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Disney's Grand Floridian Resort Overview
Walt Disney World's flagship hotel is inspired by Florida’s grand Victorian seaside resorts. A complex of four- and five-story white frame buildings, the Grand Floridian integrates verandas, intricate latticework, dormers, and turrets beneath a red-shingle roof to capture the most memorable elements of 19th-century ocean-resort architecture. Covering 40 acres along Seven Seas Lagoon, the Grand Floridian offers lovely pools, white-sand beaches, and a multifaceted marina.
The 867 guest rooms, with wood trim and soft goods (curtains, linens, towels, and the like) in tones of deep red, gold, and tan, are luxurious, though we think the mocha-colored walls are a little dark at night. The woodwork, marble-topped sinks, and ceiling fans amplify the Victorian theme. Large by any standard, the typical room is 440 square feet (dormer rooms are smaller) and furnished with two queen beds, a daybed, a reading chair, and a small desk with chair. Many rooms have a balcony. All rooms have a coffeemaker and a large dresser–TV stand with mini-fridge.
With a high ratio of staff to guests, service is outstanding. The resort has several full-service restaurants, and others are a short monorail ride away. The hotel is connected directly to the Magic Kingdom by monorail and to other Disney World destinations by bus. Walking time to the monorail and bus-loading areas from the most remote guest rooms is about 7–10 minutes.
The Grand Floridian’s Senses spa, modeled after Disney Cruise Line’s, is one of the best in the Orlando area (see our review in Part Twenty). The resort’s pools are among the nicest on Disney property. The Courtyard Pool, large enough that local waterfowl mistake it for a lake, has a zero-entry ramp for small children to splash in. Cabanas are available to rent here, too. An Alice in Wonderland–themed splash area sits between the main building and the Villas. If your kids like water and their college fund is paid up, this is the place to be.
The rest of the Grand Floridian’s grounds are maintained to a very high standard. It’s a lovely resort to walk around during the evening, with romantic light levels and charming background music. A stroll from the marina, past the resort’s main buildings, and over to the Polynesian for a nightcap is a nice way to end the evening.
Most reader comments concerning the Grand Floridian are positive. First, from a Durham, North Carolina, mother of two preschoolers:
The Grand Floridian pool with the waterslide was a big hit with our kids. They also loved taking the boat across the lagoon to return from the Magic Kingdom.
How Disney's Grand Floridian Resort Compares to Other Disney Deluxe Resorts
The major advantage of Grand Floridian is that is a short boat or Monorail ride to Walt Disney World's flagship theme park, Magic Kingdom. The same Monorail can be also be used to ride to the Transportation And Ticket Center, here guests can tranfer to another Monorail and ride to the front gate of Epcot. At 440 square feet, Grand Floridian's rooms are some of the largest in all of WDW. These factors come at the cost of a high nightly price. Rooms at Grand Floridian fall in to the upper end of all the other WDW deluxe resorts.
Where To Check-In, Get Theme Park Tickets, and Make Dining Reservations
A security gate guards the entrance to Grand Floridian's grounds. If you arrive by car, you'll need to provide photo ID at the gate; it's not necessary to provide your reservation number or paperwork. A dedicated parking lot across from the lobby serves as temporary parking for those who need it while checking in.
Check-in time at Grand Floridian is 3:00 PM, and check-out time is 11:00 AM. Grand Floridian participates in Disney's Online Check-In program, which allows you to you provide name, address, and credit card information up to 60 days before your arrival. If you've done this, look for an Online Check-In sign near the Registration Desk. You'll be routed to one of the Online Check-in staff and should be on the way to your room in a few minutes.
If you've not registered online, look for signs pointing you to the Registration/Check-In area. You'll need to provide a government-issued photo ID and credit/debit card when you register. While parents are completing the paperwork, kids can unwind in a nearby play area decorated with child-sized furniture, and a television showing classic Disney animated films.
Disney's Grand Floridian Resort's registration staff can provide MagicBands for your stay, if you don't already have them. Get theme park tickets and dining reservations at the Concierge Desk, to the right of the Registration Desk. If you need to check in and obtain theme park tickets, you can save some time in line if one adult gets in line for tickets just after another adult starts the registration process. The Concierge Desk can also make Disney dining reservations, and you can avoid a wait there by making them online prior to arrival.
Disney's Grand Floridian Resort's Rooms
Most of the Grand Floridian rooms are 440 square feet, which makes them some of the largest standard rooms in Walt Disney World, and have two queen- size beds, a daybed, and a table with two chairs.
