My Polynesian Resort story began in 1981.
I was a Minnie Mouse loving three year old the first time I stayed at Disney’s Polynesian Resort with my best buddy Bun Bun in tow. I still remember two of my favorite treasures from that visit – a shell necklace and a floral lei – as well as watching a very brave man twirl fire on the beach. I’ve since returned a handful of times with my own kids who would probably tell you that the best thing about the Polynesian is having Tonga Toast for breakfast. I tend to tell people that the Polynesian is the absolute best resort at Walt Disney World because of the Magic Kingdom monorail stop on property coupled with the path leading you to Epcot’s monorail just a short walk away.
Anyone who has visited Disney’s Polynesian Resort knows that the magic lies not in the breakfast options or the unbeatable convenience, but in the story that guests are told from the moment they step onto the property. Storytelling is arguably what Disney does best, what Disney has always done best. When people ask me why I stay on site while visiting Disney Parks, I list all of the perks, but I always tell them that the main reason is so I can enjoy the Disney experience from the moment I get off the plane in Orlando until the moment I get back on to return home. Disney Resort properties aren’t hotels – they’re stories come to life, and guests of the Polynesian are transported to the islands as they walk across that bridge where I posed nearly 35 years ago.
Now the story is writing a new chapter! Anyone who has traveled near Seven Seas Lagoon in the last year or so has likely seen the construction taking place on the beach of the Polynesian Resort. I’m so excited to share that Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows will be opening this year.
Beginning January 12, current Disney Vacation Club members will be able to purchase real estate interests in Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows with general sales beginning February 9th. The first phase of the property is scheduled to open April 1. The property features 20 Bora Bora Bungalows on the Seven Seas Lagoon, each sleeping up to eight guests each in a two-bedroom, home-like setting reminiscent of the South Pacific. Each Bungalow has two full bathrooms, a kitchen, washer and dryer, and large dining and living room spaces for gatherings. The Bungalows’ private decks each include a plunge pool with a over of the Magic Kingdom fireworks (soundtrack piped in through a deck sound system!) as well as a front-row seat to the nighttime water parade, the Electrical Water Pageant.
While I have my eye on the Bora Bora Bungalows, the new resort also includes 360 Deluxe Studio Villas, the largest at the Walt Disney World Resort. These villas sleep up to five guests each and feature a kitchenette, enhanced storage space for convenience and comfort, and two separate bathroom areas, one a full bathroom with a tub/shower and another one with a shower and sink. A pull-down armoire bed showcases painted artwork from the popular Disney film, Lilo & Stitch.