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Wilderness Lodge Rejoins AAA List of 4-Diamond Hotels

Walt Disney World‘s Wilderness Lodge has rejoined AAA’s prestigious four-diamond list, one of only seven Florida properties to be added to the list this year.

Walt Disney World Resort's Wilderness Lodge

The hotel, inspired by turn-of-the-century national park lodges, is known for its log-cabin theme and Pacific Northwest décor. It was first named a four-diamond hotel in 1996. AAA could not say Monday when the hotel fell off the list.

It joins 33 others in Central Florida that are already on the AAA four-diamond list, which includes properties ranging from the Ritz-Carlton at Grande Lakes to the Hard Rock Hotel at Universal Orlando.

Auto Club AAA, based in Heathrow, has been rating hotels with one to five diamonds since the 1960s. The four-diamond rating is the organization’s second highest, given to 5.3 percent of the more than 29,000 hotels approved by AAA.

Five diamonds — the upper echelon of AAA’s rating system — is even harder to come by, given to just 0.4 percent of hotels reviewed by AAA.

Walt Disney World Resort's Wilderness Lodge

“Four- and five-diamond hotels and restaurants provide guests with a luxurious experience that tailors to their every need,” said Mark Jenkins, a AAA spokesman. “These establishments consistently exceed the expectations of the most discriminating traveler — the AAA inspector.”

Disney said its Wilderness Lodge was refurbished in 2012. Guest rooms got new fabrics, paint and carpeting, and Disney added character accents in the rooms. The main areas and corridors also were renovated.

“As with our parks, our resort hotels are about exceeding guests’ expectations, and we’re very pleased with this designation,” said Rick Sylvain, a Disney spokesman.

For yet another year, the Orlando area left empty-handed when it came to five-diamond hotels, but that could change soon with the opening of the Four Seasons Hotel at Walt Disney World Resort. The hotel, which is scheduled to open Aug. 3, will likely be a candidate for the premier rating.

Walt Disney World Resort's Wilderness Lodge

Orlando residents can still get five-diamond service locally, but they’ll have to seek it at a restaurant. Victoria & Albert’s, a fine-dining restaurant in Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, has been rated five diamonds for more than a decade.

4-Diamond Hotels

Central Florida’s four-diamond hotels (with year they got the designation):

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge-Jambo House (2011)

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas Kidani Village (2011)

Disney’s Beach Club Resort (2003)

Disney’s BoardWalk Inn (2009)

Disney’s Contemporary Resort (2007)

Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa (1989)

Disney’s Polynesian Resort (2007)


Spring Savings at Walt Disney World Resort

Seven “Must Do’s” at the Walt Disney World Resort during the Holiday Season – Guest Blog Post

Seven Must Do's at the Walt Disney World Resort during the Holiday Season - Guest Blog Post

There is nothing like Walt Disney World at Christmas time.  No matter where you turn, you are immersed in the wonders of the Holidays. I thought I would share seven of my top “Must Do’s” when I visit during the Holiday season.  I look forward to doing each of these things among the many other attractions, and fun Disney has to offer.  Get ready to imagine yourself at Disney during the holidays!

1.  Take an true adventure in the evenings to Fort Wilderness Campgrounds.  There is nothing like it!  Decorations galore – not just by Disney but many of  the campers participate!  December is the perfect month to experience it all.

Seven Must Do's at the Walt Disney World Resort during the Holiday Season - Guest Blog Post

You can plan this time out as some of the activities need reservations.  Start off by scheduling dinner at Trails End, then schedule a Holiday Sleigh Ride!  Yes – I said Sleigh Ride.    You can of course choose to walk through the campground, but riding is a lot of fun too.  Sleigh rides are typically 25 minutes and run about $60.00.  Your Travel Planner can help you make the reservations.  You won’t be disappointed!

2.  Take a Holiday Deluxe Resort tour This is something I really enjoy once the decorations go up and are completed around Thanksgiving.  Each resort has a unique decorated theme and one more wonderful than the next.  I usually break this up into two days, but you can do it in one day.    I explore the Magic Kingdom Resorts the day I plan to go to the Magic Kingdom and then do the Boardwalk Resorts the day I am at Epcot. 