Each Disney's Grand Floridian Resort room is furnished with the following:
- Two queen beds
- Dresser with 4 small drawers
- Table with 2 chairs
- Nightstand digital alarm clock
- Full-length mirror (on bath door)
- WiFi wireless Internet access
- Flat-panel TV
- Mini fridge
- Coffee Maker
- Ironing board and iron
- Hair dryer
- Digital thermostat
- In-room safe
- Tiny bottle of H2O-brand shampoo, and bar soap
The mini-fridge is a dorm-style unit that sits under a counter or desk. It's more like a beverage chiller than a refrigerator in that it'll keep drinks cool, but you're not going to freeze popsicles or make ice cubes in it.
Bathrooms are large, with plenty of counter space and fluffy towels. Two shelves under the sink provide a small amount of storage. A 1,500-watt, wall-mounted hair dryer is provided, but it’s not very powerful; bring your own if you have lots of hair. Water pressure in the shower is average—probably less than what you get at home but still enough to rinse out shampoo.
A separate dressing area next to the bathroom includes two sinks and enough counter space to fit most of your toiletries. The dressing area includes a sliding door that separates it from the sleeping area. Combined with the bathroom, this means that three people can get dressed at the same time.
Grand Floridian Concierge Level Rooms
The concierge level of a deluxe resort can also be referred to as club level. Each one throughout the property has a name for its concierge club(s).
At the Grand Floridian there are two concierge lounges. The first is called the The Royal Palm Club, and it's located on the fourth floor of the Main Building. A second concierge lounge is located in the Sugar Loaf Key building of the resort. This lounge has amenities and services similar to Royal Palm Club in the Main Building.
Guests willing to pay a premium for a concierge-level room are treated to special services including a lounge/club, complimentary food and drink, and personalized service. There are about 175 Royal Palm Club rooms and around 90 Sugar Loaf Key rooms, most of which are similar to regular rooms throughout the resort, but there are also suites available. Club level prices can be over $100 more than standard rooms at the Grand Floridian.
Upon arriving to Grand Floridian, concierge guests are taken to an exclusive area to be checked in and taken care of. Once guests are brought to the club level, they will be introduced to the cast members on hand at two desks set up to be the resource for any special services they may need. These CMs are there to help folks with whatever they might need including ADRs, park tickets, and transportation options.
Another special service provided to concierge level guests is a nightly turn down. Housekeeping cast members come to your room in the evening to prepare your bed for you to fall into it after a long day in the parks and leave chocolates.
A more exciting benefit to staying club level is access to free food for most of the day. The breakfast offerings are relatively light, so don’t expect to fuel up for a full day here. Later in the day snacks are available along with an assortment of drinks including soda, hot drinks like coffee, and beer. In the late afternoon/early evening the menu changes, but appetizers are put out for guests to enjoy before they begin their evening. Wine and liqueurs along with desserts area served throughout the evening as well.
The selection of food and drink laid out in the lounges is only accessible to club level guests. There are several tables and chairs set up for folks to use throughout the day. The area is busy at breakfast time, but can be a quiet place to relax and maybe even get some work done if guests happen to be business travelers. There are also a few couches in the mix where friends can gather to chat. Kids have their own area here with child sized table and chairs and a TV running cartoons and other Disney favorites.
Handicap-Accessible Room Options
Disney's Grand Floridian Resort have around 31 handicap-accessible rooms. Some feature roll-in showers, while others include assistive hearing devices. A subset of these rooms have been converted to comply with Florida's Accessibility Code, with changes to everything from bed, counter-top, and dresser drawer height, to door widths, wheelchair ramps, and more.
Some accessible rooms have the standard setup of 2 queen beds; all rooms with roll-in showers have 1 king bed, and a small number of roll-in shower rooms have both 1 king bed. Use our hotel room finder to see which rooms have which feature
Theme Park Views, Lagoon Views and Garden Views
Disney knows that some hotel rooms are better than others. Most people want something pretty to look at from their hotel room window. To capitalize on this, Disney categorizes all of Grand Floridian's hotel rooms based on what you see from inside the room.
Here's the system Disney uses:
- Theme Park View: The view
from your window for the most part includes good views of Magic Kingdom. But some rooms may be partially blocked by a large tree. Some rooms are listed as
Theme Park View but you may have to crane your neck to see Magic Kingdom.
