Thursday, April 18, 2013

Making Lasting Memories At Disney's Boardwalk Inn & Villas

Our family went to Walt Disney World this past week. It was spring break here, so our daughters, their families and the in-laws of our youngest daughter joined us on this trip. Things have been really busy since we returned home, so I fell sadly behind with posting. I really missed visiting with all of you and seeing what you were up to and I hope to catch up with you soon!

It will come as no surprise to anyone who knows our family that we love pretty much any and all things Disney. We have been visiting Walt Disney World since our older daughter was barely seven years old. She is now forty-two. Our younger daughter had not yet been born. We would plan and save for our WDW vacations, all year long. We enjoy traveling to other places, but WDW is our all-around favorite vacation destination. Maybe it is because it brings out the child in all of us and takes away some of our worries, even if for only a time, and we all need that.

About five years ago, we decided to join the Disney Vacation Club. It was a good decision for us. You can visit (, if you want to find out more about it. Disney's Boardwalk Inn & Villas is our "home" resort. I am not being compensated for this post, but I wanted to share with you this charming place called Disney's Boardwalk Inn & Villas.

Disney's Boardwalk Villas, Our Home Resort

The design and concept of Disney's  Boardwalk Inn and & Villas was inspired by the boardwalks of Atlantic City, N.J. and other Atlantic coast resort areas of the day. The resort was built on the south shore of Disney's Crescent Lake and is located somewhat adjacent to Disney Yacht and Beach Club Resorts. These two resorts can be seen in these pictures, which I took while standing on the boardwalk at Boardwalk Inn & Villas.

Our daughter, Stephanie, and her family stayed at the Beach Club Villas with Berry and Kathy, her husbands parents, who are also members of DVC.  The Beach Club is also a beautiful and elegant resort and is within about 5 minutes walk or a relaxing ferry boat ride across from the Boardwalk. Because of the many shops, restaurants, clubs and entertainment (magicians, jugglers, comedians, games, etc.) taking place on the boardwalk, it is a popular place. Many people come over  from other Disney Resorts to enjoy it. Even those who are visiting WDW for the day, or just enjoying a romantic evening out, will come to spend time at the Boardwalk. It is wonderful to walk along or sit at night on the boardwalk and watch all the goings-on and entertainers performing.
View Of The Boardwalk As You Walk Toward Epcot
View Of The Boardwalk Walking From Epcot
More Shops Along The Boardwalk

The Gateway to the World Showcase of Epcot, my husband's and my favorite Disney park, is about  5 minutes walk from Boardwalk Inn & Villas. If you don't care to walk, you can board one of the Friendship Ferry Boats, pictured here. The Swan & Dolphin Resorts are pictured directly behind the boat and the Yacht Club is on the right. The ferry boat can be taken to or from any of these resorts. You can walk or jog (if you like) around from one to the other on a wide, paved pathway and bridge.
Friendship Ferry Boat
The front lobby is a wonderfully fascinating and beautiful place. In it, you will be enchanted by an exquisite miniature hand-crafted carousel, which was purchased by the Walt Disney Company to place on display in the Boardwalk Inn's Lobby. It was built by M.C. Illions sometime during the 1920's. Illions was a designer and manufacturer of  full-sized carousels. This little merry-go-round was built to scale to be used to demonstrate Mr. Illions work to prospects in the market for a merry-go-round. It was restored to its original beauty by Disney Imagineers and a few "hidden Mickeys" were added during the process. It is my understanding that the speed of this miniature is scaled to match that of the King Arthur Carousel  located at Disneyland in California. It is fascinating to watch each uniquely different one of its forty-four hand-carved horses, which seem to virtually float up and down as it turns.
Hand-crafted Carousel Designed By M.C. Illions In 1920's

 Here is what you see if you look upward when you enter through the front entrance of the resort.
Hippocampus Electrolier Chandelier
The animals on this magnificent chandelier are mythological creatures called Hippocampus which were a combination of   sea-horse and fish. In between each Hippocampus and holding the lights is a cherub. It is said to weigh about 3000 pounds and finished in 22-carat gold, Austrian crystals and blown-glass light fixtures. It is a huge fixture. Truly a sight to behold.

This is one of the many magnificent chandeliers hanging in the lobby. I think there are eight or more, but I forgot to count them. You can't tell from this picture, but they are gigantic.
This is a miniature replica of a roller-coaster which was located in Luna Park. It was called the Flip-Flap and was supposedly the first upside down loop roller-coaster in the world. For some reason, I had a difficult time getting a picture of the entire coaster. It is so detailed, right down to the little lights along the track.
This is a picture of, I believe, the actual Flip-Flap roller-coaster taken at Luna Park many years ago. This hangs beside the fireplace in the lobby. I did not do a very good job taking a picture of a picture, as you can see.

These chairs were called "nanny chairs" and were placed on 19th century  European carousels. Their purpose was for seating adults while their children were riding on moving animals. A lot of work obviously went into the carving of these and the colors are lovely. However, I think their faces look pretty scary, don't you?

This is a picture of an elephant which I believe was supposed to have been built for the purpose of promoting the sale of real estate and to attract tourists. The actual structure was said to have been about six stories in height. From what I have read,the actual elephant was called Lucy. There was a wonderful replica of this elephant on the mantel above the fireplace in the lobby, but I cannot seem to locate the picture I shot of it.
Angela On The Spacious And Beautiful Porch At The Back Of The  Lobby And Overlooking The Boardwalk

Our Daughter Angela And Her Husband Jimmy
Glenn And I On The Day We Arrived At Boardwalk Villas
This picture was taken as we sat in one of the "kissing chairs" located on the wonderful covered porch which is on the second floor as you walk out of the lobby. The porch overlooks the boardwalk and the view of Crescent Lake is beautiful from this porch.
Angela & Jimmy With Their Three Children Sitting On The Boardwalk
The boardwalk is very long. It circles around and the Dance Hall can be seen in the background.

The Pool With Kiester Coaster Water Slide At Luna Park
This is one of the resort's pools. It is called Luna Park and features a huge "coaster" slide called the Kiester Coaster. There is a giant clown's head at the bottom and the slide ends as you come out of his mouth.
Leaping Horse Libations-For Poolside Refreshments
The design of Leaping Horse Libations is in the style of a merry-go-round with all the colorful decorations and ornamentation and striped roof. It is one of my favorite things about the pool area because it makes me feel like a child when I look at it.

View Of The Back Disney's Boardwalk Inn, Taken Around The Bend Coming From Disney's Beach Club
 This is a final shot. This gives you an idea of the size of the fabulous boardwalk at Disney's Boardwalk Inn & Villas. I was going to share some of the photographs of the inside of our villa, but I will have to save that for another day.

Some wonderful memories were made last week. Some for Glenn and me and some for our daughters and their families.  Jimmy's illness has changed us and made us all acutely aware of how each moment we share together is precious and is to be deeply cherished, for we are not promised tomorrow.

May you be blessed.

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