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“Not a resort stay...feel is more of a time share.” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Disney's Contemporary Resort

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Disney's Contemporary Resort
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   4600 North World Drive, Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, FL 32830   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #133 of 326 Hotels in Orlando
Miami
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Not a resort stay...feel is more of a time share.”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 14, 2013

Chose the hotel because of location and because our family fit in a 2 bedroom suite in the adjacent building. We were 3 couples with 3 children. My husband and I used the very comfortable sofa bed and had a full bathroom to ourselves. The bedrooms were used by our daughters with their families. Definitely a very nice full kitchen in the units. We were unaware that the facilities are part of Disney vacation club- we were constantly asked if we were members since there were services offered only to them. The lounge was open not to us - only members. As a time share, the units are definitely more rundown- lots of stained furniture. Door to balcony did not lock- definitely dangerous since the balconies have a concrete step on the railings!
I really feel that these units should be treated separate from the Contemporary Resort.

  • Stayed April 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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1,693 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (435)
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London, England, United Kingdom
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
47 helpful votes 47 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 13, 2013 via mobile

We have just returned to the UK from a 14 day trip to wdw. We stayed at the contemporary. The location was fantastic. We don't drive, but could walk to magic kingdom. We could see the fireworks from the room. The monorail was a great way of getting to some other resorts, Epcot & the ticket & transport centre, from where we could get the Lynx bus to Seaworld. We liked The Wave restaurant on the ground floor. The food was nice and it was a bit quieter than other disney restaurants. We also all enjoyed the character buffet breakfast at Chef Mickeys, although this was expensive and you have to book months in advance. The counter service contempo cafe was also very good. The pool was big, with a water slide and 2 hot tubs. It was also right by the lake with a beach and a view of the electrical water parade at night. We really enjoyed our stay and on the face of it we couldn't fault anything. The service was great and staff were quick to help with any of our requests. We just felt that for the amount of money we paid a few details could have been improved. We felt the pool area was a vast amount of concrete and could have done with a bit more landscaping / greenery. Also it would have been nice to have had the odd bit of disney magic during our 14 day stay, such as a towel animal or 2! We stayed at contemporary as location is the main factor for us in choosing a hotel, which means we miss out on some of the better themed hotels, but it would be nice if they could add a few magical extras for the money. Having said this we would recomend the hotel to anyone who wants the convenience of a good hotel in a great location

  • Stayed April 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Charleston, South Carolina
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 11, 2013

Our family has visited this hotel for the last 13 yrs... stayed on the club level and loved it! They are the most amazing staff of people and very friendly and helpful for everything you need! They love kids! Some of the staff know our family from staying there so many times! The remembered us! Very sweet and lovely rooms and food outstanding! If you want a great experience stay here!

Room Tip: Stay magic kingdom side so you can watch fireworks if you are too tired to be in the park! ! 10 pm e...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
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Phoenixville, Pennsylvania
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 11, 2013

I just returned from a 3 night work related stay at the Contemporary resort. I stayed in a tower room with a theme park view. During the day the view was more construction and parking lot but at night it was beautiful with a full view of the fireworks at the Magic Kingdom. This was ok for me as I was "at work" all day anyway. The rooms were quiet, clean and well appointed. If you get a water view on the other side of the tower that is ok because at night there is a light show over the lake that is really beautiful.

Yes the hotel was noisy but is is a hotel filled with kids and families who are having fun. It was fun hearing and seeing the families at Chef Mickey's dancing and singing with Mickey. However once you were in your room it was quiet. Heck some adults in our group where a bit noisy as they were having fun too!

I used the free Disney Magic Express to and from the airport. This is a great feature. Once you check out of the hotel your bags are tagged for your destination at the hotel and you don't see them again until you return to your home airport. The only thing I suggest is check the time they say you will be picked up and make sure there is enough time to get to the airport. Our pick up time was 4:50 for a 7:30 flight. We didn't think that was enought time so we had it changed to 3:50 and were glad we did. After stopping at several other resorts we didn't leave Disney property for an hour so it took us over 1.5 hours to get to the airport. It was ok becasue we had enough time to get through security and have dinner before our flight. If we had left at 4:50 it would have been a mad dash to the gate. Also when you take the Disney Express to your hotel when you arrive you can get you bags at baggage and bring them with you on the bus. No need to wait to have them delivered to your room.

