Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The Polynesian Resort: To Stay or Not to Stay During a Race Weekend?


The Polynesian Resort has some of the most picturesque landscaping so I thought this post was appropriate for Deb's link up today.



The decision of what resort to stay at while visiting Disney is such a personal one that depends on many factors. We have stayed at all levels of Disney resorts from the All-Stars, Moderates, Villas, and Deluxe, and quite honestly we were happy at all of them.  When we visit Disney for race weekends, we look for different things in our resort than if we were visiting for a full on family vacation or a quick sisters trip.   So far, we've found that we prefer to stay at the Polynesian for race weekends.

If you should choose to stay at the Polynesian resort for your next stay during a run Disney race, here are a few pros and cons you might want to consider.
 


Although the concierge says that all the rooms are the same, they really aren't. We were moved a few times ( due to no fault of our own) and we noticed that some rooms had larger ( and a bit nicer) bathrooms, and some rooms had walk out balconies, and some rooms only had large windows. I'm not sure if they slid open, but you couldn't walk out on a balcony.


We were lucky enough to get a corner room with a great view.  Almost any view at the Polynesian is great, unless you get a view of the construction.  We could see across the lake on one side, and the monorail in front of us.

Yes, some rooms are in front of the monorail. Yes, you could hear it go by but it didn't bother us one bit. It was kind of exciting and we liked seeing it as we sat out on the balcony.  If you think this would bother you than you might want to ask for a room away from the monorail.

Having the monorail for easy transportation was a big reason why we chose to stay here, but the fact that it was shut down from 11 am- 7pm was a bit of a bummer.

The monorail does run in the wee hours of the morning for race day transportation between the Polynesian, Grand Floridian, and Contemporary resorts but you still have to switch monorails at the Transportation and Ticket Center and grab the one that goes to Epcot. 

Since we were staying at the Polynesian we found it easier to just walk to the TTC and get on the Epcot monorail. The walk is not far at all and it saved us time by not having to travel to all the other MK resort.  This was probably the biggest benefit to staying here on race weekend.



The larger rooms are also a benefit when you are sharing a space with other runners. We all had enough room for all our things and I even had room to lay out my yoga mat and foam roller!


We don't expect to get lots of park time in during race weekends, but we do expect to relax a lot at the resort and realistically, sleep is pretty important to us.  Having  the comfy beds and the inside corridors that cut down on some noise was pretty important to us. Oh, and it helped a LOT that the ice machine was right outside our door. How perfect was that?


Our staff at the Polynesian made our stay a little more magical too!
After our last race, these Mickey's were left on the dresser with a very nice note from our housekeeping staff. She had met my mom in the hallway several times over the weekend as my mom was getting ice for my leg. Look at the bandage on Mickey's leg. I thought that was so sweet.


One of the other things that we like about staying at the Polynesian is the variety of food choices. Ohana, Kona Café, and Captain Cooks are all our favorites!

It doesn't hurt that you can see Wishes right from the resort too. I think we only stayed up late enough to see them only once though!

What resort do you like to stay at during a race weekend? Is your choice of resort different when you are visiting Disney for a family trip other than a race?
Focused on the Magic

36 comments:

  1. We stayed at one of the Disney resorts when we race Princess a couple of years ago and it wasn't anything to write home about :( but I would try a different one again!

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    1. Boo! Sorry your resort was a bummer! I hope you get to try another resort on your next trip and that it is fabulous!

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  2. I am all about the deluxe resorts for the races. Hoping on the monorail is so easy and with such an early wake-up it is one thing I don't have to worry about. We just planned our vacation for the summer and we are staying at Coronado which we have stayed at before and like, so with the family we like staying at moderate resorts. Not really a fan of the All-Stars!

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    1. We stayed at CS only once and thought it was gorgeous! I agree with staying at Deluxe resorts during race weekends. It makes it so easy!

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  3. I haven't stayed at the Poly before, but it looks gorgeous! And your mousekeeping staff is so sweet to surprise you like that. That is awesome you can watch Wishes from the resort, too! Could you see from your room balcony or did you have to go to a specific spot on the resort?

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    1. Since we had a corner room we could have possibly seen Wishes from that angle but the night we saw them was when we were eating dinner on the patio by the pool. The best place to view them is on the beach!

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  4. My parents had a time share at the Boardwalk, so we stayed there a lot, whether we were there for a race weekend or a family trip.

