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Boardwalk. This was once our favorite.

Discussion in 'Disney Vacation Club' started by gojoe, Jan 6, 2017.

  1. gojoe

    gojoe Member

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    We have just spent the Christmas weekend at Boardwalk; our home resort. During previous trips, we had noticed that the resort seemed different. Notably absent were the beautiful floral arrangements in the entry. My wife has always loved the flowers in the entry, lobby and other common areas. This was one of the “touches” that made Boardwalk a deluxe resort. Our trip before the holidays was in October. At that time, we inquired at the desk and were told they were getting ready for Christmas decorations so this is why the areas were bare. There have been other changes that we have seen, and have attributed those to cost-cutting. The changes are not limited to décor; the quality of guest services has diminished. We do understand some of these so we are not averse to changes.

    Upon arrival on Friday, the entry did have a floral arrangement, just one - in the entry. I had seen others’ posts and pictures of the lobby this year but my wife had not. I had tried to prepare her but she could not believe her eyes. Long gone were Donald, Daisy, Lewy, Huey and Dewey-even Stitch was more festive than this. In its’ place was a table, a cash register, a few ginger bread houses (made from the kits they were selling). The only thing I can say is WOW! What had happened to the holiday décor that we had enjoyed in previous years? Is this what has happened to all of the resorts? No –Boardwalk seems to be the only resort suffering from anemic holiday displays.

    Our morning plan was to visit the Epcot resorts to see the holiday decor. Dolphins' tree with its’ train was beautiful. ; as was the Chocolate Santa at Swan or is it the other way around. The Yacht and Beach Clubs were beautiful as always. During the course of our weekend we visited the Contemporary, Poly, Floridian, Wilderness, Jambo & Kidani. We could find the Hidden Mickeys or Olafs in the displays. The other resorts never gave us the feeling their only purpose was to sell us a gingerbread kit. All were very beautiful; some more than others. Happy Festivus!

    We had done online check-in requesting an 1) upper floor, 2) near the elevator. We received the text stating that our room was ready while we were touring resorts. The room assigned to us was Room 1005. This room was on the ground floor, and at the end of the corridor. I know requests aren't guaranteed but this was the complete opposite. Our experience has been that if we request a preference at Boardwalk, we are pretty sure we will be assigned the opposite of our request. We haven’t had this issue at other resorts. We headed back to see if we could change rooms.

    I have a question maybe someone could answer. What are the cast members at the front desk staring at on their screens when they are not helping a guest? Mind you no one was ahead of us and no one was checking in but there we stood waiting for someone to acknowledge us and ask to help us. Even what I assume was a manger was too busy in conversation to notice us. I'm 6'2" 260 lbs. wearing a bright red shirt, tough to miss. Finally with half a smile we were asked if she could help. We were told no other room was available (studio) but they could change us for our next night. She told us they would leave a message on our phone with instructions to confirm the switch. We didn’t receive a phone call; we had to follow up with the front desk to make our move the following day.

    This was not the first time we have stayed in this room. Last time I had issues with the mold (common in ground level). I explained this to the cast member and was told the room had recently been refurbished and it would not be a problem. This time the room’s mold was in remission. I spotted adhesive being pushed up through the vinyl floor. This is usually caused by moisture pushing the adhesive up through the cracks. It hasn’t rained much in Orlando for a few months so mold was not a problem this trip but this room has ongoing issues.

    This love lost of the Boardwalk has been building for a while, with its’ less than friendly staff. This comment may be bit strong but there is a marked difference between resorts. We have many encounters with so many cast members that make our stay very magical-just not as many at the Boardwalk. This was once our favorite. We are sad to say that this is no longer true.
     
    George, littleroo, betty rose and 3 others like this.
  2. GoofGoof

    GoofGoof Well-Known Member

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    Unfortunately requests aren't always able to be honored. I stayed in a MK view room at BLT and asked for a high floor...they gave me the 3rd floor. I'm guessing pretty much everyone asks for high floors. My room was just to the right of the awning over the front entrance. They have since changed that room to a standard view room, but it was still MK view when I stayed. My next stay I had a lake view room and made the same request and got a room on the top floor. It's a crap shoot, but always worth asking IMHO.
     
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  3. Phonedave

    Phonedave Well-Known Member

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    As far as cost cutting in the lobby is concerened, operating costs of a DVC resort are covered by the members dues. If costs go up, dues go up. If costs go down, dues go down. The lack of decor is not something Disney is doing to make money. It is something they are doing to keep dues increases in check. Now of course some people may want to pay the 5 cents extra a year for flowers, others may say to heck with it, I hate flowers. It all comes down to how guest surveys are answered and what gets said at member meetings.