- Lagoon View: At the Grand Floridian any rooms facing the
Seven Seas Lagoon, that don't have a view of Magic Kingdom, are tagged with
the Lagoon View. Most rooms have a great view of the lagoon. Some rooms face can see the Contemporary Resort across the water.
- Garden View: Garden View rooms don't have views as good
as Theme Park or Lagoon View rooms, but you'll still see some nice scenery.
Most rooms have view of
landscaping, the resort's pool, or other buildings. In some rooms you may catch a glimpse of the Monorail.
Grand Floridian Pools
Grand Floridian has two pools. The Courtyard Pool, sits east of Grand Floridian's Main Building. There is also a hot tub, kiddie pool and water player area.
The other pool, the Beach Pool is located between the Main Building and the Villas. The Beach Pool is a 111,261-gallon pool overlooking Seven Seas Lagoon. Its main feature is a 181-foot water slide. The Beach Pool also has cabanas available for rent.
Grand Floridian's pools range in depth from around 3 feet 6 inches/1.1m to 4 feet 9 inches/1.4m. Pool are open every day, including during winter. The pools are heated to 82°F/28°C throughout the year. We've swum in temperatures as cold as 40°F/4°C; the water was fine, but getting out was a shock. Grand Floridian also has a hot tub located near the Courtyard Pool.
Beach Pool has one water slide that all ages are free to use. Guests can find showers, storage lockers, restrooms, and laundry facilities. Pool hours are at least 10AM to 10 PM, extending to as much as 8 AM to 12 AM during busy times. Feature Pool will have lifeguards during the pools' operating hours.
Infants and children in diapers are welcome in all of Grand Floridian's pools, as long as they're wearing swim diapers. Water wings are allowed at all Disney pools, and every pool has free life vests in a variety of sizes:
- Infant/child: Weight less than 30 lbs.
- Child: Weight 30-50 lbs.
- Youth: Weight 50-90 lbs.
- Adult XS: Weight more than 90 lbs., Chest size 31-34 in.
- Adult S: Weight more than 90 lbs., Chest size 34-37 in.
- Adult M: Weight more than 90 lbs., Chest size 37-40 in.
- Adult L: Weight more than 90 lbs. Chest size 40-43 in.
- Adult XL: Weight more than 90 lbs., Chest size 43-46 in.
- Adult XXL: Weight more than 90 lbs., Chest size 46-48 in.
- Additionally, there may be a small supply of even larger vests. Inquire at your resort.
You may need to bring your towels from your room to use at the pool - Disney sometimes stocks extra towels poolside, and sometimes they don't. Our advice is to send someone down to the pool to check the towel situation before you go. If you end up using your room towels at the pool, just call Housekeeping when you get back and request more.
Pool toys are permitted in Grand Floridian's pools, including "pool noodles," and basic toys that would be appropriate for water use such as rubber duckies and bucket & shovel sets. Some of us will occasionally bring something like a whiffle ball for playing catch in the pool. As long as you’re not disturbing other guests, you’ll be fine. Also note that kids with pool toys become very popular with other kids in the pool who want to play too. If you’re traveling with an only child and want him to have some age cohort interaction during your vacation, a nice strategy is to bring some extra toys. Chances are he’ll make a buddy.
Wheelchair Accessibility at Grand Floridian's Pool
Grand Floridian's Courtyard Pool has a chair-lift device that can lower guests in wheelchairs into the shallow end of the pool. Check with any lifeguard for assistance on using the lift.
Restaurants and Dining
Grand Floridian has a number of fine dining options available, including WDW's flagship signature restaurant Victoria & Albert's.
Victoria & Albert's
With only 18 tables in the main dining room and Queen Victoria's Room, a new private space with seating for eight, this is the top dining experience at Disney World. A winner of AAA's Five-Diamond Award (the only restaurant in central Florida so honored), Victoria & Albert's is civilized, lavish, and expensive. Waitstaff in the Queen Victoria Room expertly revive the European art of tableside finishes for each dish.
The menu changes daily, but chef Scott Hunnel's favorites include Jamison Farm lamb, Florida seafood, and Japanese Kobe beef. Any of master pastry chef Erich Herbitschek's desserts are divine. Hunnel and his team prepare modern American cuisine with the best of the best from around the world. While the main dining room and Queen Victoria's Room are whisper-quiet, the convivial Chef's Table is a whole other experience. For foodies, it's a bargain. Note that the Tables in Wonderland discount card is only accepted for standard dining here (not Chef's Table or Queen Victoria Room).
