You’re probably hearing all wonderful things about Disney’s brand-new Riviera resort. But we’ve got some pros and cons we want to share before you decide to stay there.
It’s a Disney Vacation Club Resort. But anyone can stay there. You can book the same way, you would book any hotel in Walt Disney World. You don’t have to have pointed to stay there. But the only rooms are going to be those Disney Vacation Club Studios villas and grand fellas. So now before you go ahead and choose to stay there, we want to make sure you know the pros and cons that we notice on our first few days at Riviera.
There are some great things about this Resort and I know people are touting it right now out there. But there are some drawbacks as well. We want to make you aware of. So, while you’re making your decision whether or not to stay at Riviera, we want to tell you about these 5 important things. And there’s an extra six the one that we’re going to throw in there as well.
Foods in Disney World Riviera Resort
Firstly, we’re going to talk about the foods in Disney World Riviera Resort. The food here really does have promise.
Breakfast in Disney World Riviera Resort
Our first meal at Riviera was the breakfast ala art with Mickey and Friends. Where you’ll find Mickey Minnie Donald And Daisy and some adorable new costumes. Along with some seriously gourmet breakfast options. Topolino Terrace, which is where the breakfast occurs is a pricier option. Breakfast is 41 bucks for adults, 24 dollars for kids 3 to 9 years old. So, the prices here are no joke.
And it’s similarly priced to the very expensive Chef Mickey’s in Disney’s Contemporary Resort. Where you also get to meet Goofy and you have an all-you-care-to-eat meal.
If you’re comparing the two the food for breakfast at Topolino Terrace is miles above a regular Disney buffet. You don’t have all those ups and downs of a Disney buffet. You’re getting up and down a million times. But also, the ups and downs of the food. Buffet food isn’t always the best. Especially as Chef Mickey’s specifically. And the atmosphere at Topolino Terrace knows is decidedly different from that loud chaotic concourse at the contempt.
But if your main priority in a character breakfast is to meet the characters rather than have a five-star meal, then chef Mickey’s does have all of your classics. They do have goofy there. We would probably give the edge to Topolino Terrace to the breakfast with Mickey and Friends. Simply because it is a higher-end meal you get to need for classic Disney characters and the atmosphere is a lot more pleasant for about the same price. As you can get a Chef Mickey’s.
Dinner at Disney World Riviera Resort
Now let’s talk dinner at Topolino Terrace. This is a clear contender for date night. The menu offers seafood and meat dishes, handmade pasta and desserts infused with French and Italian flavors. In that rooftop signature dining experience. Now Topolino Terrace breakfast is one Disney Dining Plan credit. Topolino Terrace dinner is going to be to Disney Dining Plan credit. So, it is a signature meal at dinner.
And every dish is prepared in their exclusive expo kitchen or wood-burning grill. So, it is a foodie’s dream. But also, it’s Italian and French. It’s not a crazy adventurous menu. You can probably find things for pickier eaters here as well.
This one has the potential to be one of the top foodie resorts right up there with Grand Floridian and Animal Kingdom Lodge the cocktails were excellent. The food was fresh and innovative. We have to compliment the service plus they do have some minimal fireworks views. It’s not anything like California girls’ fireworks views. But you can see some fireworks from pretty far away at Hollywood Studios and Epcot when you’re dining there.
Also, FYI a big tip on this, if you do dine at Topolino Terrace for dinner, and you’re not there during fireworks time you can return with your receipts to see those fireworks. Again, though not our spectacular show and they do not pipe into music at the moment.
Overall Topolino Terrace is a fancy meal for both breakfast and dinner. So, if you’re looking for an exceptional and elevated dining experience this is a top pick. The rest of the food options at Revere I’m not going to go into them in detail right now. We’ll get them into another post. But they are pretty good and they are higher-end. It may not necessarily be a destination for those other dining locations, other than Topolino Terrace. But if you are staying there, you’re going to have a good food experience.
Monte Cristo at Disney World Riviera Resort
Number two they do have one food item that I do want to go into in detail with you. Especially if you been to Disneyland. They do have a Monte Cristo on the menu at bar Riva. Which is technically their pool bar over at the Riviera resort. If you’ve been to Disneyland you know that Disneyland Monte Cristo at Cafe Orleans and Blue Bayou is a quintessential dining experience. It’s amazing. Not too Christian if you haven’t had one is a ham and cheese sandwich that has been battered and fried. It is delicious. And if it’s done well it’s an exceptional dining experience.
