Polynesian v. Caribbean Beach Resort
Caribbean Beach and the Polynesian are Walt Disney World’s tropical-themed hotels, and both have received reimaginings and added amenities in the last few years. It may seem like a ridiculous resort face-off, but thanks to improved transportation and dining, it’s a surprisingly close call. (Updated April 24, 2022.)
Essentially, this post head-to-head smackdown answers whether Moderate-tier Caribbean Beach Resort is good enough, or if they should splurge on the Deluxe-tier Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort. In other words, the comparison not being incredibly lopsided depends heavily on pricing, since Caribbean Beach is much less expensive. When taking into account the cost differential, the verdict might shock you…or not.
Setting aside the price, this one is absolutely no contest. If our Polynesian v. Grand Floridian post was any indication, the Poly is better than the flagship resort of Walt Disney World. However, we were already calling the rooms at Caribbean Beach “Poly-lite” and now that Caribbean Beach Resort’s re-imagining of its common areas and dining is complete, the resort makes a strong case…
What this post will seek to address is whether the gap in quality between the two resorts is enough to justify the giant chasm between the two in price. With that in mind, our first comparison here will be cost, with everything else following from there. While we won’t grade on a curve in the subsequent categories, you should mentally be doing that yourself, considering your own budget, how much time you’ll be spending at the resort, and other pertinent (to you) factors.
Now, it’s time to see whether Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort can pull off a Rudy against the heavy favorite…
Cost: Caribbean Beach Resort – On average, Disney’s Polynesian Resort costs almost triple what Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort costs. Even with discounts factored in, the Poly is still at least double the cost of Caribbean Beach every single night of the year. (In some cases, Caribbean Beach is an even better value.)
This is the backdrop against which the rest of this comparison is set. Now, we’re not saying the Poly needs to be twice (or more) as good than Caribbean Beach to be the ultimate victor. As mentioned, we’re not grading everything else on a curve. The reason being is simple: while cost is objective, its relative weight is subjective. For some people, it matters a lot. For others, money is no object, and absolute best is still absolute best. In other words, you might want to make a mental note of that huge price difference as you read the rest of this. Or, you might not…
Theme & Atmosphere: Polynesian – Technically, we’re comparing Polynesia to the Caribbean, which are separated by vast expanses of ocean, but are nonetheless fairly similar to casual guests. Both “feel like the islands.” Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort has some of the nicest grounds of any hotel at Walt Disney World, and is truly transportive. From the vegetation to the carved signs to the longhouses, theme here is really effective.
By contrast, Caribbean Beach Resort feels like a hotel masquerading as another place. The details and architecture are not as convincing, so it falls short of being a wholly immersive themed environment. That’s the downside. The upside is that it does a really good job capturing and conveying some of the essence of vacationing at a tropical resort. Moreover, due to the way the Skyliner and Riviera were constructed, it doesn’t have the same serene atmosphere that it once had, and simply doesn’t compete with the Poly in terms of ambiance.
While it’s not as good from top-to-bottom, the grounds are lush and provide a relaxing morning walk, the new Centertown area is exceptional, from the interior of the new lobby to Centertown Market, Banana Cabana, and Sebastian’s Bistro. Even the outlying room buildings look a lot like Jamaica or Cayman when partially-obscured by palms or if you squint just right. There’s a ton to explore at Caribbean Beach, and I love wandering this resort late at night or in the early morning.
Rooms: Polynesian – Caribbean Beach Resort’s redone rooms are nice, and are why we dubbed the resort “Poly-lite” in the first place a few years ago. These rooms don’t look like budget motel accommodations, and feature a lot of details. Thematically, Caribbean Beach Resort has the best rooms of any Moderate.
However, the rooms at Caribbean Beach are starting to show their age both stylistically and in terms of wear and tear. These were among the earliest of Walt Disney World’s “new” rooms, and they’re darker and drearier than more recent counterparts. They also lack the functional improvements and space-saving design features that have been incorporated into newer remodels.
One such remodel is the “Moana Makeover” at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort. (See our Review, Photos & Video: New Moana Rooms at Polynesian Village Resort for a tour and thoughts on the changes from our most recent hotel stay.) The room is packed with custom-made fixtures, furnishings, and Moana decor. The furniture is heavy and substantial, feeling high quality and durable. These little upgrades imbue the room with a greater sense of luxury, and the Moana styling provides fun Disney touches.
