Am I the only one underwhelmed by Riviera?

jarestel

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Oct 24, 2003
The member “quiet” pool is not a fair comparison to any feature pool. And this criticism is not leveled at RIV alone. Save Aulani, pools at most DVC locations are less than they should be.
It is certainly fair to point out that DVC didn't build SAB or any of the feature pools at the Disney hotels so to expect them to build one at Riviera is unreasonable.. As I pointed out earlier in this thread, I have no interest in debating personal preferences since there is no right or wrong, but when inaccuracies are posted, I don't mind jumping in.

Edited to add: IMO, the feature pools at SSR and OKW are more interesting than Riviera's so I think that's a fair comparison/criticism.
 
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RivShore

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Sep 27, 2019
To add some further context around a few things recently stated as fact in this thread - The pool in not small when compared to hotel capacity. Someone recently did the math on pool size vs. capacity at all DIs resorts and RIV was right at the high end of the average, just as expected for a hotel of it's size. Maintenance Fees - they are the highest on property but not drastically higher than many - they are 5-6% higher than the next group.
 

ClemTig

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Apr 12, 2008
To add some further context around a few things recently stated as fact in this thread - The pool in not small when compared to hotel capacity. Someone recently did the math on pool size vs. capacity at all DIs resorts and RIV was right at the high end of the average, just as expected for a hotel of it's size. Maintenance Fees - they are the highest on property but not drastically higher than many - they are 5-6% higher than the next group.
The MF at BLT and GF started out much lower than average. I would have expected the same pattern for all new resorts, but maybe that isn't the way Disney plans to do it moving forward. As BLT and GF have risen through time, they may have started out artificially low to induce sales.
 
  • AKNOTTS66

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    Jul 25, 2014
    The MF at BLT and GF started out much lower than average. I would have expected the same pattern for all new resorts, but maybe that isn't the way Disney plans to do it moving forward. As BLT and GF have risen through time, they may have started out artificially low to induce sales.
    I've heard the MF for Riviera includes a large portion for the Skyliner in relation to Pop and CBR and AoA. I wonder how the Monorail accounts at BLT, GF and Poly? I'm wondering if its not included in those resorts at all but they changed that going forward for the skyliner?
     

    TexasChick123

    Always Dreaming of Our Next Vacation
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    Feb 19, 2017
    I've heard the MF for Riviera includes a large portion for the Skyliner in relation to Pop and CBR and AoA. I wonder how the Monorail accounts at BLT, GF and Poly? I'm wondering if its not included in those resorts at all but they changed that going forward for the skyliner?
    My understanding is that MF’s at monorail DVCs do include the monorail, but the hotel’s pay a portion as well. Since RIV is a stand-alone resort, there is no hotel to help share the cost with regards to the RIV station. I haven’t seen anything definitive about POP, AoA, or CBR not paying their share. It’s just conjecture so far, I think. The hotel rates went up at all of those resorts when the Skyliner opened up. Unless you actually work for Disney accounting, I don’t know how you’d prove what percentage of the hotel cash rate goes to the Skyliner, but maybe I just don’t know where to look.

    There has been discussion for years about Poly, VGF, and BLT DVCs paying an unfair portion of the monorail maintenance compared to the hotels, but again, I’ve never seen hard numbers.

    If someone has hard data versus conjecture, I really would like to see it. No sarcasm there. I’d be happy to argue with DVC about it like I did about the restrictions when they were first announced. :)
     

    we"reofftoneverland

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    Aug 5, 2015
    Im not doubting what hes doing as a whole for the Walt Disney Company. I mean in the parks mostly. Hes making exciting choices but none of it is doing a thing to help crowds or lines. Imo the parks need more rides and not just replacements. GE is great and all and Pandora is wonderful and toy story land but they just need more or crowds are only going to get worse. Idk just my thoughts.
    Just to remind folks that comparing DVC properties to Disney hotels is not entirely accurate or fair:


    It's on par with or slightly better than any other DVC lobby. Remember that GF, WL, AKL, etc are not DVC lobbies, they were built with the original hotels. DVC was added on to those hotels years later.


    The BCV pool is very bland and unremarkable. If you're referring to SAB, that was built as part of the BC/YC resort and had nothing to do with DVC construction. Same for the Polynesian pool.
    Lol. Who’s comparing the hotel lobbies? I’m talking about dvc lobbies. Kidani? BRV? BCV? Incredible lobbies with soaring ceilings and insane levels of detail. The cost to build these lobbies was 10xs the cost to build the RIV lobby. Never mind the fact that these resorts also have access to the main lobbies on the regular hotel side. The RIV lobby is absolutely not on a par with other dvc lobbies. Even BLT has a more impressive lobby than RIV, and BLT has a meh lobby.
     

    DVC_HK

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    Aug 6, 2019
    I wonder if this will truly be the end of Iger or if he will sign another year contract. Who appoints the Next CEO? Is it the Board of Directors?

