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  • Grand Floridian vs Animal Kingdom Lodge

    My wife and I are talking about visiting WDW after I finish my deployment in May. We were looking at the resorts and have come down to either choosing the Grand Floridian or the Animal Kingdom Lodge (I think that's what it is called). My wife loves the "turn-of-the-century" (er, 20th Century that is) feel, but also loves the concept of a hotel with wild animals on its property. Does anyone have any suggestions as to which one might be better? Thanks!

  • #2
    Re: Grand Floridian vs Animal Kingdom Lodge

    I think the Grand Floridian is way more expensive... though both hotels are way out of my price range.

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    • #3
      Re: Grand Floridian vs Animal Kingdom Lodge

      I have never stayed at either but have visited both. It really is a matter of personal taste and location/convience when comparing those two, from what I can see.

      Animal Kingdom Lodge is the furthest from everything except DAK and you don't have as many transportation options with the monorails and boat access nearby. If that is not a problem the lodge is a great choice if you don't like the Victorian stlye of the G. Floridian.

      Personally I like the Wilderness Lodge best, with Animal Kingdom Lodge a very close second.
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kwwdFhJWDK0

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      • #4
        Re: Grand Floridian vs Animal Kingdom Lodge

        Between those two, I would choose the GF simply because of its proximity to the MK and monorail access to Epcot. I tend to spend more time at the MK than at AK. I've stayed at the GF, but not at AKL. The GF was very nice, but it didn't have the comfy, relaxing feel that some of the other resorts have. I'm with Disney Magic in that I like the Wilderness Lodge more than any other resort. The AKL is architecturally similar to the WL, but the AKL seemed darker to me - maybe it was the color scheme, maybe the time of day. Good luck with your decision! It's a tough one!
        "All our dreams can come true.....if we have the courage to pursue them."
        - Walt Disney

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        • #5
          Re: Grand Floridian vs Animal Kingdom Lodge

          I actually like the Animal Kingdom Lodge better of the two. The proximity of the Grand Floridian is really nice though.

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          • #6
            Re: Grand Floridian vs Animal Kingdom Lodge

            I have never stayed ot GF but will be in December. But as for AKL, it is a beautiful resort! We stayed in a Savannah view room and the animals were right there under our balcony. It was so nice to go out in the morning and sit and watch the animals. It is a very quiet and relaxing resort. We will definitely stay there again. But our goal is to stay at every resort at least once and we've almost accomplished this. We only have Yacht Club, Boardwalk and Polynesian left after we stay at GF in December.
            Originally posted by larasound
            am I the burrito man?

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            • #7
              Re: Grand Floridian vs Animal Kingdom Lodge

              I've stayed at both and I can recomend the Grand Floridian, all the way. It's SO convenient to the Magic Kingdom and Epcot is just a monorail ride away. The rooms and service are incredible. The restaurants and pools are pretty good too.

              If you're staying long enough, you CAN stay at both places!

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              • #8
                Re: Grand Floridian vs Animal Kingdom Lodge

                The big plus for Grand Floridian is the monorail. It's quite a bit more upscale in the people who stay there. It has beautiful rooms though and it's considered the "Best" disney resort. It's the most expensive also. For restaurants it has
                Citricos (business casual dress), Narcoosee's (business casual), Victoria and Alberts (you might as well dress as if you are going to the opera and no kids), and 1900 park fare (great character place)

                If you love animals, Definitely go to AK.It's the lowest priced Deluxe resort along with Wilderness Lodge. It might take you a little longer to get to the park, but sometimes that's worth it It also has 2 very good restaurants Boma and Jiko's. I like the music and atmosphere of AK better than the GF..It's more upbeat and moving to me...Also if you have kids AK has some great children activities if you want a break for a bit...They have specially arranged games and 'safari's n stuff they can do while supervised.
                Deepbluesea.smugmug.com -Check out my pics!

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                • #9
                  Re: Grand Floridian vs Animal Kingdom Lodge

                  i think that the Ak lodge is too far away from everything else. it is nice if you will want to go to the ak every day. but otherwise you will be far away. i'd go with the flordian

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                  • #10
                    Re: Grand Floridian vs Animal Kingdom Lodge

                    Just got back from staying at AKL not too long ago. Go to my trip report here if you would like to see some pictures of the resort and of our room. We LOVED it and I can't imagine staying anywhere else. Of course, I haven't stayed at GF, so I can't give a totally objective report on staying there. Good luck making your choice.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Grand Floridian vs Animal Kingdom Lodge

                      I loved staying at the AKL. We had a savannah view room and it was great sitting out on the balcony and watching all of the animals. I LOVED the giraffe! There is also a great fire pit out in back with rocking chairs where you can hang out at night.

                      We went to the Grand Floridian for dinner one night and it was really close to the park and on the monorail, but to me it didn't have that "special" feel to it. We walked around and checked things out, but when we left we decided we probably would never stay there.

                      Have you thought about Shades of Green? I think it's near the GF but being military it will save you some serious cash.
                      One day your life will flash before your eyes. Make sure it's worth watching.


                      Originally posted by Mouse princess
                      Of course I am worried about your mental health. I want happiness for all. Like we can all be like the Smurfs. But without Gargomel. He was mean.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Grand Floridian vs Animal Kingdom Lodge

                        Thank you everyone for your responses! My wife and I sat together and read the posts. We decided to go with AKL. We're planning on being there for only a couple of nights, so the distance isn't a problem.

                        One of the advantages of being deployed is the large amount of cash for compensation. We're estimating over $15K tax free is what I'll recieve. So actually, money isn't the issue. Since this will be my wife's first trip to WDW and probably our last for a VERY long time (travelling to the East Coast FROM Hawaii isn't really practical) I just wanted to know what would give us/her the best expierence. Again, thank you all!

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                        • #13
                          Re: Grand Floridian vs Animal Kingdom Lodge

                          Originally posted by CA_Man_In_HI View Post
                          We decided to go with AKL. We're planning on being there for only a couple of nights, so the distance isn't a problem.
                          The proximity thing is overrated, in my opinion. If you're taking Disney busses, the difference is maybe a 20 minute ride to the MK vs a 10 minute ride from the more centrally located spots. True, the monorail from the GF to the MK is a very short hop. But to get to Epcot you have to ride it all the way around to the Transportation & Ticket Center (15 minutes), walk over to the Epcot loop and usually wait for a monorail (<> 5 minutes), and then ride the Epcot line (10 minutes). It's a fun trip, but it's much quicker to take a bus.

                          You're really going to enjoy the AKL. Be sure to take time to wander the halls. They have many beautiful, museum quality displays at various junctions of hallways. And whether you get a savannah view or not (from your budget I'd guess you'll go all in and get the nice room!), there are many public balconies along the way that allow great animal viewing. I usually like a high floor, but here you'll want maybe floor 3 or 4. That way you're high enough to have a good view without being too far away from the critters. There's nothing like opening your balcony window in the morning and seeing a giraffe feeding maybe 15 feet away!

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                          • #14
                            Re: Grand Floridian vs Animal Kingdom Lodge

                            I totally agree with everything danyoung said^^^

                            Proximity is not why anyone would stay at this resort unless they were addicted to AK anyway but it is a resort that should be experienced if possible. There were days I didn't want to leavethe room and just sit and enjoy the view and quiet.
                            Originally posted by larasound
                            am I the burrito man?

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                            • #15
                              Re: Grand Floridian vs Animal Kingdom Lodge

                              Originally posted by evilqueenrocks View Post
                              I totally agree with everything danyoung said
                              Sorry, I just want to forget whatever this thread was about and savor the moment . . . . .

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