My co-worker forgot to bring her medication that she needs to take everyday. In a panic she called the front desk to see if they had any suggestions for a pharmancy in the area and how she could get there as we didn't rent a car. My co-worker was told all she needed to do was have her doctor fax a Rx to the Disney pharmacy and the Rx would be delivered to her room. Through the "magic of Disney" her Rx was delivered to her room that day. Kudos to Disney for thinking of everything!

Other than having to work (smile) I had a "magical" stay at the Contemporary.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Chicago, Illinois
Top Contributor
86 reviews 86 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 40 cities Reviews in 40 cities
68 helpful votes 68 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 11, 2013

Arriving at Orlando airport, we had pre-booked the Magical Express transfer coach. I had seen that they will pick your luggage up and deliver it 3 hours later. Big Mistake. See further down.
The check in desk was sooo exciting - it really did build up the excitement of our arrival to Disney.
Unfortunately the 30 minute wait for other guests who went to pick up their baggage themselves dampened the excitement somewhat. Especially after 12 hours of travelling due to indirect flights!

Finally on the move. We arrived at the Contemporary 35 mins later.
The check in process - just awful I'm afraid to say. We were queuing for 5 mins when we were called over to a different desk. The guy was very sweet but unfortunately for us he wasn't really suitable for the check in process. It took 45 minutes! By this time the kids were running around like loons and we just wanted to get our room.
Having finally been given 2 keys and a room number we went to look for our room. After 10 mins walking around thank goodness we bumped into a guy delivering luggage. We obviously had that lost look on our face because he asks us if we needed help. We showed him the room number. It didn't exist he said...! We then had to wait whilst he radio'd to the front desk to get us our real room number.
Having finally got the correct details we quickly found our room. It was a garden room on the first floor with 2 large king sized beds, well furnished with bathroom. The bathroom had 2 large shallow sinks, a bath with shower and a separate w.c.
There was an empty fridge, coffee making facilities and 2 wardrobes. I was pleased with the room but then it had cost us nearly £300 a night room only (and this had been a cheap deal!)

Having no bags, we put the kids straight to bed, rang room service for us - just a burger and waited. And waited. The burger finally turned up. An hour after calling. Unfortunately it was stone cold as were the fries. We called room service and another burger arrived 20 mins later. This was good however it was 11pm and we were not happy.
We also called front desk to chase our luggage. We were informed that we shouldn't expect the luggage until 3 hours after check in... We asked what time we had checked in. They said 8.05. We had landed at 6pm.
At 11.30 my husband called again to be told they had left a message on our phone to say the luggage was in but the ringer hadn't rung as it was so late they didn't want to disturb us...
My husband requested the luggage be brought up immediately and it arrived 10 mins later.
This was not the great start we were expecting from a deluxe Disney resort.
My husband wrote an email of complaint that night.
To be fair to the hotel they called the next day and sent an email to respond.
My husband went to see a duty manager who comp'd our evening meal (food only) at the Wave and extended our 2 day ticket to 3 days free of charge. (We didn't need the 3rd day but nice to have the option)

Next morning we were awake at 5am off so got washed and dressed and headed for breakfast.
The hot breakfasts don't start until 7am so we made do with bagels which you could toast yourself . They were huge! There was also cereals, fruit, Danish pastries and donuts. There were drinks available on self serve also. Perfect to start an early trip to the park.
The monorail in the hotel was quite frankly awesome! And was the reason we chose this hotel. It comes right into the hotel. One floor above the breakfast cafe reached by a small escalator or lift.
The mono rail seems to run every 10 mins or so.
The ride in took around 10 min. And stopped at the Polynesian and grand Floridian on the way to the Magic Kingdom.