Size is really the big thing, as the Poly’s rooms are significantly larger than those at Caribbean Beach. This can be critically important for families, as trying to fit 4 people into a Moderate Resort room isn’t always easy or comfortable. The larger rooms of the Poly give adults and kids more space to spread out, and the addition of the balcony for some separate outdoor space also is huge.
If room size doesn’t matter to you, the two guest rooms are a lot closer in quality than you might expect–but the Poly still has a good edge. Overall, the Polynesian’s rooms are larger, showcase better attention to detail, have far better bathrooms, and do a good job of balancing theme and luxury.
Dining: Toss Up – As a Deluxe Resort, it should come as no surprise that the dining scene is solid at the Poly. Captain Cook’s is one of Walt Disney World’s better counter service restaurants, and the tandem of Kona Cafe and ‘Ohana are great casual table service options. With Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto, the Poly has one of the best lounges at Walt Disney World.
With that said, this is not as much of a runaway victory as you might expect. The duo of counter service dining options, Centertown Market and Spyglass Grill, is actually better than Captain Cook’s. Then there’s Sebastian’s Bistro’s new family-style meal that is the best dinner deal in all of Walt Disney World. (I’d take that over ‘Ohana or Kona Cafe.) Add to that Banana Cabana, which is now arguably the best pool bar at any Walt Disney World resort, and you’ve got quite the formidable lineup.
If we added the dining slate at Disney’s Riviera Resort, which is a short walk from Caribbean Beach, that would easily tip the scales in favor of the Moderate Resort. Topolino’s Terrace has a ton of range, with a great character breakfast and romantic dinner. On top of that, Riviera has a solid slate of counter service, lounge, and snack options. However, if we include Riviera then we’d also probably have to include Grand Floridian since it’s likewise walkable from the Poly.
This dining comparison is way closer of a call than it should be, and we’re going to call it a toss up. Even though the restaurants are “less iconic” at Caribbean Beach, they’re higher quality. Trader Sam’s is great, but it’s also a bit of a hassle. Personally, if I could only dine at one resort or the other, I’d pick Caribbean Beach. A first-timer might be better suited by the Poly’s restaurants, though.
Pools: Polynesian – If there was one battle where Caribbean Beach Resort could’ve pulled off an upset without grading on a curve, it’s here. On our list of the Top 10 Pools at Walt Disney World, Fuentes del Morro Pool (aka “Pirate Pool) at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort ranked #3 and Lava Pool at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort ranked #2.
In those rankings, we gave a slight edge to the Poly because it’s totally new pool area has a slightly nicer and more diverse feature set, we could just as easily flip those rankings and call Caribbean Beach #2 because pirates. We were tempted to do exactly that for this post, but integrity won out over making this more competitive. We really do think the Poly presents the ever-so-slightly better option here–but keep in mind, the advantage is slight.
Transportation: Tie – You might be wondering: how can this be a tie? The Polynesian has some of the best transportation at Walt Disney World, with direct monorails to both Magic Kingdom and (if you take the peaceful walk to the TTC) Epcot. This means you have easy non-bus transportation to two theme parks.
However, now that the Disney Skyliner is open, Caribbean Beach offers something similar to both Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Epcot. Due to having the hub Skyliner station and a second station, Caribbean Beach has direct access to both parks, with less overall transit time than the monorails from the Poly.
Granted, Magic Kingdom is the flagship park at Walt Disney World, but Disney’s Hollywood Studios is the big ‘up-and-coming’ park thanks to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, Toy Story Land, and Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway. Being able to (easily) get to DHS before Early Entry starts is huge, and makes doing Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance with minimal wait much easier.
Likewise, the Skyliner gondola station drops Caribbean Beach Resort guests off at the International Gateway entrance to Epcot, which makes it easier to knock out both Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure and Frozen Ever After during Early Entry. The equation will change a bit with Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind being at the front of the park, but there’s still a lot to be said for aerial access to Epcot and DHS.
Then there’s bus transportation, which leaves something to be desired at both resorts. Caribbean Beach has an internal bus loop, and while that’s not as bad as it used to be, it’s still not ideal. Similarly, the Polynesian frequently shares buses with Grand Floridian, so it’s no faster than Caribbean Beach. Truly, this is a toss-up.
