Disney’s Art of Animation resort is one of the biggest Disney theming bangs for the buck in all of Walt Disney World. Fun villages with Pixar characters everywhere, themed rooms and pools, and family activities put a tremendous value in this value resort. Here is our stay in the adorable Little Mermaid Standard Rooms that can be booked for far less than some hotel rooms.
We decided to do something differently this past Thanksgiving break. No stressing over the grocery shopping, timing the use of the oven, and definitely no Black Friday. We went with The Little Mermaid Rooms at Art of Animation for both my own little redhead and also with the holidays approaching we were trying to keep the cost down. We were pleasantly surprised in what we found at both Art of Animation and the Little Mermaid Village.
Art of Animation Resort
At Art of Animation it feels like you’ve been dropped into a Pixar Movie. With family villages themed in Cars, Lion King, and Finding Nemo the whole resort is decked out in beloved characters from top to bottom. Animation Hall where the food court, gift shop, and check in are located features beautiful large artist animations of Simba, Ariel, Lightening McQueen to welcome you.
“Be surrounded in the artistry, enchantment and magic of Walt Disney and Disney•Pixar movies. Stay at a Disney Resort hotel that invites you to explore the storybook landscapes seen in such classics as Finding Nemo, Cars, The Lion King and The Little Mermaid. From delightfully themed family suites to wondrously detailed courtyards, Disney’s Art of Animation “draws” you and your family in to become a part of some of your animated favorites.”
What Does Value Resort Mean?
We chose the hotel style Little Mermaid Standard Rooms. We stayed over Thanksgiving weekend for a rate of less than $200 per night which is pretty mind blowing for Walt Disney World. Having stayed at the deluxe resort Animal Kingdom Lodge and the moderate resort Caribbean Beach I did not find the Art of Animation to be a huge step down. In fact, I thought it was very comparable but different. Animal Kingdom Lodge had a sophistication to it (but still family friendly! It’s Disney after all.) that didn’t quite feel a fit for us as a family with younger children, and I found Art of Animation’s theming very comparable to that of the Pirate theme at Caribbean Beach but honestly I just preferred the bright, fun colors and feeling like I moved into a Disney movie and the price of Art of Animation.
The Art of Animation Little Mermaid Standard Rooms come in either one king or two full beds. They are approximately 260 square feet (which is about 45 square feet smaller than a moderate resort room). There are 3 buildings in the Little Mermaid Village. It is important to note that The Little Mermaid Standard Rooms are very different in both price and size to the family suites so be sure and know what you are booking at Art of Animation. Also, be aware of things that make a value resort “value” in comparison with luxury and moderate. There is only one sink at the vanities. You need to bring your own towels from your room to the pools. (This was for me the biggest drawback of the value resort especially when we didn’t know to bring them the first time. But luckily the front desk is used to this and had plenty to hand out.) There are no sit down restaurants at a value resort which for us was not a problem. The food was good quality and comparable to the park’s quick service offerings and we could save our sit down meals on the dining plan for awesome park dining experiences. Also, there are no slides at the pools but once younger kids see the pools, especially the Nemo pool, The Big Blue Pool which is the largest pool at Walt Disney World the odds are you or the kids won’t miss the slide. Older kids may miss the adventure of the slide but the pool is pretty awesome.
The Little Mermaid Village
The Little Mermaid Village welcomes you “Under the Sea” with fun waves and bright colorful fish on all the buildings. Larger than life Triton, Ursula, and Ariel make you feel like you are part of the Disney classic. My kids were 6 and 4 at the time of our stay and there was excitement at every turn for them in this bright happy village. Photo opps galore y’all! There is also a small Ariel pool in the center of the court yard.
From the treasure chest to the dinglehopper to Flounder and Eric, everything you know and love about The Little Mermaid is here.
The Little Mermaid Standard Rooms
The Little Mermaid fun continues inside of the room with Disney details like the fish mirror and sitting area with the lyrics to “Under the Sea” on the table with scallop shell chairs. The room includes a dresser with drawers and a door with mini fridge with the usual TV on top. As mentioned the vanity is one sink but I found there to be plenty of counter space. There is a shower and tub with cute themed shower curtain, an open closet area with shelf, and in room safe.
As you can see the beds are adorable with shell headboards like you are sleeping in a sea shell. Art includes Flounder and Sebastian and the very handsome Prince Eric. Be aware the beds are full size. I found the mattresses comfortable which I can’t say for the completely adorable Pirate Bed at Caribbean Beach. They are adorable comfortable rooms if not fancy. My kids loved all of the theming and so did this Old G former Disney Store employee.
And we couldn’t stay in the Little Mermaid Rooms with my redhead and not recreate the Dinglehopper scene. We brought her (affiliate link) Ariel nightgown and I borrowed a fork from the food court. She thought I was a little crazy but cooperated and we captured what may be my favorite photo of her to date.
We used our stay at the Little Mermaid Rooms to kick off the holiday season with an in room surprise delivery of stockings and hung them on the coat hooks which the kids loved. You can do in room celebrations for almost any occasion though. We did one to mark our first Walt Disney World visit which has become a great keepsake for us.
Special Needs Mama’s Perspective:
Art of Animation does offer wheel chair accessible Little Mermaid Standard Rooms. You can view one on Rolling With the Mouse here. They also have wheelchair accessible tables in the food court and the paths are wide for easy rolling. One end of the pool is also zero entry for easy access. This is a resort that caters to young families so for those fellow Sensory Processing Disorder or Autism friends the noise level may be something to consider. This can be worked around with headphones or doing activities at off peak times. I did not find the rooms themselves to be particularly noisy. As with all Disney dining, communicate any dining needs to cast members and they can work with you.
Like anything preferences in resorts is subjective. If you’re looking for sophisticated elegance and amenities of the deluxe resorts like at AKL, The Little Mermaid rooms may not be for you. If you like a bigger room or sit down restaurants or pools with slides and towels like at Caribbean Beach and other moderate resorts then The Little Mermaid Rooms and Art of Animation may not be for you. If you’re like us and love Disney theming with lots of fun activities like drawing Disney characters and feeling like you’ve stepped into a Disney movie for a great price then give The Little Mermaid Standard Rooms at Art of Animation a try. We’ve adopted it as our current home resort.