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“Great hotel but in my opinion not the best for Disney travel.” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista

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Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista
Ranked #144 of 338 Hotels in Orlando
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
41 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Great hotel but in my opinion not the best for Disney travel.”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 10, 2012

Let me start by saying that I am a frequent Hilton guest and a HHonors Gold member so I am pretty loyal to the brand. This hotel did not disappoint as to what is generally delivered by Hilton. We booked this trip as a result of a time share promotion by Hilton Grand Vacations. It was really an offer we could not refuse and as frequent Disney visitors ready for another vacation the timing was good for us. We always stay on Disney property (Port Orleans, Beach Club, Animal Kingdom Lodge) so this was a change for us. There are definitely some pros and some cons to this resort. First, the grounds are beautiful and very very clean. The staff is friendly and accomodating and as we visited around the holidays - beautifully decorated. The prices for food/drinks - TOTALLY outrageous. Our room was not ready when we got it (around 2pm) and we were told housekeeping was working on it and it would be ready within the hour so we went to the pool bar with our 2 kids (5 and 11) to get a sandwich and drinks. Went back to the front desk at 3pm and were told they were almost done cleaning our room. It was not until 4pm (which, in their defense is the guaranteed check in time) that we were able to get it. Not a huge deal, however if the lady at 2:00 would have told us it may be awhile, we would have let our kids swim or stored our bags and went to a Disney park. Kind of a disappointing way to spend our first few hours of vacation. To kind of add insult to injury here, we were assurred someone would call me on my cell phone as soon as the room was ready - I proactively kept going to the desk and was finally checked in - it wasnt until 15 minutes after we were checked in AND in our room that someone called me to let us know the room was ready. This may not be a big deal to some people but I am admittedly type A and always trying to make the most of time ESPECIALLY on vacation so this was a little frustrating. The room itself was gorgeous and HUGE. We had a double deluxe suite with a Downtown Disney view and there are definitely no complaints with the room itself. I will say that the bathroom was a surprise considering the size of the room. It was literally the size of a powder room with a shower. For sharing a bathroom with 4 people - that was a little rough. The shower was GREAT - never wanted to get out of there and while the beds were not typical comfortable Hilton beds, they were fine - the pillows and linens were clean and soft.

As a HHonors Gold member we received access to the club floor. This was KEY for us as we were able to go in in the AM and get a nice breakfast. The nice surprise was the meat and cheese trays as I dont really like eggs and breakfast food, so I was able to make a turkey or ham sandwich for breakfast, any kind of drinks (soda, coffee, juice) yogurt and fruit - that was a HUGE savior for us and not only for saving money but convenience too. Loved this. The staff in the club room were very nice and friendly and like the rest of the hotel, it was clean and well done.

Ok - so here's where I have to put rubber to the road. Do you stay here if you are going to Disney? I say no - but that is just a preference thing and I will tell you why. First, the thing I liked is that even though I have kids, I dont prefer to be around a bunch of amped up screaming kids on vacation. This hotel is kid friendly and definitely Disney'esque however at the pool etc - there are not a ton of kids, which was actually refreshing after a day of kid mania. That said - it is a very boring kid pool (there are no water features, slides, anything kid - like so if your kids want to spend alot of time at the pool, they will get bored here).

Transportation. Where do I start. Downtown Disney Resorts operate a bus system separate from the Disney Transportation System that you are familiar with if you stay at Disney hotels. So what that means is this - the schedule is different and the STOPS are different. For example, the Hilton shares a bus with three other hotels. This means every time you go somewhere you have to stop at the other three hotels. That isn't THAT big of a deal because they are all right there. The real hassle is that there are 3 bus schedules. One that goes to Animal Kingdom and Magic Kingdom - one that goes to Hollywood Studios and Epcot, and one that goes to the waterparks (but that one only runs twice in the morning and once at the end of the day....I'll get to that one in a minute). So- there are cases where after touring Magic Kingdom all day - you are EXHAUSTED and then have to get on the bus and drive to Animal Kingdom to get those people....or in reverse you get on at the Hilton, stop at three other hotels THEN stop at Epcot, THEN stop at Hollywood (I cant remember which comes first on the route but you get the idea). So the other option is to catch a bus at Downtown Disney. Well what nobody tells you is that you can not catch a bus from ANY theme park to get to Downtown Disney. You have to catch a bus to a hotel, then take a downtown disney bus from the hotel THEN walk back to the HIlton. We left Magic Kingdom after fireworks one night, had to walk to the Contemporary and take a bus to Downtown Disney that was BEYOND crowded. Had to stand while holding a stroller and it was a 25 minute trip (then had to walk to hotel). The waterpark. OMG. We went to Blizzard Beach one day and they only have 2 busses at 9 and 10am. If you want to leave in the afternoon you are kind of stuck as the only Hilton return bus is in the evening = so we had to take a bus from Blizzard Beach to Old Key West, catch a bus from there to Downtown Disney and then walk back to the hotel. Its a real pain and one that I am TOTALLY unwilling to deal with again. Again, it is a preference thing. Last time we stayed at Disney's Beach Club and could walk to Epcot in literally 3 minutes, take the monorail from Epcot to Magic Kingdom, and take a boat across to Hollywood Studios. The only time we had to get on a bus was to Animal Kingdom - so that DEFINITELY gets my vote. You pay for the convenience, don't get me wrong and again, we got this Hilton room for a STEAL so for the price - whatever, it was cheap, but the transportation kind of killed the magic for us.

