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{travel} Disney Hotels - The Villas at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa

  Thursday, November 16, 2023 at 7:30 AM   |    Post a Comment     Tagged:,, 

When Christian and I ran the Wine & Dine 5K at the beginning of November we did a split stay starting at The Villas at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa for one night and finishing with three nights at Disney's Polynesian Villas & Bungalows. We rented Disney Vacation Club (DVC) points for this stay and paid $458.25 per night - our portion was $305.50 per night splitting with my friend. The same room booked through Disney would have been $958 for one night. Talk about savings!


For many, the Grand Floridian is the dream resort stay on a Walt Disney World trip. It's gorgeous, upscale design makes you feel like a rich aristocrat and it's very close to Magic Kingdom Park, there's even a walking path from the hotel! 


We stayed in the DVC building which is a short walk away from the main building. It is themed to Mary Poppins and has the most adorable penguin fountain in the center.  This building felt close enough to all the action of the larger building but was quieter and felt more private. Our room even had a view of the Magic Kingdom fireworks (we paid for a standard view.) 

A quick video tour of our room:

One of the best times to visit this resort, even if you aren't staying there is the Gingerbread House and shop during the holiday season! We happened to arrive the weekend they were assembling the gingerbread house and we were able to sample some of the gingerbread for free! Once the house opens officially there is a little shop inside where you can purchase shingles, ornaments and more made out of gingerbread! On our visit we even got to see them sprinkling the powdered sugar snow on top, so much fun!



Most guests stay at The Grand Floridian because of the Monorail. It is the quickest way to get to Magic Kingdom and EPCOT. All you have to do is make your way to the lobby, go up to the second floor and walk out to the monorail! You'll go through security here so there's no need to wait in the (sometimes) crazy long lines at the front of the parks. Magic Kingdom is the first stop after Grand Floridian. If you're heading to EPCOT you'll have to switch monorails at the Ticket and Transportation Center. You can also visit any of the other Monorail Resorts (Disney's Contemporary Resort and Disney's Polynesian Village Resort) this way.


Buses are the only way (besides rideshare or driving) to get to Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom. The bus station is easy to find and there are a couple benches if you get there early enough. We did not utilize the normal buses on this trip as we spent our day there at Magic Kingdom and the 5K. I will note that once park hopping restrictions end it will be possible to monorail to EPCOT, walk to the back of the park and then take the Skyliner to Hollywood Studios. But that would take longer than the bus so I wouldn't advice it unless you really hate buses.



If you'd rather avoid lines and crowds there is also a walking path from The Grand Floridian to Magic Kingdom. Sadly it was under construction during our visit so we couldn't test it out. I believe it is tabout three quarters of a mile long, so not horrible considering you would still have to walk and stand in lines to get to other forms of Disney transportation at the end of the evening.


Grand Floridian Café

Christian and I dined here for breakfast in May 2022 with his Mom. We figured it was a perfect Mother's Day activity so she could feel special. The food here is very simple, easy breakfast food so it will please most in your party. I had the waffle and it came with an amazing orange butter - SO GOOD.

Enchanted Rose

I was hoping to visit this lounge on our trip but we tried to pack in so many other things we ended up skipping it. The lounge opens at 3 and we didn't feel like leaving a park at such a random time to make it there for opening/less crowds. Hopefully we'll make some time for it on our next trip because I want to try their Warm Marinated Olives.

Gasparilla Island Grill

We stopped in at Gasparilla Island Grill for a late lunch on our September trip. I had the Pepperoni Flatbread which was just okay. Christian had the Blackened Chicken Sandwich. This is the Grand Floridian's quick service restaurant so it's basically grab and go items, nothing super fancy. They will have themed desserts based on the season which are fun.

Beaches Pool Bar & Grill

Christian and I quickly stopped here on our arrival day to grab a quick chicken tender lunch before heading off to the runDisney Expo. We can't comment on the drinks, but the chicken tenders and dipping sauces were great. Our server was also wonderful and we had some laughs due to wind blowing everything around the bar. We would definitely stop here again.

1900 Park Fare 

Not reopened as of November 2023

I ate at 1900 Park Fare back in October 2018 on my 30th birthday trip. My friend Kristen and I went for the Supercalifragilistic Breakfast with Mary Poppins, Pooh, Tigger, Alice in Wonderland and The Mad Hatter! They have everything from Mickey waffles and fresh fruit to eggs, french toast, cinnamon rolls and so much more! See my full post on it for more details. I hope it makes a triumphant return soon!



Cítricos was our first dinner on this most recent trip. I was really looking forward to it but we were personally a little underwhelmed with what we got for the price. The theming of the restaurant is subtle nods to Mary Poppins which I LOVED. We were also obsessed with the bread service and salted butter and asked for more - one of the breads had bacon and olives in it. I had the sustainable fish with chorizo risotto. It was good, just not $48 good. Christian felt the same about his $52 short ribs; good but not mind-blowing. We also had a Zero-Proof  Old Fashioned Orange Soda Float which was fun!



We have not eaten here yet, but Narcoossee's is definitely on my list of "fancy" restaurants to try. Christian and I usually do one upscale restaurant per trip for our budget's sake so we skipped it this past trip in favor of Cítricos.


Garden View Tea Room

Not reopened as of November 2023

This is a traditional tea room that serves up a fun afternoon tea! I have not tried it yet but would like to in the future. I believe they used to do morning and afternoon teas and even a tea with a Disney Princess for all the little ones!

Victoria & Albert’s

This is our dream dining experience. I have been trying to get us reservations here for every one of our past few trips. So far, no luck. Maybe for our Valentine's trip in February?! Send me all the good vibes.



Since we were only here for an overnight we skipped out on the pool even though we brought our bathing suits this trip.  The Grand Floridian has two pools - the Beach Pool and Courtyard Pool.  There is also an Alice in Wonderland Water Play Area for kids to cool down in.


When staying at The Grand Floridian guests can take part in numerous activities. There's an arcade, boat rentals, campfires complete with s'mores, pool games and more! For $49 per half-hour you and up to 9 other people can rent a pontoon boat to ride around Seven Seas Lagoon. 


There are also fireworks cruises you can book to view the Magic Kingdom fireworks from the water. Each cruise ($449+) includes the services of a captain and assorted snacks and soft drinks. Festive banners and balloons are also included in the cost and can be requested at the time of booking. One day I'd love to do this with a group of friends.

Some more photos around the resort.

About Closet Fashionista

Loves to get bargains on clothes and is obsessed with Harry Potter and Disney. By day she is a freelance graphic and web designer. She also has a slight obsession with movies.

You can also find her on the web at her Harry Potter and Matthew Lewis fan sites.

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