I will be honest, Disney’s Pop Century was never high on my list of resort choices. It just didn’t appeal to me. The rooms were small. The beds were double beds. And I just didn’t love the themes around the property. In 2017 the rooms were upgraded and had a much cleaner look as well as queen-size beds. In 2019 the Disney Skyliner was scheduled to open in “fall.” Both of these made the resort catch my eye a little more. The Skyliner, in particular.
The promotional free dining offer was available at Pop Century when I was toying with the idea of a trip right after it was released. To tell you more about how popular that offer is, I was looking at a “Standard room” I walked away from my computer to check on food that was cooking, stir it, and returned to the computer to complete booking only to find the room was sold out! It wasn’t totally back to the drawing board, the next room category, “Pool View” was about $60 more. I should have just picked that originally but I was being silly and cheap. I very quickly snagged that reservation with a $200 deposit before worrying more about dinner.
The room is definitely small. Basically as small as I thought it would be. And I did complain about the size of it a few times throughout the week. Not having stayed here before I can’t say that it would have felt much bigger with full-size beds, but I do know once you added luggage it was probably frustrating to move around if you were spending any time in the room. Disney has solved that problem though. As with other properties we’ve stayed at, they have raised the bed so luggage can very easily be stored underneath. This is honestly my favorite feature in any hotel room. Not having to look at suitcases and being able to easily slide them out as if they were under the bed drawers is such a space saver!
In addition to the under the bed storage, there was a 3-drawer dresser and bathroom “closet” and shelf system that provided a extra space. We used the bathroom “closet” as a place to keep our dirty clothes until laundry day. The bathroom space was also much better than The Contemporary. The counter had room for our personal toiletry and beauty items though it was lacking the double sink. It is a very tight space for everyone getting ready in the morning, but we made it work.
In terms of space, one of the beds is a murphy bed and can be stored when not in use. For us, that didn’t make sense. Besides needing to make the bed we’d need to move the kids blankets, put away the bed pillows and then if we did that the suitcases we were storing under the bed would just be in the middle of the floor. Other than that, it was super easy to fold open and closed the one time we did close it.
During one of our pool breaks we were rained out and then when the storm passed we took some time to explore the property. My favorite thing about value resorts and the deluxe properties we’ve visited is they aren’t spread out like the moderate hotels. We were able to walk through all the other sections of Pop Century: the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s with stops to observe the Skyliner, take pictures, play games, and be silly all in about thirty minutes.
The value resorts are filled with excessive theming. Each decade here was filled with fun– and some things the kids didn’t understand at all! Like Roger Rabbit and a walkman. They Mr. & Mrs. Potato Head, Twister, fooseball, and oddly enough, the giant computer keyboard. They really had no concept that it was “part” of a computer.
Overall, they really got a kick out of the statutes and life-sized games. We played Twister for a bit and Peanut tried to be silly at foosball area, but Diva tried to follow and her flip flops slipped on the ground that was still wet from the rain. It was actually really slick and I slid a little too.
The keyboard was part of the only one of the three pools we did not take time to use during our stay. The pool is the monitor portion of the computer. The area seemed small, which makes sense since it isn’t the main feature pool, but we never went up to the fence to look inside.
The feature pool is the Hippy Dippy pool in 60’s section. On our last full day when it was blazing hot we spent time at the pool. It felt pretty giant and not overcrowded at all even at peak pool time during the hottest day of our trip. We sat along the edge near a flower sprinkling water into the pool. The kids both had a blast jumping through it and into the pool with some others that were around.
Most of our pool time was spent at the Bowling Pin pool just outside our building. It was my favorite. The size was great– it was large, but not huge. Being one of the two non-feature pools it wasn’t main draw and so never had more than a handful of families. We always had an area we could call our own.
Everything Pop is the food court and shopping area at the resort. The food court is the only option for meals, though Petals Pool Bar is located near the Hippy Dippy pool and has some snacks. We did not stop at Petals and spent very little time in the food court because mobile ordering was offered. Our most frequent meal was breakfast and it was so convenient to order food then grab it and go! We ate a lot of Mickey waffles and didn’t really eat lunch or dinner at the resorts.
There were two times we “looked around” the food court. The first was at arrival for our reusable resort mugs– I had to have a Halloween one during this trip since I missed out in 2018. Luckily they were being restocked when we arrived and I was able to find the one I wanted. The second stop was in search of desserts before our afternoon at Hollywood Studios. I loved the selection of goodies!
Would We Stay Again?
Pop Century was a fun resort! It was not my favorite due to the room space, but with the addition of the Skyliner it’s an incredibly convenient and well-priced option. I had been looking forward to staying again to utilize the Skyliner during our what was going to be our Easter/Spring break trip a few weeks ago. Now, that plan has moved ahead to Easter/Spring break 2021. So, yes, we’ll definitely return.
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