Verdict: It Depends – The Poly is one of Walt Disney World’s most iconic resorts, and it beats Caribbean Beach Resort handily in overall quality. Still, the gap between the two has closed considerably in terms of rooms, amenities, dining, and transportation. The resort’s reimagining and Disney Skyliner gondolas have been instrumental in turning Caribbean Beach into a resort with near-Deluxe offerings.
This story of this battle should be viewed like that of Rocky. Even though Creed wins in the end, no one cares because Rocky put up such a valiant effort as the underdog. The story of Caribbean Beach Resort here is similar: it put up a commendable effort, and the Poly’s victories were not nearly as decisive as you might’ve expected.
To the contrary, the most decisive victory of all here is Caribbean Beach on the pricing front. It wins that one by a wide margin, and is the main reason this is now a toss up. With that said, if money is no issue to you, choose the Polynesian–it’s the objectively better of the two resorts when price is taken out of the equation. Not by a huge margin, but by a big enough one to make that our recommendation.
On a personal note, if we were ‘forced’ to choose between paying rack rate at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort and Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort, without question, we’d choose the latter. Every. Single. Time. Even with normal discounts, the price difference is not proportionate to the quality difference for us. We can have a perfectly nice time at Caribbean Beach Resort, know how to leverage its amenities, and prefer the Skyliner to the monorail.
Plus, traveling without kids negates the size difference between the rooms and we routinely resort-hop for table service dinner, anyway. For us, most of the downsides of Caribbean Beach are negligible, and definitely not enough to overcome that glaring price difference. (Again, for us.) We do use DVC points to stay at the Poly, but it’s just really hard to justify paying rack rates and it’s pretty rare for decent discounts at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort.
That’s just us, though and your mileage may vary on the question of value for money. That’s really what we’re most curious as to what everyone else thinks with this one. Obviously, in a strict question of which is best, the Poly wins. However, when you factor in cost, a really strong argument can be made for Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort.
When comparing any two resorts, other factors will obviously come into play. Important amenities, location, recreation, and other variables are going to matter and weigh differently for different parties. Our goal is for this post to be helpful in offering a head-to-head comparison of the most crucial elements of each Walt Disney World resort experience, but we suggest supplementing this with our full review of Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort (if you haven’t seen the new rooms, it’s definitely worth checking out just for that) and our Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort Review.
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!
We’d really love to hear your rationale for your pick in the comments. I think other readers would like to hear too, so please make your case in the comments. Deciding whether Caribbean Beach Resort is “good enough” or if it’s “worth it” to splurge for the Poly is a tough decision, and multiple perspectives beyond ours will help others when making that big (expensive!) decision. Hearing your feedback–even when you disagree with us–is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!
You’re right that transportation from the Poly is superior but you can easily neutralize that difference by using Lyft/Uber/Minnie Vans from CBR. You’re saving more than enough staying at CBR over the Poly to justify paying for private transportation. Without the transportation difference, I think they are so comparable on other important metrics (like theming and dining) that I would have an incredibly difficult time justifying the Poly. That said, I expect CBR pricing to increase now that construction is wrapping up and once the Skyliner/Riviera are complete. I also wonder how Riviera crowds will impact pools and dining at CBR. Once all that happens, Poly might start to look more attractive by comparison. (Either way, since we usually travel as a family of 6, neither is a great option for us …)
Stayed at poly when they had the garden in the lobby much preferred that poly to this one. Next year stayed at Caribbean beach and have to tell you that given the two extra days was totally worth it. Probably why I do more value resorts than anything, I’m able to spend a full week doing deluxe dining and not in the room that often anyway. In January staying in coronado springs first time. The only deluxe I’d want to stay at now would be the animal kingdom lodge. I think it’s a really lovely resort
I haven’t stayed at either resort, but wonder if “crowds” should have any weight in this comparison. Like many, I enjoy visiting the Deluxe resorts, to enjoy the theme and ambiance, as well as the dining experiences. It seems like every time I visit the Poly, it is inundated with the masses waiting for dinner reservations at O’hana and Kona, and the bar seats are always full. I would imagine as a resort guest at the Poly that would be irritating. Whereas it is probably less likely to run into that problem at CB and some of the other sprawling moderates. What do you think?
Totally agree. The second level of the Great Ceremonial House at the Poly is often miserable around the breakfast and dinner rushes as guests (staying elsewhere) await their ‘Ohana ADRs.