Evening drinks - a bar opens early evening to grab a drink upstairs or there is a bar behind the wave that is better for a quieter drink.

Amenities:
The shops in the hotel open at 8am. They charge more than the park on the items I was looking at but handy for last minute gifts.

We ate at the Wave that evening. The waitress was wonderful telling us this was her 38th year of service. The food I'll review separately.

The pool. Unfortunately for us the weather wasn't on our side it was cold however the pool was heated which kept the kids happy! There were life guards everywhere. I counted 8! There was a slide which was great fun, a hot tub that was hot! And two pools. Perfect.

There was a beach area with volleyball net, free loungers and towels and a pool bar which we didn't use.
We did rent 2 Mini speed boats. The guys were very friendly and knowledgeable. Hubby and son loved the boats. Me not so much!

On our second night we were able to walk from the Magic Kingdom to the resort in under 15 mins. This is a fabulous option and was a major factor in us picking the hotel. With a 4 and 6 year old with no buggies to fall back on we needed to have a short and fast journey. The queues for the coaches to other resorts looked awful and we guessed the mono rail would have queues too. To have the flexibility to walk back really was great and the reason the resort is so pricey I guess.

Overall. We were very happy we had chosen the Contemporary. It isn't the prettiest hotel - that had to be the Grand Floridian however it matched our needs perfectly. It is just a shame the first impressions let the hotel down.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 10, 2013

This has been my family's favorite place to stay since the 70's. Yes it is a little expensive but it is much better than most of the alternatives depending on what you want from your vacation, I prefer this to all the other hotels becuase of the laid back California energy. I love having the Monorail running through the hotel and there are many ammenities. Shopping, Bars, Restaurants, The Pool area, Game Room, Boating, Fishing really this place has it all. Always have a good experience here everytime. I prefer it to the Polynesian or the Grand Floridian. If you stay at either of these two you MUST stay in the main building becuase if it rains your are S.O.L.. Why? Because you cant leave your room when its raining without getting soaked. Nothing more fun than being stuck in a room all day with the family right? Right? Not. So stay at the Contemporay and you can have access to all the amenities.

Room Tip: Get the Tower Rooms Facing the Park so you can see the fireworks at night.
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Chicago, Illinois
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 9, 2013

I've stayed here 4 times for the same conference in the last 6 years. Forgetting for a moment that Disney without a child is a strange, parallel universe, this time was hardly magical. I arrived a little early so I went ahead to the conference where I received a text message telling me my room was ready. I went up to a suite. I figured that since I was speaking, all the speakers were getting such nice rooms. The room looked great but the bathroom made no sense at all--no towel bars, shower so small that you bumped your elbows on the walls, no floor-length mirror, terrible lighting. My dinner reservation was lost so I had to entertain my clients at a cafe. Then when I looked at my bill, it was twice what I had been told. The suite was double the price and no one had asked my permission for the upgrade. They did credit the difference when I called and I was not charged for the dinner reservation which I'd guaranteed with a credit card. The desk clerks were very helpful, as was the reservation agent on the phone but this is a lot less than you expect from the perfection that Disney usually provides.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
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Additional Information about Disney's Contemporary Resort

Address: 4600 North World Drive, 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:
#29 Top resorts Hotel in Orlando
#37 Luxury Hotel in Orlando
#108 Family Hotel in Orlando
#126 Business Hotel in Orlando
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Disney's Contemporary Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 655
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Disney's Contemporary Resort is an ultra-modern Disney Deluxe Resort, made up of a towering A-frame high-rise building—the iconic Contemporary Tower—and complemented by one garden wing annex. This lakeside Resort is the only hotel in Walt Disney World Resort to have the Walt Disney World Monorail System pass through the main concourse. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Disney`s Contemporary Hotel Orlando
Disney Contemporary Hotel
Contemporary Disney Resort
Disneys Contemporary Resort
Contemporary Hotel Disney
Contemporary Resort
Disney Contemporary Resort
Disneys Contemporary Hotel

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