As soon as you arrive at the Disney Art of Animation Resort, which is inside Disney, you see these huge panels with the four themes: Cars, The Little Mermaid, Finding Nemo and Lion King. At the entrance there are several blank canvases with crayons so that the kids who are coming or going don’t get bored even while you take off or put the bags in the car.
The Lobby is common to all wards. On the left are the counters to check in and check out and on the right are the panels telling a bit of the animation story. The sketches start in black and white and become coloured until they end in 3D.
An interesting detail in the Lobby is that in the left corner, there is always a Disney artist doing some drawing. The children can sit on the sofa and watch while he draws and the parents can checkin without hurrying.
It’s all very colourful and designed to delight both children and adults. This area is called Animation Hall.
In this same area of the Lobby is also where the Restaurant called Landscape of Flavors is located, which is open every day from 6am to midnight. The Restaurant offers several food options. The traditional fast food is there: Hamburger, French Fries and Pizza, but there are healthier options such as salads, soups, natural sandwiches and also ethnic food such as Tandoori Chicken, Portuguese sausage and fish options.
A Gelatto station opens the dessert space that has cupcakes with Mickey’s face, cookies and others. There is also an area to buy “trip” food, with sandwiches, juices in bottle and donuts.
Still in the Animation Hall is the Arcade (Game Room) which has toys, video games, flippers and lots of space for children to play. And finally the souvenir shop, where you can buy in addition to specific material from the Resort such as T-shirts, glasses, etc … a surprise: some of the decoration items you have in the suites are also available for purchase! The shower curtains of the characters and lampshades are two items that I noticed there.
Disney Art of Animation is considered a “Value Resort”, that is, it is in the most economical class of Disney resorts, but it has the same advantages of stay as any other resort in the network. It has transportation to Disney parks and has the advantage of “Magic Hour” that allows visitors to the Resorts overtime to visit the park, either in the morning or at night.
The Resort has 10 buildings, with 1120 suites and 864 rooms separated by wings or themes. We will take a tour around them:
It was the first wing to be opened in May 2012. It has two buildings, one with the turtle Crush(and Dori) and the other with Mr. Manta Ray. The theme is deep sea, in many shades of blue. In these two buildings, there are only suites and they are the ones closest to Animation Hall (restaurant, shop, lobby, entrance) and also to the pool.
Between the two buildings is where the biggest pool of the Resort is located. In fact, this is the largest pool of all Disney Resorts. It has a bar, a wet fountain area for children to play with water and a dry area with slides. In the pool there are always recreators with music doing dances or giant balls.
This wing was inaugurated in June 2012 and is one of my favorites (mother of boys!!!). It is composed of three buildings, and the way to it is a “simulation” of Route 66 with the typical Motels. Here a reminder that Motel in the United States is the classification for roadside hotel. Take a look at these pictures below and tell me if the car wing is not beautiful? With the characters in life-size, it’s a party for the pictures. The kids go crazy around here and I had to wait a long time to take pictures.
The Car area has the Tow Mater in one of the buildings, Luigi in the other and Lightning mcqueen in the Wheel Well Motel. The Cozy Cone Motel has the pool of this wing with cabins in the shape of cones and bathrooms.
The Lion King wing opened in August 2012 and has all the characters from the animation classic. They are two buildings separated by the famous scene of Simba, Timon, Pumba crossing a tree branch. Another beautiful area to take pictures.
I visited one of the rooms in the Lion King’s wing that had recently been opened. The entrance imitates a forest and the carpet has the footprints of Timon, Pumba and Simba. All the details are thought to be part of the scenery. In the bathroom, the tiles form the classic sunset landscape and the curtain of one of the bathrooms is also with the characters and is sold in the resort shop.
The double room is also thematic. Furniture, lampshades, and bedding remind us of details of the Lion King.
The salon has a sofa bed and a mini kitchen with fridge, microwave, sink, coffee maker and disposable utensils like plates, glasses and cutlery. The same print as the giraffes is also used on the sofa.
The dining room, has a colorful table on the theme with 4 chairs and two stools, which turns into a double bed. Very interesting transformation in a few seconds.
The Little Mermaid wing will open on 15 September 2012 and is the only part of the Resort that will have normal rooms instead of suites. This area also has its own swimming pool.
A few tips:
- For those who want to stay at Disney this is the most economical option. All Disney guest rights as free transportation to the Disney and Magic Hour parks are also valid here.
- If you are staying at the Resort, book at least half a day to explore the resort, which is sure to be an attraction with all the characters scattered around it. And enjoy the pools too, which are open 24 hours and can be a great option after a tiring day in the park.
- There are self-service washing and drying machines spread around the resort, near the pools.
- The concierge can help make reservations for restaurants, breakfast with characters and also to buy tickets to the parks.
- The souvenir glass which costs US$15.49 and can be bought in the restaurant has free refill for soft drinks, teas or juices during your entire stay both in the restaurant and in the pool bar area . It is very useful and convenient if you will spend several days at the resort.
- The Resort has free Wifi: In the lobby, in the pools and in the rooms.
Disney Art of Animation Resort
Address: 1850 Century Drive, Lake Buena Vista
Prices: For the suites, the prices are from US$246.00 per night, in the 2 bedroom suite for up to 6 people. Single rooms, in the Little Mermaid wing that opens on 09/15/2012, cost from US$94.00.
For reservations: Booking