Hi Bridget. As a frequent resort guest at Poly, in my humble opinion, I wouldn’t let the crowds around Ohana and Kona sway you from staying at Poly. Big crowds make me very irritated and flustered but these crowds at Poly rarely bother me. Since the monorail is located on second floor near the restaurants, I constantly head to MK around the morning and dinner rushes. If the bar near Ohana is too crowded, Trader Sam’s and Oasis bar offer good alternatives.
We have never stayed at Poly, but did stay at the Caribbean Beach once pre-construction (by a couple of years). We absolutely loved CB…except for the transportation, which, to us, was so bad that we sadly had decided never to stay there again. We frequently had to wait for a second (or even third) bus at our stop because the first was already standing-room-only. It really seemed to be a luck of the draw of which section of CB you were in that greatly affected how full your bus would be when it arrived. It seems like the new Skyliner will help that, assuming it’s relatively easy to get to the Skyliner station from all sections (or will that just be part of the internal transportation–effectively replacing the Customs House–and therefore not really help at all?). When we did stayed at CB, it was also a time when vacationing at WDW seemed less stressful and it wasn’t so important to pre-plan everything months in advance and make sure you take advantage of every minute you have to be in the parks, meaning you could enjoy the time at your resort and not feel like you were missing out on something. It just makes the CB transportation now even less attractive to us despite the beautiful resort that we really loved.
On our trip to WDW we stayed at Pop Century and regularly used LYFT to travel to and from the Parks, Because it was our first time using the ride share company our first ten rides were 10% off. This meant that we got a car within minutes of arriving at the bus line wait point (lines were so long at closing time that we would have waited for 3 to 4 buses to fill before boarding.) Our fares were an average of between 4 to 7 dollars (with discount). Even our ride to US was under 15.00. We were at a park or back at our resort in about 20 minutes or less from each park. It was $ well spent for eliminating the negative bus line up and trip time factor.
I have been to WDW 10 times . My son’ s favorit was All Star Movie and mine were CBR , BUT that was before we went to Polynesien.
Its expansiv but it was worth it .
We live in Northen part of Norway so its expansiv to go to Florida to .
Trying to have a Disney timebreak 2107 .. njÃ¦Ã¦.. maby we go to Disneyland Paris , just to smell and feel some Disneymagic . ( Been i DLP 15 Times)
March will be our first visit to WDW. We had to factor cost the most, so we chose the Carribean Beach Resort. Although we considered the Polynesian, we could not accept that big of a cost increase. Now, after reading your article, I am even happier to know our decision was a good one. We went to England in 2013, and wanted the immersive experience, so stayed in a local run B&B. Mistake. Big mistake. When you are sleeping in a room, it doesn’t matter (to us anymore any way) how immersive it is, as long as it has a comfortable bed, with a (non-shared, clean, reasonable sized aka big enough for one person with a toothbrush) bathroom. The immersive we can get on site. Bus transport to site we will deal with to make sure we can afford the other things to make memories. Memories are not made while I sleep.
Hi Susan! Have fun with your 1st trip to The World! Since you are staying at Caribbean Beach Resort, thought I would add my 2 cents, as this is where we stayed on our most recent trip. Great resort but the transportation at this resort is TERRIBLE! I have stayed at quite a few of the resorts & because of the slow transportation, I will never stay here again. Allow 1.5 – 2 hours to get to where you want to go. We left 2 hours early to get to Magic Kingdom, then over to Chef Mickeys for dinner, & we still didn’t make our reservation! Luckily, we called Chef Mickeys & they were very accommodating. We thought that maybe it was just a fluke, but nope, this happened every single day. So, PLAN for long waits for buses! Have a fun trip! 🙂
We took our three kids to WDW for the first time Dec 2015 and they loved the bus rides. There was always a bus stopping and we hardly ever waited more than five minutes. I’ll take that wait to keep some change in my pocket 😉
We have only stayed on resort one time and it was at the Caribbean. The transportation instantly had me kicking myself for not renting a car. Before reading this I had thought it was like this at all the resorts. With that said, the other moderates would have to knock my socks off with the themes, pools and mystique. The CBR really had that island feel, that is until you started waiting for the buses. Haha.
I wonder if the transportation routes change throughout the year. We stayed a CBR and the buses came often. We had no issues other than three kids falling asleep on the way back and only two parents to haul them to the room 🙂
My only issue with Poly: The noise. If it isn’t the boat horns, it is the constant stream of birds flying from balcony to balcony. If you are a light sleeper and get a room facing the water you may find this a problem.
