Newest Review: ... the room. This wasn't a problem for us though as I much preferred a kingsize bed to a double. When we arrived the cot wasn't in the room,... more
A taste of New England in, erm, Paris
Disney's Hotel Newport Bay Club (Paris, France)
Member Name: rlc2281
Disney's Hotel Newport Bay Club (Paris, France)
Advantages: Close to Disney Parks, Good facilities
Disadvantages: Large hotel, expensive when you're there. Tired decor
- Why this hotel?
To put it simply, it was the only one available for our dates! Our first choice was the Sequoia Lodge as our friends had stayed there recently, but when I called to book we could only get the last 2 rooms at the Newport Bay Club. At this point I should mention that I currently work in the travel industry and they offer fantastic rates including park entry for anyone employed in the industry. For this reason I'm not going to focus on the price in this review as it was significantly cheaper than we would have paid "normally". We were booked rooms on the Admiral's Floor which, from what I could gather at the time of booking this meant that we had a separate check-in desk and were provided with towels at the swimming pool, but other than that there was nothing else special included without paying extra. They do offer the use of a lounge and wi-fi, but both those facilities require an additional fee. When we arrived at the hotel the other "extra" became apparent, and this was having our baggage taken to our room for us.
- Arriving at the hotel
We arrived on Sunday afternoon at about 2:30pm. I thought that the separate check-in desk would be great as we would avoid the queue at the main desk, however as it turned out there wasn't much of a queue there either. We were called towards the desk and dealt with promptly. The lady checking us in highlighted the facilities of the hotel (shop, swimming pool and health club hours and breakfast details). We were given cards for breakfast every morning and she also gave us our vouchers for the character breakfast that we'd pre-booked without me having to ask. When I asked how we would make a reservation for character dining in the evening she offered to book it for us which was a better service than I was expecting. When I booked the hotel I had requested inter-connecting rooms, and she made a point of telling me that this request had been fulfilled. Finally she asked how many keys we would like for each room and then gave us directions of how to get there (nothing very complicated, as the Newport Bay Club is all in one building).
- Our rooms
We were on the 6th floor (there are 8 floors altogether in the hotel) and our room was well signposted from the lift. There was a slightly unpleasant odour in the corridor outside our room, but this wasn't present in the room. Our room had a kingsize bed and was quite small compared to our friends' room which had 2 double beds in the room. This wasn't a problem for us though as I much preferred a kingsize bed to a double. When we arrived the cot wasn't in the room, but someone came to put it up within 15 minutes of us arriving. This was a travel cot, and they provided sheets for it. I was glad that I had brought my son's duvet with me as there was no other bedding provided for my son. Despite the room being quite small, the cot wasn't in the way.
The room also had an ensuite bathroom with toilet and bath with a shower over it. The sink was outside the bathroom in an area that also had a hanging rail and contained the safe. The safe was free to use and was electronic. There were 12 coat hangers provided (I know that as my husband unpacked before me and I made a point of checking that he didn't take more than his fair share!). There is also a mini bar in this area and you need to leave your card details with reception to be able to use this. I was a little annoyed at this point, as, although the member of staff at check-in was really useful with everything else, she never asked for credit card details or highlighted that the use of the mini bar would require them. So I trekked back off downstairs to leave my card details to activate the mini bar. They ask you not to put anything in the mini bar, and there are sensors so if you remove anything it's charged straight to your account. However, I put the milk that I'd brought with me in there and it wasn't a problem. I was pleased that I'd bought really small 250ml bottles of milk though as a normal carton wouldn't have fit in the space.
The room also had a kettle, coffee maker and TV but we didn't use any of these.
Other than being slightly bigger, and having the 2 beds, our friends room was the same as ours.
The only negatives that I have to say about the room are that it was that the decoration was a little bit "tired" and a lightbulb wasn't working, but it didn't have a big impact on our enjoyment of our time there.
- The hotel
This is a big hotel, with 8 floors in 3 areas, two wings and the main building. All are connected, but you need to get in different lifts to be able to access the different wings. The design is based on a New England seaside resort and Disney describe it as "a beautiful homage to the golden-age of yachting and seaside ambience." As a result of this, the restaurants and common areas of the hotel have all got nautical-themed names (e.g. Cape Cod restaurant).
