Old Key West is beautiful. It's a deluxe Disney resort in the Downtown Disney area, and it covers a bigger area than any other Disney resort. Old Key West is Disney's recreation of the Conch Flats in the Florida Keys, and it's one of the most relaxing and striking places I've ever had the pleasure of staying in.
We arrived in Old Key West after a long flight, a delay at baggage claim and a bus trip in the rain on Disney's Magical Express, so we were very relieved to have a quick and easy check-in experience in the pristine lobby.
The staff were all friendly and informative, but I'd expect nothing less in a Disney resort. All the best customer service experiences I've had by far have been in Disney World! We were directed to our block of 'flats', or Vacation Homes as they're called in Old Key West, and I had a lovely Disney welcome with towels shaped like Mickeys on the bed!
I'd read a lot of complaints about the rooms in Old Key West before we went on holiday as people thought they were dated and shabby. I have to disagree... The rooms are immaculate, spacious and even have a little kitchenette in each one. What more could you possibly want for a holiday where you don't even spend much time in your room? The view from the balcony was absolutely beautiful... I'm still missing it! A lot of people would complain about being on the second floor because they needed to climb some stairs, but I was very grateful for the lovely view and the peace and quiet.
Our block was only five minutes away from the Hospitality House, which is the central hub at Old Key West. The Hospitality House consists of the lobby, gift shop, main bus stop for the resort, Olivia's restaurant, Good's Food To Go, the bar and the entrance to the main resort pool. Although I had a lovely breakfast and dinner at Olivia's, my favourite food from Old Key West had to be the amazing onion rings from Good's Food To Go.
We stayed in Disney's Coronado Springs resort last year, in the Animal Kingdom resort area. Although I loved Coronado, I felt as though Old Key West was even more 'Disney'. There were little Mickeys everywhere and in the most unexpected places, and the whole atmosphere was relaxed and 'magical'... typically Disney! There were a lot of small children staying here with their parents so the resort had a real family-friendly feel about it, yet it was still extremely tranquil.
We didn't actually go the main resort pool as we had a little quiet pool just around the corner from our block. As Old Key West is so sprawling, there are a few quiet pools situated around the resort so that people don't need to walk for fifteen minutes to get to the main pool. Although we only went to the quiet pool once as we were so busy, it was a lovely setting and was actually quiet. There was also a hot tub next to the pool which was strangely relaxing, even though the humid climate begs to differ!
I loved the way staff members said 'Welcome home' every time you set foot in the resort after being out for the day. Yet another nice touch which you probably wouldn't get anywhere outside of Disney. The staff in Olivia's, the bar, Good's Food To Go, the gift shop and the luggage attendants were all equally friendly and welcoming, which added to the beauty and serenity of the resort. How many times has a nice hotel experience been ruined for you because the staff were rude? It wouldn't happen in Disney!
One of the best thing about staying in a Disney resort has to be the Disney transportation system. If you're a Disney resort guest, you can catch a free bus to any of the Disney parks (Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom, Typhoon Lagoon, Blizzard Beach) and to Downtown Disney. All day, every day! You can then catch a bus back to your resort from the parks whenever you feel like it. Old Key West is massive so the buses did take a while to travel around the whole resort, but I'd much prefer to be sitting on a free bus than trying to negotiate the Disney park car parks.
As Old Key West is in the Downtown Disney resort area, you can also catch a boat to Downtown Disney if you fancy a break from the buses. We caught the boat once during our stay and it was a lovely experience... a short boat trip is always going to a bit nicer than a bus ride!
I don't think I could ever praise Old Key West enough, but hopefully I've given you a flavour for what a fantastic place it is.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Experience the romance of the Florida Keys at this tranquil community of Conch Flats-a sprawling island hamlet with shimmering waterways, swaying palm trees and manicured golf-course fairways. Delight in sun-soaked pools, casual dining and such amenities as fully equipped kitchens or kitchenettes. A peaceful tropical paradise, Disney's Old Key West Resort is also just a boat ride away from the excitement of the Downtown Disney area. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Disney`s Old Key West Hotel Orlando
- Old Key West Resort
- Disneys Old Key West Hotel
- Disney Old Key West Resort
- Key West Disney
- Disneys Old Key West Resort