How can you beat walking to both EPCOT and Disney-MGM? Don't want to walk (it's about 15 minutes to either park) you can hop on the boats that connect both parks with stops at the Swan/Dolphin, Yacht/Beach, and Boardwalk.
You also are just a five minute walk from Boardwalk where you will have a better assortment of restaurants than at the Swan or Dolphin. Oh, and you have a miniature golf course right in front.
Oh, and all of the perks of in-Disney hotels without it being Disney owned (early entry, late nights, bus service, etc.).
$80? Jump on it! I've stayed at both in the past and the rooms are nice. If you can ask for an EPCOT view you will get a sweet view of the Illuminations fireworks show from your room.
I too have heard it is a great place to stay, but that you have to pay something like $4 or $8 a day for parking at each resort. Other than that, $80 a night at Dinsey for what is considered a Deluxe Resort is a good deal.
The Swalphin is a great hotel. The rooms were all recently redone and are some of the best on-property. The only thing it is lacking, compared to the other on-site hotels, is an immersive theme. But, when you can walk to EPCOT and the boardwalk, who needs a themed hotel ? Jump on the deal.
I dont understand why some hotels charge you extra to park. That should be included when you stay at the hotel.
Because they can.
I know it sounds like a crappy answer but no industry thrives of the "because we can" approach more than the hotel industry.
Ever notice how it's the low/middle end hotels (like Fairfield Inn, Hampton Inn, Comfort Inn, etc) that charge in the range of $79 to $139 a night - they often include parking, internet access, breakfast and sometimes even an evening social with food for free? It's because these added amentities incrase the value and are more likely to put your hotel (in a sea of similar properties) ahead of another. The attempt to add things like this got so big that most just became standard issue. And quite bluntly, the type of person looking to pay $79 for a hotel room isn't likely to pay extra for such things. Better to get their business with the freebies than lose them to someone else.
At the same time ever notice how the higher end hotels that charge $200, $300 or $400 or more usually charge you to park, charge you for internet access and they never include a meal of any kind although most have onsite restaurants. It's because the type of person who spends that much for a room is not only more likely to use these services, but also more likely to pay for them.
The Swan and Dolphin certainly qualify as "higher end" hotels.
I've stayed at the Swan and would definitely recommend it. It was great being able to walk to Epcot and enter the park in the World Showcase. You can also walk to the Studios, but that seemed farther than Epcot so you’re better off waiting for the boat. There is also a boat that goes to Epcot, but it takes about the same amount of time as walking there. As Downhill Screamer said, there isn’t much of a theme, but that didn’t bother me at all since we didn’t spend much time in the room anyway. *** Edited 12/30/2006 4:40:20 PM UTC by person***
As per usual Gonch, I think your analysis is right on target. The higher end resorts know people will pay for the extras, so they don't feel they need to provide them without charging extra. We just got back from three days in Vegas and stayed at the Paris resort, which is one of the nicer ones on the strip. The first day they left us a coffee machine in the room, but not the next day. When we called house keeping, we were told the first day was a mistake and we would have to pay $28 per day to be able to make two tiny cups of coffee - and you thought Starbucks charges alot. They also wouldn't even provide us with a box of kleenex for the room, which was listed as a luxory suite. I couldn't resist filling out their survey at the end of our stay. I said, "You should probably dry clean this bedspread. Since you wouldn't provide us with Kleenex, we had to use whatever was available."
right on guys, thanks for the input! at first i was worried that starwood hot rates didn't apply to a higher end place like swan and dolphin, but yesterday i was talking about disney to a co-worker who stayed at the swan and dolphin for $70/night, i think the price changes according to season, but either way will be cheap, or that is, around the same price for a real nice place as a low-end disney like all-stars or whatever. thats pretty killer to be able to walk to epcot and mgm as well as boats, busses, etc. the transportation is the main reason i want to stay on-property. stayed at dixie landings (i think now part of port orleans) a few years back and the transportation was killer and really made the whole week way better.
as for the parking, i don't mind at all as i'm not going to rent a car at all. apparently disney has a shuttle from/to the airport and there are some independent services that will drive to other parks in the area such as universal, sea world.
i havn't been down since 2000 and i'm really itching to get back to disney. thanks for all your input!
awesome Neil, yea from what ive heard youll be in for a real treat. those two hotels are quite nice, and the proximity to Epcot cannot be beat (not just Epcot, but the monorail as well). have fun man:)
I am in the same situation. I am going to WDW for graduation in June. My parents are offering me to stay on property (I'm leaning towards Port Orleans Riverside) However I work for a Sheraton hotel and I can probably get a discount at the Swan or Dolphin. We really want to do the whole "Disney Imersion." Would this be the same as a "real" Disney resort? Also, can you do meal plans with the Swan/Dolphin?
from what i can tell by reading through the literature i got when hired, any hotel that gives hot rates (incl swan and dolphin) also gives the half-off meals, but i could be misreading it. as for wanting to stay in a disney hotel, if that's what you have your heart set on, i'd say go for it, but if you don't mind my opinion, i'd suggest taking the nice place still on property with all the transportation at a discount that would be around the price for a super low end disney room. but either way have a great trip!
quite honestly, after going to the parks all day, and getting disney transportation to and from, as well as everyone in the hotel in the disney mindset, i'm not sure you'll have time to notice it's not a disney themed hotel as you watch the 20 min of tv before you pass out exhausted from a long day at the parks, wake up, shower, and jump back on the disney bus or boat :)
oh right on. that's a good question, i think maybe a call to the resort (what is it, something like 1-800 wdisney or somthing like that?) could awnser. not sure something like that would be on the website