Is a Disney World Skyliner Hotel Worth It? A Deep Dive.

Since its 2019 opening, the Disney Skyliner became the lastest addition to the Walt Disney World Transportation System, and it has quickly become one of our favorites! The gondola system’s routes connect two of the resort’s theme parks to several of its resort hotels, ranging from one of the newest Disney hotels on property to some of its most affordable value resorts.

Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort

We’re about to take a hard look at each of these resorts and what they offer to help you decide if a Skyliner resort is the right choice for you and which one might meet your vacation needs.

Four Disney Resorts sit directly on the Skyliner line and have their own Skyliner Depot:

As mentioned before, the Skyliner connects these resorts to EPCOT and Disney’s Hollywood Studios, some are direct routes, and some might require a transfer to a different Skyliner at the connection hub. On days with inclement weather, the Skyliner might close, and resort guests will be directed to take a bus to their park destination.

In addition to the resorts directly on the Skyliner route, there are three resorts that are also in the Skyliner vicinity, Disney’s Beach Club, Disney Yacht Club, and Disney’s BoardWalk Inn. Though these resorts are also within walking distance or a short boatride away from Hollywood Studios and EPCOT, having these Skyliner adjacent means that guests at Skyliner resorts can also easily travel to these EPCOT area resorts to enjoy their dining options.

So without further ado, let’s take a look at these Skyliner resorts and see which one best fits your needs.

Riviera Resort

Disney’s Riviera Resort is Walt Disney World’s newest Disney Vacation Club (DVC) Resort. Riviera Resort is the 15th DVC and the first stand-alone DVC to be built in over eight years. Styling at the Resort is inspired by the Riviera and features rich colors, elegant metallics and metals, and playful artwork and decor.

Riviera Resort

Riviera Resort offers five room types: Tower Studios, Deluxe Studios, 1-Bedroom villas, 2-Bedroom villas, and 3-Bedroom grand villas.

Two-Bedroom Villa

Tower Studios are a first-of-their-kind room design for Walt Disney World and suit parties of two or fewer with a Murphy-style bed.

Riviera Resort also has the distinction of having a dedicated Skyliner station with direct access to Epcot.

Room Amenities

All rooms include an ironing board, iron, hair dryer, and other standard amenities like a coffee maker.

Deluxe Studios include a small kitchenette with sink, microwave oven, and toaster.

Deluxe Studio Kitchenette

1- and 2-Bedroom Villas and 3-Bedroom Grand Villas include a full-size kitchen with a larger refrigerator, microwave oven, standard oven, cooktop, washing machine, and dryer, dishwasher, and cookware and dishware.

Two-Bedroom Villa at Riviera Resort

Price

Riviera Resort rooms cost between $400 and over $4500. The initial per-point cost at Riviera Resort was $188.

The Riviera Resort Tower Studio room only sleeps two!

For DVC members, Tower Studios can be had from 12 points per night, Deluxe Studios for 16 or 20 points per night (standard or preferred rooms), 1-Bedroom villas for 33 or 41 points, 2-Bedroom villas for 43 or 52 points, and 3-Bedroom grand villas for 108 points per night.

Dining Options

Le Petit Cafe in the Resort’s lobby will serve coffee and pastries in the morning.

Le Petit Cafe

Primo Piatto and Bar Riva serve quick service food throughout the day, including coffee and grab-and-go items like Lemon and Blueberry Pancakes, Tuna Nicoise Salad, and yogurt with acai, fresh fruit, and granola.

Primo Piatto

Topolino’s Terrace — Flavors of the Riviera is a rooftop restaurant with an attached terrace. The Mediterranean and the Riviera inspire the menu and features pasta, fish and seafood, and fresh preparations.

Topolino’s Terrace

Topolino’s Terrace features Breakfast a la Art, a character breakfast with Mickey the artist, Minnie the poet, Donald the sculptor, and Daisy the dancer. Breakfast is a prix fixe meal with pastries and an entree. Dinner at Topolino’s Terrace is a la carte and celebrates the cuisines of the Riviera, including fresh house-made pasta.