Victoria & Albert's has a strict dress code, which is enforced. From Disney's website:
“Men: Dinner jackets with dress pants/slacks and shoes. Ties are optional (Please no jeans, shorts, sandals, flip-flops, or tennis shoes) Ladies: Cocktail dress, dressy pant suit, skirt/blouse or nice dress. (Please no jeans, shorts, capri pants, sandals, flip-flops or tennis shoes)”
This is one of the best-kept dining secrets at Disney World - it's generally easy to get Advance Reservations here. For an extra-special night, reserve the Chef's Domain, a private room for up to 12 guests where the chef creates a special menu.
The golds and yellows of the Mediterranean color this stylish dining room on the second floor of the Grand Floridian. Diners often find chef Phillip Ponticelli working his culinary magic in the full-view show kitchen. Selections include sauteed shrimp with lemon, feta cheese, tomatoes, and white wine; oak-grilled filet of beef; braised veal shank.
A Tallahassee, Florida, reader thinks we underrate Cítricos at the Grand Floridian:
How come you gave Cítricos only 3½ stars? We had the most amazing meal ever there! The service was the most outstanding I have ever received, and the food matched. My grandmother had some dietary 446 part 10 di di ning in and around Walt alt dis ney world restrictions; the chef came to our table to talk with her about what she could eat, then sent her out a side dish free of charge. They even let her order from the kids’ menu even though she’s way over the 9-year-old limit.
(For the record, Cítricos is one of the TouringPlans team’s favorite eateries. The food is indeed excellent, and it’s one of the most quiet and sedate restaurants at Walt Disney World.)
Grand Floridian Cafe
Grand Floridian Cafe is basically an upscale coffee shop, the large dining room - with high ceilings and decorative windows - looks out on the Grand Floridian's pool and center courtyard.
Breakfast includes eggs prepared virtually every way known to mankind; waffles; French toast. For lunch, there's Cobb salad and the Grand sandwich with ham, turkey, and Boursin-cheese sauce. For dinner, choose from salmon, shrimp pasta, or grilled pork chop.
Stroll through the grounds of the Grand Floridian and toward the waterfront to this freestanding octagonal building at the edge of Seven Seas Lagoon. The atmosphere is upscale casual, though hardwood floors make it noisy. Diners have great views of the Magic Kingdom and the boats that dock nearby to pick up and drop off guests after a day at the park.
Narcoossee's offers excellent service, a very good wine list-and steep prices. But it is one of the few places at Disney with a seafood-centric menu, and one of the few places where you can get fresh steamed lobster. A splurge for grown-ups.
1900 Park Fare
An OK choice for character dining, but too bright and loud for adults without children. The prime rib is 1900 Park Fare's major draw at dinner, but go someplace else if you prefer your beef on the rare side of medium.
Garden View Tea Room
Garden View Tea Room is home to traditional afternoon tea, served in grand British style. The menu includes a selection of international teas and an assortment of sandwiches and pastries.
Gasparilla Island Grill
Gasparilla Island Grill is the resort's counter service restaurant. It has a decent selection of burgers, sandwiches, and pizzas. There's also kid friendly items like chicken nuggets and hot dogs. Gasparilla is unique in that it is open 24 hours a day. But past 11:00 PM the menu is very limited.
Gasparilla Island Grill participates in Disney's Rapid Fill refillable mug program, where you purchase a souvenir plastic mug once, and get free refills for the remainder of your stay. The cost varies depending on how long you're staying at the resort:
- $8.99 for 1 day
- $11.99 for 2 days
- $14.99 for 3 days
- $17.99 for length of stay (4 or more days)
The break-even point for the refillable mug program seems to be around 3 visits on the 1-day plan; 4 visits on the 2-day plan; 5 on the 3- day plan; and 6 visits for stays of 4 or more days. Keep in mind that if you buy a regular $3 fountain soda at any meal, you get unlimited refills during that meal. So for the refillable mug program to make sense, you'll need to drink soda with at least 3 separate meals on the 1-day plan, or 5 separate meals on the 2-day plan. In those cases, it would be hard to get too far from a bathroom, let alone all the way to the parks.
Restaurants at Grand Floridian participate in the Disney Dining Plan; meals cost 1 credit at Grand Floridian Cafe, 1900 Park Fare and Gasparilla Island Grill, and 2 credits at Citricos and Narcoossee's. Tables in Wonderland cardholders are eligible for a 20% discount at most resort restaurants.
