Coronado Springs Resort, Disney’s only mid-priced property, is located near Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Inspired by northern Mexico and the American Southwest, the resort is divided into separate themed areas. The two- and three-story Ranchos call to mind Southwestern cattle ranches, while the two-story Cabanas are modeled after Mexican beach resorts. The multistoried Casitas embody elements of Spanish architecture found in Mexico’s great cities.
Disney’s most recent addition to the resort is Gran Destino Tower. The 545 rooms in Gran Destino Tower range from standard to deluxe, with one-bedroom and presidential suites. The public areas showcase a vibrant Spanish and Moorish design mix, with bold colors and large, open spaces. The rooms offer some of the best-designed bathrooms of Disney’s moderately priced resorts.
Gran Destino’s standard rooms are almost 20% larger than the rest of the resort. They have vinyl “hardwood” floors, large windows, good lighting, and lots of desk and storage space; rooms are also equipped with a minifridge and a Keurig coffee maker. Bathrooms have plentiful lighting and shelf space, two sinks, a huge shower, and separate areas for grooming and the toilet, allowing three people to get ready simultaneously. Our one criticism is that there’s little theming: The rooms barely differ from those at other Disney resorts.
forGran Destino has a relatively low cost for Club Level rooms, which get you access to the Chronos Club lounge. Standard rates for these rooms run $200–$300 per night less than the next-cheapest Club Level room on-property; limited-time discounts can make the price even better. The Chronos Club has fantastic views, good food throughout the day, and friendly staff. If you’re looking for some pampering on vacation, Gran Destino’s Club Level rooms are probably the best value in Walt Disney World.
The Gran Destino Tower serves as the lobby for all of Coronado Springs.
The Gran Destino Tower is also home to two lounges: the Barcelona Lounge, located on the lower lobby level, and the rooftop Dahlia Lounge.
El Centro, the former lobby of Coronado Springs, has shops, restaurants, and a conference center to its west. There are plenty of great seating areas and even a chess table.
Most of the 1,839 rooms in the Ranchos, Cabanas, and Casitas measure 314 square feet and contain two queen beds, a desk with an excellent working area, a chair, a minifridge, a coffee maker, and a vanity outside the bathroom. Sliding doors divide the main living area from the sinks, allowing three people to get ready at the same time. Bathrooms have plenty of storage. Rooms are decorated with a subtle Southwestern theme in a desert-landscape palette. No rooms have balconies. The Ranchos are far from check-in, lobby, and restaurants but close to the main pool.
My favorite area of the resort is the Casitas. The Casita 1 building has excellent views on the third and fourth floors facing the courtyard and the lagoon. Another benefit is that the building is the closest to the restaurants, the convention center, and the main lobby at Gran Destino Tower.
Half of the Casita 3 building faces the lagoon, and the East side of the building is still very close to El Centro. The preferred rooms on the second and third floors have the best lagoon views.
Coronado Springs is a vast resort surrounding a 22-acre lake. The resort has three quiet pools and one large swimming complex. The main pool features a reproduction of a Mayan step pyramid with a waterfall cascading down its side. Kids will love the main pool and the adjacent play area.
Coronado Springs has four full-service restaurants and a food court called El Mercado de Coronado. Bridges Bar & Grill inside Villa del Lago is an over-the-water bar and restaurant in the middle of Coronado Springs’ 22-acre lake, connected to the resort by three bridges.
Toledo—Tapas, Steak & Seafood is located on the rooftop of the Gran Destino Tower. Next to the Convention Center is the Mayan Grill, serving new Latin-American cuisine. The full-service Rix Sports Bar & Grill—with TVs on every wall—is perfect for those who want pub fare while catching a game.
The dining capacity and choices are just adequate for a resort this big. We suggest having a car to expand your options.
The resort is connected to other Disney destinations by bus only. Walking time from the most remote rooms to the bus stop is 8–10 minutes.
For all there is to see and do at Walt Disney World, check out The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World.
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