The B Resort & Spa is within walking distance from Disney Springs and is pretty affordable compared to actual Disney Resorts. So is it worth staying there for your family’s Disney vacation?
My wife and I recently took a trip to the Walt Disney World area, and since we were going without kids, we wanted a hotel that was close to the action but not super expensive. (I mean, nothing down there is going to be cheap, but we were willing to sacrifice some of the resort experience for the something more affordable.) When we booked our flight, the airline offered discount bundles for various resorts on Hotel Plaza Blvd., and we chose the B Resort based on the pictures and watching a few YouTube reviews.
Here’s the good thing: the location is excellent. It took us 12 minutes to walk from our lobby to Disney Springs, and since you can get a bus from there to pretty much anywhere, you have free transportation to any of the properties.
The restaurant near the lobby, the American Kitchen Bar & Grill, was reasonably priced (for Orlando), not very crowded, and had great bar food. The Pick Up is a small grab and go store with a long line for coffee in the morning.
Since it’s considered a partner resort, you also get Disney FastPass+ service, which lets you reserve FastPasses 60 days in advance instead of the 30 everyone else gets, Extra Magic Hours and free shuttles to the parks.
Here’s the bad news about the shuttles, though. The sign says that they come every 30 minutes. A shuttle will come get you outside the B Resort, but what don’t find out until you’re there is that the same shuttle services many of the other resorts on Hotel Plaza, so if you’re anxious to get over to the parks, know that you’ll also be swinging by the Holiday Inn, the Doubletree, etc., first. And each shuttle services two theme parks, one for Hollywood Studios and Magic Kingdom, and one for EPCOT and Animal Kingdom. Since we wanted to get to Hollywood Studios at rope drop, we weren’t confident that we could catch the shuttle in enough time to:
- stop by all of the other resorts on Hotel Plaza
- load their guests
- drop a group off at Magic Kingdom
- then drop us off when we wanted to be at the gates of Studios
We ended up paying for transportation because we wanted to try to get Rise of the Resistance boarding passes (which we did!).
The pool area is very underwhelming, which was fine for us since we were spending most of our time in other places around WDW. But if you’re on a trip with kids that enjoy pool time, this isn’t a fun place for that. It looks a lot like a pool for an apartment complex, and the afternoon that we did check it out, the tower was casting a shadow over the whole area.
Our room wasn’t in the tower but in the two-story buildings connected to the parking lot. The room was a little beat up, to be honest. It looked a bit different from the videos we saw online, which must have been filmed in the tower rooms. Again, our priority for this trip was less expensive but close to Disney Springs, so the condition of the room wasn’t bothersome.
That brings up another point. You don’t get the same magical experience that you do at the official Disney resorts. Our kids loved staying at the Art of Animation, surrounded by Disney characters, artwork, and decorations. There’s even a difference in the friendliness of the staff. Both times I went to the front desk for assistance at the B Resort, it felt like I was inconveniencing them. I’ve only had the opposite experience at Disney resorts, even at the “value” ones like All-Star Movies.
The B Resort & Spa is a fine place to stay. It’s reasonably priced for being so close to the action, and if that’s all you want, it’s good enough. But if you’ve been saving for a super memorable Disney trip for your family, it’s probably not the best choice for you. There’s just nothing “magical” about it.