Walt Disney World’s Gateway Hotels

Walt Disney World’s Gateway Hotels

Blog contribution by Meredith Michler, Travel Advisor – The Mouse Detectives

For those of us with the love of travel running through us, there is always that yearning for more. More knowledge, more adventure, and as Elsa would put it more going, “into the unknown.” 

As authorized Disney vacation planners we are expected to keep up to date with the latest travel news and training courses as part of our yearly Disney College of Knowledge assessments. Not only do we gain more expertise to help you, our clients, but also earn the privilege to go on tours and trips to further our Disney knowledge. 

Recently, my family went to Walt Disney World and I had an opportunity to partake in a tour of Disney Gateway Resorts. At the time, I didn’t know which resorts I would be visiting, nor did I know any other agents I would be on the tour with, but I felt this opportunity was meant for me. My children and my husband headed to the Lego Store at Disney Springs while I strolled to the bus stop to meet my fellow travelers for the next 5 hours. 

So, why a Disney Gateway Resort? Well, sometimes families request a resort that is the calm away from the crowds, doesn’t have Disney theming, possibly their first choice in resorts is not available, or they are looking for a more cost-effective price per night. 

A few things I learned from my five-hour tour: Disney Gateway Resorts offer similar amenities as staying on Disney grounds such as 60-day Fastpass+ Reservations and access to Extra Magic Hours in the parks. You will not be able to purchase the dining plan; that, unfortunately is a perk of staying at a Disney owned and operated resort.  Most have shuttle service to the parks each day on a rotating schedule, although some hotels will charge a daily fee. Sunday brunch with the characters? Enjoy character dining, walk the Skybridge to Disney Springs, or watch nighttime firework spectaculars all from the comfort of your resort.

We started our tour at the Springhill Suites and Towneplace Suites by Marriott. These are located adjacent to one another in Flamingo Crossings. These resorts are moderately priced, and the rooms are complete with workspace, sleep space, and some rooms are provided with a fully equipped kitchen. 

The next stop on our agent tour was the Hilton properties of Disney Springs: Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista and Hilton Orlando Buena Vista Palace. These two deluxe resorts are connected to Disney Springs via the Skybridge. Did someone say a room with a view of the fireworks, a pool with a lazy river, and character breakfast on Sundays? Well, Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista Palace is your one stop shop for all these amenities plus more! 

Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista and Hilton Orlando Buena Vista Palace

Lastly, we arrived at the crown jewel of all hotels! As we pulled into one of the properties, I was awestruck. This hotel has been on my own personal bucket list for quite some time, and I am so thrilled to have been given the opportunity to tour this amazing resort. Nestled within the Golden Oak community, residing in an Orlando oasis, is the only Five Diamond Awarded property within 150 miles of Orlando.  At Four Seasons Orlando enjoy a 5-acre water park, a complimentary kids’ camp, world class dining, the only adult-only pool on Disney property, a Tom Fazio golf course, an incredible spa, and much more! 

Four Seasons Orlando

Fun Video on What to Expect at the Four Seasons Orlando

That was the icing on the cake. When the day was complete, I met my family at the Wilderness Lodge where my children were playing with their new Lego sets. We had dinner at Geyser Point, then my oldest and I headed to the Magic Kingdom to catch Extra Magic Hours and caught the last ferry back to the resort at midnight. I’ll save those details another day.  😉 

On your next stay, will you be willing to try a Disney Gateway? 

Thank you so much to Meredith for contributing this blog post! Contact her for complimentary Disney vacation planning services at meredith@themousedetectives.com !

Disney Vacations by Meredith Michler – Our 1st Sponsor!

We are thrilled to announce our very first sponsor – Mouse Detectives by Meredith Michler, specializing in planning Disney vacations! Meredith is officially our go-to Travel Advisor for Disney vacations. (Check out her ad here on the right side of our website!) We will also be featuring Instagram posts and stories with Meredith. While I will always be sharing my personal Disney guides with you, Meredith can take it to the next level by taking care of booking your vacation as a complimentary service. Continue reading “Disney Vacations by Meredith Michler – Our 1st Sponsor!”

Galaxy’s Edge Guide

Galaxy’s Edge Guide
Bright suns! Here it is – my first Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge blog post including my go-to guide and the beginning of a tour of the land! I had heard Disney was going to randomly be announcing its Annual Passholder Preview for Galaxy’s Edge via email. At the end of July on a Thursday morning at 9am I got that email. 9:33am I officially had us set for this special event! It was a tricky process waiting in virtual queues as the lottery happened, but we are so thankful it was meant to be for us! A few weeks later we were here & couldn’t believe it!

Continue reading “Galaxy’s Edge Guide”

Our Annual Passholder Preview of Galaxy’s Edge!

Bright suns! We were totally stoked to get the opportunity to visit Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge in Walt Disney World’s Hollywood Studios before it opened to the public! We were able to experience the new land from 3:30-9pm, rode Smuggler’s Run 3 times and enjoyed drinks at Oga’s Cantina! Check out our vlog for a complete tour and details! Subscribe to our Youtube channel if you’d like to watch more! Till the spire!