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Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney's Wilderness Lodge
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Reviews (587)
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Reviewed September 16, 2008

Our family of four (myself, wife and two teenage daughters stayed at the lodge for six nights in August. As members of DVC we try to sample different lodging each time we visit Disney World. We stayed in a one bedroom suite with a view of the quiet pool area. Check in went very well and the concierge area is very convienantly located next to check-in area. This made it one stop shopping as we purchased our theme park tickets, made reservations for dinner and picked up confirmation notices on previously made reservations.

The property is not large and spread out like Saratoga Springs or Old Key West so it was easy walking distance to the bus or boat transportation and back to the main building. The lodge is well maintained, clean and the theming inside the main building and around the pool areas are pleasing to the eyes.

The one area that we were a little displeased with was the bus transportation. I recommend the boat to MK it is more reliable even though it is only a 5 minute bus ride from the lodge. The problem that week seemed to be infrequent bus transportation more than 20 minutes apart and in our case almost a 45 minute wait for buses to Epcot or the Studios. Buses to these two resorts first stop at the Floridian so be prepared for crowded buses.

All in all it was a pleasant experience, we rate this resort above both Saratoda Springs and Old Key West but a notch below the Boardwalk. We have not been to AK Lodge or the Beach Club so I can't comment if the Wilderness Lodge is a better stay. Its main advantage is it is close to the MK and the compact nature of the resort. Cast Members were helpful and I would revisit this resort again.

  • Stayed: August 2008, traveled with family
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3  Thank MickeytheSorcerer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 6, 2008

We were already staying at the Wilderness Lodge when we decided to extend our stay because we were having such a great time in Disney World. The Lodge was booked, but they did have an opening at the Villas. We were happy because we didn't have to waste much time in getting over there. The Villas are very nice. We loved the decor and theming. If you stay, make sure you go and look around. They have a lot of nice quiet sitting areas. the beds are very comfortable. Everything was very clean and well kept. We thought the Villas are much quieter than the actual Lodge. We didn't hear any noise. We could only get a studio, so the room was a bit small for a family of 4. It was nice though to have a fridge and microwave in the room. The laundry room was very close and free of charge!!!(even though there is a slot for money, it doesn't accept money).

  • Stayed: August 2008, traveled with family
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4  Thank oftheseas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 30, 2008

We have stayed at the Wilderness Lodge Hotel previously but decided to stay at the Villas for 3 days of our stay this summer- traveling with a 6,3, and 0.8 year old. If it weren't for the main hotel pool and proximity to the Magic Kingdom, I'd rate it even lower.

We arrived for check-in at 4:30 and were greeted by a grumpy receptionist who snapped "all rooms are pre-assigned...we're at 100% capacity" when we politely inquired as to whether a 1 bedroom unit might be available facing the the Hotel or Lake. Then it took 45 minutes and 2 calls to the bellhop for our 2 bags to arrive up to the room.

The room furniture was comfortable bordering on luxurious. But there were tumbling dust balls in the room corners. The kitchen had 3 knives- 2 of which were duller than some butter knives. We nearly set off the smoke detector baking a frozen pizza in the oven since the vent fan did nothing but blow fumes into the living area and the living area windows are locked shut. The noise from the washer/ dryer was LOUD making it difficult to do the wash in the evening without disturbing the kids sleeping in the sofa bed.

The Mercantile in the hotel does carry basic grocery items, albeit with the obligatory nice price mark-up. And the pool at the Lodge hotel is quite nice. But if you're not going to use the pool/ hot tub much and have your own car, you can do much better staying at an off-property extended stay hotel which provides complementary hot breakfast and internet access for nearly half the price.

  • Stayed: July 2008
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1  Thank Trottingtexan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 25, 2008

We stayed at the Villas during the week of the 4th of July. We had a one bedroom unit, which was plenty of room for us (2 adults and 2 kids). We arrived before 10:00 am and were lucky to get right into our room. The room was very clean and stocked up with all the "starter" packs you get with DVC-coffee, Tide, etc...The king size bed was wonderful, but the pull out sofa bed was dubbed "the Black Hole" by my 6 year old.