That aside, the restaurants/pool/bar area/grounds are hard to beat. The lobbies in the longhouses definitely look dated, but as someone who has been to Aulani I’m more likely to notice this.
We’ve never stated poly or Floridian and neither appeal to us at all. If we stay bay lake we go with the tower, WL, or FW. We have done CB a couple times and this is a great upgrade. Between the two I’d rather stay CB bc I’d wanna rollerblade and they have room for it. Poly has a great slide but our fascination with the slides has deteriorated. Saratoga’s slides are just as nice, if not better, and we get more bang for our points there. We always take a car. We don’t use buses. It’s def. going to be different for everyone. For us, we stay where we can get a great deal and have a great vacation. That’s probably never going to mean Floridian or poly. It’s out of reach and I’m ok with that.
These comparison reports are a great & fun read, but there seems to be a common thread; cost. I’ve read it quite often. “If money were not an issue, I’d choose the Poly. But since money IS an issue, I stay at Caribbean.” I bet the final grades would differ if each method of comparison were weighted. For me, cost outweighs everything. By a lot!! Theme, dining, room, transportation, pools… If I can’t afford to stay there, none of those things matter. So in this case, CBR wins!
I am interested to see what they do to the Caribbean Beach with the addition of the DVC wing. I’m guessing it will mean an additional pool, but will it mean any additional dinning as well?
I really like reading these battle of the resort posts. Could you do one on Beach Club vs Poly? When Star Wars land is finally open (yes, we are preparing for it), we would like to stay at one of these. We’ll have a dedicated resort day when we are there. Both look so awesome.
I would love this comparison. I currently have both booked for my upcoming vacation because I can’t decide between the two. We stayed at the Poly on our last trip and LOVED it. Beach Club is a bit less expensive, we’ve never stayed there before, and I always hear their pool is he best. I’m going to let my daughter decide though since it’s her 10th birthday trip.
Before we had the DVC we had never stayed at the Polynesian because of the cost. We have stayed at the CBR and probably would have picked CBR over the Poly if it was just between those two resorts. We have no complaints about the CBR although to me not the most exciting. I just didn’t see the value in paying those prices for the Poly no matter how much we wanted to stay. Our idea of a splurge was staying at the Wilderness. However, after having the DVC that’s changed everything I would pick the Poly over the CBR any day. It is everything you wrote about and more.
I have stayed at both. The lifeguards at CBR saved my kid when he got disoriented after going down the water slide. Before I even registered what was happening, the lifeguard blew his whistle, shut off the slides and pulled him out of the pool. Those lifeguards are fantastic and I am forever grateful! I wouldn’t hesitate to ever stay there again. But if $ is not a main focus, there is nothing more magical than being able to roll your sleeping baby directly onto the monorail without having to wake him up. That’s what makes the Polynesian worth every penny.
One aspect of value where CBR really falls down is the “Disney Bubble.” My family stayed there for the first time this past December, and we found the rooms to be serviceable. However, there is a grand lack of “Disney” at the CBR, and we felt like would could have been at just about any other large, two-story resort/hotel complex anywhere else in Florida. It really felt disengaged from Disney World, and the long bus rides everywhere didn’t do much to alleviate that impression. Our experiences with the Lodge at Animal Kingdom, the Wilderness Lodge, the Boardwalk, Art of Animation have been much different where we feel even though we are not in a park, we’re still in the Disney experience. Even our stay at the Swan & Dolphin had more “Disney Bubble” than CBR. I also think that the lack of Christmas themes at CBR is quite noticeable compared to the other resorts we toured. So, if staying at a location where you feel like you’re still part of Disney-Magic is important to you, it may be worthwhile to consider other resort options even if it means a bit of higher cost. If Christmas-magic at your resort is important to you, definitely look for another alternative (we’ll be targeting the Wilderness Lodge in 2017).
We stayed at CBR on our last trip to WDW and while I personally like the theming and the resort a lot of things were just a mess. We are at Shutters and the food was acceptable but not phenomenal, and then there’s the fact that they almost killed my little sister. She has a severe allergy to iodine which we explicitly stated to our waitress. Her main meal was alright but the creme brÃ»lée she was brought for dessert was sprinkled with sea salt which is obviously iodized. She thought it was sugar and took a big bite, about thirty seconds later her throats started to close up and we had to inject her epi pen. The waitress then claimed we never told her and tried to blame it on us.