Seven Must Do's at the Walt Disney World Resort during the Holiday Season - Guest Blog Post

For the Magic Kingdom – I start by taking the boat from the Magic Kingdom to the Wilderness Lodge.  After the Wilderness Lodge I take the boat to the Contemporary and then make my way around the monorail.  The last stop is The Grand Floridian – where the smell of the life size Gingerbread house engulfs the entire resort grand lobby.  You have to buy a little gingerbread!

Don’t miss the Animal Kingdom Lodge.  It is a stop all of it’s own, but worth seeing.   If you want to complete your tour in one day – you can hop back on the monorail and change at Ticket Transportation to the Epcot Monorail. 

Seven Must Do's at the Walt Disney World Resort during the Holiday Season - Guest Blog Post

Once at Epcot walk toward the back entrance between the United Kingdom and France and take a stroll to the Boardwalk Resort.  Stop by the bakery for a little treat.  Then visit the Beach Club and the Yacht Club.  A fantastic way to end my tour is to attend the Candlelight Processional at Disney’s Epcot.  It gives me goose bumps every time I attend. 

3.  Enjoy the Epcot Storytellers!  This is a treat for the whole family to experience.  Each country will share their legends with Storytellers.  They perform several times a day and begin in early November and end around the 29th of December.  Even Santa and Mrs. Claus make their appearance in the American Adventure!  Make a photo journal  or have the children commentary a video with your family to remember some of these great stories.

Seven Must Do's at the Walt Disney World Resort during the Holiday Season - Guest Blog Post

4.  Joyful!  The Gospel Celebration of the Season at Epcot.  We often just stumble upon such great shows at Disney – this is one not to be missed.  Located just pass the Fountain of Nations as you head toward World Showcase a blast of wonderful holiday music will really get you in the mood!  Sing and Dance along!

Seven Must Do's at the Walt Disney World Resort during the Holiday Season - Guest Blog Post

5.  Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  Now I don’t mean just going to see it – I mean being there when they are turned on at dusk.  If you are one of the lucky ones you can be chosen to flip the switch!  There is no light display that can match this one and you can experience it!  If you have some 3-D glasses at home, put them in your suitcase and take them on the night you do this activity – Osborne Lights in 3-D – very cool too!

Seven Must Do's at the Walt Disney World Resort during the Holiday Season - Guest Blog Post

 6.  The Cinderella Castle Lighting — another truly Magical Moment at the Walt Disney World Resort.  At 6:30 Each evening you can be amazed when the Castle Lighting takes place.  You have always thought the Castle looks beautiful, but when Fairy Godmother works her magic you will have never guessed what she could make happen!

Seven Must Do's at the Walt Disney World Resort during the Holiday Season - Guest Blog Post

7.  Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party  — is one of the more well known events at the Magic Kingdom and is a personal favorite of mine.  Snuggle up in your Mickey Santa Hat, scarf and some gloves and head out for a Magical Celebration of the season.  Snow on main street, Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Holiday parade, hot chocolate and cookies and so much more!  Just seeing the characters dressed in their Holiday best warms the heart. 

Seven Must Do's at the Walt Disney World Resort during the Holiday Season - Guest Blog Post

Don’t Miss a Moment of Christmas at Walt Disney World Resort
Let Kingdom Magic Vacations Plan Your Holiday Vacation Today!


Guest Author – Laura Schiely

Laura Schiely, Kingdom Magic VacationsI am a Certified Travel Agent specializing in Disney Destinations including Adventures by Disney, Disney Cruise , Disneyland and Disney World. I also specialize in Universal Orlando, Princess Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean Cruises, Sandals and Beaches.  As a Travel Planner, I work with my clients to develop a memorable vacation from the point of selecting a vacation destination, to planning the details and follow up when they arrive home. As a home based agent, I have the opportunity to be available for them when they need me. I value my clients time, budget and experience and treat each vacation as if it were my own.  Contact me HERE.

Enjoy a Dinner at the Flying Fish Cafe on Disney’s Boardwalk

We LOVE Dining at Disney! As a matter of fact, after all these years of visiting Walt Disney World and even Disneyland, now the restaurants are as much of an attraction for us as the Theme Parks! I know it sounds hard to believe, but Disney restaurants are an attraction in themselves!

