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Old 01-29-2013, 09:34 AM   #16
BadgerGirl84
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I have stayed in Orlando three times on Marriott points. My guidelines are: close to the parks, free full breakfast (either for all or just Gold/Platinum), and a reasonable number of points. I have made my Marriott points from my business travel days stretch REALLY far.

My favorite that I have stayed at (twice now) is the Residence Inn Lake Buena Vista. Very clean, excellent breakfast, nice sized room, nice pool, close to tons of restaurants and the parks.

I have also stayed at the Fairfield in the Marriott Village but I didn't care for it as much because the breakfast wasn't all that great.

If blowing a lot of points and having a free breakfast isn't a big deal, I would probably stay at one of the Marriott timeshare properties. No guests get free breakfast at those resorts, not even platinum.
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Old 01-29-2013, 01:04 PM   #17
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Marriott World Center is the closest
Still a nice place after 30 years of operation.
No, it's not the closest. The Marriott branded products in Lake Buena Vista are closer

And as a person who spends 100 nights a year in Marriott branded hotels it's not "still a nice place" It's dead last on my options in Orlando. I only stay there if I have some professional meeting that requires it. Service is horrid, place is poorly run and parking is a nightmare. (Charge me to take a shuttle to your lot?? REALLY)

I stayed Marathon weekend at the Fairfield Marriott Village and was very pleased. I have also done both the Courtyard and Residence Inn in Lake Buena Vista. Courtyard is a little run down but often can be had for point savers or great rates.
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Old 01-29-2013, 01:11 PM   #18
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No, it's not the closest. The Marriott branded products in Lake Buena Vista are closer

.
I disagree. Staying in LBV, you have to fight the DTD traffic, where the world center has a straight shot into the parks.

I have stayed at the hotel and the condo properties many times over the last 20 years and never had an issue.
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Old 01-29-2013, 01:19 PM   #19
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I disagree. Staying in LBV, you have to fight the DTD traffic, where the world center has a straight shot into the parks.

I have stayed at the hotel and the condo properties many times over the last 20 years and never had an issue.
But you will spend 20 minutes getting the shuttle to your car at the world center or if you pay MORE you can wait 25 minutes for a rude valet to show up with his palm out... (that's the one thing they are good at, asking for tips LOL!)

I timed it every time from the Marriott Village. Average time from my room to the GATE at the park 15 to 20 minutes (so that included parking the car etc..) The one outlier 3:20 AM on Sunday morning! ... that took 35 minutes with all the marathon traffic.

Sorry, but I have stayed at the World Center enough times to say it's just badly run. They depend 100% on convention traffic and could care less if you actually enjoy the stay as they know the conventions just keep coming. If I had just had one bad experience I wouldn't trash talk it, but every time it's been a nightmare. (And don't forget that if you and your family are there they can, and will, close off large portions of the pool area for the conventions) My final blow was the time my friend couldn't get a working refrigerator or store her insulin anywhere. They refused to store the insulin and also refused to give her room a working fridge. What was she suppose to do? Luckily my fridge worked and we traded rooms. I wound up getting a boatload of apology "points" from Marriott, but....!)

For the price it's a RIP OFF! (And the Gaylord is a better straight shot IMHO)
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Old 01-29-2013, 01:54 PM   #20
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Honestly, best bet to beat the traffic is to stay on Palm and take the back road in (cross over 535 and enter on Vista or Buena Vista). If you're savvy you can avoid some parking fees too.

My usual choice is the Residence Inn for most of the reasons already posted.
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Old 01-29-2013, 02:18 PM   #21
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If you're savvy you can avoid some parking fees too.

.
Sorry, I have never had a bad experience at the world center, but i admit, it has been a good 4 years since we last stayed there.

Agree, no matter where i stay off site, I dont pay to park. to many options to those in the know.
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Old 01-29-2013, 02:33 PM   #22
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Gaylord Palms is now operated by Marriott. That would be my first choice. Courtyard by Marriott in DTD if you plan on relying on shuttle bus transportation to the parks.

You could use taxis to supplement GPs shuttle.
The nearest Courtyard is actually in Lake Buena Vista (co-located with Fairfield and Spring Hill Suites). It is across I-4 from DTD.

That would be my choice (Lake Buena Vista) or the Marriott Orlando World Center. There is also a Residence Inn just up I-4 a few miles north of DTD.
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Old 01-29-2013, 03:50 PM   #23
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The nearest Courtyard is actually in Lake Buena Vista (co-located with Fairfield and Spring Hill Suites). It is across I-4 from DTD.

That would be my choice (Lake Buena Vista) or the Marriott Orlando World Center. There is also a Residence Inn just up I-4 a few miles north of DTD.
The Residence Inn Lake Buena Vista is accessed at the same freeway exit as Marriott Village (exit 68). Just drive one traffic light down on the other side of the freeway to turn into Palm.
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Old 01-30-2013, 07:03 AM   #24
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Not sure when you are planning to travel, but the World Center Marriott is doing a major renovation of the main pool.

Some parts are finished and the pool is open, but they are adding new slides and a new splash area for little kids and those won't be finished until June.

I just booked the JW Marriott for Memorial Day weekend, it's farther from WDW but the lazy river pool is great. We have had positive experiences at both World Center and JW, but I'm not interested in staying during the reno.
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Old 01-30-2013, 09:43 AM   #25
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Is JW doing renovations? We are staying there in July so curious.
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Old 02-01-2013, 06:44 AM   #26
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Is JW doing renovations? We are staying there in July so curious.
No, the Marriott World Center is renovating.

My JW Marriott tip of the day-- if you bring your own floats for the lazy river (from the dollar store or any CVS/Walgreens store) they will inflate them for you at the pool. Saves you some $$ over buying or renting them there.
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Old 02-01-2013, 08:19 AM   #27
mel345
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A couple of years back we were in a similar situation. After speaking with a number of friends, we decided to go with an offsite Marriott property(about a 20 mins drive). It was cheaper and covered our rental car bill. After a couple of days at the parks, we decided to take a day off and relax at the beach, which I think made the rest of the days even more fun.

Btw, remember to check out the property pages on the Marriott website. They usually have special offers that will help you save a little more. Also, you probably already know this, but your reward points can expire if you don't complete a paid-stay over a period of 2 years. If you don't travel that frequently, you can do a part-cash & part-points stay.

Enjoy your vacation.
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Old 02-04-2013, 02:05 PM   #28
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Is JW doing renovations? We are staying there in July so curious.
The JW is not scheduled for a refurb to my knowledge. They actually just updated their rooms within the last couple of years, and the Ritz next door is just wrapping up a major room refurb project.

It's a great resort, you will be happy with it.
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Old 04-26-2013, 07:55 AM   #29
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Bumping this because now it looks like we will be going at the end of July.

Just to reiterate what the deal is:
1) LOTS of Marriott point so amount of points doesn't matter
2) Platinum member
3) would LIKE breakfast (either included or included for gold/plat), but will deal with kitchenette if not
4) Probably will be driving so no parking fees, unless someone can recommend a hotel where no need to have a car or its "worth" the parking fees
5) Will be myself my wife and my DD who is 3 (in case those details matter)

THANKS!
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Old 04-26-2013, 11:55 AM   #30
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anyone have thoughts?
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