Overview: The Art of Animation is Walt Disney World’s newest resort. The AoA really puts a focus on family and features some of the most popular Disney and Disney/Pixar characters. The Art of Animation’s Family Suites in addition to the largest main pool area make it one of the best options among any of the Walt Disney Resorts. Not to mention this resort is categorized as a Value Resort making this affordable option that much sweeter.
Rooms: Our family have only stayed in the Family Suites so this review will be discussed from that perspective. We traveled with a family of 6 (our immediate family of 4 in addition to a set of grandparents). My parents stayed in the master bedroom, while my wife and I slept on the sofa bed, and our two kids used the pull out bed. Though all three beds were being used, what limited time we spent in our room, the suite was still relatively roomy. Thankfully there are two bathrooms to accommodate a full house in the family suite. I think a family of 4, especially if your children are older, would be perfect for the family suite but 6 is quite doable. It felt a little cramped at times but was a very nice experience.
Grounds: If you are looking for the “Disney Feel” then look no further than the Art of Animation. Each section “The Lion King”, “Finding Nemo”, “Cars”, and “The Little Mermaid”, are beautifully themed to meet any Disney fan’s expectation. The thought and time put into scale is very apparent which makes the grounds an experience in themselves. By simply touring the area it is easy to be completely immersed into your surroundings.
The pool is enormous and potentially the best we have experienced. Outside the Waterparks or the Beach Club Resort, I doubt you will find a better pool area. The kids pool area is also top notch with beautiful characters and fun fountains to enjoy.
If the grounds were not enough, you can take a short walk to the bridge over Hourglass lake and watch the Hollywood Studios at night in some of the most breathtaking surroundings you will find at any Disney Resort.
Dining: The Landscape of Flavors food court was pretty good. Nothing extraordinarily special but if you are looking for burgers, pizza, or sandwiches then you will not be disappointed. We really didn’t eat at Landscape very much simply because the choices were a little bland and felt a little too familiar to home. It is not to say the food wasn’t good but in other experiences, there has always been one or two items that gave the location it’s name or reputation. However, the place is beautiful just as the resort. It is themed very appropriately and flows very well with the rest of the resort. Maybe others who have more experience could speak to this more but my overall opinion is that you will not be disappointed but you will not be blown away.
Extras: To me Art of Animation sets itself apart from the other Value Resorts by offering small things that you would only find in a Moderate or Deluxe resort. You have the Family Suites which are very spacious depending on your family size. There are both refrigerators and microwaves. There are movies each night by the pool area and an event schedule full of activities for kids and even their families. You have an arcade, babysitting services, and a pool side bar. The reason that I do not give this a little higher rating is these features are not completely foreign to other resorts but it was a nice touch to include all of these ideas at a single Value Resort where you may only find a couple at any other. This made the resort worth the extra bit of money we paid compared to other quotes for Pop Century and the Caribbean Beach Resort.