After all, they do have world class chefs, wonderfully themed restaurants and fantastic and diverse wine lists themed to that restaurant, the best example that comes to mind is Jiko at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge has one of the most extensive lists of South African wines than any restaurant in the country.

Dining at the Flying Fish at Disney's Boarkwalk Resort

So along with planning which park we’ll visit and how many FastPasses we can get, we think about which restaurants we’ll be dining in. On a recent trip, we had the opportunity to eat at one of our favorites, the Flying Fish at Disney’s BoardWalk.

Dining at the Flying Fish at Disney's Boarkwalk Resort

At the Flying Fish, guests dine amid parachuting fish, funhouse mirrors, decorative roller coaster tracks and a whimsical, backlit Ferris wheel. The ambiance and décor really are incredible, it’s totally sets the stage for the wonderful meal you will soon be enjoying.

Dining at the Flying Fish at Disney's Boarkwalk Resort

As you walk into the restaurant to be seated, you will pass by and be able to peer into the onstage kitchen, where chefs use uber-fresh ingredients to create such succulent specialties as potato-wrapped red snapper, crispy crab cakes and char-crusted strip steak.

A very popular experience at the Flying Fish is the Chef’s Tasting Wine Dinner for a savory 5-course prix fixe menu with expertly chosen wines.

Take a seat at the chef’s counter, directly in front of the onstage kitchen, and interact with the talented culinary team preparing the evening’s specialties.

Dining at the Flying Fish at Disney's Boarkwalk Resort

The Chef’s Tasting Menu changes daily but may include such delicacies as miso-cured yellowfin tuna with shirred quail egg or ginger-laced Maine lobster ravioli.

Dinner seatings for this experience—which is designed for Guests 10 years of age and up—are at 5:45 PM and 8:15 PM, Sunday through Thursday. Groups of up to 6 can be accommodated and reservations must be made at least one day in advance.

Dining at the Flying Fish at Disney's Boarkwalk Resort

As we were seated, some warm bread arrived at our table and we selected a wine, the Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc. We were parched from a hot day in the parks and this fit our fancy wonderfully!

There we six of us dining, so we chose a variety of appetizers to start off. Actually we chose the three signature appetizers, Crispy Sesame and Togarashi-scented Calamari – with Asian Dipping Sauce, Yellowfin Tuna Tartare and Crispy Tempura Tuna-Vegetable Sushi Roll – with Wasabi Foam, and a Sweet-and-Spicy Sauce and Signature Flying Fish Cafe “Crispy Maine Coast Jonah Crab Cake” – with Vegetable Slaw and Ancho Chile Rémoulade. Each was fantastic, but I think the Calamari was incredible!

Crispy Sesame and Togarashi-scented Calamari

Crispy Sesame and Togarashi-scented Calamari

Yellowfin Tuna Tartare and Crispy Tempura Tuna-Vegetable Sushi Roll

Yellowfin Tuna Tartare and Crispy Tempura Tuna-Vegetable Sushi Roll

"Crispy Maine Coast Jonah Crab Cake" - with Vegetable Slaw and Ancho Chile Rémoulade

“Crispy Maine Coast Jonah Crab Cake” – with Vegetable Slaw and Ancho Chile Rémoulade

For our entrees, one of our friends had the Trio of Heritage Berkshire-Kurobuta Pork, which was incredibly which had a rich pork au jus and was incredibly tasty. Another tried the Fragrantly-spiced “Char-crusted” Yellowfin Tuna, which is one of my favorites and is maybe the best Tuna I’ve had anywhere. Another of our table mates ordered the Mussels appetizer and Roasted Heirloom Beets and Fresh Vermont Goat Cheese which was a great choice. Two signature entrees on the menu are the Idaho Potato-wrapped Red Snapper and the Char-crusted Angus New York Strip Steak always tough for me to choose between these two. Well thanks to the Chef, we don’t have to anymore! Now they have combined the two into a Chefs Thunder Entrée Duo.

Fragrantly-spiced "Char-crusted" Yellowfin Tuna

Fragrantly-spiced “Char-crusted” Yellowfin Tuna

Roasted Heirloom Beets and Fresh Vermont Goat Cheese

Roasted Heirloom Beets and Fresh Vermont Goat Cheese

Idaho Potato-wrapped Red Snapper and the Char-crusted Angus New York Strip Steak

Idaho Potato-wrapped Red Snapper and the Char-crusted Angus New York Strip Steak

The Char-crusted Angus New York Strip Steak comes with a Roasted Fingerling Potatoes, Red Bermuda Onions, Young Carrots, and Haricot Verts with Classic Sauce Foyot which tops it off so nicely! The Char on it is perfect while the steak stays juicy and tender on the inside!