Pizza delivery is available to your room from Disney's own delivery service. Besides pizza, chicken wings, desserts, beer, wine, and sodas are also available. However, delivery can take up to 90 minutes, and the food quality is often below average. You're probably better off either walking to the food court or calling Domino's. Pizza delivery hours are 4 PM to midnight daily. A medium (16") cheese pizza costs around $14 and a pepperoni around $16. Minimum order is $15, and Disney will tack on an 18% tip, $3 delivery charge, and 7% sales tax. Thus, a $30 pizza order will cost you $40.50 delivered.
Mizner's Lounge is located on the second floor in Grand Floridian's Main Building. Mizner's has indoor seating and a full drink menu, with several beers, wines, and a selection of spirits. You can also hear live jazz music in this location during the day. The lounge is usually open 4 PM to 12 AM daily. The Courtyard Pool Bar is located adjacent to the Courtyard Pool at the Grand Floridian. It also has a selection of beers, wines, and cocktails. Plus a small menu of burgers, flat bread pizzas, sandwiches, salads, and desserts is available. Beaches Pool Bar & Grill is located next to the Beach Pool. It also has a selection of alcoholic beverages and a dining menu of burgers, sushi, and salad.
Transportation to and from Disney's Grand Floridian Resort
Driving Your Own Car Disney's Grand Floridian Resort is just off of I-4 in Lake Buena Vista. Take I-4 Exit 67 - Epcot Center Dr. and you'll end up on World Drive. Take World Dr. for about 2.1 miles, and turn left on Seven Seas Drive. After .8 miles, turn right on to Floridian Way. Grand Floridian will be on your right.
Disney's Grand Floridian Resort's GPS address and location are:
Disney's Grand Floridian Resort
4401 Floridian Way
Orlando, FL 32830
Latitude: 28.411444 North, Longitude: 81.586792 West
From Orlando International Airport If you're arriving at Orlando International Airport, Disney's free Magical Express bus service will take you and your luggage directly from the airport to Disney's Grand Floridian Resort, then back to the airport when it's time for your flight home.
From Sanford International Airport It's about a 40-minute drive from Sanford to Disney's Grand Floridian Resort. If you're not renting a car, be aware that Sanford's airport offers fewer transportation options than Orlando's, and Sanford's options are generally much more expensive. A taxi from Sanford International Airport to Disney's Grand Floridian Resort will cost between $120 and $150, depending on traffic. Mears Transportation offers 3-passenger towncar service to Disney's Grand Floridian Resort for around $140 each way, plus tip; 5-passenger SUV service or 10-passenger van is around $190 each way. That means round-trip transportation will run you somewhere between $240 and $380, plus tip, between Sanford and Disney's Grand Floridian Resort. At those prices, it may be less expensive to rent a car and park it at the hotel.
Getting to the theme parks, water parks and Downtown Disney Disney provides free bus service from Disney's Grand Floridian Resort to Disney's Hollywood Studios, Disney's Animal Kingdom, Blizzard Beach, Typhoon Lagoon, and Downtown Disney/Disney Springs. Disney's Grand Floridian Resort's bus stops sit along the front wall of the lobby, between the lobby and check- in parking lot. Each theme park has its own bus stop somewhere along the wall. Animal Kingdom's bus service is shared with Blizzard Beach, while Downtown Disney/Disney Springs and Typhoon Lagoon also share a stop and service.
Magic Kingdom is accessed via Monorail via the station on the second floor in the Main Building. Monorail service may be suspended at any time. Monorail service is not available during Extra Magic Hours.
Epcot is accessed by taking the Monorail via the station on the second floor in the Main Building to the Transportation And Ticket Center. There guests travel to Epcot via the Epcot Monorail.
Disney's Grand Floridian Resort's Bus Schedule
Ask a Disney Castmember about Grand Floridian's bus schedule, and they'll tell you that buses run about every 20 minutes. In reality, Grand Floridian's bus schedule varies considerably depending on the time of day and where you're headed.
For example, if you're headed to the Animal Kingdom between 8 AM and 11 AM, you'll wait around 15 minutes, on average, for a bus to arrive. The bus schedules for Disney's Hollywood Studios are about the same early in the day, with a bus arriving every 8-17 minutes, on average. Bus schedules to the water parks and Downtown Disney are a little less frequent, and you could wait anywhere from 20 to 30 minutes for a ride.