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    1. The Boardwalk is definitely in a good location!

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  5. I'd love to stay at the Polynesian some day :) I walked through and had a drink at the beack with my brother during Wishes one evening and it was a great way to end the day. I think we're planning to stay at Saratoga Springs during Tower of Terror this year. I figure we'll be spending a lot of time at the resort so the pool, the spa, and proximity to downtown disney are selling points.

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    1. We plan to spend more time at the resorts too during race weekends so that is why we chose the Poly!

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  6. The Poly was so pretty when we went for the #runnerslove meet-up! We've really only gone to Disney for races (last time for vacation was Spring Break of my freshman year in high school), so I think I don't worry too much about our hotel, since we don't spend that much time in the room. If we were to go for just a vacation, I'd want to go with a "better" hotel.

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  7. Love love love the Poly for Marathon weekend. We have stayed there the last two years and plan to again in January. It is perfect with the TTC right around the corner making the early morning wake ups a bit later and of course the ease of getting to the race start. Will you be running in January at WDW? I'm thinking about cutting back to the Goofy Challenge....doesn't that sound ridiculous???

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    1. I'm thinking that running in January might be a possibility for at least one of us. We will see how it goes!

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  8. Great info! I'm still deciding on where to stay for W&D (also my first trip to WDW). I'll be sure to keep the Poly in mind! Thanks!

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    1. Wow Kim, I didn't know it was going to be your first trip to WDW! I'm so excited for you!

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  9. We've never stayed at The Poly, but have been there quite a few times (love Ohana!). The monorail sounds so nice...but my heart is at AKL, so that's where I'll be for PHM 2015!!! :)

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    1. Glad that you are already planning on coming to PHM in 2015 Karen. I guess we really should check out AKL sometime!

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  10. Stop it! that Mickey doll with the bandaged leg? That's above & beyond duties. love that!

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    1. Yes, we thought that was SO great. We didn't even notice the bandage at first. Disney staff really does pay attention to every detail!

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  11. What a great stay - we love staying at the Poly! That Mickey with the bandaged leg is awesome, love when there is some Disney magic sprinkled in with your stay.

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    1. Absolutely! I will be putting that mickey on my shelf next to my medal!

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  12. I stayed at the All-star resorts the last few stays. Its a decent price, have the buses for race transportation, but can be a little loud! I guess that's what we have to sacrifice for staying at a Disney "economy" resort!

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    1. We've stayed at the All Stars a few times when it was a quick sisters trip and we didn't mind it. I do like the fact that we didn't have to ride a bus this time though.

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  13. Staying at the Poly is on my Disney Bucket list for sure. I can't speak for staying there on a race weekend, but I would think having the monorail handy would be great!

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    1. I would have been a little disappointed if I was staying there with children and wanted to go back and forth to the parks during the day because the monorail was not working. ( at least during the week). But for the sake of the races, we were fine!

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  14. That is so sweet about the Mickey's!!!! :)

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    1. Yes, we thought so too! Their staff is great!

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  15. Thanks for the tips about the rooms. Love the Mickey they gave you, so thoughtful! :) We haven't stayed at the Polynesian but it's on our short list of Disney resorts we want to stay at.

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    1. I like to try all the Disney resorts at least once but it will be hard to not want to stay here again!

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  16. I want to stay at the Poly for Marathon weekend! Hoping it works out for us. Nice write up! Poly stay is on my bucket list.

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    1. Thanks Julie! Being able to walk right to the monorail is a great plus. Gave us a little extra time to sleep in :)

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  17. We've never stayed here but what a great resort. I like all the special and personal touches. All the food looks yummy.

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  18. I've never stayed at a resort in FL, mainly bc my family has a house nearby but the Polynesian has always been at the top of my list if we ever do. When we take our son there in a few years, we will def. stay on the property so he gets the full experience.

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  19. The Polynesian is such a beautiful resort. We visited it for the first time last summer for dinner at 'Ohana. I fell in love with the waterfall - I hear they're removing that though :(

    Here's my #DisneyWordlessWednesday post! - Flowers + Gardens at WDW

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  20. The Poly is so beautiful and so convenient! I love hopping on the monorail and the food is fabulous! Love that little Mickey. So cute!

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  21. We absolutely love the Polynesian!! The landscaping is just beautiful!

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