Disney’s Beach Club Resort review
In this review, I’m going to provide you with an in-depth review of The Beach Club resort at Walt Disney World. I’ll break down everything you can expect—from the decor and room accommodations to dining and proximity to the theme parks.
The goal of this article is to give you a better idea of whether The Beach Club resort is worthy of your time and money, or if you’d be better off staying at another Disney hotel.
So without further ado, let’s jump into the review by discussing this resort’s decor.
Walt Disney is known for its theming, not only within the parks, but also within the resorts, and Beach Club lives up to it’s name. Built in 1990, this deluxe resort makes you feel as if you are right on the seaside. It’s light blue coloring on the exterior immediately transports you to New England and it continues in the interior with it’s pastel colors and nautical accents in the pillows, artwork, etc.
I do have to say that I think my favorite part about the theming is that Disney took it one step farther and built the resort on Crescent Lake, a body of water that includes a small little beach where you can spend your time taking a romantic stroll with your feet in the sand or sitting on one of the many swings while watching one of Florida’s unforgettable sunsets. Although you can’t swim in the water, it really gives you the vibe that you’re on the ocean while being inland.
Although I didn’t spend too much time in the rooms, I have to say that I was impressed with the quality of the lodging. Most of the rooms have a balcony and when booking, you are given the choice of which view you’d like, including the standard view (mainly facing the parking lot), the garden view, or the lagoon view. I did stay in a standard view room and despite the fact that the room was facing the parking lot, I thought that the balcony was an extremely charming touch.
As for the rooms themselves, I have to be honest. They’re quite simple and contemporary. Although they do bring in the blue colors, it’s what you’d expect of any hotel room. Beds, a couch, an attached bathroom, and possibly one painting of a seashell. Don’t let this deter you though. With it being close to the parks, there’s a good chance that you won’t be spending most of your time in the room. It’s the perfect place to lie your head after a long day by the pool followed by drinks at Epcot.
If you do feel like splurging a bit more, The Beach Club also offers Club Level rooms. The Stone Harbor, located on the fifth floor, provides guests with a continental breakfast, complementary food and drink throughout the day and evening, and nightly turn down (they even leave chocolates on your pillow).
There are also cast members on duty throughout the day to help with any FastPass and dining reservations. If your party is larger, like many families who visit, they do offer a two bedroom club level suite that sleeps up to 7 people. Most standard rooms sleep about five.
I think that Beach Club is one of my favorite hotels due to it’s amenities. Out of all of the Disney resorts on property, Beach Club has the best pool, in my opinion. Stormalong Bay consists of 3 acres of aquatic fun including a lazy river where you can tube while you catch some rays, a water slide shaped like a pirate ship (incredibly fun, no matter what your age, trust me I tried it), three whirlpool jacuzzis, and a raised tanning deck.
Although people tend to spend most of their time playing in the parks, if you have the opportunity to spend time at Beach Club, be sure to check out the pool area. If you are visiting without children, they also offer three different leisure pools offering a bit more peace and quiet. It really has something for everyone.
Another thing that made Beach Club stand out for me was their boat rentals. You heard me correct. Boat rentals! Disney allows you rent to motorized boats to take out on Crescent Bay. They offer Sea Raycers, a Boston Whaler Montauk, and a pontoon boat, with prices ranging from $32-$45 per half an hour.
The Sea Raycers allow for anyone who is 12 and over to become captain for a day. If you’ve got the kiddos and you feel like sailing yourself, the Boston Whaler Montauk and Sun Tracker pontoon boats allow for anyone over 18 to drive and can fit up to 10 guests depending on the boat. Once on the water, you’ll be able to explore the bay like never before.
Later that night, once you’re cleaned up and winding down after a day by the pool or at the parks, be sure to head to the beach where you will often find movies under the stars and a campfire where you can roast marshmallows. A truly memorable way to end a busy day.
The Beach Club offers a wide variety of dining options, most included on the dining plan.
1) Beaches & Cream
I think Beaches & Cream just might happen to be one of my favorite places to eat at Disney World. It might have to do with the fact that I have quite the sweet tooth and Beaches & Cream is the perfect spot to treat it. This retro hot spot is famous for it’s “Kitchen Sink,” an ice cream dessert served in a mini sink that consists of 8 scoops of ice cream, cake, brownies, cookies, peanut butter, hot fudge, three sauces, bananas, cherries, sprinkles, and a whole can of whipped cream to top it all off.
Talk about one heck of a dessert.
If that’s looking like too much, they also have sundaes, shakes, and other desserts such as banana bread and brownies. Okay, okay, enough of the sugar. They also do have diner food such as burgers, patty melts, chili, and sandwiches. I do have to warn you though. Beaches & Cream can be extremely hard to get a reservation for.
