams in the mornings and evenings, but generally it moved efficiently. A few times we took our food to our room to avoid the “Screaming Child Syndrome” playing out in the dining room. The food at Artist’s Pallet (quick serve) and the Turf Club Bart & Grill (casual dining) were actually really good. There is free wi-fi in the rooms, and the speed was great. I was streaming NETFLIX on my iPAD with no problems. Overall, it was a nice stay at a good resort. We used to stay at the Caribbean Beach each year, and this was a markedly different and improved experience.
We asked for a view of the lake. It was not too crowded when we were there, and they accomodated us...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.