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“Beautiful aesthetics and good music also” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa

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Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa
4.5 of 5 Resort   |   4401 Floridian Way, Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, FL 32830   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #52 of 328 hotels in Orlando
Florida
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
31 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
78 helpful votes 78 helpful votes
“Beautiful aesthetics and good music also”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2014

This facility is quite interesting. There are people outside to greet you and escort you into the check in counters. This was also true on my visit here a year ago. This is a very nice touch. The flowers in the vases throughout the main facility are among the most beautiful arrangements I have ever seen. The main hall has a pianist who takes requests (he has a computer on which he can obtain the music sheets), as well as a band that plays from the balcony (obviously not at the same time). The pool area at night has a beautiful blue lighted fountains that has an amazing effect I have grown to appreciate the aesthetics of the property. The dormitory style arrangements of having the 9 buildings surrounding the main building has its inconveniences, though one can stay in the main building at a higher price. The food for my event was provided by the meeting and I thought was not good at all in the selection, with inadequate healthy choices though that may have been the fault of the meeting sponsor. Hotel prices are up substantially in the last four years, so value is difficult to judge. I have grown to like this property much more over the years and enjoy walking around the campus of buildings.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (376)
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Long Island, New York
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
145 helpful votes 145 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 17, 2014

I stayed at the Villas at the Grand Floridian from December 15-20, 2013 in a Studio, room 1415.
The Villas at the Grand Floridian are the Disney Vacation Club (“DVC”), i.e. timeshare, portion of the Grand Floridian and opened in October 2013. The Villas are a relatively small building on the Grand Floridian property, located near the Wedding Chapel and Spa.
The Villas are promoted as DVC’s ultra-luxury timeshare. Indeed, it is a step up from the other DVC properties. The rooms have bath robes, a bigger (46”) TV, fancier toiletries, a TV in the bathroom mirror (more a gimmick than a useful addition), and fancier furnishings. All staff were, of course, extremely friendly and courteous.
The property itself is beautiful, with a nice lobby, beautiful zero entry pool with a neat water slide, a children’s splash area, a beach, and pool snack bar. You also have access to all the amenities at the Grand Californian, including their pool, hot tub, restaurants, entertainment and stores in their lobby, and Monorail station.
My only experience in the restaurants at Grand Floridian was at the counter service Gasparilla, where kosher meals are available, and managers Christos and Boris could not have been more helpful. Gasparilla also has an outdoor eating area overlooking the Magic Kingdom’s castle, and you can see the Magic Kingdom fireworks from there nightly.
My Studio was quite nice. The bed was comfortable, the pillows adequate. The TV was big, and now Disney has many channels thanks to satellite TV. The room was an adequate size for me, but I think a family of four would find it very tight. And if the fold down bed (located in the TV stand) is used, there will be even less space. There is the usual DVC kitchenette: sink, toaster, coffee maker, microwave oven, mini fridge, manual can opener, etc.
The bathroom has 2 showers, one a beautiful stall with hand held and rain forest shower heads, the other a shower/tub combo. There are sliding pocket doors between the stall/sink and commode/tub sections, so both can be used at the same time.
Another plus is that since the building is rather small, there are no endless hallways like at some other Disney resorts. Even though my room was at the far end of the hall, I was able to get to the laundry room, move my clothes from washer to dryer, and get back to my room all during a commercial break on TV.
That being said, there were several quirks in the design of the room: 1. There is no dresser. The only storage is 2 draws under the bed, one of which opens only part way due to being blocked by the night stand. Not only do I doubt this is enough for 4 people, but to check if you have everything out of the drawers, you have to get down on the floor! This is definitely not a “luxury” situation; 2. There was no clothing hook near the stall shower. That means no place to hang your clothes or the towel. A bizarre omission; 3. The only place to put your luggage is the space in front of the “lock out” door in the hallway by the room entrance. That was fine for me as a solo traveler, and actually made the room look neater, but if you have 4 bags, I don’t know where you’d put them; 4. The mini fridge has no freezer section. The concierge assured me that the middle shelf was designated by the manufacturer as the freezer section. But the manufacturer’s website makes no mention of a freezer section for this unit, and the shelves are wire, which means if you set the temperature low enough to freeze the middle shelf, the air circulates and freezes everything in the fridge! I am only making an issue of this because for religious dietary reasons I bring a lot of my own food, and this fridge was a bit of an inconvenience. Other DVC properties have mini-fridges with freezer sections.
So my bottom line on the Villas: it’s up to you if you want to pay the hefty premium for plusher amenities, more dining options, and Monorail convenience. If you are traveling with children, I would suggest you look into the one bedroom, as the Studio is going to be cramped. I checked out one, and it was beautiful.

