Contemporary Hotel

pj4963

New Member
Original Poster
Could anyone give me some info on the Contemporary Hotel Pros and cons. Their rates dont look too bad for the time we plan to visit Disney World in June.
 

EpcotCenter82

Active Member
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Could anyone give me some info on the Contemporary Hotel Pros and cons. Their rates dont look too bad for the time we plan to visit Disney World in June.
You can walk to the Magic Kingdom or take the monorail. Hopefully the Epcot monorail will be reopening soon so that guests can travel to that park by the trains. The Contemporary has the largest guest rooms on Disney property. If you book a room in the tower building, you will have a balcony. If you book a Magic Kingdom view room in the tower building, you'll have a great view of the park and can watch the fireworks from your balcony. There is a channel on the room tv that plays the soundtrack for the fireworks.

Your dining options include The Wave, California Grill, and Chef Mickey's. There is a quick service place on the 4th floor, Contempo Cafe and there is a coffee bar on the ground floor of the tower building.

Some people find the hotel bland and don't like all of the concrete buildings and pathways.

I'd do a search on youtube for "Contemporary Resort" and view some of the videos of the rooms and what the hotel is like on the outside and inside.
 

JIMINYCR

Well-Known Member
Never stayed in Bay Lake Tower so I cant address that side.

Pros... Close proximity to MK. There is a walking path to MK that takes about 10 minutes.
Sits on Bay Lake, Very pretty area. When it runs the Electrical Water Pageant makes an appearance at night.
Nice pools. One is more adult focused, other kids and adults.
Monorail runs through it. Buses tend to run pretty regularly without too much waits. One bus stop area outside the main doors.
A convenient coffee/ pastry area on the ground floor.
Package center near the conference center for shipping pkgs.
A resort that has some of the largest in size, square footage rooms on property. Comfortable beds.
Cali Grill is a top rated restaurant. View of MK and fireworks from their deck. The Wave is another highly rated restaurant with great meals and great breakfast. Chef Mickey for families with kids, characters. Has a decent food court, 2 bars / lounges.
Several gift shop[s/ stores with great assortment of gifts/ souvenirs.
Also a fairly fast moving Escalator to shopping areas and food areas.
Decent sized arcade. Outdoor marina with boat access.

Cons... Some people knock the resort because they say it isnt as well themed as others. Elevators in the main bldg can take a long time going from ground floor to other floors. Sinks in the rooms were changed out when they refurbed and they are flat. Difficult to shave or wash in. Some guests have said certain main bldg rooms can hear the monorail when it runs through. Weve only stayed in the Garden Wings so dont know how the noise is.

Has been a resort weve enjoyed. We are going there again in May 2021. I think those who knock the resort haven really given it a chance. After staying there more than once, its got a lot more of positives. When weve stayed elsewhere its been because of cost and budgetary needs.
 

nickys

Premium Member
The pros have been covered well. I love the view over Bay Lake itself, especially early morning and at sunset. And if the boat is running it’s a nice trip to WL and FW - I often just ride around the lake for a full circuit and then disembark at WL for a lazy morning with coffee and cake over there. Nothing beats walking to MK, although it’s also fun to ride the monorail around via the Poly and GF at least once.

The pools at the Contemporary aren’t particularly exciting IMO. The main pool is large, the smaller pool nearer to Bay Lake itself is quieter and more adult orientated. There are also cabanas to rent around the smaller pool.

If you stay at Bay Lake Tower (the DVC side), be aware studios are small and will be cramped for more than two people. The pool there is small but I like it. Also if staying at BLT you can use the Contemporary pools too.
 

StarshipDisney

Well-Known Member
The pros:

1) Room-to-Elevator-to-Monorail
2) Room-to-Elevator-to-Bus
3) Monorail-to-Elevator-to-Room
4) Bus-to-Elevator-to-Room

The sheer travel convenience of the Contemporary Tower just cannot be beat. You know that once you arrive at the hotel you are a couple of minutes at best from your room. It is just as fast from your room to the Monorail Station or Bus stop.