Resort Pool

There are two pools and one splash area at Riviera Resort. The Riviera Pool is open 10AM to 8PM and is gated for use by Resort guests only. Riviera Pool is the Resort’s main pool and features a winding pool slide around a stately column.

Riviera Pool

Beau Soleil Pool is the Resort’s quiet leisure pool. This pool has an adjacent spa/hot tub.

Riviera Resort

The S’Il Vous Plait aquatic play area is for kids 48″ and under. There’s adjacent seating for adults and older siblings, too.

S’Il Vous Plait Splash Area

Resort Skyliner Station

The theme and elegance of the Riviera Resort is extended to the Skyliner Station.

Disney’s Riviera Resort Skyliner Station

Guests stopping or waiting at the Riviera will get to experience the detailed artistry of the arched murals depicting beautiful scenes from Tangled and Peter Pan, which carry on that theme of floating through the air.

These murals make the Riviera Skyliner Station a destination spot worthy of Instagram.

Everything You Want to Know About Disney’s Riviera Resort

Caribbean Beach Resort

The Caribbean Beach Resort opened October 1, 1988 as Disney World’s first Moderate Resort. The hotel is themed after various islands, here called “villages” in the Caribbean and is easily recognized by its candy-colored buildings throughout the resort.

Caribbean Beach Resort

The CBR has guest rooms in colorful 2-story buildings on the shores of a 42-acre lake. The buildings are grouped in 6 villages: Barbados, Martinique, Aruba, Jamaica, Trinidad North, and Trinidad South. Each building contains 64 guest rooms. Each village has its own pool, white sand beach with hammocks and playgrounds, laundry facilities, bus stop, and parking area.

Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort

You can identify the villages by their colorful buildings:

    • Jamaica is yellow buildings with sky blue roofs
    • Aruba is pink and purple buildings with aqua roofs
    • Barbados is light blue buildings with coral roofs
    • Martinique is coral and pink buildings with aqua roofs
    • Trinidad North and South are light and dark coral buildings with dark coral roofs

The centerpiece of CBR is its 45-acre lake, Barefoot Bay, surrounded by a 1.1-mile promenade that connects to winding paths leading to all guest rooms and common areas. The promenade is great for strolling, jogging, and bicycling. In the center of the lake is Caribbean Cay, an island with a playground, picnic area, and lots of lush foliage. Caribbean Cay is connected to the promenade on each side by a footbridge.

Caribbean Cay

Room Amenities

There are no elevators in any of the buildings, only stairs access. Guests who are unable to use stairs should request 1st-floor rooms. All common facilities are wheelchair accessible.

Caribbean Beach Resort

Most rooms have two queen beds, though a few rooms with king-size beds are available. Up to four guests, and one child under 3 in a crib, are allowed per room. Cots are available at $15/night; call to reserve one in advance. Many rooms (but not all) have the ability to accommodate up to five, with the addition of a child-sized fold-down bed.

A guest room at Caribbean Beach Resort

Rooms include two sinks outside the bathroom, cable TV/radio, armoire, table and chairs, phone, a small wall safe, hair dryer, iron and ironing board, a Pack and Play, and coffee maker. Complimentary coffee packs are also supplied. There should also be a refrigerator in the room — if it’s not there, request it; there is no charge. Bed boards, bed rails, extra blankets and pillows, baby cribs and sharps containers are available through housekeeping. Complimentary wi-fi is available.

Price

The Caribbean Beach Resort is considered a “Moderate” resort hotel, and its prices are in the mid-price range of the hotels at Disney. These are regular rate prices and do not include the Florida Sales Tax nor the county resort tax. Rates are based on double occupancy. No charge for children under 17 years old when in the same room as the adults. If you have more than two adults in the room, there will be a $25 per night charge for each extra adult. Maximum of four per room, plus a child under 3 in a crib.