So overall - as far as Hilton's go - this one is top notch. I would highly recommend to my company for business travel and may even be willing to stay a day or two with the family if traveling for non-Disney reasons - but if you are a Disney traveler you may want to consider staying at a Disney hotel if you can afford it. For me, it is worth the extra cost but like I say, if transportation issues do not bother you this is a fine choice!

Room Tip: Ask for an upgrade and the room we had was a HUGE double deluxe suite. We were on the 7th floor wit...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Megan A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Coal Valley, IL
Level Contributor
39 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2012

Although we only had one night here I would defintely stay again. We are long time Disney fans and have stayed on property many times. This time I wanted to experience disney without immersing myself in it at night. This conference hotel is large but the staff was great with directions. We were able to walk to downtown disney for lunch, take a disney boat to a hotel and transfer to a bus for the Magic Kingdom. At midnight when the park closed it was super easy to take the Downtown Disney Bus back to our hotel.

  • Stayed November 2012, 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
Helpful?
Thank tammyu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York
Level Contributor
65 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 105 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 8, 2012

I have stayed at this Hilton a few times and overall, I would reccomend it. The service is truly excellent here - our poolside server (Linda) was awesome, the valet and bell service guys are very efficient and professional and the front desk is really accomodating. No one told us about the breakfast availabe to members, but we found it on our own and even with the morning, crazy rush (Disney goers all around), the servers work very hard at helping seat people and keep things stocked and clean. I stay at a lot of Hiltons and this level of service was truly above and beyond, I would say its like Ritz Carlton service at Hilton prices.

Thats what is great about this hotel - the rest is pretty standard - for example, there are two large pools outside in a well-kept area at this property, but its nothing too special - if you really want a great pool, stay at the Orlando Hilton, which has an awesome pool area complete with lazy river, water slide, etc (however, that property also runs $70 or so more a night). The hotel itself is older (this was the first Hilton in Orlando), but well kept.

I also get the complaints about the "resort fee" - why dont they just bump up their room prices $20 and leave that off? I am no marketing expert and I guess they need to keep their prices competitive, but it makes people feel like they are being ripped off, in my opinion. You get internet access (those of us who are Hilton members already get that), two free waters and 20% off your food and drink (the restaurants are decent but pricey), but feel like you should be getting something more, well...resorty I think.

We booked a regular room, but were offered an upgrade as a Gold member,so after waiting a little while, we took the parlor suite. Pros of that suite are that it is very roomy with a huge dining room table, wet bar area and great balcony (there are only a few balconies available at this property, so it was a good bonus). However, this room has a pull-out couch (not the worst I've slept on, but not the best, either) and a murphy bed - I find that strange, especially since they were placed right next to each other at an awkward angle - my 10 year old was fascinated with the Murphy, so the kids got that one (which they said was extremely comfortable) and the parents got stuck on the couch. Not sure it was worth sacrificing a real bed for the balcony, but the views of the area are pretty neat. Also, I don't mean to be too much of a nit-picker, but the carpet was really old and funky, beween that and the murphy bed, I felt like I had stepped back in time.

The location is good if you are heading to the parks, and I think this is the only hotel within walking distance to Downtown Disney (although, in my opinion, the only thing worth taking the kids to there is the T Rex cafe). There is also the Diseny shuttle offered at this property (which I think is the only Hilton with that service).

