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Thread: DVCNews Debates: Best & Worst of Grand Floridian

  1. #1
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    Default DVCNews Debates: Best & Worst of Grand Floridian



    Disney's Grand Floridian Resort is viewed by many as the flagship resort at Walt Disney World. And the Disney Vacation Club component added in 2013 is a worthy namesake to that property. Elegant touches and expensive furnishings are visible throughout the villas. However the villa wing is also somewhat isolated from the main resort, lacking its own amenities. Per-night room costs reached an all-time high, yet the small size of the DVC build out makes it one of the hardest properties to book at 7 months.



    Topic: What are most favorite and least favorite aspects of the Grand Floridian villas?

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  3. #2
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    Red face Great time at Grand Floridian

    The Grand Floridian is our home resort, so I can't speak to the 7 month window, but we loved our stay this past summer.
    Pros
    • Access to the monorail
    • Even at the DVC resort, you get the beautiful decor for which GF is known.
    • Access to some of the best restaurants at Disney world
    • Access to wonderful Spas and shops
    • Beautiful pools
    • Double bathrooms (bath toilet/shower sink)
    • Traditional decor with modern features (like TV built in to bathroom mirror)
    • DVC staff is wonderful and attentive. Never saw any lines!
    • Covered walkway to main building giving adequate protection from sun/most rain.
    • Bus stop area nice with benches ETA monitors (for non-monorail destinations)

    Cons
    • Separate building from main resort, so you need to walk to main building for restaurants, shops, spas, etc.
    • Awkward to get to monorail. You need to go to the second floor of the main resort to enter monorail.
    • Same sardine busing for which Disney is known
    • Would have liked to see the double bathrooms where both had sinks similar to Polynesian (in function - not necessarily size, dimension, decor, etc.)


    I give it out of 5.
    Last edited by eli1rju; 01-09-2017 at 09:02 AM.

  4. #3
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    The Grand Floridian has always been my favorite resort. So when the new DVC building opened, I couldn't wait to get a reservation, even with the high points. It took me a long time before I finally was able to book 2 nights. I wanted more nights but settled for the 2 rather than getting nothing.

    Pros: pure luxury, a monorail resort, the main lobby, boat transportation to the MK

    Cons: no availability at 7-months, no restaurant in the DVC building

  5. #4
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    We also own at the VGF, so the 7 month window hasn't been an issue for us.

    Pros:

    Hands down my favorite thing about the resort is the dedicated cast members that work concierge and handle check in. They're fabulous and there until 10:00 pm. They've helped me so much.

    The penguin fountain in the lobby, it keeps my daughter occupied and happy when I don't want her watching tV

    The elevator is large, convenient and fast

    The rooms are beautiful

    the laundry room never has a line

    Lovely walk to/from the Poly

    Great views of the water pageant/fireworks even from standard view rooms.

    Cons:

    Wish the closer feature pool/kiddie play area had a hot tub. The one hot tub near the quiet pool gets full and when the temperature is a little chilly, it's a longer walk than I would like.

    I hate the TV in the bathroom mirror, I find it distracting even off. >>;

    Some of the monorail facing rooms are noisy.

    No walking path to Magic Kingdom

    We own at the VGF and Poly and so far those two are my favorites of the DVC we have tried. (we've also tried Kidani, Jambo, BLT, and Beach Club.)

  6. #5
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    Default Love the GF

    We own here as well as the Grand Californian, and I couldn't be happier with either. We have owned here since 2012 and this is actually our first time staying here -- we're at the GF right now! Having just switched from Saratoga Springs, which is a fine resort in its own right, I must say the GF is a head above. Monorail and boat service to MK are real game changers. The lobbies are beautiful, and I don't really mind the isolation, although I prefer DVCs when they are integrated into resort hotels like at the Grand Californian, since you get hotel-level service all the time. The rooms are impeccably furnished, love the crown moldings, marble tile floor. The mirror tv seems a bit hokey, but if you don't like hokey you probably aren't a big Disney fan to begin with.
    Howell

  7. #6
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    Red face Felt isolated