Buses run a little slower from around 11 AM to around 4 PM, when most people are already in a park. Disney's evening buses are scheduled around the theme parks' closing times, where most of the fleet is deployed to get guests back to their hotels. Your waits to return to your hotel from a theme park should average out to around 30 minutes under most circumstances.
If you've got your own car, it's faster to drive yourself to Disney's Animal Kingdom, the Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach water parks, and Downtown Disney. Disney's bus service is faster to Disney's Hollywood Studios. We evaluate Disney's Grand Floridian Resort's bus service annually, and the latest transportation times can be found below.
Getting to another hotel from Disney's Grand Floridian Resort If you've got dining plans at another Disney hotel, the cheapest option is to take a Disney bus from Disney's Grand Floridian Resort to Downtown Disney (or an open theme park), then take another bus from there to your destination hotel. Do the reverse to get back to Disney's Grand Floridian Resort. While that's free, it can take anywhere from 90 minutes to 2 hours each way. If your destination is one of the other Magic Kingdom monorail resorts, and the Magic Kingdom is still open hop on the monorail (to the Polynesian and Contemporary), or take a boat (to Fort Wilderness, the Polynesian, and the Contemporary). We suggest you still allow at least an hour for that.
The fastest option, however, is almost always a taxi from Grand Floridian to wherever you're going; it's generally not more than a $20, 15-minute cab ride to get to most Disney hotels from Grand Floridian, and often less. Taxis are available outside the lobby; if a taxi is not already sitting out front, the bell services desk also serves as a taxi stand, and they'll call one for you.
To Universal Orlando If you're staying at Walt Disney World and don't have a car, Mears Transportation will shuttle you from your hotel to Universal and back for $18 per person. Pickup and return times are at your convenience. A one-way taxi ride is around $36, and may be the cheapest option if you have three to five people.
Shopping, Recreation and Things to Do
Senses - A Disney Spa is Grand Floridian's spa. Senses includes 15 treatment rooms offering a multitude of treatments and featuring Florida citrus and botanicals. A unique touch to this spa is that each treatment, or "Journey" as they call them, includes a small glass of a fruity elixir. Each Journey has its own flavored drink and this flavor carries through to the end of your Journey when you receive a very small gel that contains the same flavors. Guests are encouraged to book ahead, they may do so by calling 407-WDW-SPAS (407-939-7727).
Senses also has a fitness center. It is open 24 hours a day but attendants are only available from 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM.
Watercraft Rentals are available for use in Seven Seas Lagoon 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Kayaks, sailboats, pedal boats, and Sea Raycers can be rented. Prices vary. All rentals can be purchased in a booth near the Sugarloaf Key and Conch Key buildings.
Grand Floridian has a number of gift shops. Including Sandy Cove. As you'd expect from a Disney gift shop, Sandy Cove has a decent collection of souvenirs ranging from small trinkets such as keychains and pens, to embroidered jackets and Disney princess dresses. Prices for these items are about what you'd pay in the theme parks or Downtown Disney.
Sandy Cove also sells basic pharmacy items such as sunscreen, aspirin, allergy and cold medicine, baby diapers and formula, shampoo, and the like. And Fantasia Market has Disney-branded cookies, chocolate, coffee tins, and similar items, if that's what you're looking for. Prices for these items are considerably higher - about double - than what you'd probably pay at home.
Other shops include M. Mouse Mercantile, it features souvenirs, character plush, toys, and Disney apparel. Commander Porter's sells men's apparel and some Grand Floridian-branded merchandise. Basin is a bath and body store that specializes in high quality soaps. Finally, Summer Lace is a store on the first level that sells women's apparel.
Walkers, joggers and runners can find a jogging trail. The trail is a 1-mile jogging path located near the Main Building. The trail starts at Grand Floridian and ends at the Polynesian Resort.
Disney's Grand Floridian Resort Babysitting and In-Room Child Care
Disney doesn't offer on-site child care at Grand Floridian Resort, but you've got some options. If you've got a car and you're headed to the theme parks, you can drop off your little ones at one of the child-care clubs at a resort nearby Services vary, but children generally can be left between 4:30 PM and midnight. Milk and cookies and blankets and pillows are provided at all centers, and dinner is provided at most. Play is supervised but not organized, and toys, videos, and games are plentiful. Guests at any Disney resort or campground may use the services.
The most elaborate of the child-care centers (variously called "clubs" or "camps") is Lilo's Playhouse at the Polynesian Resort. The rate for ages 3-12 is $15 per hour, per child (2-hour minimum).
