boardwalk inn

Disney World BoardWalk Inn: My Honest Review

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A charming seaside theme sets the stage for Disney’s BoardWalk Inn, but its proximity to Epcot steals the show; in short, location reigns supreme at Disney’s BoardWalk Inn.

The Boardwalk Inn is a Deluxe resort property at Walt Disney World inspired by the east coast’s turn of the century boardwalks. The property is made up of +/- 900 rooms including those dedicated to Disney Vacation Club members. The hotel structure is unique as it is, effectively, one giant interconnected multi-story building.

boardwalk inn

Upon arrival, guests stroll into a quaint lobby where pastel colors are set against skillfully crafted crisp white wood paneling and accents.

Boardwalk Inn

There is an upscale feel to the lobby area where the tone is playful and understated with barrel ceilings and crystal chandeliers.

Boardwalk Inn
Boardwalk Inn

Those who checked in online and linked their MagicBands to their reservation can head straight to the rooms and bypass the traditional lobby check-in.

Boardwalk Inn

The resort is very spread out and the walk (especially with luggage!) from the parking lot or lobby can be a long one, depending on your room’s location. The parking lot, in particular, is not especially close to the vast majority of the BoardWalk Inn’s rooms. In our case, we actually parked just about as close as possible to our room and it was nearly a 0.4 mile walk from our car to our room…and ours was a straight shot (more about this later).

Boardwalk Inn
Disney’s BoardWalk Inn borders Crescent Lake, here with the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotels in the background.
Boardwalk Inn
Boardwalk Inn

The BoardWalk Inn is lined with restaurants with some great snack options as your wander around Crescent Lake.

Boardwalk Inn
Boardwalk Inn
Boardwalk Inn
The BoardWalk Inn’s boardwalk (office of redundancy office?) is a great place to grab breakfast on the way to the parks in the morning or an afternoon snack during a casual stroll around the lake.
Boardwalk Inn
The BoardWalk Inn really lights up at night along Crescent Lake.
Boardwalk Inn
There is always something magical about Disney at night when the lights are on.

BoardWalk Inn Property Overview

As one of eight Deluxe resort properties at Disney World, Disney’s BoardWalk Inn has a number of upscale touches including wide meandering pathways, multiple pools, an arcade, and workout facilities.

BoardWalk Inn
BoardWalk Inn
BoardWalk Inn
The circus/carousel/boardwalk themed pool area is getting a makeover from a bizarre (and unappealing) clown head slide to a Mickey Mouse themed pool area.

BoardWalk Inn Location and Theme Park Access

The most appealing thing about Disney’s BoardWalk Inn is its proximity to not one, but two Disney World theme parks. It’s also near Blizzard Beach. The obvious is the short walk to Epcot’s International Gateway entrance.

BoardWalk Inn
The walk to Epcot from the far end of the BoardWalk Inn was actually shorter than our walk from the parking lot to our room. Yes…it’s THAT close.
BoardWalk Inn
Although accessible from multiple resorts and the Disney Skyliner, the International Gateway entrance to Epcot sees much less foot traffic than the main entrance.

Not only do guests have the option to enter Epcot, but they can also hop on the Disney Skyliner to Disney’s Hollywood Studios at the International Gateway entrance.

BoardWalk Inn

Guests of the BoardWalk Inn have other options to access Disney’s Hollywood Studios. They can catch a ferry or they can just walk – it’s only about a 15-minute stroll to the Studios and, assuming your legs are up for the 0.8 mile journey, it’s much faster to walk directly than to take the shorter 7-minute walk to the International Gateway loading area and ride the Skyliner for a 16-minute ride with a transfer.

BoardWalk Inn
This is the rare Disney World resort where objects are actually closer than they appear!

Overall, we were really excited to stay at Disney’s BoardWalk Inn and made this our home base for a couple of days while visiting Epcot. We actually didn’t realize how close the property was to Hollywood Studios until we were there and had made Disney’s Pop Century Resort our hotel of choice while visiting DHS.

Disney’s BoardWalk Inn Rooms

We locked down a room at the BoardWalk Inn by renting DVC points. The price to upgrade to a premium view room was reasonable and we decided to splurge on this (stay tuned for whether it was worth it).

BoardWalk Inn
The hallways of BoardWalk Inn are specious, well lit and have a luxurious feel with the white wood paneling throughout.
BoardWalk Inn
Upon entering the room, there was a bathroom and closet area just off the entrance opposite the standard DVC wet bar with microwave.
BoardWalk Inn
The bathroom vanity had one sink with a closet on the left and commode with bath/shower combo on the right behind a privacy door.
BoardWalk Inn
BoardWalk Inn
BoardWalk Inn
The room had a table with two chairs in front of a pull-down daybed, a sofa and coffee table, and bed.
BoardWalk Inn

We upgraded to a preferred view room. We Nerds love the them parks (and Mickey Pretzels!) and we are rarely in the room during daylight hours to enjoy a view – your experience may differ.

BoardWalk Inn
The room had a table and chairs on the patio and a nice view of Crescent Lake with Disney’s Yacht Club and Disney’s Beach Club resorts just beyond.
boardwalk inn
boardwalk inn

Even the Nerds can make mistakes sometimes. In this case, it was the “splurge” on the preferred view room – our analysis of preferred view and location rooms can be found here.

First of all, the walk to and from the parking lot was nearly 0.4 miles…and we did this twice while rolling our luggage. So the small amount of time we saved by being a little closer to the entrance to Epcot was more than offset by the increased time to walk to Hollywood Studios or to the car. We would have preferred something closer to the car for eating, driving to other parks, heading off to miniature golf and just generally exploring Disney World.

Overall, we had a nice time at Disney’s BoardWalk Inn and it made visiting Epcot (and, more importantly, taking a midday nap while visiting Epcot) a piece of cake. While the hotel was nice, we weren’t overly impressed with the theme especially the theme and decor of the room itself. Next time, we will try Disney’s Beach Club or Disney’s Yacht Club Resorts because they are closer to Epcot and the Skyliner and this was our main reason for selecting the BoardWalk Inn.

Additionally, the BoardWalk Inn is a very attractive resort from across Crescent Lake and these two hotels will offer great views of the property and their nighttime “glow”.

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