Sunday Showcase: Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge

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Animal Kingdom Lodge, Jambo House. This is the main lobby of Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge. Photo by Donald Fink.

Good morning and Happy Sunday (sorry, I posted on Saturday)! Welcome back to the fifth week of Sunday Showcase. Each week we take a look at one of Walt Disney World’s resorts. This week we will be taking a look at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge.

Sunday Showcase: Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge

“Karibuni (Welcome) to a Disney safari adventure as extraordinary as nature itself! Escape to this secluded African lodge-style resort set amidst 46 acres of tropical savanna. Stroll its many meandering pathways to encounter the more than 30 species of wildlife up close in open, natural habitats. Bask in the dramatic detail of artwork, artifacts, cuisine and music that bring Africa to life. Travel to the heart of the continent and enjoy the finest traditions of quality service and hospitality.”

Brief History

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge was designed by the late Architect, Peter Dominick. Peter’s work also included Disney’s Wilderness Lodge and Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel in Anaheim, CA. This resort opened on April 16, 2001 and has been taking the breath away of guests for 20 years now. Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge provides guests with an extremely unique experience. From certain guest rooms and public areas around the resort, guest are provided the opportunity to view grazing wildlife within a relatively close proximity of the animals, conveying the feeling of being in an African savanna. Situated in the Animal Kingdom Resort Area, this resort provides guests with quick access to Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Shortly after its opening in 2001, Disney Vacation Club announced in October 2006 that Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge would be the site of the next DVC resort. On February 18, 2008, Disney announced the first phase of this expansion was complete and included 109 rooms. In a separate building named Kidani Village, to the west of the lodge and houses, 300 additional villas were built. This expansion also extended The Sunset Savanna and more species of animals were introduced to the area. Additionally, a new pool was built and features water slides and an aquatic playground. On May 1, 2009, Kidani Village opened 65% of its rooms.  At that time, the main lodge building was renamed Jambo House. Finally in September 2009, the remainder of Kidani Village had been completed.

At the time of this post, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge is not open, with exception for the Disney Vacation Club Villas.

Rooms and Facilities

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge is currently configured with over 900 Guest rooms, 412 Villas and 297 Deluxe Studios. Standard guest rooms consist of 2 queen beds orsleep up to 4 adults with 1 child under the age of 3 years old in a crib.

Guests choosing Club Level accommodations at the Kilimanjaro Club receive personalized concierge service and lounge with continental breakfast, midday snacks and evening wine, hors d’oeuvres, cordials and desserts. Unfortunately at this time, Club Level is unavailable due to restrictions from the ongoing global pandemic.

Standard Guest Rooms

ANIMAL KINGDOM VILLAS – JAMBO HOUSE AT DISNEY’S ANIMAL KINGDOM LODGE

Experience your own African-like safari adventure. Inspired by the traditional African kraal, this hotel’s horseshoe-curved design provides spectacular views of 4 lush savannas—where over 200 hoofed animals and birds freely roam. Enjoy the comforts of home in our spacious Studios and multi-bedroom Villas, and indulge in Club Level service for added luxury.

ANIMAL KINGDOM VILLAS – KIDANI VILLAGE AT DISNEY’S ANIMAL KINGDOM LODGE

Enjoy Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Kidani Village at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, with all the amenities and recreation the Resort has to offer. Observe more than 30 species of wildlife that roam free across an African-inspired, 21-acre wildlife preserve! Each of the rooms in Kidani Village are slightly bigger than those at Jambo House.

DINING

TABLE-SERVICE DINING

  • Boma – Flavors of Africa – Feast on an all-you-care-to-enjoy buffet in an atmosphere inspired by a lively open-air marketplace.
  • Jiko – Be transported to Africa as you taste the fragrant spices and bold flavors of this amazing continent’s cuisine.
  • Sanaa – Discover exquisite East African cuisine and enjoy views of Sunset Savanna – home to some 30 wildlife species!
  • Wanyama Safari and Dinner – Make this event the highlight of your stay! See the savannas through the eyes of a private guide – crowned with a gourmet dinner.

QUICK-SERVICE DINING

  • The Mara – Get a snack to go or grab a seat in the dining room and enjoy a meal under a canopy of banyan trees.

OTHER DINING OPTIONS

  • Maji Pool Bar – Sip on a cocktail at this romantic open-air oasis serving up signature drinks, sandwiches and salads.
  • Sanaa Lounge – Try a flight of African wines surrounded by the warm hues of an Old-Word spice market.
  • Victoria Falls Lounge – Park yourself by the glow of a fire pit or sink into a sofa while sipping a selection from the full bar menu.

RECREATION

  • Uzima Springs Pool – Go for a dip in the enchanting Uzima Springs Pool, an 11,000-square-foot tropical oasis facing Uzima Savanna.
  • Samawati Springs Pool – Make a splash at the Samawati Springs Pool—located just a short walk away at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Kidani!
  • Jambo House Campfire Activities Hakuna Matata Playground Pumbaa’s Fun and Games Arcade Movies Under the Stars

TRANSPORTATION

  • Bus Service to Walt Disney World® Resort Theme Parks, Water Parks and Disney Springs®

Parking

Standard overnight self-parking is available to registered Guests for a fee. As to which this fee will be applied to their hotel folio upon check-out. All parking fees include applicable tax.

  • Parking for Disney Deluxe Resorts is $25 per night.
  • Valet parking is also available for $33 per night.

Complimentary standard self-parking is available while you enjoy select dining, shopping, entertainment, and recreation experiences at this Resort.

In conclusion, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge is a one-of-a-kind resort experience. Where else can you drink coffee on your balcony and see Giraffes and Zebras grazing right outside your window. This is truly a magical experience that one must try for themselves.

Thank you for checking out this week’s iteration of Sunday Showcase. Have you stayed at this resort? What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments below.

Finally, if you are looking at traveling to Walt Disney World, contact Far Beyond Infinity Travel. They will help you navigate the inns and outs of Walt Disney World. While their services are always free and they will help as much or as little as you’d like. Contact them today at info@farbeyondinfinitytravel.com or visit them online.

[Source and Images: Walt Disney World]


Pirates & Princesses (PNP) is an independent, opinionated fan-powered news blog that covers Disney and Universal Theme Parks, Themed Entertainment and related Pop Culture from a consumer's point of view. Opinions expressed by our contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of PNP, its editors, affiliates, sponsors or advertisers. PNP is an unofficial news source and has no connection to The Walt Disney Company, NBCUniversal or any other company that we may cover.



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As a kid, I had visited Disney multiple times and it sparked a passion for all things Disney. In 2010, I proposed to my wife in front of Cinderella's Castle an since then it has been a large part of our life. Now as a father of three and experiencing Disney with my wife through our children's eyes, our love for Disney has grown tenfold and I can't wait to share my passion and experiences with you. I am also the owner of Far Beyond Infinity Travel, Inc. which was founded on the premise that making travel plans should be honest, easy and exciting. Based in the Boston area, we specialize in providing each customer with a wide array of travel packages and services. Whether you’re looking for a cruise, beach break or theme park excursion, we can help you put together a vacation you’ll never forget. We’re committed to service and excellence, and we’ll take care of all the details so you can start relaxing long before your next trip. Far Beyond Infinity Travel, Inc is a Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business, officially recognized by the U.S. Department of Veteran's Affairs and a Proud Member of Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA) and Travel Leaders Network.