Vero Beach renovations under way

Work has commenced on extensive refurbishments to Disney's Vero Beach Resort, a project budgeted at more than $3.8 million.  

Disney's Vero Beach Resort

Disney's Vero Beach Resort

The Vero Beach Press Journal reports that work is under way to renovate guest room interiors at Disney's Vero Beach Resort.  

Of the nearly $4 million earmarked for this renovation, the Press Journal cites figures of $2.7 million for the main inn building, $936,000 for renovations to Building 12 which houses Disney Vacation Club villa rooms and $113,000 for the beach cabins.  Most aspects of resort guest rooms will be updated including flooring, appliances, fabrics and furniture.  

VB Refurb 2015

Vero Beach Refurb concept (subject to change)

The resort originally opened in October 1995.  This is the most extensive renovation project in its 20-year history.  

The project is expected to be completed before the end of the year.  

Vero Beach is one of several Disney Vacation Club properties scheduled for refurbishment in 2016.  Renovations are currently under way at Disney's Beach Club Villas and Disney's Animal Kingdom Villas.  Work will begin later this spring at Bay Lake Tower at Disney's Contemporary Resort.  Guest rooms at Disney's BoardWalk Villas were updated throughout 2015 and into early 2016.  

Reader Comments
New Dining at VB Not So Good -- mike 92
2017 Feb 20 01:27:04 PM
The much anticipated update to Vero Beach dining shows that DVC is still struggling with their non park resorts. Previously the big shortfall at VB was Sonya's, which was lost back in the corner and never busy, at least when we visited. Shutters was nice, a bit noisy at times, but provided a nice view of the world outside and was a great place for breakfast, which is often the most important meal for modern travelers. The Green Cabin Room was always the highlight because of its positioning on the second floor which allowed a view of the Atlantic and a great balcony. The menu wasn't extensive since the food had to be brought up from the first floor kitchen at Shutters, but the ambiance was fantastic. Lunch at the GCR was always a treat at VB, which really is a relaxing type resort.

The new operation is a big step down. Wind and Waves Grill, the revamped dining room, no longer is open to the outside, but rather a glass enclosed claustrophobic eatery using Shutters old open kitchen. It gives me the chills just to see the place. The menu is a departure from traditional Disney menus where the expense of items is offset by the size of portions. In W&W Grill the portions are small and prices high. VB is a real high end community and I'm not sure if DVC is targeting locals, but for a family of four on vacation it seems to be. The fact that Disney uses 'fusion' in its description of the Grill's menu seems to be a hint that pretentiousness is the theme.

The W&W outside bar is nice, but it is by the pool, so a quiet linch or dinner is not likely to occur. The W&W market is an odd set up - it does serve Dole Whips which is a big plus, but no DVC discounts on these. Everything else is steam table or prepared food. There are few places to eat here so it looks like the object is to take food back to your unit. If cafeteria style food works for you, this is ok, although the way some items qualify for the DVC discount and some don't is irksome. I'd rather get no discount then discover that the item I want doesn't qualify.

Finally, the GCR is now closed until 5:00 PM. This defies logic, especially in the winter months. The GCR balcony was always a hit at lunch, or early evening with its wonderful views and small eatery ambiance. In winter, after 5:00 PM the balcony is worthless because its dark and often too cold. The menu is weak as well. I suspect that the GCR was too popular and Disney thought taking too much business from Shutters.

As a DVC member since 92, a VB member as well and a VB neighbor for much of the year, it seems that Disney has always struggled with dining at its non park resorts. VB with the Inn is especially problematic because of its traditional hotel style environment and the reality that the best lodgings in the resort are the top floors of the Inn - it's a beach resort, and the best accommodations with a beach view are in the Inn. I've always thought that a beach front hotel should provide a good place for breakfast (who wants to start the day of a vacation cooking?) a nice place for lunch and a fun place for dinner. I also think that people on beach vacations like casual lunches and dinners where casual clothes are the standard dress. In other words we're on vacation, at the beach, lets have some fun. The W&W Grill misses that mark by a mile and the new GCR hours do as well.
Re: Vero Beach renovations under way -- christianweecare
2017 Feb 20 02:21:02 PM
We will be at VB in May. It's our tradition every year. We had wondered if the refurbs to dining had been completed. It's not sounding very good from your post. We stayed in a refurbed ocean inn room last May which was very nice. We were hoping for positives on the dining front, as well.
Re: Vero Beach renovations under way -- denlo
2017 Feb 20 02:45:38 PM
I am sorry to hear that they have closed the Green Cabin Room until evenings. I guess they are making it to more of a lounge than the all day restaurant/lounge it was when we were there in October.

What was the GCR like before the construction started on the restaurants and pool bar?
VB is still really nice -- mike 92
2017 Feb 20 02:53:31 PM
It looks like most of the renovations may be complete. i live across the street and go there at least once a month. No sign of the construction equipment that was present earlier, so hopefully rooms are finished. The W&W bar area still has some temporary fencing issues with the pool area - since they serve alcohol, the separation has to be permanent, but even that should be finished soon. My biggest concern with the new dining is the Grill as a dinner venue and the restricted hours at GCR. For breakfast the grill is probably ok since morning is a hectic time. Since you've been there before you probably remember the 'porch' area at Shutters that was next to the outside walkway. That is now gone and replaced with an indoor walkway that takes you past the Grill and through a door to the new outside bar. What I don't like, and this is of course personal, is that the Grill now has floor to ceiling glass walls, so the walkway to the outside bar is separated from the grill by a sheet of glass. The passageway has chairs to sit it for what reason i don't know but watching people sleeping or reading travel brochures from where I'm dining isn't for me. My impression of the place is chrome, stone, dark and cold - some may like, but i preferred Shutters. In May when we're on DST, it will be daylight until around 9:00 and warm, so the GCR balcony will be more welcoming. Our bartender did say that the GCR menu would be expanding soon, but right now you cannot get burgers, wings and flatbreads, previously a staple of GCR.

Hurricane Matthew and a recent storm did some damage to the beach, but for DVC VB is was actually a good thing as the lower walkway is once again free of sand, at least partially - Years ago it was buried by another hurricane, but mother nature has returned at least some of it. Also Disney and the town of VB have done a fabulous job of restoring the beach - it is better than i've seen in 15 years. We love DVC VB, so don't take my comments about the dining changes as a criticism of the entire resort. Along with OKW, we think it is the best resort in the entire DVC universe (haven't been to Aulani, so that's an exception). I'm sure your stay will be as much fun as ever.
Green Cabin Room -- mike 92
2017 Feb 20 03:04:23 PM
Denio - aside from periodic menu changes the GCR has been the same since we first started going there over 20 years ago. On Saturday nights they had entertainment, usually a local solo act, and you couldn't find a seat. My idea of a fun spot on a vacation. They still have occasional entertainment. Room 2222 in the Inn is the best room on the property because it's right next store to GCR, I could be out of bed and on a bar stool in 30 seconds or less :-)

Seriously, it was always a nice gathering place. We've lived in VB, across the street from the resort for five years, and going to GCR for lunch was always fun - nice food, really nice wait staff and bar tenders. It was just a friendly place. The recent change in hours and menu is the most dramatic and we'll just have to see how it works out. After DST returns we might start going back for early dinners, especially if the menu improves, but there are so many great places to do lunch nearby that its off our list for now.

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