The Best (and Worst!) Parts of Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort

by | May 16, 2024 | Disney Springs, Walt Disney World Resorts, WDW Blog

What are the pros and cons of Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa? Take a look before booking your next trip to Walt Disney World.

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When it comes to Walt Disney World Deluxe Resort hotels, your first thought likely goes to the Magic Kingdom or EPCOT-area resorts. However, did you know a Deluxe hotel is just steps away from Disney Springs? Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa is located just across the shores of Lake Buena Vista. The hotel is an equestrian-themed, Victorian-style resort inspired by the famous racetracks of Saratoga, NY. The hotel offers DVC rooms, as well as unique Treehouse Villas that you can stay in. If you’re considering booking a stay at this Victorian-style Disney Vacation Club resort, these are the best (and worst) parts of the hotel that you need to know about.

The Pros of Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa

Let’s start off with the pros of this unique resort! Located within walking distance of Disney Springs, the hotel offers a world of shopping and dining just steps away at Disney Springs. As a Disney Vacation Club resort, it also offers unique room options that can often add more space for a family. Let’s take a closer look at some of the other great parts of Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort.

Proximity Disney Springs

Hands down, the biggest perk of Disney’s Saratoga Springs is its proximity to Disney Springs. The hotel offers a quick walking path over to the shopping and dining district, although a water taxi is also available (the latter of which offers a relaxing boat ride over). Being so close to Disney Springs opens you up to a world of possibilities, with dozens of shops and incredible restaurants just a short walk away.

While many Disney World Deluxe Resorts pride themselves on their dining options, none have the variety of restaurant choices as this. Just a walk away from your hotel stay at Saratoga Springs, you can find any kind of food you’re possibly looking for, whether it’s quick-service, table service, a dessert, or a snack.

Dining Options On-Site

While Disney Springs is right nearby, there are also plenty of dining options to choose from on-site. You’ll find The Turf Club Bar and Grill, a steakhouse-style signature dining restaurant. And for quick-service, you have The Artist’s Palette. Plus, there are pool-side choices you can opt for as well.

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Dining options abound at Saratoga Springs. Photo by Brett Svenson

If you do stay here, make sure to try out the Saratoga House-made Chips from The Artist’s Palette. They’re absolutely delicious, and you have the choice to order them alone or as a side to your meal

Entertainment

Not only are you steps away from Disney Springs when you stay at this Disney Vacation Club resort, but you also have access to loads of other recreational options. This includes:

  • Two large feature pools, three smaller pools, and water play areas
  • A Disney-inspired painting class
  • Sunrise yoga
  • Bike rentals
  • Disney’s Lake Buna Vista Golf Course
  • Senses – A Disney Spa at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort

Great DVC Points Value

If you’re cashing in DVC points to stay here, you’ll be pleased to find that you’ll often need fewer points to stay at Saratoga than other DVC resorts. This is one of the reasons many DVC members frequent this particular DVC getaway.

If you aren’t a DVC member, you can rent points at an applicable resort. You can use a site like our friends at  David’s Vacation Club Rentals, which allows you to choose your dates and different resort options. You’ll be given a per-point cost for each of your choices, so you will know going in just how much the trip will cost if approved.

The Cons of Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa

Like with any hotel at Disney World, along with pros, there are also cons. These are a few of the features we would recommend you keep in mind while booking to figure out the best Disney World hotel for you and your party.

Not Close to Any Parks

While the location is perfect if you plan to spend time at Disney Springs, it isn’t ideal for visiting the parks. While you can access all of them via Disney bus transportation, it may take you longer to get to the theme parks than it would from other more centrally located resorts.

If being particularly close to a park is important to you, you may have better luck choosing a Magic Kingdom Resort area or EPCOT Resort area hotel, both of which are centrally located to their designated park. Additionally, hotels located on the Disney Skyliner have easy access to both EPCOT and Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

Transportation

Saratoga Springs is a sprawling resort with five distinct areas: The Carousel, Congress Park, The Grandstand, The Paddock, and The Springs. While this means there’s a lot to do (like multiple pools to choose from), it also means it can be a bit of a hike to take advantage of some resort amenities. It also means you have to wait through multiple stops when using Disney bus transportation, which can be especially tiring after a long day at the parks.

Non-Disney Theming

Let’s start off by saying that we love the theming of Saratoga Springs, which is themed to the equestrian history of Saratoga Springs, New York. However, if you are with kids (or adults!) that would prefer more Disney-theming, this may not be their top pick.

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The horse-theming at Disney’s Saratoga Springs isn’t for everybody. Photo by Courtney Reynolds

While Saratoga’s recent remodels and updates have added some charm and elegance to the property, it just doesn’t have the wow factor of other resorts like Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort or Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge. However, we do recommend giving Saratoga’s Treehouse Villas a try, even if you’re not keen on the theming at the rest of the resort.

Should You Stay at Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa?

So, is Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa a good choice for your family? Now that you’ve weighed the pros and cons of Saratoga Springs, it’s up to you to decide. If you’re planning on enjoying plenty of time at nearby Disney Springs or you want to hang by your resort, Saratoga Springs may be the perfect spot for you and your group to consider.

However, for those that are looking for more Disney theming, or would rather be closer to the theme parks, you may want to consider a more centrally located alternative. Other Disney Vacation Club Resorts like Disney’s Riviera Resort, or Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort will offer closer options to the parks (while still allowing the option of using DVC points).

 

Posts by Dani Moritz

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Dani has been visiting Disney Parks since she was two years old. She’s part of a DVC member family, a WDW annual passholder and former Cast Member, and the kind of Disney fan who still cries when she watches the Magic Kingdom fireworks. Since having her daughter, though, her favorite Disney title is Disney mom, and she’s loving sharing her love of the mouse with her toddler—who almost loves Walt Disney World as much as she does.
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Authored by
Dani Moritz

Dani has been visiting Disney Parks since she was two years old. She’s part of a DVC member family, a WDW annual passholder and former Cast Member, and the kind of Disney fan who still cries when she watches the Magic Kingdom fireworks. Since having her daughter, though, her favorite Disney title is Disney mom, and she’s loving sharing her love of the mouse with her toddler—who almost loves Walt Disney World as much as she does.
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