5) View...there is none better. No resort has a better view than the Contemporary Tower. That Magic Kingdom side will hopefully have fireworks again as that was a huge benefit.

The cons:

1) There are none to us. Three stays and never had an issue to mention. Hope to go back.
 

Tom 55

Well-Known Member
Well the first time, Sept 2018, I stayed there I did not know that Garden View rooms were the section behind the main building. Was a great room. Big sliding glass doors. One looked out to the pool, the other on to Bay Lake. Was able to sit in bed and watch Electric water parade. Second time, Sept 2019, we had a room that looked out on MK. High floor and end of building. Was great for watching fireworks. They have the sound track playing on one of the TV channels during fireworks. When you walk to MK there is a security station along the way. Only for traffic from Contemporary hotel. No waiting. Security station before you get on Monorail. How cool it was to be staying in this hotel. Something I had wanted to do since my first visit to MK in 1979.
 

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Zé_Carioca

Active Member
I stayed recently and It changed my mind completely on the resort. I never cared for it, as others mentioned, it just looked like a slab of concrete, lifeless, though I did appreciate its history. However, it was magical to stay there. Having the monorail right outside my room, the stunning view from bay lake from my balcony, being able to walk to MK... it was honestly really exciting. The pool is not as exciting as other pools but being able to use the original quiet pool right at Bay Lake felt really cool.The rooms are modern and spacious, however, the least- Disney like from any room I stayed at. I know overall the deluxe hotels have tiny Disney details but overall are very modern and clean, but this one didn't even have Disney details if I remember correctly, it could have been a room from any other non-disney hotel.
 

Queen of the WDW Scene

Well-Known Member
In the Parks
No
It had been a goal of mine to stay there since I was young.
I stayed for the first time July 2019.
I like that everything is right there so no walking a mile from your resort room to the main building.
I also really like the dining and shopping options.
The rooms are spacious. If you get a theme park view room you can watch fireworks and I loved just looking at Space Mountain.
Its quick and easy to get to MK and EPCOT.

I did not like the bus situation though. Buses took a long time to come and then one would come for HS, AK, and DS at the same time so it would become chaotic people with ECV's and strollers weaving around each other trying to get to the correct bus.
I'd consider Uber/Lyft for AK and HS.

The sinks are cool looking but do not function well which is kind of annoying.

If you stay in the main tower it can be quite loud due to Chef Mickey's but we bring a small fan which drowns out the noise quite well.
 

shipley731

Well-Known Member
I agree with most everything that has already been said. The only thing I have to add is that if you like to sleep in & you are in the main tower, request to be on the opposite end from Chef Mickey's. The sound from the monorail never bothered me, but the music & noise from Chef Mickey's drove me nuts. (I used to run a meeting that took place for several years in the Contemporary. I always got upgraded to the concierge floor which was nice. I always stayed for a couple of extra days when the meeting was done to rest & decompress. The noise from Chef Mickey's always woke me up on those vacation days.)
 

jmargarone27

Active Member
The Contemporary is so classic Disney. Definitely not my first choice (I’m a hardcore GF fan), but a visit to Disney wouldn’t be complete without stopping by the Contemporary to walk around and eat. California Grill is one of my favorite restaurants ever!! As for the rooms, I’ve heard they’re large but noisy in the main tower. Never stayed there (only BLT once when it first opened) but I don’t think you can go wrong with convenience and classic Disney nostalgia. Have a blast!
 

totaldisneygirl

Active Member
This is my absolute favorite resort. I love the monorail access and how easy it is to walk to MK. I just stayed in the tower with a Theme Park view and it's breathtaking. I didn't have any noise issues and I was right by the elevator.

I've also stayed in the Garden Wing - I have to say, it's not as magical, but you still get the resort perks!

