The Best Walt Disney World Luxury Hotel Lobbies for Hanging Out
My Top Picks for Where to Go if You Want to Kick Back and Relax in a Walt Disney World Hotel Lobby
Most Walt Disney World Deluxe Resort hotels have pretty nice lobby areas. They’re well appointed and have the trademark Disney attention to detail, which all makes sense because this is typically your first interaction with the hotel. You’d hope they’d put their best foot forward.
Above and beyond that, however, there are a few Walt Disney World Deluxe Resort hotel lobbies that are so nice that guests actually like to spend time hanging out there. So if you see yourself as someone who likes to kick back and chill in a luxury hotel lobby, this post is for you.
The Three Best Walt Disney World Deluxe Resort Hotel Lobbies for Hanging Out
These are my top picks for welcoming Walt Disney World hotel lobbies for hanging out and relaxing.
Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
Without question, the most inviting lobby of them all is the lobby at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa.
Not only is this lobby huge, but it is loaded with comfy and cozy couches and chairs just begging for guests to sit down, relax and stay awhile. While many lobbies are transitory places (designed to make you feel at home if you have a short wait for transportation or a room), this lobby was built for comfort.
This entire lobby area was designed to be inviting and relaxing and it’s brimming with a sense of Southern hospitality (even with its Victorian flair). Not only are there loads of comfy chairs and furniture, but you are often serenaded by a pianist playing on a grand piano set right in the middle of the lobby. There is even a special area for the kids to relax, featuring kid-size furniture and a screen playing Disney cartoons.
There is a lot to look at as well, with beautiful artwork and art pieces, along with the ornate Imagineering work and the eye-catching lobby elevator.
We often head down to the Grand Floridian lobby later in the evening with the extended family to sit down, relax, have a drink — and to listen to the live music that’s usually playing. The Grand Floridian Society Orchestra sets up on a bandstand out front of Mizner’s Lounge on the second floor and the live music flows out over the cavernous lobby and fills the room with sound (as well as playing for guests who are enjoying a nightcap in Mizner’s, of course).
Visually, the Grand Floridian lobby is striking. Like the rest of this top-tier resort hotel, the lobby is bathed in the Victorian decor that marks the theme of this luxurious Walt Disney World property. If you’re looking for something to do, be sure to take a moment to appreciate the attention to detail in here: from the classic Disney scenes in the marble inlay floors, to the Hidden Mickey’s just waiting to be discovered here in the lobby.
If you are staying here (or if you happen to be in the area for a meal or show) and you are looking for a place to just sit back and relax with a nightcap (and maybe watch a few people stroll by), there is no better lobby than this one at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa. It is truly in a class of its own.
Disney’s Yacht Club Resort
Disney’s Yacht Club Resort is modelled after after an upscale seaside private club, so it shouldn’t be too surprising that the lobby area here has some very welcoming areas to relax, kick back and stay awhile.
While not cavernous and impressive in the grandiose way of Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort, the lobby at Disney’s Yacht Club Resort has much more of a private club feel. The ceilings are lower (but not too low) and the lobby has more “rooms” to it, giving it the feel of being a little more private for those who want to sit for awhile. There are some really great spots here if you are lucky enough to get one. The overall theming is club-like, with dark wood surroundings featuring a nautical theme that reflects the overall hotel yacht club profile.
Since this lobby is not usually quite as active and bustling as other Disney Deluxe Resort hotels, this is a favourite spot to just relax and enjoy the moment as part of your Walt Disney World vacation.
If you are staying in the Crescent Lake/Disney Boardwalk area, drop by to check it out.
Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
Over at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge is another very large yet cozy lobby space.
While very impressive with its towering totems and rustic beam woodwork, this lobby isn’t one that you’d necessarily make a special trip to see, since Disney’s Wilderness Lodge is not quite as easily accessed as some other hotels in the area. If you’re staying here — or if you are here for dinner at Artist Point or Whispering Canyon Cafe — you may just find yourself taking a few moments to sit down, relax and reflect on your day amidst the impressive rustic-themed design of this very impressive lobby.
The seating here is very comfortable, with lots of cushy chairs to tempt your tired self. Kids in particular love the bridge over the stream inside the lobby and there is quite a bit of space for younger ones to enjoy as well. The attention to detail in the lobby design is excellent, so it is definitely one of those areas of Walt Disney World that is worth taking the time to appreciate and explore.
Pretty much every Walt Disney World Deluxe Resort hotel has a nice lobby and there a few more in particular worth mentioning. They may not be quite as good in terms of being somewhere you’d want to go and chill for an hour, but they are still pretty nice for spending a short period of time (to have a snack or a coffee, for example).
The lobby area at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge is another that I quite like. It’s similar in many ways to the lobby at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, but it’s not quite as much of a destination, in my opinion (it is pretty isolated, by Disney standards). Still it’s a place with comfortable, cozy and inviting seating that is definitely worth visiting if you are at the resort for dinner. Disney’s Boardwalk Inn has a great lobby as well. It is well appointed and has some super comfy seating. And finally, the lobby area at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort is a good spot to take a load off and maybe enjoy a Dole Whip while you rest for a few minutes. Personally I preferred the old lobby setup with the fountain (I find the new one too transitory), but I understand why they made the changes from a hotel functionality perspective.
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Mike Belobradic, The Finer Side of Travel™
A Luxury Disney Travel Blog