Contemporary Resort at Walt Disney World is located within walking distance of the Magic Kingdom. It is a deluxe resort with a very contemporary theme. The Monorail runs right through the inside of the resort. It was one of the two original resorts when the park opened in 1971 and it has a ballroom and a convention center.
Price: $498 – $659 and up!
Room size: 436 square feet and up
Sleeps: 5 people plus an infant in a crib
Room count: 1041
Standard rooms: features 2 queen beds and a day bed. It includes a desk with chair, fridge, safe, coffee maker, flat screen television.
Choose from a room in The Tower with either a Bay Lake or Magic Kingdom view or a room in the South Garden Wing with either a water, garden or parking lot view.
Food options: There are 3 counter service restaurants and 3 table service restaurants in The Contemporary.
The Contempo Cafe – Located on the 4th floor, this counter service restaurant serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. It is open from 6 am – 12 am daily.
Contemporary Grounds – Stop by this quick service restaurant to start your day with coffee and breakfast sandwiches or later for smoothies, cookies and more.
The Sand Bar – Located by the pool, this restaurant has a couple quick service options. It is open from 11 am to 6 pm daily.
The Wave – This table service restaurant is located off the lobby on the first floor of The Contemporary. It serves breakfast, lunch and dinner and is open from 7:30 am to 9:30 pm. It is not overly difficult to get a reservation at this restaurant, so it is a great last minute option.
Chef Mickey’s – This popular character meal is located on the 4th floor. Reservations need to be made 180 days before you travel. Chef Mickey’s serves breakfast, lunch and dinner from 7 am to 9 pm.
California Grill – This signature restaurant is located at the top of The Contemporary. It serves dinner from 5 pm – 10 pm. You can also watch the fireworks from this restaurant on the day you have a reservation even if it isn’t at the time the fireworks begin. Just return to the restaurant and they will show you to the viewing area. Review of California Grill
Pools: There are 2 pools. The large pool has a 17-foot curving slide and small water fountains in the center. There is a children’s water play area by the big pool.
The quiet pool is shallow around the edges and deeper in the center. It is located closer to the lake.
Activities: Nightly movie behind Contemporary Tower; Pool party at 2 pm; Nightly Campfire and Marshmallow Roast; Poolside Activities from 1-5 pm; Beer Tasting at the Wave ($); Arcade; Tennis Lessons ($); Guided Fishing Excursions ($); Poolside Cabanas ($); parasailing, water skiing, wakeboarding, family tubing and personal watercraft rentals; Arcade; Tennis Lessons ($); Guided Fish Excursions ($); Health Club; Electrical Water Pageant nightly
You can watch Wishes from the observation deck on the 4th floor or if you dined at California Grill that day, you can watch it from the 15th floor observation deck. You can also book Magic Kingdom view rooms in the Contemporary tower that will give you a wonderful view of it.
The Electrical Water Pageant glides by every night at approximately 10:05 p.m.
- 24-hour front desk
- ballroom (42,300 sq feet)
- basketball court (get a ball from the Marina shop)
- Beach volleyball (get a ball from the Marina shop)
- cabana rentals by the pool
- check-in and guest service
- childcare service
- complimentary wifi
- concierge level rooms
- convention center (90,000 sq feet)
- covered bus stops
- daily mousekeeping
- designated smoking area
- dry cleaning
- gift shop
- hair dryers
- handicap accessible rooms
- ice machine
- ironing boards
- kiddie waiting area in lobby
- laundry facilities
- luggage service
- Magical Express
- mail services
- merchandise delivery and pickup
- newspaper delivery (complimentary)
- online check-in
- outdoor smoking areas
- resort airline check-in
- valet parking
- wake- up call service
Overnight parking is $24.
Transportation: Walk to the Magic Kingdom or take the monorail to the Magic Kingdom or Epcot. You can take a bus to Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom or Disney Springs. There is a boat available that takes guests to Ft. Wilderness.
Screening and bag check has been update when taking the monorail to Disney’s Magic Kingdom, guests will now be screened prior to boarding the monorail. This is in an effort to distribute screening at Magic Kingdom for quicker entrance.