The Potato-wrapped Red Snapper is served over a Rich Leek Fondue with a Veal Glace de Viande and Red Wine-Cassis Butter Reduction. The fish is flaky, tender and moist, and the leek fondue just melts in mouth, delicious!

We did manage to save just a bit of room for dessert, I know sounds crazy, right? The Flying Fish is known for its Caramelized Banana Napoleon, Crisp Phyllo, Banana Mousse, Crème Caramel, Exotic Fruit Coulis, and Bitter Chocolate. As one of my friends who recently tried this said, “I’m so mad I just found out about this”!

We also tried the “Nuts about Chocolate” Indulgence, Caramel Chocolate and Hazelnut Praline Mousse, Candied Pecan and Butterscotch-laced Blondie, Chocolate Sorbet, and Candied Marcona Almonds, while the Banana Napoleon was really good, the chocolate sorbet and the almonds was my favorite!

"Nuts about Chocolate" Indulgence,

“Nuts about Chocolate” Indulgence,

Flying Fish Cafe is a Signature Dining location, which means that it is one of the pricier places to eat at Walt Disney World. Expect to spend $36-60 per person, or to use 2 credits per person on the Disney Dining Plan.

The Chef’s Wine Tasting Dinner includes a 4-course prix fixe menu that includes wine pairings for $149 plus tax – groups of up to 6 can be accommodated.

Reservations are highly recommended, and can be made 180 days in advance.  Reservations are required for the Chef’s Wine Tasting Dinner.

Let Your Kingdom Magic Travel Planner
Know that You Want to Add
The Flying Fish Cafe to You Dining Reservations

New MagicBand Merchandise Is Now Available at Walt Disney World Resort

The MagicBands are still in the testing phase at Walt Disney World, but that does not stop Disney from rolling out some bling for your MagicBand that allows you to decorate your MagicBand and make it your own.

We noticed in the Magic Kingdom a new MyMagic+ Service center next to Tony’s Town Square Restaurant. This is where you can customize your magic with your MagicBand.  Below are some photos to so you can get an idea of the merchandise at the service center.

New MagicBand Merchandise Is Out at Walt Disney World Resort

New MagicBand Merchandise Is Out at Walt Disney World Resort

MagicBand accessories are also being sold at Animal Kingdom Lodge Jambo House and the Contemporary Resort. You can find them at Fantasia gifts at the Contemporary Resort and Zawadi Marketplace at Animal Kingdom Lodge.

New MagicBand Merchandise Is Out at Walt Disney World Resort

These fun accessories allow you to customize your MagicBand in an affordable way. This is the first batch to be released – and there are already several different designs to choose from – (Tinkerbell, The Muppets, gemstone Mickeys and more).  So you can really personalize your MagicBand. These are called MagicBandits – and they are priced by item. The MagicBandits with three in a box are $6.95 , packs of four are $8.95 , and packs of three or more are $12.95.

New MagicBand Merchandise Is Out at Walt Disney World Resort

New MagicBand Merchandise Is Out at Walt Disney World Resort

CoverBands are $6.95 for one and $15.95 for 3.

New MagicBand Merchandise Is Out at Walt Disney World Resort

New MagicBand Merchandise Is Out at Walt Disney World Resort

MagicSliders for the bands are available in a Mickey design for $12.95 and Minnie design for $14.95.

New MagicBand Merchandise Is Out at Walt Disney World Resort

New MagicBand Merchandise Is Out at Walt Disney World Resort

See the New MagicBands T-Shirts Available at Walt Disney World

What do you think of the new MagicBands Merchandise?

It’s Heating Up Outside But Walt Disney World Pools are Always Cool

We all know that Walt Disney World has some of the most incredible theme parks in the world.  And we love the resorts and all the amazing places to eat.  But one of our favorite things to do after a long morning in the parks, is to go back to our Disney resort and spend some time relaxing at the pool.

