The Waterfront Bungalows at Disney's Polynesian Village Resort
A Walt Disney World Resort Reviewby Cheryl Pendry, PassPorter Featured Columnist
Last modified 01-12-2017
Over the past couple of years, the Polynesian Resort has gone through a comprehensive update, even including a name change. Included in that work was the addition of 20 two-bedroom bungalows on the shore of the Seven Seas Lagoon.
Polynesian Village - waterfront bungalow
One of the main selling points of these bungalows, the plunge pool over the Seven Seas Lagoon.
Sleeping eight people, they are an expensive place to stay. Prices start from $2,272, rising up to $3,659 per night, which sounds pretty insane to me, and there is no way we could afford to pay for a stay in the bungalows. Instead we’re Disney Vacation Club Members, and we put our excess points from a couple of vacations that didn’t work out for us, towards a two night stay in them. Even then, it wasn’t a cheap stay. One night starts from 115 points per night for Sunday-Thursday, and goes up to 197 points at peak periods. Friday and Saturday night stays cost even more.
To put that in context, if you’re thinking of buying into the DVC at the Polynesian Village, each point will cost you $171, and the minimum purchase for new members at the resort is 100 points, so it’s a big investment. Equally, you can also get a Grand Villa that sleeps 12 people at many other DVC resorts at Walt Disney World for a lot less points. Fancy a Grand Villa at Animal Kingdom Lodge? You’re looking at between 75 and 126 points a night for Sundays to Thursdays for a savannah view. A view of the Magic Kingdom from a Grand Villa at Bay Lake Tower will set you back between 102 and 175 points, depending on the time of year you visit.
So what do you get for so much money or so many points? Well, in total, it’s nearly 1,100 square feet, which gives you a lot of space, especially if there’s only two of you. As you walk into the villa, the hallway leads you through the entire bungalow, with the main living area at the back, and bedrooms off to the side. One thing we immediately noticed was how high the ceiling was in here, which made the whole bungalow feel massive!
The first thing you come to on the left is the master suite with a king-size bed, and the minute you walk in, the feeling you get is one of sophistication. Don’t get me wrong, given it’s got a Polynesian theme, there’s still a fun element, but this is definitely a nice room to stay for a couple, or maybe parents of a larger family.
The attached en suite bathroom was a real surprise to me. Many Disney Vacation Club resorts have been moving towards more muted color tones during recent renovations, but here, the bathroom is a lovely shade of blue, with black granite, mahogany wood and in places, tiling from floor to ceiling. It’s not normally the sort of style I’d like, but here, it worked really well. It was also very spacious, and includes a rain shower, full sized tub, and two separate sinks, a design I particularly like, as we don’t need to fight over one!
To the right of the hallway is the second bedroom, with a queen-size bed, and this has a much more fun theme to it with surfboards as the headboards, and bright colors including oranges, and light blues and greens, making it feel much lighter than the master suite.
Next door is the shared bathroom, with tub and shower, and a separate area with a toilet, which was a nice touch, given if you have eight people, bathrooms are going to be in demand. You’ll also find the washer and dryer here, which we were very grateful for, as we were 10 days into our vacation, and had yet to stay anywhere with such facilities!
Polynesian - Bora Bora bungalows
The bungalows on the waterfront of Seven Seas Lagoon.
The living area is packed with facilities, but ironically, it also still feels very spacious. However, we never put the queen-size sofabed, and the twin pull-down bed (underneath the TV) into use, so I can imagine once those are in play, it could become a lot more cramped. It is combined with the dining room, which has a dining table that can seat the maximum eight people, and fully equipped kitchen. This is packed with everything a group could want to cook for themselves, including an oven, microwave, and massive fridge – our few items in that looked very pathetic!
We didn’t cook during our two night stay, and it was only on the final morning that I opened every cupboard, and drawer in the kitchen and discovered the full extent of what was available. If I say, items included a casserole dish, baking sheet, mixing bowls, and storage containers, you get the idea.
Perhaps our favorite part of the bungalows, and I’m guessing one of the reasons Disney can charge so much for them was the private deck at the back, from which you’re right on top of Seven Seas Lagoon, and have a view across to the Magic Kingdom. Before the bungalows opened, there was a lot of discussion about the plunge pool out here, and whether anyone would ever really use it. Well, I can confirm we did, and more than once. It was so hot and humid during our stay that we were very grateful for some cold water, although in truth, it felt more tepid in the temperatures we experienced.
The deck is also home to a table, and four chairs, along with two lounge chairs, and two hanging basket chairs, so everyone can enjoy the deck together. One of my favorite memories is getting up early, and watching the sun rise over the Seven Seas Lagoon and working at the table on the deck, feeling as if I was completely alone out there. It was very surreal, but amazing at the same time.
One of the big selling points is that the music from Wishes is piped into deck area, if you want to listen to it. On one evening, we left the Halloween Party early at the Magic Kingdom, so we could do this, and it was a truly magical experience, and one we’ll both remember for a long time.
All in all, our stay at our waterfront bungalow was exceptionally relaxing, and we could both see why Disney charges so much for this. It is a very special and unique experience, and one we’d love to do again, if only we had enough Disney Vacation Club points to do so. Ah well, isn’t that what Disney is about… having a dream….?
Updated 01-12-2017 - Article #1362
by PassPorter Travel Press, an imprint of MediaMarx, Inc.
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