Bay Lake is FANTASTIC if you have a large group. The views are amazing and the rooms are spacious. I stayed in a one bedroom with 5 people last year and we had plenty of room!
 

EdnaMode

Well-Known Member
This is my absolute favorite resort. I love the monorail access and how easy it is to walk to MK. I just stayed in the tower with a Theme Park view and it's breathtaking. I didn't have any noise issues and I was right by the elevator.

I've also stayed in the Garden Wing - I have to say, it's not as magical, but you still get the resort perks!

Bay Lake is FANTASTIC if you have a large group. The views are amazing and the rooms are spacious. I stayed in a one bedroom with 5 people last year and we had plenty of room!

You could lose someone in the one-bedrooms over at BLT. They are huge. I still prefer a park view room at the main tower over BLT but there are just two of us, so maybe that's why?

Contemporary is popular for walking to the MK, park-view (fireworks) rooms, easy dining access across the monorail resorts (and over to WL via boat), great cast in both hotel and dining, Mary Blair's mural, larger guest rooms...and probably a lot of other reasons. For a big concrete trapezoid, there is somehow a really lively and even magical atmosphere there. The last time we were at WDW (November 2020), they had made some good improvements to the bus staging, which was desperately needed since the waiting area is so small and not organized by destination. Contemporary probably makes the Bucket Lists for many people who were children when it opened and it slides in very closely behind GF for me.
 

wedenterprises

Well-Known Member
I used to knock it. Stayed in a 3bdr lake view with kids and family and loved it for the view, the proximity to MK, and the lounge.
However, I'll always try to choose a more themed resort. Likely AKL now that the kids are a bit older.

BLT has a subtle theme that's hard to describe but really stuck with me after. The background music on spotify is all I listen to now. That's weird.
 

NelleBelle

Well-Known Member
Love the size of the room! We had a Bay Lake view and watched the electric water parade every evening (and yay that it’s coming back)! Loved the monorail and ability to walk to MK. Loved having Cali. Grill right there (yummm)!

Pool was meh. Not enough shade for this redhead. The bathroom, while huge, had terrible sinks and no where to put make-up/toiletries while using them to get ready in the morning—ZERO counter space!!

And if in the main building, yiu can hear the lobby noise, even in addition to Chef Mickey’s, so any light sleepers should bring earplugs (walls and floors seemed thinnner as well).

Still one of my favorites!
 
Con - not a lot of shade at the pool, which can be an issue in June.

Pros - If you are in the Tower, the MK side has some of the best views in WDW, and the Bay Lake scenery isn't bad either.

You can reach all of the restaurants (at least the open ones) at the Contemporary, Polynesian, and Floridian without getting out in the rain (except Narcoossee's), which sometimes is an issue in early June.

If you have dinner at Victoria & Alberts, it is a a lot of fun to take the monorail to dinner while dressed up.

It was already mentioned that MK access is great with a 10 minute walk to the park. The same 10 minute walk also gets you to the MK bus station, and it is easy to catch a bus to there from most places in WDW. Makes it easy to get to most of the restaurants in the other hotels, since every hotel as a MK bus.

Lots of watersports at the marina next to the pool.
 

Robbiem

Well-Known Member
The same 10 minute walk also gets you to the MK bus station, and it is easy to catch a bus to there from most places in WDW. Makes it easy to get to most of the restaurants in the other hotels, since every hotel as a MK bus.
I never thought of this but its a really good point. You could even use it to go to Epcot or dhs via the crescent lake resorts in counter peak directions if the bus service is bad
 

IanDLBZF

Well-Known Member
I've stayed in both the Tower (Lake View) and the Garden Wing - both during the Pandemic.
In all honesty, the Contemporary has become a new favorite of mine. It is so easy to get the monorail to Magic Kingdom or (when the Epcot Monorail is running) Epcot.
Both rooms were very spacious, and I loved the view in the Tower Room.
Plus the CMs here are very friendly, especially over at California Grill (which their food is very good!)
 

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