    I honestly think the crowd situation at WDW can only be remedied by building a 5th park.
    The board votes on those who run for the position. Iger talks about it in a special how he had to approach them with ideas to get him the votes. He says he is done and honestly I think the board won't extend this contract again after the PR nightmares this year with SWGE and the SW Movies
     

    AKNOTTS66

    Mouseketeer
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    Jul 25, 2014
    My understanding is that MF’s at monorail DVCs do include the monorail, but the hotel’s pay a portion as well. Since RIV is a stand-alone resort, there is no hotel to help share the cost with regards to the RIV station. I haven’t seen anything definitive about POP, AoA, or CBR not paying their share. It’s just conjecture so far, I think. The hotel rates went up at all of those resorts when the Skyliner opened up. Unless you actually work for Disney accounting, I don’t know how you’d prove what percentage of the hotel cash rate goes to the Skyliner, but maybe I just don’t know where to look.

    There has been discussion for years about Poly, VGF, and BLT DVCs paying an unfair portion of the monorail maintenance compared to the hotels, but again, I’ve never seen hard numbers.

    If someone has hard data versus conjecture, I really would like to see it. No sarcasm there. I’d be happy to argue with DVC about it like I did about the restrictions when they were first announced. :)
    Oh I know its all just theories lol But it could be a reason the Monorail resort fees are lower, while all bus and skyliner resort fees are higher but then you also have SSR thats lower too so its all just a guess. I've also heard storys about Disney labor rates and the min wage 3 tier increases being a reason and that Riviera has started out with higher wage rates vs the other hotels and the higher min wage rates will come and the other hotels will be hit too. Its so complicated.
     

    AKNOTTS66

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    Jul 25, 2014
    The board votes on those who run for the position. Iger talks about it in a special how he had to approach them with ideas to get him the votes. He says he is done and honestly I think the board won't extend this contract again after the PR nightmares this year with SWGE and the SW Movies
    I've heard a lot of people come out in support for Josh D'Amuro but I'm not sure if he's even qualified to be CEO of the Disney Co. I really would love to see someone along the lines of Eisner type come in. Eisner was about as close as you could get to Walt Disney. I really fear the next CEO will be more $$$ and shareholder friendly than a Spirit of Disney and Massive supporter of the disney parks type of person like Eisner was.
     

    TurnDownForWalt

    DIS Veteran
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    Feb 7, 2020
    My wife & I cruised over on the skyliner last week from Boardwalk to check out Riviera and had lunch at Bar Riva (their open-air pool bar). We were actually quite impressed with the property and would definitely recommend lunch & cocktails at Bar Riva for anyone looking to try something new. My wife & I are not DVC members and don't have any future intentions of staying at Riviera, but from what we saw I think it's a solid addition to WDW. Our kids would absolutely love that giant pool area! And the beach with cabanas on the east-end of the property was a really nice & serene place to relax for a bit. On the flip side, I can see why people might view it as a stuffy hotel or maybe a gaudy version of a DoubleTree, but overall I think the pros outweigh the cons based on everything we saw and I've read about. All that being said, I'm kind of hoping this type of resort style doesn't start becoming a trend, as the amazingly "themed" Disney resorts are what really set WDW apart from anywhere else off property.
     

    jarestel

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    Oct 24, 2003
    Lol. Who’s comparing the hotel lobbies? I’m talking about dvc lobbies. Kidani? BRV? BCV? Incredible lobbies with soaring ceilings and insane levels of detail. The cost to build these lobbies was 10xs the cost to build the RIV lobby. Never mind the fact that these resorts also have access to the main lobbies on the regular hotel side. The RIV lobby is absolutely not on a par with other dvc lobbies. Even BLT has a more impressive lobby than RIV, and BLT has a meh lobby.
    Your opinion is noted.
     

    kboo

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    Mar 10, 2014
    We were using Marriott points (we have a lot of 'em; it's almost like having a DVC contract for a hotel room) at Swolphin to do split stays with our MK DVC. The Swolphin has some great big pools, they're walking distance to HS/EP, the Dolphin has a spectacular, grand lobby, and yet ... we added on at RIV.

    Not saying we'll never use our Marriott points at Swolphin again, but we wanted something more serene and intimate (and a kitchen) for longer stays. Different strokes ...
     
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    DVC_HK

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    I've heard a lot of people come out in support for Josh D'Amuro but I'm not sure if he's even qualified to be CEO of the Disney Co. I really would love to see someone along the lines of Eisner type come in. Eisner was about as close as you could get to Walt Disney. I really fear the next CEO will be more $$$ and shareholder friendly than a Spirit of Disney and Massive supporter of the disney parks type of person like Eisner was.
    I think Josh is getting groomed for Chapek's job as head of parks and resorts after helping DL and now President of WDW though Chapek might not be a fan of this
     

    AKNOTTS66

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    Jul 25, 2014
    We were using Marriott points (we have a lot of 'em; it's almost like having a DVC contract for a hotel room) at Swolphin to do split stays with our MK DVC. The Swolphin has some great big pools, they're walking distance to HS/EP, the Dolphin has a spectacular, grand lobby, and yet ... we added on at RIV.

