Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Oh the confusion...

So now that we're within that year mark we get to start the real planning stuff and, oddly, before we can sign a contract or provide Disney with a check, we have to deal with the room block.

I would always chuckle at the messages I'd see on the Dis Boards with people all stressed out over the room block, asking all kinds of questions.

Yeah.  Um.  I had NO IDEA what a confusing mess it is to set up the room block or how much information was required.  Or that if we don't make it to the number of reserved rooms that we requested be held, Prince Charming and I will have to pay to make up the difference. I thought it was as simple as picking three hotels and being done.  Nope. 

Finding Nemo Suite at Art of Animation.
So basically, what they ask you to do is choose three hotels where you want your guests to stay for your wedding or where you think your guests will want to stay.  Right off the bat, we eliminated the deluxe hotels.  It's just not in the budget for most of our family and friends.  So that left us with the Value and Moderate level resorts.  There are pros and cons for all of them.  We ended up weighing heavily that most of the people who have said they're coming to the wedding are coming with children.  So our first choice of resorts for the room block is the Art of Animation Resort.

It's opening in May of 2012 so it will still be pretty brand new by the time of our wedding in November. It will have a mix of family suites that sleep up to 6 people and also a number of standard rooms.  The rooms and suites will be themed like several (awesome) Disney Movies:  Cars, The Lion King, Finding Nemo and The Little Mermaid.  Prince Charming, the munchkins and I are planning to spend most of our trip at Art of Animation.

CBR pool of coolness.
For our guests who might not want to stay in a suite or who want swankier digs, we also reserved rooms at the Caribbean Beach Resort. I stayed there with my mom and sister when we went to WDW for Christmas 1995.  It was awesome then, it's better now.  They have an amazing pool that looks like a Spanish colonial fort with a water slide that zips through the building.  The kiddie pool looks like a pirate ship.  They even have pirate themed guest rooms with bed that look like a ship, carpet that looks like wooden planks and treasure chest armoires.  It's pretty darned cool.

Can I be there right now?  Please?
And last but not least, our third choice for our rooms block is the POP Century resort.  Prince Charming and I have stayed there twice with our kids and we love it.  When you check in, if you catch the right time of day, you can do the Hustle with the resort staff.  There's pop culture memorabilia all over the place. The place is crazy with the over-the-top decor and Disney theming.  It also has it's own bus system.  (The All-Stars share buses.)

The food court is the best of all of the Value resorts.  It has a million cloices-- sandwiches, Italian, Asian, burgers, salads.  Each cuisine has it's own counter and line that feed into a handful of registers.  All of it is great stuff.  Plus, it's the only place in WDW where you can get tie-dyed cheesecake.   Pop is pretty much our go-to choice of resorts.

Picking the hotels was easy peasy.  Next we had to guess how many rooms we wanted reserved for specific nights.  Our wedding is November 1, so the bulk, our DFTW guy wrote, would be for that night with the night before and night after needing a chunk of rooms needing to be held.  I felt funny saying, "Okay, we need 3 rooms at Art of Animation on October 31, and 3 at Pop and 2 at Caribbean Beach.  For November 1 we need blah blah blah..," especially knowing that if we don't use that many rooms we will have to pay for them.  The thing that saved me from having a complete meltdown about it is that we will have an opportunity to alter our numbers at a couple points over the next year.

The really cool part is that we're asked to guarantee that our wedding will fill 25 room nights and if we do, Prince Charming and I get a free night at ANY Disney resort.  So we put it down on our form, we're going to spend our wedding night at the Polynesian.  It may be the only way we get to stay there. We're pretty psyched.

Just for clarity-- our guests don't have to stay at these three resorts.  Any stay on Disney property for our wedding counts toward our room night guarantee as long as we get the confirmation number to provide to DFTW.  Even stays at one of the Disney Vacation Club timeshares counts toward our total.


  1. We are doing 9 nights so that means you only need 16 more...

  2. That is so confusing but I'm glad that you got it all clarified! (So glad we didn't have to deal with any of that at DL though!)