Room Tip: Ask for a floor with the ice machine and laundry.
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Balcombe, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
77 reviews 77 reviews
58 hotel reviews
Reviews in 62 cities Reviews in 62 cities
107 helpful votes 107 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 17, 2014

We travelled with our Grandchildren and their parents and had two rooms on Club Level in the main Building.

Initial arrival was spoilt by an extremely grumpy Bellman who was expecting a tip but since I only had $50 he was out of luck. Check in was quite swift as we by passed the main desk and were taken to Club level where we were checked in. That was where the fun started. Disney are introducing 'Magic bands' which are worn like a wristwatch. Each band is personalised with your name, room number and it can be used for purchases and park entrance. Somehow, I had been allocated a room with my son in law and my wife was in the room to be occupied by my daughter and the two grandchildren ! To sort this out proved almost impossible so for the 3 day stay there was total confusion every time the bands were used.

The rooms are pleasant with all of the facilities one would expect, but the whole room is in need of updating and renovation. The ancient spa bath did not work and could not be repaired, the shower was pretty hopeless, the chrome plate had worn off off the bath rail, the grout on the wall tiles was stained, the lighting was poor and the control for the heat-lamp was like that found on a 1950's radio.

The main room area was OK but it was the little things like chipped furniture, broken Mickey Mouse table lamp, improvised security lock on the balcony doors, ancient telephones, empty old fashioned mini bar, to name but a few things.

Breakfast is included in the rate and it was a good spread. A good variety of snacks were available at specific times of the day, with wines and soft drinks on a 'Help Yourself' basis. The final snack period had an assortment of help yourself spirits. Complimentay wines and soft drinks were also available outside of the specified snack times.

Our package included snacks, fast food and served meals on a daily basis but it does become a bit confusing knowing exactly what was a snack and what was a meal.

The first evening meal in the main Building was a disaster. The service was awful, the meal cold and served in batches rather than all meals arriving simultaneously. I asked for a bottle of Cabernet sauvignon and the waiter kindly chose a bottle of the most expensive, which presumably made him more money from the 18% service charge. A lesson to be learnt here is always choose your own even if you are unfamiliar with American wines.

The second evening we used the Princess experience restaurant. The was a memorable meal for all of the wrong reasons but our 6 year old granddaughter loved it.

On the third evening we could not get booked into any restaurant except at Wilderness lodge which was a 20 minute bus ride away. Eventually we opted for a Burger in the room and an early night.

We used, or rather tried to use the Magic bands in the parks and generally there was a problem of some sort with at least one of our party. My guess is we wasted about 5 hours in total trying to sort out magic Band problems.Besides that, there were so many closed rides the whole experience was rather a let down.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bensalem, Pennsylvania
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2014

Stayed at the GF in October, it was not a first choice, it is definitely more for princesses than pirates. If you have little boys with extra energy, chances are you will not feel like you fit the style. The music at night was nice, the balcony awesome to see fireworks from the main bldg. There was a man who brought snacks to concierge area at night I forget his name but he was the only genuinely nice person there, very nice man. We were on the second floor which was confusing because it had it's own elevator, strange. The first two days I was incredibly dizzy from the lines in the wallpaper throughout the building. The staff there to help concierge guests, definitely very phony, the one does that blink non stop with phony smile like he was just some angry mangry. Some celebrity aka "important person" was there so you could see there was a lot of fuss over this person, instead of the ones who had to save to pay their dues to stay in a "top hotel".

