If you follow me on social media, you’ll be well aware that Charlie and I spent a wonderful week last week at Walt Disney World Resort, Florida. We were out there for the Awaken Summer press event and I have SO MUCH news to share about all the new and incredible things that are now open or coming up at Walt Disney World, including a sneaky peek at the gorgeous new evening shows and activities at Animal Kingdom, the new Frozen Ever After attraction coming to Epcot, lovely Disney Springs, and lots of fab new Star Wars stuff too. First things first, though, I thought I’d tell you about the delicious BoardWalk area.
We started our journey being VERY spoiled by Virgin Atlantic. We travelled on Charlie’s 18th birthday and were treated to the Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse with is fabulous. The ladies in there were lovely and made Charlie a gorgeous cake (complete with candle). The Clubhouse and V-room are such a fab way to start your holiday – I thoroughly recommend splashing out – you get yummy food, lovely cocktails, a nice place to sit down, and loads of complimentary extras: at the Clubhouse there’s even a spa where you can get pampered before your holiday!
On the way, I wanted to buy some Dior foundation from Duty Free, and the lovely ladies on the Dior counter even gave Charlie a free sample when they found out it was his birthday!
I’m a huge Virgin Holidays and Virgin Atlantic fan and this time we flew Premium Economy and got to SIT UPSTAIRS! The birthday boy was pretty excited by all this as you can imagine, and on his very first day as an 18 year old, he even got to sip the welcome glass of champagne – what a great start to the trip. Before we knew it, we’d hopped aboard Disney’s Magical Express and arrived at our hotel.
I’ve always loved Disney’s BoardWalk – the resort is set right on the waterfront of Crescent Lake and the promenade is themed after those pretty turn of the century Atlantic City seaside resorts, with shops, restaurants and bars dotted all along it. It’s just gorgeous to wander along at any time of day, sipping a frozen margarita from BoardWalk Joe’s Marvellous Margaritas (which is precisely what we did as soon as we arrived), or maybe nibble on something delicious from the BoardWalk Bakery.
We stayed at Disney’s BoardWalk Inn, which is a deluxe resort, very cleverly spanning much of the quarter mile promenade by blending in with the different looking buildings along the way. When you’re inside the BoardWalk Inn, it’s really surprising how far it reaches along the BoardWalk as you walk along different corridors! Checking in to our room, we found that Mickey Mouse had been in and left us some magical surprises!
There’s some building work going on at the moment, especially around the area where the lovely Flying Fish restaurant is, just at the entrance to the BoardWalk Inn. The Flying Fish is currently closed, which is a shame, but we ate a couple of times at the Italian themed Trattoria Al Forno, a casual, table dining restaurant. We were really impressed with the dining here – it also has a great wine list and AMAZING breakfasts!
As you continue around the BoardWalk area, you reach the pretty Yacht Club and Beach Club resorts and also the Swan and Dolphin resort where Laura and I stayed on our Visit Florida trip a while ago. The lake gives direct access by boat to both Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios (you can also walk easily into Epcot from the BoardWalk), meaning it’s in a fabulous, central location. Of course, if you want to reach the other parks, the usual complimentary Disney Bus service offers a hop on/hop off service.
We visited Disney’s Yacht Club Resort for dinner at the Yachtsman Steakhouse on a couple of occasions and the food there is just incredible. Of course they do amazing steaks, but some of their classic appetisers are definitely worth a mention, not least this incredible wedge salad, which was practically a whole lettuce, topped with bacon, Shropshire Blue cheese, tomato chutney and a delicious ramp (spring onion) green goddess dressing. Delicious!
This is the lovely beach by the Beach Club just after sunrise. So pretty and peaceful.
The BoardWalk Inn itself has a fabulous carnival-themed pool called Luna Park, with a huge waterslide, water-spouting elephants and much more, but we were happy to kick back and relax by the quiet pool, which was mostly deserted.
Some of the rooms overlook the BoardWalk – ours overlooked the front of the hotel – we could even see the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror in the distance during the day!
On the lake, you can rent little boats called Sea Raycers from the Bayside Marina and go whizzing about on your own ($30 for 30 minutes) which I highly recommend doing – you can go all the way around the BoardWalk area and out past the Swan and Dolphin – it’s great fun and the breeze is super refreshing after a day at the parks!
Such a lovely afternoon!
Stay tuned for loads more from Walt Disney World Resort, Florida, including news of a couple of whole new parks that are coming to the resort!
Where we stayed:
14 nights in Orlando from £2,899pp, including car hire
14 nights in Orlando with Virgin Holidays including scheduled Virgin Atlantic flights from London Gatwick to Orlando, accommodation at the 5V Disney’s Boardwalk Inn with car hire included. Price is per person based on two adults travelling and sharing a standard room, including all applicable taxes and fuel surcharges which are subject to change. Price is based on a departure on January 18 2017. To book: visit www.virginholidays.co.uk, call the Hotline 0330 0378269, or visit one of our 110 stores in Debenhams, House of Fraser, Tesco, Sainsbury’s or stores nationwide.
14 nights in Orlando from £665pp
14 nights in Orlando with Virgin Holidays including scheduled Virgin Atlantic flights from London Gatwick to Orlando, accommodation at the 3V Disney’s Pop Century Resort with car hire included. Price is per person based on two adults and two children travelling and sharing a standard room, including all applicable taxes and fuel surcharges which are subject to change. Price is based on a departure on November 09 2016. To book: visit www.virginholidays.co.uk, call the Hotline 0330 0378269, or visit one of our 110 stores in Debenhams, House of Fraser, Tesco, Sainsbury’s or stores nationwide.
14-Day Disney Park Ticket for the price of 7
Ultimate flexibility and unbeatable value: six parks in ONE ticket – Disney’s Ultimate Ticket is the only ticket you need. Only available to purchase in the UK, you can come and go as you please to all SIX Parks at one incredible price. Disney 14-Day Ultimate Ticket for the price of Disney’s 7-Day Ultimate Ticket is available for Walt Disney World hotel bookings made until 31 Dec ’17 for arrivals throughout 2017.