We also had problems with the room. My boyfriend and other younger sister (they’re twins) both got food poisoning from La Hacienda de San Angel and were sick. My sister unfortunately didn’t make it to the restroom and was sick on her sheets and we had to call maintenance three times. They never came and my sister had to sleep in bed with my mum and her twin. On a separate occasion I broke a glass on accident. We called twice for them to come clean it (we’re not snobs, I offered to clean my own mess but my mum was worried about someone getting cut as we didn’t have a dustpan) but no one ever came. I did end up cleaning it which did result in my being cut.
Even though I liked the resort we will never stay there again, there’s just too many hazards. Of course this could happen at any resort but we’ve been to WDW almost 20 times and it’s never happened elsewhere. Unfortunate but I wouldn’t risk any of my family members again.
Is it the resort (or your family?) that’s the hazard??
I’m not really sure what you mean by this comment but it wasn’t my family’s fault in any of these cases.
We informed our server of my sister’s allergy. It’s not her fault she has an allergy and she isn’t hazardous because she has one. It’s not my boyfriend and other sister’s fault they were given bad food and became ill. They aren’t hazards for getting sick. The only situation in which something could have been prevented was me dropping the glass and I offered to and eventually did clean my own mess. But it was dangerous to sweep up little shards with my bare hands and we felt it wiser to ask for the proper tools and help than just risk injury. That help was never given in spite of that being someone’s job.
As someone with a life threatening food allergy myself (tree nuts), that’s my worst nightmare and I hope to everything holy you reported that cast member at Shutters. It’s extra bizarre to me since WDW is probably the only place I’ve been besides cruise ships that take my allergy seriously. Especially a table service venue, in my experience they tend to be slightly more “hands on” than counter service. (Though counter service has been great too.)
So sorry your family had such rotten luck on that trip and a bad experience at the resort. I’d definitely be writing to Guest Services about all that.
We definitely reported the waitress and we ended up being comped two days of tickets because of all of our problems. It was so terrifying to see my sister like that and I almost had a panic attack from the fear of losing her. The rest of the trip every chef was so incredibly attentive. I’m just not sure what happened to the Disney level of service in this one circumstance.
We are huge disney nerds and we have been so many times that this sole experience hasn’t deterred us from our love of Disney, but it definitely made us a little more cautious.
This is a tough one for me, because I love the poly but have never stayed there. It’s just way too expensive to justify for our family. However, it is absolutely my favorite resort on property and where I would choose to stay if money wasn’t an factor. On the other hand, we have stayed at CBR and loved it there. The theming was nice, the resort was quiet, the rooms were really comfortable, and the pool was awesome. We don’t eat the the resort every often, but I remember thinking the food court was perfectly acceptable for our needs. While I have heard bad things about the bus system, we actually had a great experience with the buses there. On the other hand, we stayed at Riverside a year later and had a terrible experience with their busses. So, if money wasn’t a factor, I would definitely pick the Poly but for us, CBR makes much more sense.
Ugh just noticed my typos….it should say “We don’t eat AT the resort VERY often…..”
It’s fascinating that the pools, dining, rooms, and theme are so close. (I have to agree with those commenting in favor of CR’s theme; while the overall levels don’t match PR, the moderate-level architectural theming is in-line with what I’ve seen in the Bahamas. Call it another close #2.)
As for transportation, I’ve never understood why the arrival time screens at resorts like the Contemporary haven’t been copied to other locations. This would improve the quality of riding the buses, especially at resorts with internal transportation systems. (Or give them a boat to Epcot or the Studios. Lots of people seem to love boat transportation.)
I can’t speak to all resorts, but I know that Port Orleans Riverside and French Quarter both have the arrival time screens. We certainly appreciate them!
Art of Animation has the screens now too. We stayed there a couple weeks ago and they were up. They were really quite accurate and were definitely appreciated.
CBR had the screens when I stayed there in September.
I’ve never stayed at either location, so I feel like I can’t really vote in the poll. I have spent a decent amount of time at the Poly though, so it would be hard to vote for Caribbean Beach! I do think if it was a question of which one I would do at rack rate, I would definitely go with the moderate option. I can’t imagine staying at a deluxe without a discount. Even with a good discount, it hurts, and I only do it for short stays!
Thanks for the comparison! Caribbean Beach is not a resort I’ve ever had a desire to stay at, but this does boost it for me a little.