All the clubs accept reservations (some six months in advance!) with a credit card guarantee. Call the club directly, or reserve through Disney at 407-WDW-DINE. (If you call before 4 PM, call the club directly using the number shown below.) Most clubs require a 24-hour cancellation notice and levy a hefty penalty of 2 hours' time or $22.50 per call for no- shows. A limited number of walk-ins are usually accepted on a first-come, first-served basis.
|Hotel||Name of Program||Ages||Phone|
|Animal Kingdom Lodge||Simba's Clubhouse||3-12||407-938-4785|
|Dolphin and Swan||Camp Dolphin||4-12||407-934-4241|
|Polynesian Resort||Lilo's Playhouse||3-12||407-824-1639|
|Yacht and Beach Club Resorts||Sandcastle Club||3-12||407-934-3750|
|Wilderness Lodge and Villas||Cub's Den||3-12||407-824-1083|
Two companies provide in-room sitting in Walt Disney World and surrounding areas. They're Kid's Nite Out and Fairy Godmothers (no kidding). Both provide sitters older than age 18 who are insured, bonded, screened, reference-checked, police-checked, and trained in CPR. In addition to caring for your kids in your room, the sitters will, if you direct (and pay), take your children to the theme parks or other venues. Neither service will transport your children in private vehicles or give baths. Both offer bilingual sitters.
|Kid's Nite Out||Fairy Godmothers|
All WDW and Orlando-area hotels
All WDW and Orlando-area hotels
Men and women
Mothers and grandmothers, female college students
Base Hourly Rates
1 child, $18
2 children, $21
3 children, $24
4 children, $26
Base Hourly Rates
1 child, $16
2 children, $16
3 children, $16
4 children, $18
Transportation fee, $10; starting before 6:30 AM
or after 9 PM, +$2 per hour; additional fee for holidays
Transportation fee, $14; starting after 10 PM,
+$2 per hour
24 hours before service when reservation is made
3 hours before service
Form of Payment
AE, D, MC, V; gratuity in cash
Form of Payment
Cash or traveler's check for actual payment; gratuity in cash
Things Sitter Won't Do
Transport children in private vehicles,
take children swimming, give baths
Things Sitter Won't Do
Transport children, give baths; swimming
is at sitter's discretion
Miscellaneous Grand Floridian
Washers and dryers are in laundry facilities located on the second floor of the Main Building. Cost is $3 per wash, and another $3 per dry cycle. The machines take credit cards. A small selection of soap, fabric softener, and dryer sheets are also sold, for around $1 each. A typical wash cycle takes 20 to 30 minutes, and a typical dry cycle takes 40 to 50.
Laundry room cards can be purchased for $7 (using cash or credit) at the hotel's front desk. These cards get you one wash and one dry cycle, plus text messages letting you know when your laundry has been completed. Walt Disney World laundry rooms now make use of a technology called "LaundryView" which displays washer and dryer availability on their website.
If you lose something during your stay, contact Disney's Grand Floridian Resort's Lost and Found department by calling (407) 824-3000.
The Villas at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
This new Disney Vacation Club property opened in the fall of 2013. The 200-room T-shaped building sits with the main hotel along the shore of Seven Seas Lagoon. The Villas offer studio, one-, two-, and three-bedroom accommodations that sleep 5–12 adults (among DVCs, the studios are the only ones to accommodate a maximum of 5). The rooms, decorated in neutral tones with green and red accents, should be among the nicest of any DVC property. Most should have vaulted living-room ceilings and tiled balconies or porches. Most kitchens should include stainless-steel appliances and glass door cabinets. Bathrooms have marble tile and televisions in the mirrors. Rates will be high, but renting points should make it more reasonable. The Villas have their own parking lot next to the building, but no restaurants or dining.
