Thursday, June 21, 2012

Kilamanjaro Baby!

If you have been wondering about staying in a club level room at the Animal Kingdom Lodge but are unsure if it’s worth the money, in my opinion the answer to that question is a resounding yes!
If you love the convenience of walking out of your hotel room and into the lounge in the morning to get your hot coffee or perhaps a nice mocha latte and a Danish ,or coming in from the parks and sitting down and enjoying a nice glass of wine and some appetizers, or the convenience of having the staff on duty to help with any last minute dining reservations or perhaps purchasing Cirque du Soleil tickets, then definitely!

Deluxe accommodations, and a wonderful staff to help make your vacation as stress free as possible, are well worth the money. Many of us, myself included, really need to unwind a bit when we go away. This is why I personally will spend the extra money to stay on the club level in the deluxe hotels on Disney property.  From the well-appointed furnishings, to the views, the concierge lounges are a welcoming and comfortable place to start the day and end your night.

The moment you arrive at the Animal Kingdom Lodge you are whisked upstairs to the 6th floor for check in.  You can access the 6th floor by inserting your room key into the slot in the elevator if you are in a concierge room at the hotel. The beauty of this resort never ceases to amaze me. I’ve stayed at this hotel numerous times and I absolutely love it.  From the smell of the wood burning in the fire pit in the lobby to the floor to ceiling windows that offer views of the savannah, I have to say this is my favorite resort on property.

Kilimanjaro Club in the Animal Kingdom Lodge is located on the 6th floor where the Jambo House villa rooms are located.  Most of the rooms are located on the 5th floor, with some also located on the 4th floor, and they offer a pool or savannah view. These rooms are labeled standard room-club level. You do not have the choice of view when staying in one of the club level rooms.  You can request either a king bed with a day bed or 2 queen beds in this room.

The other rooms on the club level are:
  • The 1-bedroom suite which offers a queen bed and a queen sleeper sofa
  • A 2-bedroom suite where you can get a king, a queen, bunk beds and a queen sleeper sofa or a king, a queen and a queen sleeper sofa
  • The Royal Kuba VP suite which offers a king and two queens
  • The Royal Asante Presidential suite which offers a king, a queen and queen sleeper sofa are also available. 

Concierge level guests have the same room amenities as standard rooms, plus:
  • Comfy robes available in your room
  • Turndown service
  • Staff available prior to and during your visit for reservations and vacation planning
  • Access to the exclusive Kilimanjaro Club featuring Continental breakfast, snacks and evening wine and cheese reception

The view from the lounge has you overlooking the lobby which is breathtaking when the tree is up for the holiday season! I love to look over the railing at the tree and see the beauty of the hard wood floors below reflecting the lights!

On one trip to this hotel we arrived in our room on the club level and found a cake, party hats and a small present awaiting us for my birthday!  The concierge cast members really do an exceptional job.

 
The lounge offerings differ at different times during the day:

Lounge location & opening hours -
6th Floor, Main Building --

Macheo (Sunrise Offering)
6:30am - 7am
Coffee and assorted juices


Miamko (Adventurous Awakenings)
7:00am - 10:30am
Fresh fruits, juices such as pineapple/orange/guava juice (which I love), muffins, pastries, bagels, croissants, oatmeal and cereals.

Vitafunio (Safari Snacks)

African Snacks and beverages. Snacks are served at the Kilimanjaro Club throughout the day, including goldfish crackers, gummy bears, fresh fruit, pretzels, nuts, dried fruits, warm cookies, brownies, veggies, cheese and crackers, etc.


Chai (Afternoon Tea)

Loose leaf teas, assorted scones, desserts, cookies and biscuits.


Kisikusiku (Twilight Offerings)
5:00pm - 7:00pm
Assorted wines, hors d'oeuvres, and specialty appetizers from Boma & Jiko, including ribs, meat skewers, soup, chicken wings, African beers, hummus and pita, etc. For the kids, there are peanut butter and jelly sandwiches or chicken fingers. Offerings vary daily.



Rehema (Evening Indulgences)

Desserts and Cordials such as Boma's signature desserts like pineapple cheesecake, chocolate covered strawberries, zebra domes, and blueberry tarts. Cordials, such as Baileys, Drambuie, Frangelico, Grand Marnier, are also available.

All Day

Whole fresh fruit & beverages

There is also a self-service refrigerator with beer, soda, and milk you can take back to your room.

Another great thing that you can do when you stay at the Animal Kingdom lodge on the club level is to reserve your spot for either the sunrise or sunset (Wanyama) safaris.  The sunrise safari starts after you check in at the lounge and then you head off to the lobby to meet the rest of your group. You disembark the hotel and the next thing you know you are entering the Animal Kingdom behind the scenes and climbing into one of the Kilimanjaro Safari trucks.  You are then taken on a personalized safari with a guide that will take you on a leisurely tour of the Kilimanjaro Safari ride with plenty of time to stop to see and photograph the animals on the savannah.  This is followed by a buffet breakfast in the park at pizzafari.  The insight of the guides and the leisurely pace really do make this an enjoyable tour and well worth the extra money which is approx. $68 for an adult and $35 for a child. 


The sunset safari on the other hand takes you out on the savannahs that are located at the hotel with a very small amount of attendees since your vehicle is now a truck that has covered bench seating in the back and it only holds 12 people plus the guide.  The sunset safari starts with you checking in at Jiko before boarding the vehicle and ends with a multi-course dinner at Jiko.  The cost per person ages 8 and up is about $195 per person.  I have had the pleasure of doing both of these wonderful experiences and I have to say that both get high marks from me.  The sunrise safari has you on the savannahs for about 45 minutes-1 hour with the total amount of time spent being around an hour and a half- 2 hours with the sunset safari, plan on it taking a total of 3 hours from start to finish.  The savannah is so beautiful whether you are seeing it in the morning or at night and Disney limits the number of attendees, which makes it even better.  Either one that you choose is going to be a wonderful experience especially if you are an animal lover or an avid photographer.  The hotel's savannahs are home to more than 200 mammals and exotic birds representing a cross-section of the African palette, including spiral-horned antelope, impala, bongo, greater kudu, zebra, wildebeest, African spoonbills and pink-backed pelicans, to name a few. Even the once-endangered national bird of South Africa, the blue crane, has found a home at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge.

Also please keep in mind that these adventures are only available to those that stay at the Animal Kingdom Lodge on the club level.

If you do decide to stay on the club level at this beautiful resort, make sure you check out the lounge.  You might find me relaxing with a nice glass of wine in the evening. Cheers!

Pam



2 comments:

  1. Oh gosh how I dream of staying on that very top floor! Maybe one day..must work a tad harder!

    ReplyDelete
  2. It actually doesn't cost much more than a savannah view room. A 6 night, 7 day stay is roughly about $300 more if you go with a standard club level room. I love it there and stay there as often as I can.

    Pam

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...