Caribbean Beach Resort
    • Standard Room range from $230 – $335 (Holidays up to $400)
    • Standard Room with a 5th Sleeper Bed range from $246 – $352 (Holidays up to $417)
    • Water or Pool View Room range from $262 – $359 (Holidays up to $417)
    • Water or Pool View Room with 5th Sleeper Bed range from $279 – $376 (Holidays up to $446)
    • King Bed Room range from $269 – $382 (Holidays up to $435)
    • Preferred Room range from $316 – $421 (Holidays up to $462)

Dining Options

Old Port Royale features the Centertown Market, open from 6 a.m. to midnight, with more limited hours for some of the counters. Breakfast selections include bagels, fresh fruit, Mickey waffles, eggs, and breakfast meats. Lunch and dinner selections include burgers, pizza, pasta, deli sandwiches, salads, and desserts.

Centertown Market

Spyglass Grill is a small quick-service spot near the Trinidad pool area. It served up sandwiches, burgers, and a selection of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks. Room Service options at this resort are limited to Blue Runner Pizza Delivery is also available for pizza and drink delivery to rooms from 4 PM to 11:30 PM.

Spyglass Grill

Sebastian’s Bistro is a full table service restaurant located in Old Porte Royale. It is open from 5 to 10 PM and Advance Dining Reservations are available.

Sebastian’s Bistro

Banana Cabana is the resort’s main pool bar, located near the Fuente del Morro pool. It is open from 12 PM til 11 PM and serves up burgers and assorted foods as well as a full bar menu.

Resort Pool

Each CBR village has a pool, plus there’s the Pirate-themed main pool at Old Port Royale, with an adjacent wading pool and whirlpool. All pools are heated, which makes for comfortable swimming year-round. The whirlpool is kept very toasty. Bring towels from your room; they are not available poolside except at the Old Port Royale pool. Housekeeping will be more than happy to replace towels taken from the room. Pools hours are seasonal, and only the main pool has lifeguards on duty during official operating hours.

Fuentes del Morro pool

The main pool can get crowded on hot afternoons, and chair space is at a premium. However, village pools are rarely crowded so you can try one of those if the main pool is full.

Resort Skyliner Station

The main hub of Disney’s Skyliner is located at Caribbean Beach, south of the Jamaica village, placing CBR in a prime location due to its easy access to both Epcot and Hollywood Studios via the Skyliner. Caribbean Beach is also next door to Disney’s Riviera Resort. Guests in the Martinique village can easily walk to the Riviera to take advantage of the Skyliner Station located there as well.

Caribbean Beach Skyliner Station

While you wait to board your gondola and take to the skies, you can stop by a Joffrey’s location to grab a cold brew and float to your next destination in style.

Joffrey’s

Sneak Peek at the NEW Little Mermaid Rooms at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort

Pop Century Resort

Announced in December 1999, Disney’s Pop Century Resort is a Value Resort. It is located near Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Osceola Parkway and Century Way and encompasses 177 acres.

Pop Century

Originally the Resort was to have two completely different areas: the Classic Years (50s to 90s) and the Legendary Years (00s to 40s). However, the Legendary Years section was never completed and was “reimagined” as Disney’s Art of Animation Resort.

Pop Century Resort

Pop Century Resort hosts 2,800 rooms and spans 20th century pop cultures and reflects (to an extent) the way people lived, played, and communicated. It is similar to the All-Star Resorts, with oversized icons located throughout the grounds. Silhouettes illustrating dances of the decade adorn the front of each building, and the roofs are lined with catch-phrases of the time.