    Not saying we'll never use our Marriott points at Swolphin again, but we wanted something more serene and intimate for longer stays. Different strokes ...
    I suppose if u want to stretch it, CBR next door has a very very nice lobby now imo on par with BCV or the Yacht Club and you could use their facilities too and think of Riv as the DVC wing to CBR. But people don't like that since CBR is a moderate and thats in a lower class system to some. I don't have this downward view point on moderates, we honestly love some of the moderates more than the Deluxes. A DVC wing of Riverside would be amazing in my opinion.
     

    AKNOTTS66

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    Jul 25, 2014
    I think Josh is getting groomed for Chapek's job as head of parks and resorts after helping DL and now President of WDW though Chapek might not be a fan of this
    What was Bob Iger's position before being CEO? Just wondering if there's a succession line at all. I imagine the next CEO might be an outside hire honestly.
     

    DVC_HK

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    Aug 6, 2019
    What was Bob Iger's position before being CEO? Just wondering if there's a succession line at all. I imagine the next CEO might be an outside hire honestly.
    I believe he was over at the ABC entertainment branch before CEO but will have to fact check that
     

    tjkraz

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    Feb 4, 2002
    The MF at BLT and GF started out much lower than average. I would have expected the same pattern for all new resorts, but maybe that isn't the way Disney plans to do it moving forward. As BLT and GF have risen through time, they may have started out artificially low to induce sales.
    There should not be anything artificial about annual dues. Costs of running the property are passed on to owners.

    With resorts like Contemporary and Grand Floridian, most costs are split across 1000+ combined hotel rooms and villas, with DVC paying its respective share. Riviera has only 300 villas, so DVC owners will pay 100% of the operating costs. And in a smaller resort, many operating costs do not scale in direct relation to the number of rooms. Riviera is about 1/3 the size of Grand Floridian (hotel+villas), but it's unlikely that Riviera's total bill for expenses like transportation, recreation and management are 1/3 of GF.
     

    AKNOTTS66

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    Jul 25, 2014
    There should not be anything artificial about annual dues. Costs of running the property are passed on to owners.

    With resorts like Contemporary and Grand Floridian, most costs are split across 1000+ combined hotel rooms and villas, with DVC paying its respective share. Riviera has only 300 villas, so DVC owners will pay 100% of the operating costs. And in a smaller resort, many operating costs do not scale in direct relation to the number of rooms. Riviera is about 1/3 the size of Grand Floridian (hotel+villas), but it's unlikely that Riviera's total bill for expenses like transportation, recreation and management are 1/3 of GF.
    Riviera should not be paying 100% of the operating costs, Pop Century, Art of Animation, and CBR all have Skyliner Stations. I'm also not sure there is anyway to break down or see the costs for the Monorail or Skyliner allocated to the Hotels on those loops vs the DVC resorts on those loops. So while annual dues represent true costs how they are allocated to the hotels vs DVC villas doesn't mean its on a per room basis.
     

    tjkraz

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    Riviera should not be paying 100% of the operating costs, Pop Century, Art of Animation, and CBR all have Skyliner Stations. I'm also not sure there is anyway to break down or see the costs for the Monorail or Skyliner allocated to the Hotels on those loops vs the DVC resorts on those loops. So while annual dues represent true costs how they are allocated to the hotels vs DVC villas doesn't mean its on a per room basis.
    I never said--nor did I mean to imply--that they were paying for the entire Skyliner network.

    Every Disney Resort shares in the cost of on-property transportation, be it busses, boats, monorail, Skyliner, upkeep of walking paths, etc. We have to assume that Disney is distributing those expenses in an equitable manner. (I'm quite sure there are a variety of accountants and auditors validating the numbers.)

    From there, it's a matter of splitting a resort's costs between hotel and DVC. At Grand Floridian, there are only 100-150 villas vs 900 hotel rooms. DVC dues are probably only paying for 10-15% of the GF's total bill for buses, boats and monorail.

    Riviera is all DVC, so member dues will pay 100% of whatever Disney Transportation charges for providing bus and skyliner service.
     

    gillep

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    Oct 12, 2009
    I suppose if u want to stretch it, CBR next door has a very very nice lobby now imo on par with BCV or the Yacht Club and you could use their facilities too and think of Riv as the DVC wing to CBR. But people don't like that since CBR is a moderate and thats in a lower class system to some. I don't have this downward view point on moderates, we honestly love some of the moderates more than the Deluxes. A DVC wing of Riverside would be amazing in my opinion.
    That's a pretty big stretch to me and not something I would personally consider as an amenity of the resort. When I stay at BCV the main check in is at the beach club resort, as is bell services, so I consider that lobby just as much a part of BCV as the BCV lobby itself when I think of the overall amenities and feel of the resort. Since RIV has these things self-contained I don't stretch that thinking to CBR just because you can use their lobby and other facilities, I can use all of the resort lobbies after all, and any of the pools on the pool hopping list if available. I do agree that CBR being so close is a plus though as it opens up more options when staying at RIV, just like having the boardwalk close to the beach club is a plus to me.
     

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