For my past several trips to Walt Disney World, I have chosen to stay at Value Resorts to save money. Since this was only a long weekend trip, I decided we could level up and stay at a Moderate Resort. My first choice was Port Orleans Riverside which one of my favorite Disney Resorts. But, due to COVID-19, it was not open yet, but was scheduled to reopen a few weeks after our trip, so we had to switch our original booking to Coronado Springs.
Coronado Springs is an enormous resort with over 2,300 guest rooms set up around a 22-acre lake in the Animal Kingdom area. The resort has three pools and multiple restaurants. The resort is themed to Mexico and the American southwest and is very beautifully landscaped. This is a convention hotel so it also has a convention center and a spa. If there is a convention, Coronado Springs can get very busy. It was pretty empty when we were there for the 50th, though.
There are some amenities that differentiate a moderate resort from the more budget-minded value resorts. Value resorts typically only have a food-court-type restaurant. This is an area where Coronado shines (thanks, in part to the convention center) with four restaurants and three bars. Moderate resorts each have a big theme pool. Coronado Springs’ is called The Dig Site and is themed like a Mayan pyramid with a waterfall running into the pool. The resort also has a playground themed to an archaeological dig. Transportation is a step up in the moderate resorts as well with several bus stops located around the resort as opposed to one main bus stop in the front of the resort at the values. Coronado Springs also has upgraded bathrooms in the rooms complete with a rain shower.
For the whirlwind trip that we did, we were not able to use most of these amenities (although the rain shower was appreciated). We were in the parks from open until close. I didn’t take a single picture of the resort. We did not make use of the pools or the lounges, although we picked up breakfast from the Mercado (the counter service restaurant) one morning. I enjoyed the breakfasts we had in the parks more, though. The additional bus stops were nice at the end of the day, but in the morning, many of the buses were full by the time they got to our bus stop. Overall, I wish we would have either shelled out more money for a deluxe resort close to the Magic Kingdom or saved and gone back to Pop Century.
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