Disney’s Boardwalk Resort & Villas: A Review of Function Following Form

Disney’s Boardwalk Resort  & Villas: A Review of Function Following Form

There is an architectural expression that “form follows function”. But in our recent stay at Disney’s Boardwalk & Villas, we found that the unique form that creates Boardwalk’s turn-of-century charm can sometimes stand in the way or at least make one forget that function does really matter. We’ll look at different elements of a stay, from arrival and check in, to rooms themselves. We’ll explore restaurants, shopping and entertainment along the boardwalk. And we’ll look at transportation issues, meetings & conventions, and its position inside the entire Walt Disney World complex.

While our post outlines this topic, our podcast carries narrative of the entire experience. You can find the podcast here on PodbeaniTunesSpotifyMyTuner, and ListenNotes. Please subscribe! 

Photo by J. Jeff Kober.

Arrival/Check In

Photo by J. Jeff Kober.
  • Valet or Hike
  • Small But Gorgeous Lobby
  • Online Check In: Convenient But Not Helpful
Photo by J. Jeff Kober.


Photo by J. Jeff Kober
  • Location: Painful
  • Deluxe Studio Villas: Spacious
  • First Floor Patio: Cool–Even Efficient
  • Deluxe Studio Villas Queen Bed: Not!
  • Biggest Problem: All Function/No Form
Photo by J. Jeff Kober.

Resort Transportation

Photo by J. Jeff Kober.
  • Magical Express: Going Away
  • Disney MinnieVan: Unavailable
  • Vehicle Parking: Distant
  • Disney Buses: Not Efficient
  • Disney Skyliner: Fun but Not Efficient
  • Boats: Fun but Not Always Efficient
  • Walking: Very Efficient

Food & Beverage

Photo by J. Jeff Kober.
  • Trattoria al Forno: Available Breakfast & Dinner
  • Boardwalk Bakery: Available All Day
  • Pizza Window: Available Noon Through Evening
  • AbracadaBar: Available Late Afternoon/Evening
  • Leaping Horse Libations: 11:00 Through Evening
  • Flying Fish: Unavailable
  • Big River Grille & Brewing Works: Unavailable
  • ESPN Club: Unavailable
  • Funnel Cake Cart: Unavailable
  • Boardwalk Joe’s Marvelous Margaritas: Unavailable
  • The To-Go Cart: Unavailable
  • Belle Vue Lounge: Unavailable
  • Ample Hills Creamery: Gone
Photo by J. Jeff Kober.


  • Pools: Open & Improved!
  • Ferris W. Eahlers Recreation Hall: Open
  • Fishing/Tennis/Jogging: Available
  • Surrey Bikes: Unavailable
  • Arcade: Available
  • Muscles & Bustles Fitness Club: Available

Shopping & Entertainment

Photo by J. Jeff Kober.
  • Disney Character Carnival, Screen Door, Thimbles & Threads: Open
  • Wyland Gallery: Unavailable
  • Jelly Rolls: Unavailable
  • Atlantic Dance Hall: Unavailable
  • Nightime Streetmosphere/Entertainment: Unavailable
  • Side Show Games: Unavailable
Photo by J. Jeff Kober.


  • Not Big But Beautiful
  • Only One Entrance
  • Outside Walkway
  • Great Access to Parking

Property Position

  • Epcot: Walking Distance
  • Disney’s Hollywood Studios: Walking Distance
  • Disney’s Animal Kingdom: Not Bad/Not Great
  • Magic Kingdom: Monorail Maybe
  • Disney Springs: Not Bad/Not Great


Photo by J. Jeff Kober.
  • The arrival experience is not customer-friendly.
  • The lobby is gorgeous but unnecessary.
  • Rooms are fairly functional but not fun
  • The Boardwalk offers 18 features that require going outside of the hotel.
  • 14 of Those 18 features on the Boardwalk are not available
  • The boardwalk still offers great recreation.
  • The property is sandwiched well between two important Disney parks.
  • The conference/convention facility is accessible to visitors, but not those staying on property.

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