Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows is a Deluxe Villa Hotel
Location: Magic Kingdom Area
Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows are located to the south of Disney’s Magic Kingdom Park near Orlando, Florida. Both accommodations are part of Disney’s Polynesian Village, a South Pacific-inspired development which lines the beautiful banks of the nearby Seven Seas Lagoon.
If we’re honest, Disney is already at an advantage with its Polynesian Villas & Bungalows located close to the Magic Kingdom Park. The stunning Seven Seas Lagoon and nearby waterways provide visitors with the spirit of the South Pacific, without actually having to be there. It’s a chance to experience what life is like thousands of miles from mainland civilization without actually having to travel for hours on a flight with the kids.
Disney’s Polynesian Villas and Bungalows sit across the lake from the Magic Kingdom Park with views of the rides and, of course, the iconic Disney castle towering overhead. The villas and bungalows are located in Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort, a collection of long-houses designed to evoke the style of Polynesia. It’s a bona fide community in its own right, with nightly entertainment, plenty of places to eat and drink, and activities suitable for all the family, day and night, even while out of the park.
The villas and bungalows sit on the Village’s north side, on the banks of the Seven Seas Lagoon. The accommodations offer guests commanding views over the park and are right next to beautiful sandy beaches. Some of the bungalows have views of the many small islands which dot the lagoon, again helping to evoke the feeling that you are genuinely on a Polynesian island.
Disney has done everything that it can to integrate the villas and bungalows with the rest of the park.
Getting from the Village to Magic Kingdom Park is easy. Just walk through the village to the monorail station and catch a train to the park’s entrance. The entire journey takes no more than a few minutes and means that you don’t have to spend time fiddling about with the car. There’s no parking or negotiating parking charges: the resort takes care of the whole lot for you.
The main car park for the Disney Polynesian Village Resort is just to the southeast and, like the resort itself, is has a monorail station you can hop on and catch a train, making it easy to transport your luggage. The whole system works together seamlessly, helping to take the hassle out of all the logistics and negate the needs to haul heavy suitcases long distances. From the moment you arrive at the park, you’re able to start having fun.
When it comes to the setting, Disney has pretty much hit the nail on the head. The Seven Seas Lagoon is a beautiful body of water, peppered with small atolls which resemble a South Pacific Island chain. The entire area is also carpeted with swaying palm trees of the variety that you’re liable to find on a peaceful Pacific Island in the middle of the ocean, thousands of miles from the nearest continental landmass. The quality of the building and amenities tells you that you’re in Florida, but there are very few other visual cues that you are.
In the evening, the Disney Polynesian Village comes alive with entertainment. You can go with the family to watch traditional Polynesian dancers performing with torches and drums. Or you can remain in your bungalow and listen to the sounds of celebration on the wind. Close your eyes, and you can almost imagine that you’re in paradise.
One of the great things about the Polynesian villas and bungalows is that you also get access to many hotel facilities that you’d expect on a trip to a quality resort. The Oasis Pool which sits at the center of several of the main longhouses is set up as a literal oasis, complete with palms and plenty of space to relax. If you don’t fancy a trip to the park or want to spend the afternoon reading, then you can.
What about the accommodation? Disney has tried in this regard to emulate the kind of luxury that you might find on a Polynesian island. The bungalows that line the beach, for instance, are raised on stilts out of the water, as you might find on real resorts in the South Pacific. And Disney has done what it can to create an atmosphere of adventure by naming guest villas in the longhouses Tokelau, Pago Pago, and Moorea.
The Bora Bora bungalows are among the most expensive accommodation on the Magic Kingdom Park. It’s not uncommon for people to pay more than $2,400 per night to stay in these attractive buildings which line the shores of the lake. Some, however, will consider the price a little steep, especially when you find out that staying in similar accommodation on the real Bora Bora islands is about half the price.
You access the bungalows themselves via a keycard system. Once inside, they meet practically all of your needs – as they should be for that kind of money. In addition, you’re treated to some pretty cool features that you wouldn’t ordinarily find in hotel accommodation, like a bathroom mirror which doubles up as a TV.
The overall quality of the finish for the bungalows is high. The design is what you might call tradition-tropical. The planners have tried to make the room look as authentic as possible, and the quality of the finish is high. The resort doesn’t try to short change you by offering gimmicks and not backing them up with the proper furnishings.
Things get really exciting in the bathroom. As you might imagine, the decor here is done well and feels pretty opulent. Again, there are Polynesian influences in the design, which is nice, but there’s no doubt that you’ve arrived at a luxurious resort. All of the sheets and bedding are crisp and well-planned, and the multiplicity of colors contrast with each other nicely.
What about the villas? You can find them in the island-theme longhouses. The resort gutted the villas recently and installed some more basic budget-friendly accommodation on the site. You’ll pay much less than $2,400 a night here – a relief for some.
Most of the previous hotel rooms have been transformed into what Disney is calling Deluxe Studio Villas. The idea is to provide families with all the comforts that they need away from home while taking advantage of the cost savings that the longhouses offer. Not all of the old accommodation, however, has been ripped out completely. It seems Disney opted for some cost-cutting tactics and has just re-skinned some old hotel rooms on the site with a Polynesian theme. With that said, if you avoid booking through the Disney website and use your DVC points, you can get excellent value.
Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows offers practically all of the amenities that you could ever want. Perhaps the most attractive of all is the beach along the shores of the Seven Seas Lagoon. There’s also the pool we discussed earlier, free breakfast for all the family, and a host of pre-arranged kids activities to keep them entertained during quieter parts of the day.
For people who need to work during their trip, the resort provides free high-speed internet across the site and a business center with internet access, should you need it. There’s a nearby gym, spa, and shuttle bus service for getting to and from the carpark, airport and nearby towns.
Disney’s Spirit of Aloha Dinner Show is quite a spectacle. The entertainment is based around the spirit of aloha and blends drummers with knife performers for a scintillating experience. Disney market the experience as “all-you-care-to-enjoy,” meaning that you don’t have to stay for the whole show. Guests can come and go as they please, making it a great option if you want to retain more control over kids’ bedtimes.
There’s also an all-you-can-eat tropical feast too. If you like roast chicken and spare ribs, then this is the venue for you. Disney has attempted to give all of the food a South Pacific edge, including coconut and pineapple whenever they can. But make no mistake, this is traditional US fare.
Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows Resort offers families a range of experiences depending on budgets. Staying in one of the bungalows gives you the truest to life experience of being in Polynesia itself. Each of the so-called bungalows looks very much like the type of accommodation you’d find on the real islands, but with souped-up amenities. The “Grand Villas” provides more of a budget-friendly experience, and this will be the one that most families opt for. One thing is for sure, though: you’ll never be bored.
Excellent entertainment in the evenings while you eat
Great dining options
Stunning accommodation, especially the bungalows on the Seven Seas Lagoon, overlooking the park.
Close to the monorail for quick access to the park
The resort operates around the clock, meaning it can sometimes be noisy at night
The bungalows on the lakeshore are too pricey to represent excellent value for money
Some guests will struggle to haul their luggage from the monorail station all the way to the accommodation
The Disney theming is minimal, which may put off some families
Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows Room Rates
For a Standard Studio Villa you’ll pay around $500 per night for 1 Queen-Size Sleeper Sofa and 1 Queen Bed and 1 Single Pull Down Bed. Lake View Studios are going to be about $560 per night and include the same set-up as the Standard Villa. For the bungalows, you’ll have to drop about $2400 per night and they include 1 King Bed and 1 Queen Bed and 1 Queen-Size Sleeper Sofa and 2 Single Pull Down Beds.