Blog Posts About Disney's Grand Floridian Resort
- SATURDAY SIX: The Best Resort Specific Merchandise at Walt Disney World
- Tuesday Video: Deluxe Resort Hotels
- SATURDAY SIX: The Top Six Vegan & Vegetarian Friendly Restaurants in Walt Disney World
- Grand Floridian Gingerbread House and More 2015 Holiday Fun
- 25 Drinks of Christmas Countdown – Day 3: Godiva Chocolate Martini at Mizner's Lounge
- SATURDAY SIX: Six MORE Extreme Eats at Walt Disney World
- Magic Kingdom Area Resorts: A Guide for Day Guests, Part 1
- Seth Kubersky's Best Week Ever July 9, 2015: WDW Monorail Hotels
- Menu Monday: How to Order the Chocolate Glass Slipper Dessert
- Disney World's Electrical Water Pageant: The Original Light Show
- 2014 Grand Floridian Easter Eggs
- Top 10 Splurge Items at Disney World
- Get to Know the Disney World Pools, Part Four: The Deluxe and Deluxe Villa Resort Pools
|Hotel||Definitely (+/- since last year)|
|Disney's Grand Floridian Resort||67% (-21%)|
|Average for WDW hotels||76% (+0%)|
|Average for off-site hotels||57% (+0%)|
|Hotel||Definitely (+/- since last year)|
|Disney's Grand Floridian Resort||92% (+5%)|
|Average for WDW hotels||92% (+2%)|
|Average for off-site hotels||79% (-7%)|
Good (and Not-So-Good) Rooms at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort
Best and worst room views at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort
TouringPlans offers pictures of the view from any Disney resort room on property. click here for the Disney's Grand Floridian Resort map and to choose a room to see the view.
The resort is spread over a peninsula jutting into Seven Seas Lagoon. In addition to the main building, there are five dispersed rectangular buildings. Most rooms have a balcony, and most balconies are enclosed by a rail that affords good visibility. Dormer rooms, just beneath the roof in each building, have smaller enclosed balconies that limit visibility when you’re seated. Most dormer rooms, however, have vaulted ceilings and a coziness that compensates for the less-desirable balconies.
If you want to be near the bus and monorail, most of the restaurants, and shopping, ask for a room in the main building (all concierge rooms). The best rooms are 4322–4329 and 4422–4429, which have full balconies and overlook the lagoon in the direction of the beach and the Polynesian Village. Other excellent main-building rooms are 4401–4409, with full balconies overlooking the marina and an unobstructed view of Cinderella Castle across the lagoon.
Of the five lodges, three—Conch Key, Boca Chica, and Big Pine Key—have one long side facing the lagoon and the other facing inner courtyards and swimming pools. At Conch Key, full-balcony rooms 7229–7231, 7328, 7329, 7331, and 7425–7431 (except 7430) offer vistas across the lagoon to the Magic Kingdom and castle. Room 7427 is just about perfect. Less-expensive rooms in the same building that offer good marina views are 7212, 7312, 7412–7415, 7417, 7419, 7421, 7513–7515, and 7517. (Grand Floridian room numbers are coded. Take room 7213: 7 is the building number, 2 is the floor, and 13 is the room number.) In Boca Chica and Big Pine Key, ask for a lagoon-view room on the first, second, or third floor. Many garden-view rooms in Big Pine Key, and a few in Boca Chica, have views obstructed by a poolside building. These are the worst views from any Grand Floridian room.
The two remaining buildings, Sugar Loaf Key (concierge only) and Sago Key, face each other across the marina. The opposite side of Sugar Loaf Key faces a courtyard, while the other side of Sago Key faces a finger of the lagoon and a forested area. These views are pleasant but not in the same league as those from the rooms listed previously. Exceptions are end rooms in Sago Key that have a view of the lagoon and Cinderella Castle (rooms 5139, 5144, 5145, 5242–5245, and 5342–5345).
|On Magic Kingdom monorail||Imposing, rather formal public areas|
|Ferry service to Magic Kingdom||Overly large physical layout|
|Excellent guest rooms||Children don't get theme|
|Children's programs, character meals||Only one on-site restaurant suitable for children|
|Excellent children's pool||Distant guest self-parking|
|Diverse recreational options|
|Good restaurant selection via monorail|
|One of the best spas in Orlando|
Grand Floridian Resort 2016 Rack Rates
Disney's Grand Floridian Resort Dining
- 1900 Park Fare (Table Service)
- Beaches Pool Bar & Grill (Bar or Lounge)
- Courtyard Pool Bar (Bar or Lounge)
- Cítricos (Table Service)
- Garden View Tea Room (Table Service)
- Gasparilla Island Grill (Counter Service)
- Grand Floridian Cafe (Table Service)
- Grand Floridian Gingerbread House (Food Cart)
- Mizner's Lounge (Bar or Lounge)
- Narcoossee's (Table Service)
- Sandy Cove (Market)
- Victoria & Albert's (Table Service)
|Park||Commuting Times||Resort Transportation|
|Magic Kingdom||7 min|
|Hollywood Studios||23 min|
|Animal Kingdom||23 min|
|Quietness of Room||B-|
|Shuttle to Parks||Yes|