Polynesian is best for fun and relaxing, GF maybe for honeymooners and princess tea, maybe business meetings.
We stayed at Shades of Green the first night which the staff at the Grand Floridian could learn a lot from....in fact, after promising to get our luggage from Shades of Green to GF they claimed this was false gave us a really hard time refusing to get our luggage moved, told us to just walk it over, totally rude put us on hold, hung up phones, even for the bellman at Shades of Green they were useless, so thee bellman at Shades of Green picked up the slack for the GF service and brought our stuff over, should have just stayed there.

Room Tip: Main concierge building is not bad, just not for us at all.
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Texas
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2014

Stayed there for 2014 RunDisney Marathon week. Great to have access to Monorail for Magic Kingdom and easy trasnsport to EpCot. The Marathon buses work GF, Shades of Green and Polynesian resort, so quick route to get to Expo/Registration. We did the Club level and the food/drinks (SCONES!) were fantastic. They have Expresso machine which helps get the day going. The hottub at main pool has great jets for working sore muscles and you will meet many other runners there. Pool bar is great also.

Must also take in the Senses Spa - not cheap, but the service and facility is fantastic.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ocoee, Florida
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2014

This review is of the NEW Grand Floridian Vacation Club Villas. We stayed in a two bedroom villa for the 2014 Disney Marathon Weekend. The resort was in great condition and still smelled new. One could still sense the newness in the landscaping but these will eventually start to grow and never be noticed again. The quality of thought that went into the villa complex is high; from the unique Mary Poppins themed Penguin Fountain in the lobby to the umbrella floor pointed above the elevators. Folks may complain about the walk to the main part of the GF complex for a meal or transportation but honestly, that separation adds charm and more importantly; quietness. The rooms are very unique with hidden twin murphy beds to a very refreshing bubble tub and huge walk in showers. We had a regular view villa so the 3 year old in our party was mesmerized with the regular passing of the monorail across the drive. The complex is part of the DVC system but one can still rent a few of the villas through central reservations. The convenience of being 5 minutes from Magic Kingdom is huge. We will be returning.

Room Tip: The non-water rooms will overlook the drive in front of the complex - but they are very quiet.
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2014

We were a family of 7 who stayed in two adjoining rooms in the club level. This was in a special building right next to the main building. We were on the 3rd floor and could look down to the first floor where all the tables were set up for the food. Our rooms were spacious and clean. The bathroom had lots of large towels and a wonderful mirror to put on your makeup each day. There is also a hairdryer so you do not need to take your own. There are plenty of outlets too.
We ate a continental breakfast each day in the lower level and it was great. The location was perfect to get to everything. Everyone working there was very helpful and curteous.
We had dinner with Cinderella and her sisters one night and the buffet was fabulous! Strongly recommend that. The only thing I did not like was the bed. I found it far too hard. Again everything else was Perfect!!!!!

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa

Address: 4401 Floridian Way, Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, FL 32830
Location: United States > Florida > Central Florida > Orlando
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#18 Spa Hotel in Orlando
#19 Luxury Hotel in Orlando
#26 Romantic Hotel in Orlando
#46 Business Hotel in Orlando
#50 Family Hotel in Orlando
#52 Top resorts Hotel in Orlando
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa 4.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa is a Victorian-style Disney Deluxe Resort distinguished as the flagship hotel of Walt Disney World Resort and offering world-class dining, entertainment and luxurious accommodations in its 6 striking red-gabled buildings. This magnificent hotel sits along the white-sand shores of Seven Seas Lagoon. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Disney Grand Floridian Resort
Grand Floridian Resort
Grand Floridian Disney
Disneys Grand Floridian Hotel
Grand Floridian Orlando
Disney Grand Floridian Hotel
Grand Floridian Hotel Orlando

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