Grand Floridian or Contemporary or Wilderness Lodge with 9 year old?

I am taking my youngest to WDW for a few days in February. She chose to stay at the Poly which was my first choice too! I reserved the room at the rack rate and was hoping there would be a promo for winter. Sadly nothing for the Poly and I can't really justify the price.

We want to stay in the MK area but I've never stayed at the Grand Floridian, Contemporary or Wilderness Lodge. Any thoughts in terms of theming, pools and logistical benefits each offers?

If it helps, she isn't super into princesses anymore and pretty much just loves rides, so in terms of theming we aren't super picky, but at the Deluxe price point it should definitely have a little bit of wow factor??

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My kids all loved Wilderness Lodge at that age. In fact, DS21 asked to go back to WL for our January trip just for the nostalgia.

Also, the Poly does have some limited availability on the promo for my dates, so I would keep an eye out for anything that might pop up if that's where you really want to be.


he's right
I haven't done GF. I have stayed at BLT and VWL, the latter several times. VWL is my favorite---I love the north-woods theme, I think the pool there is more interesting than CRs (which I walked over to a few times) and the setting on the lake is lovely. The Resort Monorail is cool, so there is something to be said for the others, but I'd go with Wilderness personally.


New member
I would go to Wilderness. It's breathtaking and the pool is fun. GF is very Victorian and (Just my opinion) stuffy. I know it's the most expensive resort but given the choice of all of them I wouldn't go there. I did just come back from a trip and stayed at Bay Lake Tower at the Contemporary. Not much fun theming for kids. Wilderness also has the boat to MK which my kids loved when they were little.

Not That Josh

Well-known member
I guess there is a trend here, but I would say Wilderness for theme, also.

It really depends on your plans (hopper, park plans, etc.). Having stayed at BLT and CR, I prefer them for proximity to MK. The last time we stayed at BLT, we walked to MK for at least part of the day every day of our trip. BLT and CR are easily the least themed of the Deluxe options, but I love not needing transportation for MK.


wishes he had a pink frolicing llama under his tag
At that age, I considered a wilderness theme way too rustic, and Poly way too motel-like with its low-rise buildings. CR was the ultimate for me, modern and with the monorail. GF wouldn’t have done it for me either. Now, of course, I love all four, hard-pressed to pick a favorite, though GF would be at the bottom of a great list.

J&J's Dad

In Feb, pool is likely to be less of a factor, IMO. Not sure it will be warm enough to swim. I would say for a more unique hotel, CR, but really if you're not in the Atrium building you loose the conveniences due to the long(er) walks. Also the Atrium is a LOT more $$ than the garden wing and even BLT. WL I believe is the cheapest Deluxe resort and is more impressive in person than the pics. Also, you're going to get a lot of brown at both Poly & WL :) I'd actually factor in which parks you are going to. If you are skipping Epcot then the monorail isn't as needed. The boat to WL is very easy and civilized


I'd go with Contemporary, just because of transportation convenience. I'll agree that Wilderness Lodge has a great theme, but I don't like just having the ferry or bus. I love the ability to walk to MK, riding the monorail is fun and you get dropped off in your hotel, and you still have the option of the ferry.


Well-known member
I’d go with the Contemporary, especially if you have park hoppers. I’d love to be able to walk to MK every evening.
I ended up finding rooms at the Poly AND WL for the nights we are there, so I've got them both reserved, but I'll need to make a decision soon so my Credit Card bill isn't out of control. I think I may have done too good of a job selling her on WL because now she's not sure which hotel she wants. Anyone willing to give me their thought between these two??


Well-known member
I'd do Poly!!! It's my 8 year old, husband, and grandpa's favorite. My 7 year olds favorite is GF, but I don't think his taste is typical for his age group.

At Poly tansportation is so convenient to both MK and Epcot. It just feels so relaxing at the end of the day after the crowds. And there is the nostalgia factor from my first trip way back in 1980 when the only park was MK and the only hotels Poly and Contemporary.

The only exception would be if it were Christmas season, then I'd do WL.
We are there in late February, so I'm assuming most of the decorations will be gone at that point. I am still leaning towards just doing the Poly. We have a reservation for O'hana one of the nights and between the pool and fireworks visibility I think it's probably a no brainer.

Do they still do the water pagent or is that a seasonal thing? I remember seeing it years and years ago with my big girls and it was one of my favorite things!!