We stayed in Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort in September 2017 for 10 nights. We were feeling pretty skeptical due to reviews we had read before hand and the fact they have some major construction work going on. Here’s our review of our stay there ..
Construction work at Caribbean Beach Resort
Firstly, the construction work did not effect us at all. We heard no noise and it is boarded off so you can see it but it’s really not a major issue. We received a gift card from Disney for $75 for each night of our stay as we booked before the construction work commenced. We were extremely grateful for this and it actually helped us out a lot on our holiday! I’m sure once the construction work is complete over the next 2 years the improvements to the hotel will definitely be worth it. Of course it was slightly annoying for us that we didn’t get to make the most of what the hotel had to offer before the construction such as the Old Port Royale Food Court, but you can see they have put in every effort to make alternative arrangements.
We were on the Disney quick service dining plan which we received free with our holiday booking (we booked in June 2016 directly through Disney and got an amazing deal overall!) The dining options are now the Centertown Buffet, the Centertown Food Truck, in-room dining and some small Island Markets in several locations around the resort. We ate breakfast in the Centertown Buffet almost every morning of our stay and we couldn’t fault it, there’s a nice selection of fruits, cereals and cooked food and of course the Mickey Waffles which were the best part!!
We only ate lunch and dinner a couple of times here and the food was nice, I would definitely recommend the taco salad which is available at lunch time it was so delicious! The only thing we would say is it is the same food every day, there is no variation so if you intend on having lunch and dinner in there a lot it can become pretty repetitive.
We also had our refillable Disney cups which were so handy! It’s a really cool cup with a Disney print on it and you can pick them up from the island market and choose which colour you’d like. We had ours included in our booking but you can purchase them for we think $17.99 for the length of your stay. There are various drinks machines around the resort which you can refill them at. The machines have a wide range of choices, we particularly enjoyed trying the different flavours of the vitamin water! We didn’t do this but we did see people carrying them around the Disney parks too. You can’t refill them for free there at vending machines but you can use the water fountains which are scattered around.
We used the bell service when we arrived at Caribbean Beach Resort to help us transfer all of our luggage to our room from the front desk. Remember to give them a tip! (We think we tipped $10) Please be aware the front desk is pretty far away from the rooms, you have to catch the internal shuttle bus to get back to it.
We booked a King bed room and were extremely happy with it for the first few days. We were in the Jamaica part of the resort and were happy with this location. It wasn’t too much of a long walk to Centertown, we had an island market close by and it was about a 2 minute walk to the bus stop. The rooms are cleaned every day to a good standard. There is a large TV in the room with lots of good channels including the In Room Disney channels which give info on each of the different parks which we found helpful.
Unfortunately on about the 5th day of our stay our room got an infestation of ants around the door!!! We called reception and they were very helpful and moved us to one of the pirate themed rooms in Trinidad South. Bell Service arrived around 20 minutes after calling reception to help us move our belongings.
Going from a king bed to 2 small doubles was not ideal for us but the standard of the room was great again so we just made the most of it and appreciated the hotel accommodating our move so quickly. The area of Trinidad South was not as convenient as Jamaica. There was a pretty long walk to Centertown (around 10 – 15 minutes) no island market, but again only around a 2 minute walk to a bus stop. Our room was right by the pool too which was nice for us after being in the parks all day to go for a quick dip to cool off in the late afternoon! The pool was lovely and much more quiet than the main pool in Old Port Royale. (We only spent about 30 minutes in the main pool so can’t give too much of a review. It was busy but there were plenty of sunbeds around.)
The bus service
We had read SO many bad reviews about the bus service before we came and we were dreading it slightly. There were horror stories of the bus being so full you couldn’t get on and waiting an hour for one to turn up. We were wrong! The bus service was excellent. Maybe this was due to the fact that we didn’t go in the real high season or the fact it was more quiet than usual for the majority of our trip due to Hurricane Irma hitting only a few days before. We never waited more than 10 minutes for a bus and pretty much every time we got on it we got a seat. It was only when we were coming back from a park at closing time that the bus was really busy and we had to stand, which can be expected. The bus service served us really well on our travels between all of the parks.
We didn’t take advantage of the entertainment at the resort at all really as usually we would be out at the parks. There are some fun activities on offer though including campfires, movies under the stars and a pirate adventure cruise. We did notice there were some really good movies lined up for the movie under the stars whilst we were there. There is also a playground for children.
There’s a jogging trail around the resort and we did see quite a few joggers especially early in the mornings as we were walking to breakfast. Our feet were FAR too tired to jog after walking around the parks for hours every day!! Fishing is also available, we believe you can make a reservation through the hotel. You can do yoga we believe early on a Friday morning. There are boards around the resort which give further info on the activities and the dates/times that they’re happening.
There is a band that plays the steel pan drums and you can find them by Centertown next to the Centertown Bar. They play caribbean/reggae tunes and they’re really fun to listen to if you get the chance!
Most night for entertainment we got the short shuttle to Disney Springs, this was by far our favorite place to visit after the busy parks.
If you buy merchandise in the Disney parks that you don’t wish to carry around with you, you can get it sent back to the hotel! We made use of this service, you just have to state when you’re paying for it that you would like it to go to your hotel and they just ask you for your name, the name of your hotel and your room number. They will give you a green slip and a reciept for when you go to pick it up. It takes a couple of days to arrive at the hotel, you just have to go to the Concierge desk which is located in Old Port Royale. Remember your green slip, they will need it.
We had a few meals left on our quick service dining plans at the end of our holiday. If you go to one of the island markets they have bags of sweets which are great to take home as gifts. They count as 1 snack, and you can exchange 1 meal for 3 snacks which is what we did so we grabbed a few bags of these sweets for gifts to take home for family!
There is SO much wildlife at this resort! We saw lizards, a tiny snake, a few frogs and an owl just to name a few! Keep an eye out and see what creatures you can spot!
Summary of Caribbean Beach Resort
Overall we really enjoyed our stay at Caribbean Beach Resort and are glad that we didn’t let some of the bad reviews we read put us off. We see no reason why we wouldn’t go back there, maybe once the construction is finished so you can make full use of the facilities on offer. It may not be as fancy as some of the other Disney Hotels but for us on our first visit to Disney it was pretty much perfect!
Thank you for taking the time to read our blog it is much appreciated! X