Room Amenities

Rooms at Pop Century were refurbished in 2017-2018. Rooms are 260 square feet with two queen beds (one is a Murphy bed) or one king bed, a table and chairs (the table is the backside of the Murphy bed), vanity area and sink with separate bathroom (with shower/tub — with new glass doors — and toilet), a large flat screen color television, in-room wall safe, iron/ironing board, a mini-refrigerator with additional storage, a clothing rod and shelf, and telephones with voicemail.

Pop Century room

When rooms were refurbished, more outlets were added, including some USB charging ports. Available on request: rooms accessible to guests with disabilities, hearing-impaired TDD telephones, visual smoke alarms, bed boards and bed rails, and cribs.

Price

Like the All-Star Resorts, Pop Century is considered a Value Resort, and prices are among the least expensive offered at Disney Resorts. There is no charge for children under 17-years-old when in the same room as their adults, but if you have more than two adults in your room, there is a $10 per night charge per extra adult. Pop Century rooms have a maximum capacity of four guests per room, and a child under three can stay in a crib (for a total of five guests in a room).

Newly updated rooms at Pop Century Resort.
    • Standard Room range from $154 – $316
    • Preferred Room range from $171 – $338
    • Standard Pool View Room range from $161 – $317
    • Preferred Pool View Room range from $182 – $336

Dining Options

Offerings include Everything POP, a 640-seat food court; pizza delivery to guest rooms; and Petals Pool Bar (located adjacent to Hippy Dippy Pool).

Everything POP Food Court

Everything Pop, the food court, has five stations: Bakery & Cafe, Market, Grill, East meets West, and Pizza and Pasta plus a self-serve grab-and-go area.

Resort Pool

The Resort has three pools — the Bowling Pin Pool, the Hippy Dippy Pool, and the Computer Pool; a kiddie splash area; a playground; and the Fast Forward arcade.

Hippy Dippy Pool at Disney’s Pop Century Resort

Goofy stands watch over Pop Jet Playground, a playland of popping water located near the 1970s lodge buildings.

Resort Skyliner Station

The Skyliner Station at Pop Century is a shared with Art of Animation Resort. It is situated in the middle of the Generation Gap Bridge across Hourglass Lake in between the two resorts.

Skyliner Station at Art of Animation

Boarding the Skyliner will take you to the Skyliner hub at Caribbean Beach, where you can transfer to the Hollywood Studios or EPCOT routes.

Tips for Having the Best Stay Ever at Disney’s Pop Century Resort

Art of Animation Resort

The Art of Animation began its phased opening on May 31, 2012, and continued through September 15, 2012. The Resort has nearly 2000 family suites with themed room interiors and 864 standard rooms in The Little Mermaid (non-suite) wing.

Art of Animation

The Art of Animation Resort is located in the area that was originally planned to be the Legendary Years section of Pop Century. The Little Mermaid section of Art of Animation is located where the first Legendary Years buildings had originally been built.

Room Amenities

Standard Rooms

Disney’s Art of Animation Resort

Designed to accommodate up to four guests (plus a fifth guest, age three or under, in a crib), The Little Mermaid Standard Rooms feature two double beds and a seemingly endless array of imaginative touches inspired by the world of Ariel, Sebastian, and Flounder.

Little Mermaid room at Art of Animation

Family Suites

Art of Animation Lion King area

Family suites are designed to comfortably accommodate up to six guests (seven if an under-three-year-old child is in a crib) in the Finding NemoCars, and The Lion King sections with two separate bathrooms, a master bedroom, and a common sitting room.

Living Room in Disney’s Art of Animation Lion King Suite

Family Suites also include:

    • A pull-out couch that converts to a double size sleeper sofa
    • A work/dining table that includes an Inovabed that can sleep 1 or 2. The table is 3′ x 4′, and the double bed opens to 4.5′ by 6′.
    • Queen-size bed in the master
    • Mini-kitchen with microwave, coffee maker, sink, and small refrigerator
    • Two flat-screen TVs
    • In-room wall safe
    • Complimentary WiFi
    • Hairdryer
    • Iron and ironing board
    • Crib available upon request
    • Wheelchair-accessible rooms are available

Price

Standard rooms have a maximum four-person occupancy per room. There’s no charge for children under 17-years-old when in the same room as the adults. If you have more than two adults in the room, there will be a $10 per night charge for each extra adult. Maximum of four per regular room, six per suite, plus a child under three in a crib.