There are 3 restaurants at the hotel, and one separate bar. Other than the continental breakfast that was included we didn't eat in the hotel, so I can't comment on the restaurant prices or quality of food, but we did have a few drinks in the bar. With all the aspects of our trip we found the drinks to be expensive. From memory a beer was around 7 euros (I think I've blanked the exact figures out of my head!). The bar was pleasant and they offered table service. It was fine for us to take the children there and they had highchairs there which was handy for our son who likes to wander off at the first opportunity. The bar also serves snacks, but these are pretty expensive for what looked like quite small portions. If you fancy a snack then the shop in the hotel sells sweets, crisps and drinks which you can take up to your room. This was very handy for us as we put the children to sleep in one room while we sat in the other for the evening.
The shop also sells a vast array of Disney paraphenalia (they never miss a trick when it comes to selling things...)
We didn't use the pool or health club facilities, but I had a look through the window and the pool looked a reasonable size. There is also an outdoor pool that's only in use during the summer.
The hotel is about a 15 minute walk to the Disney Parks, although you can use a free shuttle bus service. We chose to walk as it's a hassle folding pushchairs and sorting out small children to get on the bus, so I don't know how frequently the buses run. There is also a "train" that you can get to the Disney Village (home to the shops, bars and restaurants next to the parks), but this costs 2 euros per person. The walk was fine, although I think that the Newport Bay is the furthest hotel from the parks, so you might want to choose one of the others if you want less of a walk. The closest hotels are the Disneyland Hotel (literally at the entrance to the Disneyland Park), and the New York Hotel that is located right next to the Disney Village.
The walk to the Disney Village and Parks is a pleasant one as there is a big man-made lake immediately outside the back of the hotel. On the way back to the hotel in the evening it looks particularly pretty as the hotel is covered in lights.
Breakfast at the hotel was good, although you did have to queue for it (despite having dedicated sittings). The queues looked worse than they turned out to be though and we didn't have to wait for more than a few minutes. A continental breakfast is on offer and you can pay a supplement for a cooked option. They have hot drinks, juices, cereal, croissants, rolls, toast, yogurts and fruit on offer which was fine for us, our 16 month old included.
For the kids going to the hotel there is an "animation" area where little children can go and colour in pictures and watch Playhouse Disney. This was good to keep our son occupied for about 10 minutes (he has a very short attention span), and I can imagine it would be better for slightly older children.
Also, a visit to a Disney hotel wouldn't be complete without a visit from some of the characters. There is a board up in reception showing what characters are going to be visiting the hotel and at what times. You can then join a queue to meet the character and get your photo taken. We only attempted to queue for this once and I wasn't impressed and ended up dropping out halfway to the front. Lots of people were pushing in, and as the character was only there for 30 mins the might have gone by the time you got to the front. This wasn't a problem for us with a small toddler who wasn't really aware about who was there, but for older children could be quite disappointing. Our friends queued a couple of times and were lucky enough to see the characters that they wanted to. Other than that we didn't feel like we missed out as we did character dining and our son met lots of characters there.
- Leaving to come home
We came home on Wednesday and we learned that the other benefit of the Admiral's Floor is that you can checkout and just leave your bags in your hotel room. They will then be collected and stored until your departure (our train back home was at 7:30pm). We also saw that they offer a service for taking your bags to the train station for 11 euros per room. This probably represented the best value for money of anything we spent our money on whilst over there and I would highly recommend it. You go to a window right near the Eurostar check-in and pick up your bags before travelling home, allowing you to maximise your time in the parks on your last day.
I enjoyed our stay at the Newport Bay Club. The deal we got was so good that it couldn't have failed to offer good value for money, however I'm not sure how I would feel if I had paid their regular prices. The hotel itself is looking slightly "worn", but generally it's fine for a few days.
One of the things that I think it could benefit from a little bit more for small children. A playground with a slide and swings would have been perfect for our son who didn't want to be in his pushchair all the time, but yet gets tired very quickly when walking. It would give him a chance to stretch his legs, and also do something fun without having to join a queue.
I've given the hotel 4 stars based on our experience. I wasn't impressed at having to faff around sorting out the mini bar, and also the hotel was quite busy, so in my opinion this let it down a little bit. If I went back again I would like to try and stay at another hotel, but wouldn't have any qualms about returning to the Newport Bay Club
Summary: A good hotel for your Disneyland Paris holiday
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