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View Full Version : Saratoga Springs Resort or Animal Kingdom Villas?



Toocherie
01-18-2008, 10:39 PM
Ok, I've convinced myself to buy, just am having a hard time deciding between the two--I am drawn to AKV, but the guide was really pushing SSR ($2 less per point, etc., closeness to Downtown Disney,) The cost difference is not significant to me.

Please tell me why you love AKV or SSR!

DVC Mike
01-19-2008, 05:14 AM
Buy where you want to stay. If you're into SSR, buy there. If not, and you're into AKV, buy there.

AKV Considerations


Concierge Rooms (the only DVC with them) and point-saving Value accommodations will go quick. Thus, the 11-month home resort booking window will be more advantageous at AKV than SSR. These types of rooms will go quick and probably necessitate calling at 11 months.
The 1 BR can sleep 5 versus 4 at SSR. Also, the rooms at the new Kidani Village will have an extra bathroom compared to SSR.
Great exotic theme (African game reserve) with unique decor
The Savannahs with the views of the animals (20+ species)
Samawati Springs Pool - 4,700-sq-ft with slide and 2 whirlpool spas (Kidani), plus themed Uzima pool at AKL
Excellent onsite restaurants: Jiko and Boma, plus new Sanaa TS
Lease is 3 years more than SSR (2057 vs. 2054)
Attached to a deluxe resort hotel (AKL) – room service & valet parking
Some GV have pool tables!

SSR Considerations


Lower maintenance fees
Direct access to DTD (for restaurants and nightlife)
Onsite Spa
Completed (unlike AKV, which is under construction)
Apartment-style setup; standalone, not attached to any hotel
Elegant and sophisticated décor (understated, subdued theme)
Golf course on property
Large, very spread out resort (the largest DVC resort)
Long distance from some rooms to dining and services
Themed pool - rock formations/springs/water slide
Limited onsite dining (Artists Palette and The Turf Club)
Has convenient self parking
No room service or valet parking; Outdoor hallways I bought at AKV.

GusMan
01-19-2008, 06:32 AM
Our main reason for buying SSR was the lower long-term costs. SSR considerations that Mike mentioned above are good ones but one of the things to consider is that because SSR is a larger resort, if you book at your 11 month mark, it can be easier to get what you want. (For far for our future trips, we always got what we wanted.) I dont recall how AKV will compete in the number of rooms after Kadani Village is built, but I doubt it will match SSR's size.

For us, it was slightly less the resort itself and more about being there at Disney. Hence the decision to go with lower overall costs in mind.

However, we are going to AKV for our first trip as members. And chances are, it wont be our last trip there as well. That is one thing to consider - while you dont get the 11 month booking window, there are other resorts to choose from as well at 7 months out. Sure, there may be availability limitations at times, depending on when you go, but you can have options. That is a great part about DVC membership.

While AKV is very elaborate and beautiful, SSR also has a lot of charm. The pool area is very nice and restaurant choices are decent as well.


ETA: Hey Mike... what do you know about the new Sanaa TS??

DVC Mike
01-19-2008, 08:13 AM
I dont recall how AKV will compete in the number of rooms after Kadani Village is built, but I doubt it will match SSR's size.


AKV will have 458 units, made up of 134 at Jambo House and 324 at Kidani Village, which puts it above BWV and below OKW in terms of size. SSR has 828 units, and is the largest DVC resort.



For us, it was slightly less the resort itself and more about being there at Disney. Hence the decision to go with lower overall costs in mind.


Yes, for those less concerned about which resort they will be at, SSR will have the lowest cost structure.



ETA: Hey Mike... what do you know about the new Sanaa TS??

The rumor is that it will offer Indian food!

Toocherie
01-19-2008, 08:38 AM
On some trips a family member who is disabled may be with me--do AKV and SSR both have elevators to reach upper floor rooms?

DVC Mike
01-19-2008, 09:51 AM
On some trips a family member who is disabled may be with me--do AKV and SSR both have elevators to reach upper floor rooms?

Yes, both do.

bwanabob
01-21-2008, 04:46 AM
I would choose Animal Kingdom if you "most probably" would be using the time shares during busy times of the year (Easter, Christmas, July, Aug 1st half or March). If not, choose Saratoga Springs because it's not hard to switch to any resort with 7 months notice during off-season.

Toocherie
01-21-2008, 08:54 AM
I decided on SSR. I am an adult, no kids, and will most likely be taking other adults with me so the allure of Downtown Disney won over. (I was also afraid I would get tired of the theming at AKV--figured since I was most likely going during "off-seasons" that I should be able to get in there on occasion and try it out.) I also tend to like airy and bright locations so was concerned about the perceived darkness of AKV (based on some messages I read).

I got the $10 off per point discount and the 100 developer points (on a 160-point contract). Since I bought in California--and probably the most important thing to me--I will be a member of the "Founder's Club" so have the right to buy up to 160 points at the Grand Californian when those go on sale. (Which I will probably do.) At that point, I may decide to sell my SSR interest and just keep GCV or go to another resort. Or I may love SSR so much that I would keep both! In any event, the most important thing to me in making this purchase at this time was having the option on the GCV interest. I figure even on current prices if I sold my interest at a loss the most it would cost me is $1,000--which I would gladly pay to get the option on GCV.

Frankly, the one negative I have about SSR is the lack of on-site dining--especially room service since it is not attached to a hotel. But, I figure since they have convenient parking I can make a grocery run on the way in for breakfast items (which is when I would be most likely to use room service anyway) and there is the Artist's Palatte as well as DTD. I also like having the option to take a car somewhere rather than rely on the bus service without having to wait for a valet.