They tend to book out fairly quickly so once you have your Disney trip booked, be sure to take a look at the dining reservations that are open. They do take people who walk up if they can fit you but you might have to wait for quite awhile. They also offer a window for to go ice cream orders if you feel like taking your sweets to the pool or arcade next door, something I’d highly recommend doing.
2) Cape May
Cape May is the character dining offered on site where you can meet characters such as Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Pluto, and Goofy. Not only is this a better way to meet some of the original characters but the menu is incredibly large.
It is buffet style and serves both breakfast and dinner. In the mornings they offer pastries, fruit, cereal, Mickey pancakes (the best part, of course), etc. As for dinner, they do continue with the ocean theming and offer a seafood selection as well as a carving station and pasta.
I personally love character dining for breakfast rather than dinner, however, you can’t go wrong with either and it is much easier than waiting in the long lines in Magic Kingdom to meet some of your favorites.
3) Hurricane Hanna’s Grill
Hurricane Hanna’s is a quick service restaurant located right next to Stormalong Bay where you can find a quick bite to eat or more importantly a frosty beverage to sip on while you get your tan on. I decided on the piña colada when I was visiting and was not disappointed. It was a the perfect drink to cool me down in the Florida heat.
4) Beach Club Marketplace
Beach Club Marketplace is a small counter restaurant with a very limited menu. For breakfast (from 7 AM – 11 AM), they offer pastries and breakfast sandwiches. As for “dinner” (11 AM – 11 PM), they offer flatbreads, sandwiches, and salads.
I think the best part about the Marketplace is the convenience. Not only does the counter serve food if you’re feeling like a more low-key meal, but the store itself also includes other snacks that you can get to go, alcohol, and other beverages of your choice. It’s almost like a small convenient store within the hotel.
5) Martha’s Vineyard
If you’re enjoying Disney as an adult and you feel like a glass of wine, Martha’s Vineyard is your go to spot. Many of Disney’s moderate and deluxe resorts offer a lounge to visit where you can enjoy drinks, appetizers, and live music.
Martha’s Vineyard is a smaller area with a handful of chairs and couches and the menu includes things such as wine, cocktails, and appetizers. I’d say that the highlight of the appetizers is the cheese plate. It really fits the theming of a wine bar. As for the prices, I’d say that they’re actually extremely reasonable, something that can be a bit harder to come by at Disney.
Most glasses of wine will run you anywhere between $8 and $13 a glass. Unfortunately, unlike most restaurants at The Beach Club, Martha’s Vineyard does not accept the dining plan so you will have to pay separately.
There’s something very comforting about staying on Disney property. Not only do you feel safe but it also makes things way easier. Whether you’re transporting three kids and their strollers or you’re attending the parks by yourself, The Beach Club offers extremely easy transportation to two of the WDW parks.
When I visited in September, it was during the Food and Wine Festival at Epcot, so I knew that I had to take advantage of it’s close proximity to the park. It is a short three minute walk to the International Gateway at the World Showcase entrance of Epcot. If you’re attending one of the festivals or just plan on drinking around the world, this makes things so much easier on you. If you’re not one for walking, there is also a boat that can take you into Epcot that runs until an hour after the park closes.
Hollywood Studios is the second park that you can find easy transportation to. If you walk down the pier that lies between The Beach Club and Yacht Club, you will find a loading dock where you can hop on one of the boats to Hollywood Studios. I do have to admit though, waiting for these can take awhile. They aren’t exactly the fastest boats in the water and there is usually a bit of a line to get onto the boat. In the end, I do find it to be easier than the buses.
If you’re looking to visit any of the other parks, water parks, or resorts, your best option would be the bus system. Although it sounds like a simple concept, these wait times can get a bit lengthy. Or at least they feel like forever. Much longer than the wait time for the boats. WDW’s bus system is the number one preferred way to get to and from each park so there will most likely be a line for every single park.
I’ve also found myself waiting around for the bus to pick me up, with buses coming every 10-15 minutes or so depending on your destination. If you’re looking to go to Animal Kingdom or Magic Kingdom for the day, I recommend going before opening (the buses run 45 minutes before park opening) in order to beat the crowds as much as you can. Of course, many people have the same idea. The earlier, the better.
Overall, The Beach Club is worth every penny in my opinion.
It’s theming truly makes you feel as if you are in New England and they carry this into the decor, the dining and the pool. Although the rooms are pretty basic, the amenities such as the pool, the private beach, and the closeness to two major Disney parks, you will enjoy your time immensely.
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