The Enchanted Rose is an Elegant Oasis, but is That a Good Thing?

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Everything about the new Enchanted Rose Lounge at Disney’s Grand Floridian resort is lovely and refined. The decor is elegant, the service is impeccable, the drinks are tasty and sophisticated, and theming is understated. In short, it’s perfect, which is probably why I will rarely visit.

Let’s start with the setting. Enchanted Rose is located on the second floor of the Grand Floridian, where Mizner’s Lounge used to be. Mizner’s was as humble as a Cincinnati Radisson. This rebranding is certainly an upgrade. The fabrics are refined and coordinated, but not matching. There are seating areas for larger groups, as well as spots for solo travelers. You can be chatty at the bar, or quiet at an out-of-the-way table. There’s even an outdoor patio if you want a view of the pool.

The Enchanted Rose name is a nod to the flower that is part of the Disney Beauty & The Beast story. Elements of the decor reflect that tale: the fixture over the bar is evocative of Belle’s ballgown skirt, there are roses tastefully scattered around the room, and the shelves hold doppelgangers for Mrs. Potts and Cogsworth. The housewares are like those in the 2017 live action film, not the 1991 animated version; that’s how you know it’s a classy place.

Food is served at Enchanted Rose after 5:00 p.m. I arrived there at 4:00, so no noshes for me, but I did take a long look at the menu. The offerings sound delish, but I’m a woman of a certain age with tastebuds of matching vintage. There is nothing on the menu that would appeal to your average nine-year-old, which I’m sure is the point. Even the basic items like flatbread and fries are embellished with things like mushrooms and truffles, basically umami code for “take your children elsewhere.”

I get it. This is a bar and bars are for those with adult predilections. But still, sometimes after third spin on the teacups mommy needs a little fortification, and some plain mac n’ cheese to distract junior. Yes, you can get a drink by the pool. No, that’s not always what you want.

The beverage menu features a modest selection of beers and ciders, as well as a larger selection of wines and champagnes, many available both by the bottle and the glass. The least expensive beer is a $7.50 Bud Light, which they call “Bud Light Lager, St. Louis, MO” because fancy. The bottle of Billecart-Salmon Clos Saint-Hilaire Brut, Mareuil-sur-Ay 1998 champagne will set you back $725.

Between those extremes are some very nice non-alcoholic cocktails, such as the B&B (Twinings iced tea, lemon, blueberry, and basil) and the Rosemary Cooler (lemonade, vanilla, and rosemary), as well as regular cocktails ranging from the $15 Island Rose (Ketel One Botantical Grapefruit and Rose, lime, orgeat, pineapple, bitters, and rose water) to the $25 Seasonal Old Fashioned (Widow Jane 10 year straight bourbon whiskey, seasonal syrup, and bitters).

The signature beverage experiences are the Amour and the Envie, which are prepared tableside, from a rolling cart.

I ordered the $21 Envie, which came with an apple chip, a synopsis of the Beauty & the Beast film, and a therapy session. My server, Sarah, was charming and professional as she described the envy Gaston had for The Beast, how each ingredient of the cocktail related to the concept of envy, and then recited the mantra from the menu, “Stirred together to enjoy your own life without comparing with that of another.”

With tax and tip, my one drink was about $27. I nursed it for a while, but there’s only so long that you can make a single coupe last.

Other than the price, which was admittedly my fault (I could have opted for the Bud), there was not a thing wrong with the experience. The perfectly curated environment was indeed a respite from my day traipsing through the Magic Kingdom. I left relaxed and just the right amount of inebriated. So why did I feel so unsatisfied?

Some of that was surely related to my disappointment that Grand Floridian band had been moved, relegated to a high-traffic spot by the main entrance and now playing amidst the hum of guests checking their luggage with Bell Services. You can’t have any pesky merriment nearby when adults are trying to be sophisticated.

Another part of my discomfit was again my own doing. I was dressed in shorts and a tee, quite sticky from my day in the park. The Enchanted Rose is so chic, that I felt out of place in theme park garb. To be sure, no one commented on my clothing and I was treated with the utmost respect, but the atmosphere nearly screams, “Go back to your room and take a shower before you come here.” Which is fine, but not necessarily a reality when you’re on a theme park vacation.

Rather than “mom needs a cocktail before she heads down to 1900 Park Fare to tangle with Lady Tremaine,” the atmosphere is “I’m in a bar at a conference in a large to mid-sized city trying to drink off my frustration that my boss presented my idea as his.” More to the point, it feels like an adult after-work bar, not an I’m on vacation bar. And while they don’t forbid children, it’s certainly not a child-friendly venue.