Its not the fanciest or nicest Hilton in the Orlando area, but for the service and value, this is definitely an excellent choice for a visit to the Orlando area.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank LouisLeroy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boca Raton, Florida
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 6, 2012

We planned an impromptu trip to orlando and ended up staying at this wonderful hotel. Everything about the experience was spectacular, from the friendly, attentive staff to the beautiful grounds and pool. The room was top notch, clean with crisp sheets and big screen tv. Complimentary starbucks coffee in the morning, coupons in the room to downtown disney (which was a 5 minute walk across the street) and free shuttle service to the disney parks every 30 minutes. The staff were fantastic. Patrick at the front desk checked us in, he was very friendly and welcoming. He had great knowledge of the area and attractions. Megan was also very nice and accommodating. We will definitely be returning to this hotel again in the future.

Room Tip: Get a room on the top floor...you can see the parks.
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  • Stayed December 2012, 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
Helpful?
2 Thank Lauren P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level Contributor
14 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 4, 2012

I absolutely loved this hotel and highly recommend it. Everything from check-in to check-out worked clockwork - corteous and efficient staff, clean and comfortable rooms, great price, and excellent location just accross the road from downtown Disney.

I was taking my family to Orlando for the first time and I was concerned that we were not staying in one of the Disney hotels, but it did not make the least difference here. This Hilton gives you access to extra magic hours at Disney parks and by being so close to downtown Disney, the theme park feeling was right there.

I would not think twice before making another reservation here.

Room Tip: A high flooor is great.
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  • Stayed December 2012, 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
Helpful?
1 Thank fca202
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ventura, California
Level Contributor
68 reviews
53 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 3, 2012

Stumbled on this hotel two years ago and needed to come back to Orlando again for 4 nights. I love this hotel. Check in was easy and service was great. Rooms are very clean and quiet. Coffee & teas are available in your room. Elevators are speedy and the lobby area is impecable. Had to self-park and that was very easy and close to the hotel's entrances. I loved the fitness area. Worked out 2 days and there was no one in there. The equipment seemed new and had all the bells and whistles. The price was excellent. Exceeded my expectation. Also, if you want - you can walk to downtown Disney. When I come back to Orlando, I will stay here again.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled on business
    • 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
Helpful?
Thank lilizmom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto,
Level Contributor
20 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 2, 2012

Pros
- Excellent shower pressure. Prolly the best I've been.
- Good wi-fi coverage
- Excellent price. About $90.
- Dry cleaning cheaper than the last Hilton I stayed at (Hilton Montreal)
- Was upgraded to a large king suite at diamond member which includes couch, dining table and bar area. Provided complimentary water as a diamond member.
- Close to outlet stores.
- Knowledgeable concierge. But do not expect major savings when purchasing tickets from concierge.
- Friendly check-in staff!

Cons
- Bathrooms a little small and old (you can tell its a washroom renovated on surface from 70s)
- Only expensive towncars available at the door. No taxi-rank for cheaper taxi.
- No free shuttle from airport. Taxi quite pricey from airport.
- Bus to disneyworld parks only once every 30 minutes and is shared between hotels.
- Room service more expensive compared to Hilton Montreal - at 25% service charge
- Fridge and A/C a little noisy. I landed up turning it off.
- Dialing 0 for room service, etc a little slower than usual.
- Executive floor complimentary continental breakfast is worse than other Hilton locations. Coffee was crappy (not filtered coffee - rather press a button and coffee comes out), limited selection, no hot food except for oatmeal, very small room but very crowded.
- The executive floor club room is only open to 11AM - not accessible after and no complimentary snacks or beverages served throughout the day (in Hilton Montreal, they serve snacks, hor d'oeuvres and desserts throughout day). Overall, breakfast needs improvement.
- Carpets are ugly green. Lighting is fairly dim.

Overall, you can't beat the value for $90! Cannot ask for more.

Room Tip: Ask for rooms close to elevator. Its a long walk!
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
Thank coolioblob
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista

Property: Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista
Address: 1751 Hotel Plaza Boulevard, Disney Springs Resort Area, Orlando, FL 32830-8430
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Central Florida > Orlando
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#31 Top resorts Hotel in Orlando
#40 Luxury Hotel in Orlando
#77 Business Hotel in Orlando
#116 Romantic Hotel in Orlando
#120 Family Hotel in Orlando
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista 4*
Number of rooms: 814
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ideally located in the Disney Springs™ area, the Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista hotel is steps from exciting theme parks and popular tourist attractions. Shuttle transportation to Disney Theme Parks is included in your stay. On Sundays, take the kids to a Disney Character Breakfast. Relax in two outdoor, heated swimming pools, children's spray pool or tropical outdoor spa. Savor a variety of cuisines at one of the seven restaurants and lounges. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hilton In Walt Disney World Hotel Orlando
Hilton Hotel Orlando
Walt Disney Orlando
Hilton Orlando

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