Bed

Walt Disney World Resort rates vary by season (nine seasons now) and by day of the week. The holiday season is the most expensive time of the year. It runs from mid-December to early January as well as during Easter week. Higher prices in the range below reflect holiday pricing.

    • Little Mermaid Rooms range from $180 – $330
    • Finding Nemo Family Suites range from $449 – $771
    • The Lion King or Cars Family Suites range from $428 – $764
Art of Animation

Dining Options

Landscape of Flavors offers Quick Service dining for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It serves a wide variety of items, from hearty cuisine to healthier fare across five distinctive stations.

Landscape of Flavors

Resort Pool

Three swimming pools offer fun and refreshment. The largest,The Big Blue Pool, is located in the Finding Nemo courtyard and features a pool bar (the Drop Off Pool Bar).

Big Blue Pool

Two smaller pools in the Cars (Cozy Cone Pool) and The Little Mermaid (Flippin Fins Pool) courtyards provide additional refreshment.

Disney’s Art of Animation Resort Cozy Cones Pool

The Big Blue Pool has three sections — the actual pool (swim underwater to hear sounds from Finding Nemo), the School Yard wet play area, and Squirt’s Righteous Reef (a play area with no water).

Resort Skyliner Station

The Skyliner Station at Pop Century is a shared with Art of Animation Resort. It is situated in the middle of the Generation Gap Bridge across Hourglass Lake in between the two resorts.

This Skyliner station is accessible from both resorts.

Boarding the Skyliner will take you to the Skyliner hub at Caribbean Beach, where you can transfer to the Hollywood Studios or EPCOT routes.

Secret Details You’ll Only Find at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort

Is a Skyliner Resort Worth it?

The easy answer is: YES! Skyliner resorts provide you with easy access to two of Disney parks, not to mention all of the other resorts on the Skyliner route and the resorts in the EPCOT area for you to explore and enjoy an extension of dining options beyond your own resort.

Views from the Disney Skyliner

You could argue that Monorail Resorts (Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort, and Disney Contemporary Resort) offer access to two parks as well, with the Monorail running to the Magic Kingdom and to EPCOT (though through a transfer at the Transportation and Ticket Center). But all three of those resorts are Deluxe Resorts, and you’ll spend a pretty penny for that convenience.

Monorail in EPCOT

At the Skyliner Resorts, you have the budgetary flexibility of a Value Resort, one of the cheapest options Disney provides, all the way up to a Deluxe Villa, for more luxurious and spacious accommodations. So, you’re sure to find something that fits your family and your wallet. And provided you don’t have a crippling fear of heights, the Skyliner also provides a memorable way to experience getting around Disney World and offers views and perspectives you won’t see anywhere else.

Disney Skyliner en route to Epcot

So, the real question is, not IF you’ll stay at Skyliner Resort, but WHICH ONE?

EVERY Disney World Hotel With Skyliner Access And Their Routes

Check out our in-depth article HERE for more information about the Disney World Skyliner. Keep following All Ears for all the latest Disney news!

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Which of these is your favorite Skyliner Resort? Let us know in the comments below.

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One Reply to “Is a Disney World Skyliner Hotel Worth It? A Deep Dive.”

  1. We stayed at CBR Thanksgiving of 2021. It was our first moderate resort stay (normally we stay deluxe) and we were pleasantly surprised! We were a short walk to the Skyliner station at the Riviera. I think, other than walking, the Skyliner is the best way to travel around WDW. The pool area & Banana Cabana was awesome. My only complaint was we never got a reservation for Sebastian’s. I really wanted to try it