Big Blue at Disney's Art of Animation Resort, one of the largest Disney has ever built for a resort, including an underwater sound system

Disney resorts feature some of the most unique and creative, not to mention cool and refreshing, pools in the world.  From the new Big Blue at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, one of the largest Disney has ever built for a resort, including an underwater sound system, to the Nanea Volcano Pool at Disney’s Polynesian Resort which features a volcano and 142 foot long water slide, they are all awe-inspiring.  And on a hot Summer day in Orlando, there is no better place to spend a few hours.

Alice In Wonderland”-themed kids’ water play area

We hear from clients that as much fun as the parks are, their kids love spending time in the many themed pools at Walt Disney World Resort.  And who can blame them?  At Disney’s Grand Floridian, they have the new Alice In Wonderland”-themed kids’ water play area offering the perfect blend of  ‘tea party’ and ‘pool party’, it makes me want to be a kid again!

Uzima Pool at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge

All of the Disney Resort pools have features for young and old alike, but my favorite is the Uzima Pool at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge.  It features 1,000-square-foot pool with an exciting water slide and gently sloping, zero-depth entry point, a children’s wading pool, and 2 whirlpool spas.  It’s the perfect way to relax and get a whole new perspective on what a Disney World vacation is.

All of the Disney Resort pools have features for young and old alike

But don’t just take my word for it, here’s Andrew and Rick from TravelwithRick.com to show us around some of the incredible pools of Walt Disney World Resort!  Stay cool everyone!

Don’t Miss Out on Summer Fun at a Disney Pool

Call us at 866.972.6244 or Request a Quote Online!

Special ‘Room Only’ Discount for Disney Visa Card Holders

In addition to the Free Dining offer, Disney also released a room only discount for Disney Visa Cardholders!  If free dining is not available or not a good fit for your vacation to Disney World, you can also save with the room only discount, which saves you up to 30% off your hotel!
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This discount may be a better deal than the free dining, especially for those guests staying at a Disney Deluxe Resort. When you contact your Kingdom Magic Travel Agent, they will make sure you get the best possible price for your vacation.  This hotel discount is available for travel between 8/15/13 – 9/28/13.
The discounts include:
You can add tickets and Disney Dining Plans to your package for additional savings.
For this resort discount, Disney has a few blacked out resorts including campsites at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort, 3-Bedroom Villas, and Little Mermaid Rooms at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort. For this discount, you must pay your $200 and final payment using your Disney Visa Card.
This discount expires on July 31, 2013.

Disney Parks and Resorts Receive National Awards

FamilyFun magazine, a trusted, go-to source for travel recommendations and family activities for more than 20 years, has recognized Disney Parks and Resorts on both sides of the United States as the very best in family travel for 2013.

Disney Parks Receive National Awards

 Walt Disney World Resort Magic Kingdom Park has been recognized as one of the “Top 10 Overall Favorite Family Destinations” in the U.S. Magic Kingdom Park, EpcotDisney’s Animal Kingdom and Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon water park were also recognized as part of “Top 10 Amusement Parks” is the country. And, in the same survey, Walt Disney World Resort hotels were named “Number One” in the category of “Top Family Resorts” in the country.

FamilyFun magazine’s 2013 survey recognized vacation destinations, attractions and resorts in six unique categories: Tourist Attractions; Tourist Towns; Nature Escapes; Museums, Zoos & Aquariums; Amusement Parks; and Family Resorts.

In California, the Disneyland Resort was also recognized. Both Disneyland and Disney California Adventure parks were also named among the “Top 10 Amusement Parks” in the U.S. FamilyFun conducted an extensive nationwide survey of 2,000 parents with children ages 3 to 12, asking them to rate 360 popular destinations on a scale of 1-100. For voting purposes, the country was divided into four geographic regions – West, Midwest, South and Northeast – and respondents provided feedback solely on their regions. High marks were awarded for affordability, accessibility and fun factor.

In addition to the FamilyFun magazine awards, Disney’s Polynesian Resort and Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge created the first ever tie in the About.com 2013 Reader’s Choice Awards for Favorite Disney Resort Hotel.

Congratulations to all the winners!

Which Disney Parks or Resorts do you think deserved special honors this year?

Animal Kingdom Lodge Decorations: Day 14 – 25 Days of Christmas

See what this African themed resort has up for the Holiday Season.

