1. Transportation to and from the Parks
At Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort, you get the best of both worlds when it comes to traveling to the Magic Kingdom. If you take the monorail from the Grand Floridian to the park, you’re only one stop away. On the way back, the Grand Floridian is the first stop on the boat! The boat is also great right after fireworks because crowds that have to travel back to the Transportation and Ticket Center to get their cars will not be waiting for the boat. This resort boat only services the Grand Floridian and Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort, which makes for very little competition to get on. You also don’t have to walk up the large ramp to get to the monorail, which is another plus!
The monorail at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa
Additionally, you are able to walk from the Grand Floridian to the Polynesian, and since you can walk from the Polynesian to the Transportation and Ticket Center (TTC), you can also take a longer walk from the Grand Floridian to the Transportation and Ticket Center.
2. Dining Options
The Grand Floridian has every type of dining experience offered on Walt Disney World property. For a Quick Service location, there’s the Gasparilla Island Grill, which makes some fantastic and customizable salads, and does count as a Counter Service meal on the Disney Dining Plan. While the dessert selection is not expansive, there are usually gourmet cupcakes that are available. They also have flatbread pizzas made to order. As with many other Disney resorts, there are pool bars serving up burgers, sandwiches, and drinks. These include the Beaches Pool Bar and the Courtyard Pool Bar.
There are many Table Service options here as well, including Signature and Character Dining options. There are two Table Service restaurant that are 1 Table Service credit on the Disney Dining Plan. They are Grand Floridian Cafe and for Character Dining, there is 1900 Park Fare, which is a buffet. Signature Dining options at the Grand Floridian are Citrico’s and Narcoossee’s (2 Table Service credits each). There is also Mizner’s Lounge, where you can listen to the Grand Floridian Society Orchestra and enjoy cocktails.
Something unique to the dining options at the Grand Floridian is the Garden View Tea Room. There are many options, including the Wonderland Tea Party aimed at younger guests. Princess Aurora even comes to this special event! There are several options for the standard tea, so take a look at what the different menus include to make sure you’re getting the most bang for your buck in terms of your own preferences.
Desserts from the Garden View Tea Room
Another unique dining experience offered here is Victoria and Albert’s. This is a fine dining option with a dress code. Victoria and Albert’s has received the AAA Five Diamond Award every year since 2000. After making a reservation, Disney will email you the specific dress code. Men have to wear a jacket and women are expected to dress in “elegant evening attire.” This restaurant is more of a dining experience than just simply dining. The only Disney Dining Plan that is accepted here is the Platinum Dining Plan, and this is only applicable to the 7 course menu. If you want the 10 course menu, there will be an upcharge.
3. Views of the Magic Kingdom and Fireworks
From the Disney Vacation Club Villas building, you have a view of the rest of the Grand Floridian and the monorail! It is a great view to just slow down and appreciate during your busy vacation.
View of the Grand Floridian from the DVC rooms
From other parts of the resort, there are views of Seven Seas Lagoon, the Magic Kingdom, and the Electric Water Pageant. You can even watch Happily Ever After from a seating area outside Gasparilla Island Grille. What more could you ask for?
4. Seasonal Decorations
The Grand Floridian is decorated for the holidays! In the spring around Easter, there are decorated Easter eggs themed to different Disney movies.
Beauty and the Beast Easter Egg
Toy Story Easter Egg
At the holidays in December, there are Christmas trees and even a life-size gingerbread house! Inside the house is a shop where you can buy gingerbread shingles from the window. This is a can’t miss sight, so even if you aren’t staying at the Grand Floridian, make sure to stop by!
Christmas Tree at the Grand Floridian
Gingerbread House at the Grand Floridian
5. Richard, the Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort Greeter
For as long as I can recall, Richard has been at the Grand Floridian greeting guests. He is always there and we always say hi! He is super sweet and is always willing to take a picture – so we do! Be sure to have a conversation with him as he’s been working there for quite a while – he joined the Walt Disney Company in 1991! Check out his Facebook page here.
Richard with my Dad!
My sister and I with Richard!
If you’re thinking about staying on the monorail or at a deluxe resort, Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort is a great choice! If a deluxe resort is out of your budget for your next trip, make sure you budget some time to enjoy the Grand Floridian and the other monorail resorts as well!
What are your favorite reasons to stay at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort? Share them in the comments.
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