Housekeeping was a mixed bag. We asked for bed rails and received those with no problem, but a couple nights later we asked for an extra blanket and it took 3 calls and a walk to the front desk before we could get one. We had a "trash and tidy" visit on our 4th day, and the beds were made, trash was taken out, and supplies were replenished.

The villas are located off of the main lodge, but they are an easy walk from anywhere on the property. The property was extremely quiet and nice to come back to after being at the parks during one of their busiest weeks of the year. The grounds are gorgeous. There is a small sandy beach in the back with boat docks and a place to rent boats/bikes. We rented 2 Sea Racers one afternoon, and the price was very reasonable. They allow anyone over the age of 12 or 13 drive the boats, which I think is a bit young. We experienced a very hairy situation when a young boy was trying to maneuver his boat throught the canal at the same time one of the Disney ferries was going through. If you're going to let your pre-teen drive the boat, please go with him.

The villas have a small, "geyser" pool, which was very nice. The main pool behind the lodge was very large, with plenty of pool chairs. Every afternoon they had a "pool party" with Limbo, Hula Hoop contests, dancing, and more. There is a bar and deli area right near the main pool area as well. There is some outside seating for eating, but the ducks and birds are VERY aggressive, and if being stalked by birds is not your thing I would not recommend eating outside.

Transportation was never a problem. We waited probably not more than 10 minutes for a bus to any of the parks. We took the boat to MK one morning and it was quick and very peaceful. There is also a boat to the Contemporary, which we took one morning and then jumped on the monarail for a ride.

I would definitely recommend the villas, especially if the Magic Kingdom is one of your main destinations while at Disney World.

  • Stayed: July 2008, traveled with family
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3  Thank dfarner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 17, 2008

My family and I have been members of the vacation club for almost 10 years, and this was the first time we stayed in the villas, as we had 2 extra guests. We had a two bedroom villa, and it was enormous. The room was spotless: the kitchen appliances were clean and functioning, the master bathroom was perfect. both bedrooms had small balconies that had partial views of the large quiet pool. the building was also very welcoming and fully encompassed the hotel's theme, as is expected with Disney resorts.
The main pool area is wonderful, with a gentle waterfall safe enough for children. The pool bar is good, but the pool bars at the Coronado Springs and the Boardwalk were better. The snack bar near the pool provided a wealth of snacks for everyone throughout the day, and our group would get breakfast there if we weren't going to a theme breakfast that day.
The staff was friendly, though we bumped into a few staff members that weren't exactly feeling the "Disney magic". We didn't let that get to us. Mostly everything we needed was taken care of immediately.
There are two restaurants in the hotel, and we only ate at the theme restaurant (its a barbeque restaurant). Be prepared for very involved waitstaff - if you don't like LOUD, crazy, get you up out of your seat to do a rodeo dance around the room kind of dining, then i suggest you don't go here. it's a great atmosphere for kids, but only go there if you are open to semi-obnoxiousness and you have a sense of humor. the food there is pretty good too... LOVED the pulled pork!!
Okay, now here's the bad news. The second night in the hotel my friends and I used the hotel hot tub. Two days later I woke up with the WORST allergic reaction I've ever had in my entire life all over my legs. We actually had to have a doctor come to the hotel to diagnose me, as I could barely walk. The doctor (employed by DisneyWorld) diagnosed the reaction as a reaction to potential hot tub bacteria that soaked into the pores in my legs. it's why the reaction stopped at my bathing suit line. when we informed the hotel, they were not receptive to the informaiton. they refused to take responsibility for it, which was very disappointing as we have been so impressed with Disney in the past. Fortunately, they did end up taking responsibility and covering all medical costs. However, my 10 day trip was essentially cut short - not only was it unbearably itchy, but it was so embarrassing to walk around with - people actually were commenting and asking me what was wrong (not Disney's fault). I was also unable to go out in the sun, as it would potentially irritate it. I ended up sleeping through the days and only going out at night.
Other than this setback, we enjoyed our vacation thoroughly. We have been to DisneyWorld over 18 times and never expect less than the best. If you are a member of the vacation club, seriously consider this hotel. The location and transportation are also worth mentioning, as they were never an issue.

  • Stayed: June 2006, traveled with family
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3  Thank givemeoceans
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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