Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista is a Disney Springs Resort Area Hotel on Walt Disney World property. This review covers our stay at the hotel, featuring room photos, thoughts on the Hilton’s amenities, and how it compares with other hotels in the area.
We’re increasing our coverage of third party hotels near Walt Disney World, both off-site and on-site. As hotel occupancy rates and pricing have both increased for the Disney-owned hotels, these options are going to be more appealing–and more necessary. In this case, Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista is an on-site hotel, and one that offers both Extra Magic Hours and the 60-day FastPass+ booking window. Both potential selling points for Walt Disney World guests.
Also a big selling point is the location of the Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista, with the hotel being a 5 minute walk from Disney Springs. That means you’re less than 10 minutes from Earl of Sandwich, and roughly 15 minutes from a ton of great dining options at Disney Springs. We really used this to our advantage, eating at Disney Springs several times during our stay at Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista.
Transportation, on the other hand, is not so good. We covered this in our DoubleTree Suites by Hilton Orlando Review, but the bus system is slow and makes several stops. It’s not something we’d use with regularity. We’d highly recommend using a ride-sharing service for getting to and from the parks. (Read our Tips for Using Lyft & Uber at Walt Disney World post for help with that.)
Because of the weak bus service, we’d often walk over to Disney Springs, grab a meal, and then use their bus service to Boardwalk (for entering International Gateway) or Contemporary (for walking to Magic Kingdom). While this might sound like a cumbersome process, it’s actually not bad, and usually means shorter security lines to enter the parks.
In terms of general amenities, the Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista does well. It has a pool, fitness center, laundry, bar, and multiple restaurants.
While the pool isn’t a standout, the 24-hour fitness center is quite nice. You can see a full list of the Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista’s amenities here.
The restaurants at Hilton Orlando LBV range from a 24-hour fresh market serving Starbucks coffee to bars to the signature Andiamo Italian Bistro & Grille to even Benihana. Covington Mill even features a Disney character breakfast on Sundays.
Guests looking to dine at their hotel a lot will be well-suited by the Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista as there are a range of options. This is arguably the strongest hotel in the Disney Springs Resort Area in terms of dining.
The rooms are the weakest point at the Hilton Orlando LBV. These are quite dated, feeling like they probably had their last top-to-bottom redesign in the 1980s. The bathrooms are compact, the color scheme is drab, and the whole rooms just look dingy and tired.
It does feel like an assortment of upgrades have been made over the years to meet minimum Hilton standards, but it’s really not enough. The bedding was fine, as was the desk and office chair, but the overall look of the room really leaves a lot to be desired.
Style-wise…there really isn’t much style. A lot of dark and neutral tones are used, amounting to a dull look. The unfortunate “centerpiece” of the room, by default as it were since there’s absolutely nothing else of visual interest, is a checkerboard headboard to the beds.
This reminds me of something that belongs on a blog about transforming farmhouses into ‘shabby chic’ styles, and most definitely does not work in what should be a nice Hilton. After the brand just finished an extensive multi-million dollar hotel-wide renovation at the Buena Vista Palace, I’d assume this hotel is next. (To my knowledge, nothing has been announced.)
Base prices at the Hilton Orlando LBV seem to start around $140/night; based on what I saw when pricing out nights, you should probably expect to pay more around $175/night for an average date, with peak pricing eclipsing $200. (Full disclosure: our stay at the Hilton was comped for the purposes of this review.)
This may not sound too bad, but that’s before you factor in the $30/night resort fee and the $18-24/night parking fee. Those fees push this hotel into exorbitant territory, and I’d have a nearly-impossible time justifying paying the total rate here when there are much more compelling options nearby. The hotel just isn’t that nice. (And that’s before you factor in Uber or Lyft to sidestep the weak transportation.)
Overall, it’s very difficult for us to recommend the Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista, even if you’re a loyal Hilton Honors Member. We like the location and the amenities, but the nearby Hilton Orlando Buena Vista Palace does both of those things and rooms better. I guess the one advantage might be in terms of dining, and a better atmosphere for conventions. However, I’m guessing most people reading this aren’t conventioneers. For a family trip, I really see no reason to choose the Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista. Perhaps we’d feel differently if they redid the rooms or we were able to score an exceptional deal, but as it stands, we’d suggest looking elsewhere.
Planning a Walt Disney World trip? Learn about hotels on our Walt Disney World Hotels Reviews page. For where to eat, read our Walt Disney World Restaurant Reviews. To save money on tickets or determine which type to buy, read our Tips for Saving Money on Walt Disney World Tickets post. Our What to Pack for Disney Trips post takes a unique look at clever items to take. For what to do and when to do it, our Walt Disney World Ride Guides will help. For comprehensive advice, the best place to start is our Walt Disney World Trip Planning Guide for everything you need to know!
Have you stayed at this hotel? Do you agree or disagree with our assessment of the Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista? What did you think of the experience? Any other high or low points? Is this a hotel you’d consider during your Walt Disney World vacation? Any questions we can help you answer? Hearing feedback about your experiences is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!