Thursday, February 17, 2011

The Resorts of the Seven Seas Lagoon

I've been here at the Walt Disney World resort for almost a month now. In that month, I've done a lot. And by doing a lot, I've made it so there are less things left to do that I haven't done before. Yes, that sentence you just read made sense. I've nearly exhausted the four parks, and just didn't feel super excited to go to any of them of my last day off. So what did I do? Good thing you asked, because I literally just wrote that question, and it was rhetorical, which means I'm about to answer it.

I decided that it was time to explore the resorts of the Walt Disney World...Resort. Where better to start than at the Seven Seas Lagoon, with the originals, the classics? What some people consider the best. I wouldn't know, because the only other resort I've been to was the Swan and Dolphin, where I stayed when I was 12. It didn't have a white sand beach, so it was not as cool. It did have a mini-golf course near by and access to two parks via boat, not just the one via Monorail. But the Swan and Dolphin will gets its own post someday. Today, we are going to talk about the Contemporary Resort, the Polynesian Resort, and the Grand Floridian.

I started off my day with the Contemporary. It's the flashiest of the three, being one big, unique building and having the Express Monorail running through it.

The Contemporary from the dock
At first, I was impressed by the Mary Blair Murals and the huge windows, but really, the Grand Canyon Concourse with the shops and the restaurants really isn't any different than any other place that has those things. What was cool about the Contemporary was the lobby, which looked much more modern than the Monorail floor, and the beach and pool outside. Being right there on Bay Lake was a great feature, and the pool had a very interesting shape and design to it. I'm big on pools, and this one impressed me. I checked out the convention center as well. It was just a bunch of space, like all convention centers.

I really dug the benches at the
Next was the Polynesian, which I wasn't expecting a whole lot from. The Contemporary
and the Grand Floridian both have made a big name for themselves. The Polynesian: not so much. It's like the middle child, and also is physically in the middle of the other two. I was pleasantly surprised though. It's got a show, that I did not see, but I want to. It's got awesome water features, which I was impressed by, and it's got a great little stretch of beach, which I relaxed on, eating my lunch while listening to the Castle Party across the lagoon at the Magic Kingdom. Plus, it had the best pool, with the Volcano water slide, complete with smoking peak (and bathrooms in the bottom). The South Pacific theme was also great fun, having the whole resort feel like the a Tiki Room hotel.

The sun setting on the Grand Floridian
With the sun setting, I walked on over to the Grand Floridian. This was the resort I had the highest expectations for. It's the Creme de la Creme of the Walt Disney World resorts, and I expected to be impressed. I was, but not as impressed as I expected to be. It had the most to offer, with its beaches, pools, restaurants and shops. It had the best view of Cinderella's castle, and inside the main building was exquisite. But there wasn't that cool factor that the other two resorts had, just by the cheddar factor. The cheddar factor being that it costs a pretty penny to do anything that the resort, and expensive means exclusive means cool, if you're not the one being excluded.

If I had to choose to stay at one, I'd probably choose the Polynesian. I just got this sense that I was at a place of rest and relaxation when I visited. The other two were great, but they were almost a type of attraction. I hope to someday stay in all three, and rest and relaxation are not my top priorities, but that South Pacific serenity, it really rubbed me the right way.

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