Hope you enjoy today’s video, be sure to leave a comment and share it with your friends!

Rick Howard
Courtesy of TravelwithRick.com
ricksig100

Save Up to 30% at Select Walt Disney World Resort Hotels this Fall

It’s the perfect time for you to treat your family to a vacation in the middle of the magic at the Walt Disney World® Resort! You can save up to 30% when you book by Sept. 29, 2012.

Save Up to 30% at Select Walt Disney World Resort Hotels this Fall

Offer Details:
Book by Sept. 29, 2012, for stays most nights Sept. 30 – Oct. 6, Oct. 14-20, Oct. 28 – Nov. 3, Nov. 11-16, Nov. 24 – Dec. 1 and Dec. 10-22, 2012, and:
• Save 25% at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort, Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – Riverside and Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort Cabins
• Save 20% at Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort, Disney’s All-Star Music Resort and Disney’s Pop Century Resort
• Save 15% at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort (Family Suite Rooms)

Book by Sept. 29, 2012, for stays most nights Oct. 7-13, Oct. 21-27, Nov. 4-10 and Dec. 2-9, 2012, and:
• Save 20% at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort, Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – Riverside and Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort Cabins
• Save 15% at Disney’s All-Star Sports Resort, Disney’s All-Star Music Resort and Disney’s Pop Century Resort
• Save 5% at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort (Family Suite Rooms)

Book by Sept. 29, 2012, for stays most nights Sept. 30 – Oct. 6, Oct. 14-20, Oct. 28 – Nov. 3, Nov. 11-17, Nov. 24 – Dec. 1 and Dec. 10-22, 2012, and:
• Save 30% at Disney’s Yacht Club Resort, Disney’s Beach Club Resort, Disney’s Boardwalk Inn and Villas, Disney’s Polynesian Resort, Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge (Standard View Rooms & 1-Bedroom Villas at Kidani Village and Jambo House), Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa, Disney’s Old Key West Resort
• Save 20% at Disney’s Contemporary Resort (excludes Magic Kingdom® Park View Rooms), Disney’s Wilderness Lodge Resort and Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge (Club Level and 2-Bedroom Villas at Kidani Village and Jambo House)

Book by Sept. 29, 2012, for stays most nights Oct. 7-13, Oct. 21-27, Nov. 4-10, Nov. 18-19 and Dec. 2-9, 2012, and:
• Save 25% at Disney’s Yacht Club Resort, Disney’s Beach Club Resort, Disney’s Boardwalk Inn and Villas, Disney’s Polynesian Resort, Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge (Standard View Rooms & 1-Bedroom Villas at Kidani Village and Jambo House), Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa, Disney’s Old Key West Resort
• Save 15% at Disney’s Contemporary Resort (excludes Magic Kingdom Park View Rooms), Disney’s Wilderness Lodge Resort and Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge (Club Level and 2-Bedroom Villas at Kidani Village and Jambo House)

Remember to add Theme Park tickets so you can take advantage of the magical fun available at the Walt Disney World Resort.

Booking Information:

Call Today or Click Here

*The number of rooms allocated for this offer is limited. Length of stay requirements. Savings based on the non-discounted price for the same room. Additional per adult charges apply if more than two adults per room. Excludes 3-bedroom villas and is not valid at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort – Little Mermaid standard rooms. No group rates or other discounts apply.

New ‘Untamed’ Dining Adventure Transports Disney Guests to Africa

Sanaa Restaurant Animal Kingdom Lodge

An all-new dining experience hosted by a Disney animal specialist is available at Sanaa at Kidani Village, located in Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge at Walt Disney World Resort. Over lunch, an animal expert reveals facts and myths about wildlife as guests immerse themselves in the culture and flavors of Africa.

There’s no more perfect setting, as Sanaa’s windows frame grazing zebra and giraffes, Ankole Cattle and White-Bearded Wildebeest. The experience accommodates up to 12 guests, offering an intimate, fun insider’s view, with plenty of time for questions.

Adding flavor to the experience: a four-course, African-inspired lunch made in Sanaa’s tandoor ovens. It boasts many delicacies, such as warm naan bread, savory dips, slow-cooked meats, unusual sweets and more.

After dessert, diners venture to a savanna lookout, to observe and learn more about the exotic animals grazing the landscape.