If you want a refined atmosphere to have quiet conversation with adults, look no further than the Enchanted Rose. Celebrating an anniversary – head to Enchanted Rose. Want to plop down, have a drink, and scroll through Twitter while you shake the Carousel of Progress song out of your noggin, try another venue.

Erin Foster

Erin Foster is an original member of the Walt Disney World Moms Panel at DisneyWorldMoms.com, a regular contributor to TouringPlans.com, and co-author of The Unofficial Guide to Disney Cruise Line. She's been to WDW, DL, DL Paris, Hong Kong Disneyland, Aulani, DVC Vero Beach, and DVC Hilton Head. She's a Platinum DCL cruiser and veteran of 10 Adventures by Disney trips. Erin lives near New York City, where she can often be found indulging in her other obsession - Broadway theater. Erin can be reached on Twitter @MsErinFoster.

10 thoughts on “The Enchanted Rose is an Elegant Oasis, but is That a Good Thing?

  • November 14, 2019 at 1:59 pm
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    Thanks for the review. I’m disappointed that it’s not kid-friendly. Something B&B them res you’d think would be. I was hoping to stop by here with the kids next trip instead of doing BOG since we weren’t impressed. I guess we’ll skip it.

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  • November 14, 2019 at 2:10 pm
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    42 square miles, 4 major parks, over a dozen resorts and hundreds of places to eat. So aside from Victoria and Albert’s, here’s a sophisticated adult bar tucked away in one of the pricier resorts.
    I just don’t get why anyone who already has virtually the rest of WDW catering to their needs is so snippy about The Enchanted Rose. I’ve been fortunate to visit WDW many times and I’ve found a few things that were not “for me,” but I never felt the need to project my insecurities upon them.

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    • November 16, 2019 at 11:27 am
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      Thank you! I agree. (Plus, some of us have children who DO like good food! When my DD was 9, she probably would have liked everything on the menu, except maybe the spicy shrimp, if they’re truly spicy…)

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  • November 14, 2019 at 4:26 pm
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    Waaay too much snark in this article. Were you hangry when it was written?

    GF is *thee* flagship resort; it stands to reason that the only 5⭐ dining would be here. So why not an upscale lounge as well? They’re obvsly trying desperately to get away from the mac n’ cheese, sticky kiddos vibe. There’s room at this huge theme park for plain AND fancy. Not everything is loved by everyone, it’s not supposed to be!

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  • November 14, 2019 at 4:55 pm
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    Erin, I appreciated this review very much. I certainly did not detect any projecting of insecurities (who’s really projecting here?), and the amount of snark was appropriate for the forum. You were open about your perspective and clearly explained why you didn’t like it and why many others would.

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  • November 14, 2019 at 4:55 pm
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    I agree with just some guy above. My adult daughter and I went there for a drink and snack. There were many people there including some kids. I think at a place where virtually everything is geared toward families and kids that it is not too much to ask for one or two places where adults can relax without having to deal with kids all around. I think it is a welcome venue

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  • November 14, 2019 at 5:07 pm
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    I guess my big concern is that when you say it’s a lounge themed to Beauty and the Beast, I think most people’s thoughts are the animated feature and not the live-action film that has been easily forgotten. So when you’ve got something with a “cartoon movie” theme, to have it then not be a place where you’d want kids running around seems a bit off. The location for the lounge would be a perfect spot for an adults-only lounge. Somewhere classy where you can relax before your V&A ressie. So why didn’t Disney give it a theme that would be very clearly adult-centric, and then actually make it an 18+ or 21+ place where kids aren’t permitted? Other resorts are comfortable having adult-only venues.

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    • November 14, 2019 at 10:46 pm
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      I think their target is the Childless-Millennial who wants to indulge in Beauty and the Beast Nostalgia (and maybe a side of convention-traveler on expense account). In that light subtle live action BatB theming without a child-friendly menu makes perfect sense. Not too blatant a theme or you risk alienating the non-Disney business traveler and attracting too many families.

      I’ll still stop by to check it out with my 7 and 8 year old since we will be staying at GF next week. They will eat just about anything and can be depended on to behave reasonably so I don’t anticipate feeling out of place.

      And Erin, I always enjoy your posts! It certainly didn’t seem overly negative to me. Funny, down-to-earth, and honest is always my impression of your writing.

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  • November 14, 2019 at 6:12 pm
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    The review made me want to go! Everything I could want in a bar at Disney. The only negative (and it is very negative) is moving the orchestra … one of the great charms of Mizners.

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  • November 14, 2019 at 10:36 pm
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    Looks beautiful. Glad it’s adult-oriented. But it’s still off theme, and that’s the problem with it.

    Reply

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