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Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge
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Reviews (7,369)
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All reviewssavannah viewjambo houseanimal kingdomkidani villagesavannah roomnight vision gogglesafrican themewatching the animalssavanna view roomboma restaurantthe buszebra trailafrican animalslove animalsbunk bedsbooked a standard roomthe quick service restaurant
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Reviewed July 22, 2006

We were supposed to stay at AKL for 7 nights but ended up switching to the Grand Floridian after 4. AKL is beautiful and the food really good, but I was not impressed with housekeeping. We saved for 2 years for this big trip. At close to $450.00 a night Canadian, I expected a lot more. The first night when I bathed my son, I noticed the plastic bolt cover for the base of the toilet, on the floor beside the toilet. It never moved for 4 days. That means the housekeeper never cleaned the floor around the toilet. When we got back to our room the eve of day 2 you could smell urine in the bathroom (i've 2 young boys!) so I dont know why the maid could not. On day 3, we decided if the bathroom floor wasnt cleaned, we would complain upon our return to the room in the evening.....except we forgot to remove the do not disturb sign from the door! So we couldnt very well complain at that point. The 4th morning we had a character breakfast at the Contemporary Hotel and decided to tour the Polynesian and the Grand Floridian too. When my oldesty son saw how beautiful the GF was he begged us to stay there. It didnt take much begging as we had stayed there on our honeymoon and loved it. The GF cost $50 more a night for the cheapest room but we went for it. It was the best decision we made! I now feel if you are going to spend a fortune on a room, might as well go all the way and stay at the GF. There is absolutely no comparison. Guests are treated royally! The beds turned down every night, and chocolates and a poem on the pillow! The rooms are stunning, fresh flowers everywhere in the lobby and hallways.
Back to the AKL......some other minor annoyances. The walls around the bathroom sinks were covered in toothpaste splatters along with the wooden front of the vanity and wooden frame of the mirror. I dont know how many weeks it would take for that much to accumulate, but I've never seen a quarter of that in my own bathroom with 4 of us, and I probably wipe the walls around the sink area once a week. It was the first thing I noticed while unpacking. The taps actually had a layer of dust further up the handles where the hands dont touch! And trust me, I am not a clean freak. Is it too much to ask to have your bathroom cleaned fully, not partially, for $450.00 a night? We have stayed at probably 8 different Disney hotels and I have never had a housekeeping problem.
Regarding booking a Savannah room, I paid aprox $1000.00 extra for this view for the week. Definately not worth it unless all you plan to do is sit on your balcony and try to look at the animals. I say "try to" because of the time we spent in the room during daylight hours, I would say the animals were in sight about 25% of the time. A lot of money for what you get if you ask me. Unfortunately, you dont really figure this out until you're in the room. I had read other review saying how you can go to the viewing areas and see the animals instead of booking a savanna view, but it sounded so cool to wake up and watch the animals eat breakfast! The only animals we saw in the morning the whole time was 2 zebras, one morning.
Regarding the walk....didnt really bother us. We were 3 rooms from the very end of the Zebra Trail too! As long as you are in reasonable shape you can do it. It will not be good if your children are too tired to walk and you dont have your own stroller as you will have to carry them all the way from the bus to the room!
The food was really good at all 3 restaurants. We enjoyed Boma as it is a buffet and a great way to try a variety of African foods and not commite to a whole entree.
We did the dining plan which we recommend. We figure it saved us aprox $500.00 over the course of the week. Most sit down meals at Disney ended up being about $150.00 for us (2 adults, a 12 year old and 4 year old) and the dining plan cost us about $115.00 CDN a day. If we paid for what we ate , on average it would have cost about $225-$250 a day.
All in all, we felt ripped off and somewhat disappointed about the Animal Kingdom. Once we switched to the Grand Floridian, it save the holiday!

  • Stayed: June 2006, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
25  Thank torontotripster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 20, 2006

Fantastic, I stayed at the Animal Kingdom Lodge for two weeks and loved every minute of it. When you walk in it is just breathtaking. All the staff were very friendly and there are cleaners around the hotel nearly 24/7. The food was great in both 'Mara' and 'Boma', we didnt try 'Jiko' but it was supposed to be really nice aswell. The pool could of been cleaned a little more often but was not too bad.
The rooms are very comfortable and all cleaned to a high standard every day. The decor was interesting arounf the hotel and in the rooms but just added to the 'African' feel.
Overall FANTASTIC.

