Thursday 3: Comparison of Disney & Universal Family Suites - Value Resorts

Reservations are now being accepted at Universal’s Endless Summer Resort - Surfside Inn and Suites for dates beginning August 1, 2019. We recently compared the standard hotel style rooms so, today, I will cover the family suites to two Disney World value resorts that have both standard rooms and family suites: Disney’s All-Star Music and Disney’s Art of Animation Resort. We can help you plan a vacation that includes your stay at any of these resorts so request a free, no-obligation quote today.

 Disney’s Art of Animation Resort - Cars Family Suite / Walt Disney World Resort

Disney’s Art of Animation Resort - Cars Family Suite / Walt Disney World Resort

 Disney’s All-Star Music Family Suite / Walt Disney World Resort

Disney’s All-Star Music Family Suite / Walt Disney World Resort

 Universal’s Endless Summer Resort - Surfside Family Suite / Universal Orlando

Universal’s Endless Summer Resort - Surfside Family Suite / Universal Orlando

How do the rooms compare?

Capacity: All of these suites can accommodate up to six (6) adults plus one infant in a Pak ‘n Play crib.

Kitchenettes: All three options include a have a kitchenette with microwave, coffee maker and mini-refrigerator

 Disney’s All-Star Music Family Suite / Walt Disney World Resort

Disney’s All-Star Music Family Suite / Walt Disney World Resort

Size:

  • Universal’s Surfside Inn family suites: The 440-square-feet

  • Disney’s Art of Animation Resort family suites: The 520-square-feet

  • Disney’s Art of Animation Resort family suites: The 565-square-feet

Beds:

  • Universal’s Surfside Inn family suites: three queen beds with one bed in a separate room and the other two beds in the main area.

  • · Disney’s Art of Animation Resort family suites: one bedroom with one queen-size bed; one double-size convertible TableBed; one double-size sleeper sofa.

  • · Disney’s All-Star Music Resort family suites: bedroom with one queen-size bed; a living area with a double-size sleeper sofa; a sleeper chair; a sleeper ottoman.

 Universal’s Endless Summer Resort - Surfside Family Suite / Universal Orlando

Universal’s Endless Summer Resort - Surfside Family Suite / Universal Orlando

 Disney’s Art of Animation Resort - Cars Family Suite / Walt Disney World Resort

Disney’s Art of Animation Resort - Cars Family Suite / Walt Disney World Resort

Bathrooms:

  • Universal’s Surfside Inn family suites: one bathroom that has two compartments with the toilet and tub/shower in one section and a separate section with two sinks and a vanity

  • · Disney’s Art of Animation Resort family suites: two full bathrooms

  • · Disney’s All-Star Music Resort family suites: two full bathrooms

Seating

  • Universal’s Surfside Inn family suites: Concept art shows an adorable picnic table with a bench on one side and two chairs on the other.

  • · Disney’s Art of Animation Resort family suites: There is the sleeper sofa and the table with seating for four.

  • · Disney’s All-Star Music Resort family suites: Sleeper sofa, chair with ottoman, and a small round table with two chairs. There is also a chair in the bedroom.

Official Disney Hotel Benefits: Staying at an official Disney resort gives you some great benefits like airport transportation at no additional cost, Extra Magic Hours not available to the general public, complimentary bus transportation to the Disney theme parks and the ability to book FastPass+ reservations 30-days ahead of the general public when you have tickets or a vacation package that includes tickets. Disney Magical Express transportation between the Orlando International Airport and these resorts is also available at no extra cost.

Official Universal Orlando Hotel Benefits: Staying at an official Universal Orlando hotel gives you benefits like Early Park Admission to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and complimentary bus transportation to the Universal Orlando theme parks. A neat perk of the official Universal hotels is that you are allowed to use the pools at any of the other official hotels, where Disney does not allow “pool hopping” in most cases.

2019 Cost comparison: Pool view rooms are available about Universal’s Surfside for an additional $20 per night. Finding Nemo suites at Disney’s Art of Animation typically cost more than the Cars and Lion King suites. Disney’s all-Star Music resort does not offer any upgrades for their family suites. For consistency, the lowest priced, undiscounted suite available was used for the cost comparisons below. Prices do not include tax.

Parking: Universal charges $12 per night and Disney value resorts charge $13 per night for self-parking.

August 15:
Universal’s Surfside - Standard View: $184
Disney’s All-Star Music - $309
Disney’s Art of Animation - $406

September 15:
Universal’s Surfside - Standard View: $184
Disney’s All-Star Music - $310
Disney’s Art of Animation - $405

October 15:
Universal’s Surfside - Standard View: $154
Disney’s All-Star Music - $300
Disney’s Art of Animation - $395

November 15:
Universal’s Surfside - Standard View: $184
Disney’s All-Star Music - $306
Disney’s Art of Animation - $395

December 15
Universal’s Surfside - Standard View: $189
Disney’s All-Star Music - $339
Disney’s Art of Animation - $425

Getting two standard location connecting rooms at Disney’s All-Star Music Resort or any of the value resorts is usually cheaper than getting a family suite and can sleep up to eight adults. On August 15, 2019, the cost of two connecting rooms at Disney’s All-Star Music is $270 which is $39 cheaper than the family suites. You can get guaranteed connecting rooms if you only have two adults in the party and more children age 17 or younger than one room can hold.

I limited the above comparisons to official theme park resort hotels but it is worth mentioning that DoubleTree Suites, one of the Disney Springs Good Neighbor hotels offers a less expensive suite option that runs about $245+ tax per night for the nights listed able and includes some great on-site benefits like Extra Magic Hours, bus transportation to the parks, and the ability to book FastPass+ reservations 60-days prior to arrival when you have a package that includes tickets. This hotel does not participate in Disney’s Magical Express airport transportation so you may need to include transportation costs into your comparison.

 DoubleTree Suites - Disney Springs - An official Disney World Good Neighbor hotel / Walt Disney World Resort - Florida

DoubleTree Suites - Disney Springs - An official Disney World Good Neighbor hotel / Walt Disney World Resort - Florida

In summary, the suites at Universal’s Surfside family suites are significantly cheaper than the Disney value resort family suites and they’ll be shiny and new when they open next August but they’re smaller and only have one bathroom. The Universal resort hotels do not offer complimentary airport transportation so that, if needed, will affect total cost. The Disney family suites are bigger and having two full-bathrooms is definitely a big advantage when you’ve got a lot of people all trying to get ready to get out the door in time for park opening. Families who need separate beds may find the two twin sized pull-out beds helpful at Disney’s All-Star Music resort. I didn’t dive too deeply into style and theme because Surfside only has concept art at this point but it should be noted that, although the most expensive, the suites at Disney’s Art of Animation are delightfully and adorably themed. Disney’s complimentary airport transportation may offset the higher price of the Disney resorts for larger families.

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