I should note that most of the time I travel by myself, so except for a stay in a 1-bedroom at Boardwalk, I nearly always stay in a studio. So while I can easily give you an idea of quality of furnishings, resort conveniences, and other things like that, there isn’t a lot I can tell you about room lay-outs and sizes for the larger units. What I can tell you thought is that DVC units, compared to other timeshares in Orlando, tend to run smaller, so when I need more space to accommodate family, I usually find it less expensive and more suitable to stay off-site at either one of the Wyndham timeshares (Bonnet Creek is a favorite) or a Starwood vacation resort such as Sheraton Vistana Villages.
That said, I really love the Disney resorts, the theming and being right in the middle of all the Disney magic. To my mind, if DVC isn’t the absolute best timeshare company, it is certainly in the running for one of the best and it is definitely my personal favorite, and in the long run that is all that counts. Finding the best timeshare programs to suit your actual vacation needs. So with that out of the way, let’s get right into my brief Disney Vacation Club reviews.
This is the first reservation I made upon becoming an owner and I took my Dad, my brother and his daughter on this trip with me. We stayed in a one-bedroom. My dad can never stop talking about Boardwalk Villas and he gets his nose out of joint whenever we stay somewhere else now. So obviously he loved it! I like it a lot too and as far as locations go, it is the best in the parks if you love Epcot, since Epcot is within walking distance. Also, it is always lively here in the evenings with entertainment on the boardwalk and of course there are several restaurants as well. A fun place to stay.
Saratoga Springs Disney Resort
This is the DVC resort where my membership is held. I usually stay at Saratoga Springs for at least a couple of days on most trips, always requesting Congress Park. I like Congress Park because it is a quick walk over to Downtown Disney. My two favorite aspects of Saratoga Springs include the fact that it is quieter than many of the other Disney Resorts because the units are spread throughout the grounds rather than all in one building like a hotel; and for that same reason, the distance from your car to the unit is a lot shorter. Each building has its own parking area which makes loading and unloading your car much easier and getting in and out of the resort a lot faster.
Animal Kingdom Lodge Jambo House
This is my preferred DVC resort at Disney World. It requires fewer points than the other resorts and I love the location and the atmosphere here and the way the resort is decorated. Also, the restaurants and the cafeteria are great too. The animals are awesome and I will occasionally book the Savannah view. I stay here during every trip and on my last trip I actually stayed here twice (note: I stay in Florida for two months each winter). While the Animal Kingdom Lodge villas are the most “remote” in the Parks, it is very easy to get to Rte 192 from here so I find the location extremely convenient for going off-site.
The main attraction at Animal Kingdom Lodge is, of course, the animals. If you have the points or cash available, I strongly recommend booking a Savannah view unit (available at both Kidani and Jambo House), so you can see all the animals right from your balcony.
Animal Kingdom Lodge Kidani Village
I stayed at Kidani Village shortly after it opened and now that I have, I will continue to book Jambo House. Kidani Village is perfectly nice, but it does not have a cafeteria-style restaurant or much of a shop so I find the location unbelievably inconvenient if I just want a quick snack or something inexpensive to eat without leaving the resort. You can walk to Jambo House from here, but who wants to do that after you’ve been walking around the theme parks all day? No thanks!
Disney Vacation Club Hilton Head
I usually visit Hilton Head for a week after leaving Florida each winter. It helps me avoid New England winters for another week. I stayed at the DVC resort on Hilton Head during my first visit here and it is a really cute resort. It is also quiet and peaceful. Disney has their own “beach clubhouse”, but you have to take a shuttle bus from the resort to get there. This is less annoying that it sounds since you can call the shuttle bus to come get you as there is no set schedule.
Grand Californian Villas at Disneyland
I lived in California while the Grand Californian Hotel was under construction and I have always been impressed with the results and have long wanted to stay in this beautiful hotel. So I was very happy when Disney decided to add some Disney Vacation Club villas to the resort.
I have stayed here twice so far and love this resort. I love having a view of the California Adventure park at night after all the people have left. I will be buying here eventually so I can have the 11 month booking window, but so far I have been pretty lucky booking at the 7 month window as I usually have a flexible schedule.