Food - 4.5/5
Cleanliness - 5/5
Service - 4.5/5
Activity choice (while staying in the hotel) - 3/5 *It needs a few more daily activities like water aerobics or things to keep people amused.

  • Stayed: July 2006, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
14  Thank robertw1990
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 20, 2006

my family and i just returned from wdw on july 14th,we stayed at akl and we just loved it. everything was great the food the rooms the pool was great our two children loved it. housekeeping was excellent, i am not sure why it was bad for other people,we left our room about 10 am and no matter what time we came back it was clean. we loved the fact that if you wanted to go for a swim after a day at one of the parks no matter what time it was you could go in the pool. my sister in law and her family were also there and we wanted 2 rooms with connecting doors and they were more than happy to accomodate us. i would most definetly reccomend this hotel it is well worth it. our check in was very easy
and our check out was even easier. great place to spend your vacation.

Stayed: July 2006
15  Thank bigburrito
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 19, 2006

My wife and I just got back from our honeymoon at the Animal Kingdom Lodge. We both were very impressed with the service and friendly staff we encountered. We were even sent a complimentary bottle of Champagne and toasting flutes to our room compliments of Disney. Many of the comments I have heard concerning this hotel is concerning it’s outside appearance which is supposed to mimic African building styles, which it does. Also the pool is meant to resemble a watering hole with a zero entry end to the pool which allows you to simply walk right into the water without using stairs. The hotel rooms are very large and well appointed. Each room includes a mini fridge, hair dryer, in room safe, ironing board & iron, internet service for a charge, sofa, dining table with two chairs and so on. The restaurants inside the hotel are very good but they can be expensive unless you choose the Disney dining plan which we did. I have never used the dining plan before but I can honestly say we definitely saved quite a bit of money and we did not have to worry about how much the trip was costing us since everything was already paid for. The only issue we had with the hotel was that we were in our room at the time the maid came by to clean our room and she asked us to call housekeeping when we left so that she could clean our room. I called about 4:30pm as we were leaving and when we returned at 11:30pm the maid had not cleaned the room. I called housekeeping and within ten minutes a maid was at our door and she cleaned the entire room within 25 minutes while we were having drinks. I have noticed that most of the bad reviews come from the United Kingdom and I understand completely why that is. The rudest people I encountered during our entire stay were from the UK so please take into account who is rating the hotel.

  • Stayed: June 2006, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
14  Thank seanchagan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 16, 2006

The Animal Kingdom Lodge sets itself to be a beautiful oasis overlooking an animal filled Savannah. The room we had was overlooking a car park (as were a very large number of rooms) the front desk staff were extremely unhelpfull and ill advised (some would say doltish) they did not seem to understand English at all - It was a struggle to get them to understand anything withount enunciating it loudly and slowly. C a n w e h a v e a n o t h e r r o o m k e y p l e a s e ??? seemed to phase them greatly "Er... what does that mean ?".
The rooms were adequate and tidy, but the hotel exterior - though adequate and we know it was supposed to look slightly lodge like - just looked a bit, well, shabby really.

The receptionist made a mistak on checking in and said she would make a comment on the computer system and that if we returned the following morning it would be corrected, we went back and she had made a comment not that SHE had made a mistake, but that WE had and it was all our problem, and lo and behold she wasn't there for comment thereafter.

The animals are penned in smallish enclosures so they are trapped to be close to the rooms by electrified barbs stuck in the ground - you will be horrified when you see them... they look barbaric and probably are. The reserve guides knew beggar all about the animals and said the electrified barbs were to keep the animals safe from feeding by the guests and to keep them from being too close to the hotel balconies. But they looked ugly and a bit barbaric - this is a hotel in a zoo and nothing more 'different' than just that.

All in all, we would definately NOT recommend this one, please think of elsewhere - other disney or the good quality and much lower priced I-Drive hotels as it is very high cost and pretty low quality - you have been advised !!

Rick & Paula Manchester UK

  • Stayed: July 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
12  Thank rickpaulakayleigh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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