When I visited Disney World for the grand opening of Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway, I stayed one night at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and one night at Disney’s Boardwalk Inn & Villas. This is called a split stay.
We are Disney Vacation Club Members, and we were unable to get two nights at the same hotel, so we decided to do this split stay so we could stay a little longer!
Disney’s Boardwalk Inn & Villas quickly became our favorite resort we’ve ever stayed at, so let’s take a look!
There is plenty of seating both inside and outside and some cool (creepy?) turn of the century items. We don’t spend a lot of time sitting during our vacations especially in the lobbies, but we almost always sit in the lobby on our last day while we’re waiting for the Magical (Tragical) express. Because this is a DVC resort, there is also a beverage center in the lobby with fruit-infused water for your refreshing enjoyment!
Disney’s Boardwalk Inn & Villas has a turn-of-the-century Atlantic City theme. Boardwalk Inn (often abbreviated BWI) is a unique resort because the hotel itself feels like a little community.
One thing that we’ve come to expect at Disney Resort Hotels is dining immediately available at the resort. There aren’t any full-service dining locations at the actual resort. The Belle Vue Lounge, which is located just off the lobby, serves a variety of breakfast items including muffins, croissants, yogurt, fruit, bagels, and more.
However, all other dining is located at the Boardwalk. This area makes this, in my opinion, one of the most unique resorts on property. There are several restaurants, grab-n-go carts, shopping, and recreational opportunities here.
We stopped at the Boardwalk Bakery for both breakfast and lunch, and the food looked, smelled, and tasted delicious!
You can also grab some tasty sweets at Boardwalk Bakery!
Besides Boardwalk Bakery, there’s also a pizza window, which is where my husband ate lunch. I was skeptical, but the pizza was better than other “Disney pizza” we’ve tried. There are also some really nice restaurants here like Trattoria al Forno, which is home to the Bon Voyage Breakfast, and Flying Fish, which consistently receives high reviews! Since we only stayed one night, we didn’t get to try any of these restaurants, but we will definitely put them on our list for future visits.
We loved that this resort has this Boardwalk area and that there were so many options. I didn’t feel at all like I was in the middle of Disney World, which I think is the goal of this resort.
Location, Location, Location
The truth is, you are, in fact, in the middle of Disney World! Boardwalk Inn is located between Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Epcot with walking paths to both parks.
From Hollywood Studios, you can hop onto the Disney Skyliner and visit other resorts or Epcot’s International Gateway. If you have a park ticket, you can also walk through the park and jump on the monorail, which can take you to Magic Kingdom with a transfer at the TTC in between. This means you can get to three of the four parks without ever getting on a bus, and you have access to Disney’s Pop Century Resort, Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, and, most prominently, Disney’s Riviera Resort via the Skyliner and Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa, Disney’s Polynesian Resort, and Disney’s Contemporary Resort via the monorail.
You can also take a boat from the Boardwalk to Epcot or Hollywood Studios. The location is a major factor that makes this one of our favorite resorts!
There is plenty to do at this resort!
The Luna Park Pool is the feature pool with a 200-foot-long water slide. This is the infamous “Clown Pool” that everyone talks about. I didn’t find this as frightening as people had described it to me. If you’re really scared of clowns, it might bother you more than it did me. Luna Park also has a whirlpool spa and a lounge and bar for refreshments and snacks called Leaping Horse Libations, which also has a drink refill station for those refillable resort mugs. There are also two leisure pools for those who just want a relaxing soak.
Boardwalk Inn also offers campfire activities, movies under the stars, surrey bike rentals on The Boardwalk, fishing, tennis, jogging, a playground, an arcade, and yoga on the lawn every Monday and Wednesday morning at 8:15 am. Fantasia Gardens and Fairways Miniature Golf course is also nearby.
Besides these activities, there are some carnival-style games available on The Boardwalk.
We stayed in a one-bedroom villa at Disney’s Boardwalk Inn. The room was very nice! Get ready to walk – the hallways here are very long and seemingly never-ending! If you’d like to be close to the lobby or transportation, be sure to request that when completing your online check-in.
Villas offer full kitchens, a table, a living room with a pull-out sofa bed and a balcony that extends the length of the villa even providing a second access on the bedroom side of the villa. The kitchen includes an oven a full-size refrigerator, a microwave, a coffee pot, and a dishwasher plus dishes, utensils, and cookware.
Just off the kitchen is the bedroom (left), the bathroom (straight ahead), and laundry (right). The bathroom is divided into two sections including a small sink, toilet, and shower in one section and a large vanity and whirlpool tub in the other section. The whirlpool tub opens into the bedroom.
One downfall of this room is that there is not a regular bathtub for washing kids, so unless your child can use the shower, it will be hard to wash them in this room. Plus, there is only one bathroom in the Boardwalk Inn Villas even though the villa can sleep up to four adults. Other resorts like Disney’s Animal Kingdom one-bedroom villas have a large bathroom off the bedroom and another smaller bathroom in the main living area.
The location, dining options, and serene atmosphere of this resort make it one of our favorite resorts. We are pretty new to the DVC, but we are already planning our next stay at the Boardwalk Inn & Villas!
Do you like the Boardwalk Inn & Villas?