    -dave
     
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  4. wdwfan100

    wdwfan100 Active Member

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    So Disney is cutting lobby decor to control costs to DVC owners at the expense of regular guests that stay at the Boardwalk Inn for $500+/night? Seems like they are getting a raw deal. How do they calculate what percentage of lobby decor is attributed to DVC costs? It's the perfect excuse for Disney. Sorry guest, we need to keep costs down for the DVC members so we are cutting decor out of the lobby. Sorry DVC members we can't maintain our standards of decor and service in order to keep your dues down.
     
    George and littleroo like this.
  5. Phonedave

    Phonedave Well-Known Member

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    Well, this is the DVC section of the forums, so I assume the OP was staying as a DVC member and not as a cash guest. In blended properties such as Boardwalk, there is a sharing formula. I believe it is based on the number of guests, but I could be wrong (I have never looked at it in detail because I own at SSR, where it is all DVC, and the accounting is much simpler).

    I presume there is some sort of cross functional team that looks at discretionary spending such as lobby costs.

    The point is, the OP said Disney was being cheap and cutting costs. They may be doing that from a cash room perspecive, but from a DVC owner perspecitve, they are not saving any money - any savings goes back to the owners in the form of dues.

    -dave
     
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  6. GoofGoof

    GoofGoof Well-Known Member

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    It's far more likely that the opposite is true. Having DVC at the resort keeps shared costs down for Disney since a portion is paid by DVC owners not Disney directly. In other words Disney would likely cut even more expenses in the name of profits if they had to foot the bill directly for 100% of the cost.
     
  7. 21stamps

    21stamps Well-Known Member

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    What did the hotel used to look like at Christmas?

    BWI and Yacht Club were 2 of my go to resorts during F&W, it's been several years since I stayed at either though, and I had never been there during the Holiday season.

    Last month we were eating on the Boardwalk and called an Uber to meet us at BWI. Walked through the lobby and I thought it was gorgeous. Just curious how it compares to previous years, or what's missing.
     
    littleroo likes this.
  8. Ralphlaw

    Ralphlaw Well-Known Member

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    There used to be a giant Gingerbread house, which was the most notable feature. For some reason it wasn't up there this year. The other decorations seemed up to par. Side by side photos might tell me a bit more, but overall we thought it was very Christmassy.

    Like everywhere at WDW, there is a mix of CMs. some great, some not. We had a little problem on New Year's Eve getting into our room, and I found most of the CMs to be fantastic, especially Daisy. A few were a bit shorter, simply saying, "Check-in isn't until 4." But everyone else seemed to go out of their way to be helpful.

    Of course, when things are brand new, they're amazing. Boardwalk isn't brand new, so some luster will always be faded.
     
    George and 21stamps like this.
  9. 21stamps

    21stamps Well-Known Member

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    I think there was a smaller gingerbread house, correct? I noticed they were selling shingles etc, but we didn't stop to look or buy them.
    Was the previous gingerbread house as large as the GF lobby one?
    My opinion, they should come up with something different. GF has the gingerbread house, CR has the chocolate one, maybe a taffy house for BW? ;)
     
  10. Ralphlaw

    Ralphlaw Well-Known Member

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    It was big enough for people to stand in. They actually sold gingerbread out of it.
     
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  11. NYwdwfan

    NYwdwfan Well-Known Member

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    This was the gingerbread store in 11/2015. More of a shingle shack than a gingerbread house.

    [​IMG]
     
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  12. 21stamps

    21stamps Well-Known Member

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    Ok. Yeah, that's definitely different than 2016.
    IMG_8719.JPG
     
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  13. NYwdwfan

    NYwdwfan Well-Known Member

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    That's pretty - but if I can smell it I'm going to want to eat it. :hungry:
     
  14. 21stamps

    21stamps Well-Known Member

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    Ok so, we bought wayyyyy too much gingerbread while at Disney. As in we still have an entire (small) bag of shingles etc., maybe 8-9 items. We also bought the Mickey gingerbread cookie mix.. and never made it, hopefully that one will stay good for awhile.. at least until we do our Christmas in July.
    That was the one downside to staying at GF. Just smelling the Gingerbread House daily made us purchase too much.lol
     
  15. Jodo

    Jodo New Member

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    Sorry you had a bad experience. We were just there for 10 days in January. Room had been renovated, we had a great view, staff were very pleasant and the flowers were fresh and lovely.
     
  16. GrumpySue

    GrumpySue Member

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    I remember a large Carousel made of gingerbread in the lobby during the holidays, I'm sure I have pictures somewhere ??
     

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