Sometimes when traveling a hotel is simply just that, a hotel. It ends up being a place to sleep and keep your stuff, and as long as its comfortable you are good to go. However, there are times when a hotel ends up being much more. Depending on where I am going and what kind of trip I am planning, I may want to stay at something a little more luxurious and resort like. When planning a trip to Disney, the Animal Kingdom Lodge came highly recommended and I simply couldn't resist. So off I went...
On my day of arrival I received an email from the resort letting me know exactly what room I was in and when it would be ready. Once I knew my room was ready I was able to go directly there upon arrival. My wristbands, which also acted as a room key, were sent to me weeks in advance. This allowed me to bypass the reception desk for check in. I found this perk to be extremely convenient especially with a small child. This is the same at many of the Disney resorts. Upon entering the hotel I immediately fell in love. The decor and design of the hotel is breath taking and beautiful. The decor is safari inspired with a touch of luxury.
From there the room, though not facing the grazing area for the animals, was a corner room located located next to the pool and offered a small outdoor seating area. The rooms were clean and offered a spacious vanity area separate from the bathroom. For anyone traveling with a party of two or more, this can be very convenient. The room also had on-theme decor matching the resort. With kids being located next to the pool was convenient. The pool is a large multi-depth pool fully equipped with a water slide, bar, and three life guards on duty. The pool is gated, but stays open late which can be relaxing after a long day at the parks in the warm sun. There are a number of delicious options to dine at should you want to stay at the resort. For dining options there is a quick service, a buffet, and fine dining.
In the back of the hotel there is an area where the wild animals graze throughout the day. There is a large fire pit on the patio and an observation area. This area provided a unique experience for viewing the animals. When deciding which parks I wanted to visit I left Animal Kingdom off the to do list and chose to visit Epcot, Magic Kingdom, and Hollywood Studios instead. Having not gone to Animal Kingdom, I did find that staying at the Animal Kingdom Lodge provided me a satisfying wildlife experience. They offer nighttime animal viewing, to guests after 9:00pm each night. This can be a unique experience for young children and the animal lover in all of us.
Hands down the Animal Kingdom Lodge offers a wonderful experience for the animal lover in all of us. Given the choice I highly recommend spending a few nights at this resort.