The Animal Specialist experience takes place every Wednesday from 11:30 a.m.-1:15 p.m. Cost is $49, $29 ages 3 to 9 (special kid’s menu). The price includes the gratuity plus a $5 contribution to Disney’s Worldwide Conservation Fund. Reservations can be made up to 180 days prior to the experience.

Click Here to Book your Disney Vacation Now!

Afternoon Game Drive Paired with Dinner at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge

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Animal Kingdom SafariSavannas surrounding Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge offer up a panorama of wildlife as creatures large and small roam the grasses, forage for food and play in harmony. The grounds are home to approximately 200 mammals and exotic birds representing a cross-section of the African palette – bongo, greater kudu, zebra, wildebeest, impala, African spoonbills and Eastern white pelicans, to name a few.

Just before sunset, eager adventurers gather outside the lodge with a guide for a thrilling game-viewing safari. Up to 12 persons can board a specially designed vehicle for a bird’s-eye view of a typical North African safari.

Safari-goers are wide-eyed as many animals move within feet of the vehicle.  Cameras and videos are poised to capture the Africa-like wonders.

Jiko DisneyThe second part of the journey leads to the resort’s signature restaurant, Jiko-The Cooking Place, where a savory South African feast awaits safari-goers. Flavors of Africa fill the air in a memorable multi-course meal served family-style and blending regional spices and grains. Popular South African wines are paired with each course, which includes a sweet display of desserts.

The Wanyama Safari is offered to guests (age 8 and up) staying at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge and Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas, seven days a week at 4 p.m.

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Take a Sunrise Safari at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

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Animal Kingdom lodge Safari

Picture the morning sun rising in the Florida sky, illuminating a landscape rich with animals catching the first light of day. And you have a front-row seat.

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge invites Kilimanjaro Club Level guests to an amazing two-hour experience.

During an approximately 45-minute safari, guests will have the opportunity to learn more about animal care, the grounds of the theme park and the operation. Included in the cost of the tour is a lavish breakfast buffet in the park, at the Pizzafari Restaurant.

The Sunrise Safari is offered Sundays and Thursdays at 7:00 a.m. Cost is $65 adult, $32.50 child (ages 3-9).

Click Here to Book your Disney Vacation Now!

Cool Summer Fun and Hot Disney Discounts are Here

Click Here to Book your Disney Vacation Now!
Disney pool

Your family can beat the heat this summer by staying at select Walt Disney World® Resort hotels. Save up to 30%* for stays most nights June 15 – Aug. 13, 2011, at select Disney Deluxe Resorts and Disney Deluxe Villa Resorts.

Just add Theme Park tickets and you and your family can take advantage of all the summer fun.

Offer Details:
For stays most nights June 15 – Aug. 13, 2011:

* Save 25% at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, Disney’s Wilderness Lodge and Disney’s Polynesian Resort
* Save 30% at other select Disney Deluxe Resorts
* Save 30% at select Disney Deluxe Villa Resorts

Book by May 28, 2011.

Ask about other great rates for stays most nights May 1 – June 14, 2011. For example, weekday rates starting at*:

* Disney’s Wilderness Lodge – $233
* Disney’s Old Key West Resort – $238

Ask about rates for other resorts and rates for travel 4/22 – 4/30/11.

Book by 4/30 for stays most nights 4/22 – 5/28/11.

Book by 5/28 for stays most nights 5/29 – 6/14/11.

Click Here to Book your Disney Vacation Now!

IN THE WILD: Okapis highlight the stunning view of the Pembe Savanna at Kidani Village

0825ar_1473gd143547645IN THE WILD: The newest guest room wing of Kidani Village is a Disney Vacation Club property with a stunning view. The new Pembe Savanna, adjacent to the expansion, treats Kidani guests to a rare look at okapis, a typically shy animal closely related to the giraffe. The distinctly marked okapis, along with red river hogs, impala, waterbuck, blue cranes and spur-winged geese, claim Pembe Savanna as their new home. The new six-acre savannah anchors the Kidani Village expansion featuring 160 two-bedroom equivalent vacation villas. The additional rooms complete the build-out of Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas for a total of 449 two-bedroom equivalent vacation villas at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge. (Gene Duncan, photographer)
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