    It has always been one of my goals to stay at GF. Since I was little and watching it roll by from the monorail I would be so envious of the people staying here. I am a newbie to DVC (FEB 2016) but for my birthday we booked two nights in a studio. It was so awesome to drive into the resort only to feel like we were being diverted to something not the GF. I mean the DVC Villas were grand and looked the part but due to the distance from the main building, I felt like we were not really at the GF. The room was nice. I had heard about the TVs in the mirror and so wanted to check that out. We somehow were booked into a first floor handicap accessible room. The layout was a little strange and different from the many youtube videos I had been watching before our stay and I was honestly disappointed to some degree. The room wasn't cleaned. There were cob webs hanging and dust on the TV...oh and the TV..if you turned on the bathroom TV first...then the main TV out in the room would not work. Had maintenance take a look but could not find anything. I even had to point out the location of the TV in the mirror. The distance from the main house was somewhat of a pain if we wanted to get a refill of our drink cups or just roam around the resort. The shops are nice but the style was limiting. My home resort is Poly because I have always loved it so we bought in at poly. Poly is one of the resorts which the main check in is at the same building or ceremonial house as non-dvc stayers. I would love to stay at GF again and will do so soon and maybe this next time it will live up to its name for us.

    pros:
    Monorail
    atmosphere

    Con:
    distance from main building
    feeling of not actually being at Grand Floridian.

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  9. #7
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    We stayed at GF pre-DVC and didn't care for it - the CM's were nice enough and the facility was clean but everything seemed to close early. We stopped in the QS and the CM said very loudly, "We are closing - please choose quickly from the available items." My husband turned and left but I knew he was hungry so I hunted around. I remarked to the cashier that we hadn't realized everything closed so early and she said many people say that - or something to that effect.

    When DVC built at GF DH immediately responded, "One place we won't be staying." We have walked thru and he concurred the fountain was cute and the area nice but he said the monorail was too far away for him to consider the venue a monorail location. He just doesn't like to be patronized or chastised plus we enjoy spending a late night in the lounge enjoying a nice view which we couldn't as everything was closed. So we walked over to the Poly, whose lounge was open.

    So, Pro: good for DVC marketing but Con: not for us

    Janet & Dan


  10. #8
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    We have only stayed at VGF once and really enjoyed our stay. We probably haven't returned because we own at BLT and can book there at the 11 month mark. Getting into VGF from October through the first week of January at the 7 month mark, so it is not likely we will stay there regularly.

    Best of VGF:


    • On the monorail, which gives you the option of dining at two other resorts or MK. Plus you can easily get to Ft. Wilderness or Wilderness Lodge either by bus or ferry from MK. And there some wonderful restaurants right at GF
    • Nice size rooms that are well laid out. I especially like have a separate shower in the studio.
    • Beautiful lobbies both at VGF and the main resort, GF.
    • We found it very easy to get to the monorail or the lobby of GF, but then we walked via the Beach pool and the children's water play area and went into the side entrance right by the stairs to the 2nd floor and the Birdcage elevator. We were at the monorail in 5 minutes. I doubt GF cash guests staying in one of the other buildings could get there faster.
    • The Spa and Fitness Center is right out the front door of VGF


    Worst of VGF:


    • The ferry is all the way across the resort. It might be less walking to go to the Poly.
    • The QS is really hidden and takes quite a walk to get there, but it sure has great views of the castle and the marina at GF with the out door dining.
    • The main pool is just a pool with a few water spouts , and that is where the only hot tub is located. Strange enough the pool slide is at the Beach Pool which is next to VGF. And that is a much smaller pool, and not really large enough for so many families.
    • It is a shame that the QS at the Beach pool closes so early as I think guests would get food there in the evenings. It sounded nice when it was open for breakfast and dinner when Gaspiralla Grill was being remodeled.
    --Denise

    Scheduled upcoming Disney trips:


    11/30/17 - 12/14/17 - Bay Lake Tower at the Contemporary Resort
    03/01/18 - 03/08/18 - Copper Creek at the Wilderness Lodge

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  12. #9
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    Pro: Waving to the monorail from the balcony while enjoying my morning Joe!
    GFV Monorail.jpg

    Con: High point usage.

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