Each week we’ll review one of Disney’s DVC Resort locations and provide our readers with an overview of the resort, it’s rooms, amenities, and dining options. We’ll also offer our pros and cons list of the resort to help DVC members and renters make the best choice for their future family vacation.
Disney’s Polynesian Villas and Bungalows
Laidback, Pacific island vibes, tropical drinks and colorful flowers; this is what Disney’s Polynesian Resort is all about. Built in 1971 as one of the original resorts at Disney World, Disney’s Polynesian added 380 Disney Vacation Club suites to the resort in 2015. Considering that the Polynesian is one of the most popular Resort Hotels on Disney property, this addition made perfect sense when DVC was looking to expand.
The theming at the Polynesian is striking and arguably some of the best you’ll find at any Disney Resort. Walking through the front doors and into the grand Ceremonial House feels like you are transported to a remote Pacific island, circa 1970. The mix of dark brown hues, brightly colored floral arrangements and native Polynesian carvings is reminiscent of a classic island resort set upon the jungles of the island.
But it’s not just the theming that makes the Polynesian one of the most popular resorts at Disney World. Being one of the first resorts built on property, its prime location is definitely a perk of staying here. Placed directly along the Resort Monorail line with a designated station in the resort means that guests can quickly commute to the Magic Kingdom and the Transportation and Ticket Center (TTC) for transfers to Epcot. Let’s review the other perks of staying at DVC’s Polynesian Resort.
In 2015 when Disney decided to expand the Polynesian to add DVC units, they went all out. Not only did they add 360 Deluxe Studios to the resort but they also added 20 over-the-water Bungalows, bringing the true Polynesian vacation feeling directly to Disney World. This unique addition added another level of luxury to DVC that to this day is unmatched.
With over 300 Studios to choose from, there are plenty of options at the Polynesian. As an added bonus, each Studio is equipped with an extra Murphy bed making them able to accommodate up to 5 guests.
The ultimate suite for the perfect getaway, these private on-the-water bungalows are exactly as you’d imagine to experience on an exotic vacation to Bora Bora or Fiji. They each have 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, a large open kitchen, a water view living room with a sleeping bed, and a huge deck with lounge chairs and a soaking pool.
All Deluxe Studios are either Standard View or Lake View. Bungalows are all located on the Seven Seas Lagoon and are therefore considered Lakefront.
View of the resort pool, gardens or parking area
View of the Seven Seas Lagoon, Magic Kingdom and the Grand Floridian Resort.
While Lake View rooms may seem like the best option at the Polynesian, some guests have complained about boat noise on the lagoon throughout the night. If you are looking for a quiet stay, a room facing away from the lagoon may be a better option.
Disney’s Polynesian has several very highly rated dining options. Here’s where you’ll find the best of best when it comes to entertainment while you eat. From luaus to Tonga Toast, a visit to the Polynesian, even just for a meal, is well worth the trip.
You may have heard of the famous Tonga Toast, enormous deep fried french toast stuffed with bananas. Kona Kafe is the home of this famous breakfast treat as well as a wide selection of other delicious breakfast and lunch items. If you’re wondering if Tonga Toast is really that good and worth the $16 price tag. The answer is yes it is!
This popular Hawaiian themed family-style dining option serves delicious island inspired dishes for dinner and offers a character breakfast with Lilo & Stitch daily. Dinner is all you can eat but slightly different than other buffets on property. Here, bread and sides are served at your table to be shared. Meat and shrimp are cooked on open flames and brought on skewers to your table throughout the evening.
Another dining experience unique to the Polynesian is the Aloha Dinner Show. Similar to Ohana, food is served family style at your table. While dining on your delicious tropical dinner, you’ll be entertained by amazing luau performers including flame throwers and hula dancers.
Before or after dinner head over to Trader Sam’s for a few smoking cocktails and a bit of nostalgia. Trader Sams, possibly one of the best themed bars at Disney World, is like no other bar or lounge on property. Here you’ll find a variety of delicious treats, fun themed tropical drinks and a huge squid from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea hanging overhead.
Other Dining Options at Disney’s Polynesian
Capt. Cook’s – All Day Quick Service
Kona Island – Quick Service with Grab and Go Items
Pineapple Lanai – Snack Stand Serving the famous Pineapple Dole Whip
The Polynesian has two pools. The larger Lava Pool is packed with fun for the whole family. With its erupting volcano and 142-foot tubular waterslide this pool checks off everything on the list for a exoctic vacation pool day.
The smaller, Leisure pool is a quiet oasis for vacationers of all ages to enjoy a more relaxed pool experience.
- Electrical Water Pageant
Check out the Electrical Water Pageant floats along the Seven Seas Lagoon each night.
Guided excursions and dockside fishing are available at the marina.
The scenic 1.5-mile trail along Seven Seas Lagoon is perfect for a quiet jog.
- Watercraft Rentals
The lakeside marina has a variety of watercrafts available for rent.
- Movies Under the Stars
Select nights offer family Disney movies outside under the stars.
- Extremely convenient location with easy access to Magic Kingdom, the Grand Floridian, and the Contemporary Resort
- Quick 10-minute walk to and from the Transportation and Ticket Center
- Beautifully and uniquely themed resort for a one of a kind vacation
- Several delicious dining options
- Lake View and Pool View rooms can be a bit noisy
- Lower floor room views may be blocked by the water bungalows
- Can be difficult to book less than 11 months out
Interested in purchasing a DVC contract at Disney’s Polynesian Villas and Bungalows or staying at the resort as a rental? See the links below for more information.
Have you stayed at Disney’s Polynesian Villas and Bungalows? Tell us about your experience and what you love about this DVC Resort in the comments below.