Distance from parks by bus:
- Animal Kingdom – 10 miles
- Hollywood Studios – 6 miles
- Epcot – 6 miles
- Magic Kingdom – 1 mile
At Christmas, you can find a huge Christmas Tree made from gingerbread next to the mural by Mary Blair on the 4th floor.
When you do your online check-in, you can request up to two of these items:
- Ground Floor
- Near Elevator
- Odd Number Room
- Corner Room
- Upper Floor
- Near Transportation
I personally would request an upper floor near an elevator.
Bayview Gifts (BVG) carries high end merchandise, resort specific items and sweet treats.
Fantasia carries toys and pins. It is sure to excite any little boy or girl.
The Market is your stop for consumable products including food and health and beauty needs. You’ll also find reading materials including the local newspaper.
Address: 4600 North World Drive
Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830
This review comes from my reader Megan…
* Why did you choose this resort?
We chose it because we were traveling with our oldest son and wanted
the option of being able to walk to and from the Magic Kingdom. We
figured it would be the best place to stay to make quick exits if he
was having a meltdown. We also liked being on the monorail for access
to the other resorts and Epcot.
* What were the resort rooms like? Were they big enough for your
family? Did you find them to be acceptable?
The rooms seemed to be much more spacious than some of the moderates
we had stayed in previously. We had two queen-sized beds, but they
also have rooms with one king-size bed also. We were fortunate enough
to have a Magic Kingdom view room with a balcony which was wonderful
for our son to watch the fireworks that happened a little bit after
his normal bedtime, making them that much more of a special treat. All
rooms have a small, in-room refrigerator, safe, coffee maker (with
coffee), iron and ironing board, hair dryer, high-speed internet
access (not wireless), and a flat-screen tv. We were able to connect
our portable DVD player to the tv with cords we brought from home.
There are also coin-operated laundry facilities on site near the
Garden rooms. We stayed in a Tower room and this was a little bit of
a pain, but nothing major.
* What were the amenities of the resort like? What was your favorite one?
The amenities at this resort are more than adequate. The pool is fun
for adults and kids; there are tennis courts that didn’t seem to be
used much, basketball court, and a sand volleyball court. The fitness
center was a little small, but fine for the amount of guests that seem
to use it. I never had to wait for a machine so it was fine. There
is also a marina where you can rent different size boats and arrange
for parasailing, tubing, water skiing and such.
* What was the food court like? Any favorite foods?
There is almost never a line at the quick-service restaurant, Contempo
Cafe and it offers a variety of food and the service was really good
when we were there. Chef Mickey’s is hard to get into, but if you do
have a priority seating it is great for an early morning breakfast
because you don’t have to worry about transportation! The food is ok
there; it’s another breakfast buffet similar to the other ones on
property. There is also a snack bar called Sand Bar near the pool and
you can refill your mugs there while at the pool. The Wave is on the
first floor and we didn’t eat there, but watched some football at the
bar and had a snack. The bartenders were very friendly and the
service was great. The California Grill is at the top of the
Contemporary and is wonderful. We have eaten at this restaurant
several times and would highly recommend it.
* How were the resort buses? What was your walk to the bus stop
like? How were the resorts bus stops at the parks? How far was the
walk to the gates? How crowded were the buses at any given time?
The bus leaves from a stop near the front lobby so it is very easy to
get to from the Tower rooms. It shares a stop with Bay Lake Towers,
but the buses did not seem to be too crowded at any time. The buses
take you to Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, Disney Springs,
Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon. The monorail takes you to Epcot
and the Magic Kingdom. To get to Epcot you have to transfer monorails
at the Ticket & Transportation Center. The Polynesian and Grand
Floridian Resorts are also accessible using the monorail.
* Would you stay at this resort again? If not, please provide a reason.
Not until our kids are a little older. We have two toddlers and like
the amenities of a Villa. When they are older, not taking naps and
are able to drink out of normal cups all of the time, we will consider
it again because the location just can’t be beat. I never thought I
would like this resort, to me it was cold and ugly, but the location
is great and that makes up for any physical attributes I think it is
Alternative Resort: Animal Kingdom Lodge.