The cabins at Fort Wilderness went through a refurbishment that began in fall of 2015 and was completed in early 2016. To learn all the great things about the cabins you can read my blog post from last year. In this post I will give you a glimpse of the changes that have been made to the cabins.
The most dramatic upgrade is in the kitchen, which has been completely replaced. The stove is gone with a two burner stovetop and a microwave/convection oven combination as the new cooking area. At the end of this post, I will share my experience cooking in the oven.
The bathroom got new cabinets and countertops. The bathtub is fiberglass.
The bench at the dining table now has a back cushion. The murphy bed was replaced with a large TV and a six drawer dresser. The sofa has been replaced with a larger double size sleeper sofa. The child’s table and chairs are gone. The window coverings have also been updated.
With the refurbishment, the pantry and a small TV were removed from the side of the kitchen. The new space seems to be missing something, like maybe a side table was supposed to be there.
The bunk beds remain, but the full size bed has been replaced with a queen size bed. The bed is elevated and there is enough space so you can store your luggage beneath it. The linens were updated to a more modern neutral palette with crisp white sheets.
The deck has been rebuilt and metal handrails were added. Our cabin had three rocking chairs.
The carpet in the bedroom has been removed and replaced with a wood-like laminate that is in the rest of the cabin. The coat hooks across from the front door are a nice touch.
In October when I got my first glimpse of the new cabins, I was surprised to see the oven was removed. Later I found out that the microwave was actually a microwave convection oven combo. Disney did not skimp on the oven, it is a Kenmore Elite 80373 that retails for $850. I went to Trader Joes and bought several items that required baking — we cooked stuffed mushrooms, battered fish, frozen pizza, croissants, and cinnamon rolls. Everything cooked as it would in a standard oven, although cooking time was slightly longer than the directions suggested.
A Facebook user suggested baking a birthday cake. Originally I was going to bake brownies, but what the heck, cake it is. My wife reminded me that we have a Mickey cake pan from my parent’s house. I searched and found the 1970’s directions and went to a craft store and bought the needed supplies. My daughter and I recreated my 1975 birthday cake:
Yes, you can bake a cake in the convection oven, although I would not recommend spending three hours of your vacation decorating it; Publix makes very nice birthday cakes. If you are going to do any baking or cooking be aware that the kitchen tools that Disney provides are limited. The sharpest knife is a steak knife and they are not very sharp. There are no baking sheets or measuring spoons.
We really enjoy staying in the cabins. I have to say that while there were many changes made to the cabin, the refurbishment didn’t have as big an impact on the overall feel of the space as I would have expected.