Studio Murphy Beds up close

The convertible table / Murphy Bed units added during recent Disney Vacation Club renovations are a popular topic of discussion.  How large are the beds?  Are the rooms too crowded?  Is there still enough storage in the room?  Let's examine the impact on Deluxe Studio rooms at Disney's BoardWalk Villas following this design choice.  

BWV Murphy Bed

During a 2014 renovation of the Villas at Disney's Wilderness Lodge and 2015 modifications to Disney's BoardWalk Villas, the furniture configuration underwent a major change.  Gone are the traditional round table and the TV stand which doubles as a storage armoire.  In their place, Disney Vacation Club introduced a custom piece of furniture which converts from a table to a Murphy Bed.  A stand-alone armoire now provides 4 drawers of storage for guests' belongings.  

COMFORT

The Murphy Bed mattress measures 33x72", slightly smaller than the traditional twin bed dimensions of 39x74".  Being smaller than a twin mattress, any adult uncomfortable in a standard twin bed will struggle to adjust to the DVC Murphy Bed.  However it is quite suitable for a child or smaller adult.  

BWV Mattress Comparison

The mattress is about 5" thick, the same as most sofabeds in Disney Vacation Club villas.  

BWV Murphy Bed

When in sleeping configuration, the uppermost portion of the unit forms a shelf-like structure which hangs over the mattress to some degree.  This may present a head-bump risk to guests sleeping in the Murphy Bed.  This upper lip extends about 9.5" from the wall, overlapping about 30% of the mattress.  Some caution will have to be observed to avoid sitting up abruptly and coming into contact with the hard wooden surface.  

SPACE

Is there enough space to move about the room when with the Murphy Bed down?  Simply put, yes.  

Even with both the sofabed and Murphy Bed open, there is plenty of room to move about the villa.  Clearances between the end of the sofabed and Murphy Bed measure 36"--greater than the width of the villa's front entry door.  

BWV Murphy Bed

The two side chairs and coffee table will have to be moved out of the way in order to maximize available space. In these photos, the unneeded furniture has been placed in front of the balcony door.  In a lockoff Studio like this one, there is also space in front of the unused connecting door to the adjacent villa.  

BWV Murphy Bed

EASE OF USE

The process of folding-down the Murphy Bed is quite simple and effortless.  A button on the top of the unit is pressed while the table is slowly lowered to the floor.  Check out the video below for a demonstration.

 

Despite the easy conversion, a little advance planning will save some effort at bed time.  The table is no longer an ideal location to store wallets, purses, cell phones and MagicBands when they are not in use.  All items must be removed from the table before it can be folded.  Fortunately there is a shelf on top of the unit measuring 10.5 x 82" which provides ample storage space for vacation clutter.  

BWV Murphy Bed

Electrical outlets and USB charging ports were even provided to make this shelf a great location to store all electronic devices when not in use.  

STORAGE

Addition of the Murphy Bed meant removal of the traditional TV stand / armoire.  Fortunately Disney responded by adding a separate armoire.  

The armoire holds four pull-out drawers, each measuring 10.5 x 23.5 x 6".  While dimensions for the older storage unit are not available, the four drawers seem a bit inadequate for a family of 4-5 guests occupying a Deluxe Studio for anything more than a couple of days.  

BWV Murphy Bed

Also, upon arrival guests will likely find the drawers filled with linens and pillows for the sofabed and Murphy Bed.  These items will have to be relocated in order to make full use of the amoire.  Fortunately BoardWalk Studios have very large closets which can be used store little-used items.  

Overall the room modifications are a nice improvement to the villa.  The most noteworthy inconvenience some guests may encounter relates to the new proximity of the table to the enormous 55" flat panel TV.  Guests sitting at the table to use a laptop computer or perform most other tasks will find it uncomfortable to view programming displayed just inches from their face.  Nevertheless, the presence of the sofa and coffee table provides other options--arguably more comfortable ones--for watching TV during work or play.  

The furniture itself is very well constructed, easy to use and provides more flexibility in sleeping arrangements even for groups who do not intend to fill their villa to capacity.  

Reader Comments
Re: Studio Murphy Beds up close -- wdrl
2016 Jan 15 05:39:05 PM
Is there any storage space underneath the queen bed? From the photos in the article, it doesn't appear to be.

Both PVB and Aulani have storage space underneath their queen beds that is large enough to hold suitcases.
Re: Studio Murphy Beds up close -- denlo
2016 Jan 15 05:53:17 PM
There is more space between the bed and the murphy bed that I thought there would be.

Just curious can the table ever fold flat against the cabinet, for when you are not using the table? Or is it made to always be in an open as a table or partially folded to be the legs for the bed?
Re: Studio Murphy Beds up close -- bakerworld
2016 Jan 15 06:11:36 PM
The Murphy bed at the Poly (which looks like the same one in the Aulani photos) is a nice piece of furniture and, like the piece of furniture in AK, the ledge makes a convenient place to hold the items that usually end up on the table.

The piece of furniture custom made :rolleyes: for WL studios must have been commissioned by the same person who selected the Bay Lake furniture. The table looks small, cramp, and low quality. :(
Re: Studio Murphy Beds up close -- rkstocke5609
2016 Jan 16 09:13:17 AM
We have stayed in Murphy Bed equipped studios at both VWL & PVB. I thought both worked fine. I love them for us, as a couple with one child it means that we don't have to monkey around with the sofa sleeper and we have a sofa ready to use all the time for our entire stay.

Now, I love the larger studio at PVB which allowed an insane amount of space to walk between the Murphy and the queen when it was down (we never put it up). Along with that, you get a table & chairs separate.

Having said that, I would still choose VWL most of the time because the point savings is well worth the inconvenience of flipping up the Murphy to reset the table. I suspect the Boardwalk fans will feel the same.
Re: Studio Murphy Beds up close -- TimK
2016 Jan 16 09:43:18 AM
denlo wrote:
Just curious can the table ever fold flat against the cabinet, for when you are not using the table? Or is it made to always be in an open as a table or partially folded to be the legs for the bed?

No. The mechanism is all interconnected. I was surprised to find how easy it is to operate. Figured I'd have to bend over and do something to the table itself. It is truly effortless to fold the bed down, but I don't see any way to fold the table alone.

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