by Jolly Frogger Diva
Each time we visit Walt Disney World, my family tries to stay at a different resort. By now, we have stayed at almost all the ones in our price range, so we were excited to try Art of Animation during our last visit. We opted for the Little Mermaid rooms because a family suite really didn’t work with our travel party’s needs.
We arrived mid afternoon and check-in was quick and efficient. Our rooms weren’t ready yet, so they took our phone numbers and promised to text us with the room number when they were available. We opted to have some lunch while we were waiting and ate our first of many meals at Landscape of Flavors, the dining hall in Art of Animation. The food selection was impressive and service was efficient. Since we were using the Disney Dining Plan, we picked up our resort mugs at that time too. By the time we got everyone seated and ate our meals, the rooms were ready and waiting for us.
It was on the walk to the room that we realized one of the main drawbacks to our choice in resort. The Little Mermaid rooms are quite a long distance from Animation Hall which translated into a long walk every time we wanted to get a bite to eat or catch a bus. We were in building 9, the closet Little Mermaid building to Animation Hall, and it was still a 5-10 minute walk. While this might not be a problem for some folks, our party included a small child in a stroller and 2 adults with mobility issues, so it ended up being a bit difficult at times for us, especially at the end of a long day. Guests who drive their own vehicles may not have this issue since there was plenty of parking to be had.
We had 3 rooms reserved, 2 of which ended up being adjoining with the 3rd room a few doors down. I had requested a pack-and-play for my daughter when we booked the room, but it wasn’t there when we arrived at the room so I made a call to the front desk and they delivered one shortly. The room was bright, colorful, and very well themed. The Little Mermaid is one of my favorite animated movies, so I was particularly excited to be staying here. Disney did exceptionally well keeping true to the movie without making anything too girly, so the men in our party enjoyed the decor as well as the women. The rooms were a nice size; even with a pack-and-play and a stroller in our room we still had plenty of room to move around.
One of my favorite features of the larger resorts are the smaller pools, usually found near the outlying buildings. Art of Animation’s main pool is themed to Finding Nemo, but there are smaller pools in the Little Mermaid and Cars areas too. The Flippin Fins pool was a quick walk from our room, and even though we visited in the middle of a sunny day, we had the pool to ourselves. The pool area was nicely decorated and well maintained and we really enjoyed playing with our daughter there. We did not swim in either of the other pools, but walked past the Finding Nemo pool on several occasions and although it was always crowded, it looked well maintained too.
Overall, we really enjoyed our stay in the Little Mermaid rooms at Art of Animation. The theme was great- the rooms were spacious and colorful and everything we’ve come to expect from a Disney resort. The only drawback was the size of the resort and the time it took to get to the main areas from our room, but that certainly wasn’t enough to diminish our fun overall. I feel confident we will stay at this resort in the future, although by then we may have the right size party to stay in one of the family suites and experience one of the other themes.