Disneyworld used to have Monte Cristo sandwiches a couple of other places. But they’ve all disappeared from the menus in the past few years. So, we’re excited to see something that looks very much like the Disneyland Monte Cristo here. You know it’s not the same there is a strawberry, sauce that is different from the blackberry sauce that is served at the Disneyland version.
And the strawberry sauce is pre-put on the sandwich. You don’t get to choose whether you have it or not the way you do in Disneyland. And you also can’t choose to have just a cheese version of the Monte Cristo the way you can in Disneyland.
That said since we don’t have anything else even approximating that sandwich in Walt Disney World. I’m pretty excited that it’s there and it should be on your kind of foodie bucket list if you’re a Monte Cristo fan. And bar Riva might just be the best pool of our property at the moment when it comes to drinking variety and quality. Good stuff there. The resort’s quick-service prima Piatto arrival some full-service spots when it comes to quality plus, they have real plates and silverware. So again, lots of good options for food here.
Park at Disney World Riviera Resort
Number three Riviera is a great resort if you aren’t a park commando. Riviera resort is truly for the person who’d rather spend some good time at the resort at the hotel versus go to the parks from rope drop to fireworks every day. There are tons of places to sit leisurely enjoy a coffee or cocktail.
There are fun activities like Bocce ball and art scavenger hunt boat races in the pool. While all resorts have activities, these were much more intriguing and geared towards a full relaxing day at the resort. If you’re the first-time visitor who wants to be at the Magic Kingdom at robe drop maybe this isn’t your choice. But if you’re a seasoned vet who’s looking to relax and enjoy some downtime and unique resort activities this is an excellent pick.
Expense in Disney World Riviera Resort
It’s insanely expensive. The lowest rack right here is $392 for a studio room in the value season. Now, these Studios only sleep two people as the only bet is a pulldown Murphy bed that transforms what’s just a sitting room into your bedroom for the evening.
You can either choose to have a couch or a bed in your room. There’s not a lot of space at all in those $392 rooms which are kind of crazy to me. And now I was just looking at Riviera for a room in January and those tower studio rooms were $600. Which is what I would pay for a much larger room at the Contemporary Resort. Where I can walk to the Magic Kingdom. Walking to a park is not an option from the riviera resort. I was shocked about the pricing here.
One bedroom is run about 900 to 1200 dollars a night. Two bedrooms run 1,300 to nearly 2,000 a night. While the three-bedroom Grand Villa starts at 2600 and goes to 4,000 per night. That’s as expensive as the overwater bungalows. Which has the benefit of being a truly unique accommodation over at Disney’s Polynesian Resort? And FYI these are now the most expensive rooms in Walt Disney World.
let’s break this down rooms at the yacht and beach club and boardwalk in are about the same price as a studio room at the Riviera. That only sleeps, 2 people. But the rooms at Yatin beach and boardwalk can sleep four instead of two and you can walk to Epcot or take the Skylanders to Hollywood studios while one-bedrooms at the Grand Floridian in a contemporary run about 1,200 to 2,000.
The Grand Floridian maxes out at 2,500. But that gets you Club level access. Something that’s not even available at Riviera. If you’re looking for luxury, you’re going to find lower or comparable wreaths at the Waldorf Astoria and the Ritz-Carlton both on property. They both run about 300 to 600 a night for a standard room that sleeps, four people.
We’re talking about a resort that is priced sometimes twice as much as Disney world’s premier properties Contemporary Resort Grand Floridian Resort. Which is walking stance or monorail distance to the Magic Kingdom? It’s crazy to me.
On top of the high prices, the location is remote. Having the sky liner close by is great though this will bring you quickly to Hollywood Studios in Epcot as well as Caribbean beach resort, the art of animation, pop century. But still, it’s not a quick walk to a park the way you have it got Beach Club. Again, you’re paying more for much farther away proximity from the parks. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this in the comments. It just seems way overpriced to me. But I’m looking forward to hearing what you guys have to say.
Another pro is it’s beautiful
Here’s another Pro we want to talk about this Resort is beautiful. The high-end decor elements are epic. If surroundings are key for you in the hotel this could be a pro. There’s no doubt about it the resort is super elegant. So much so that you may forget you’re at Disney World. Although you still have a character breakfast Hidden Mickeys in the carpets, chandeliers and some gorgeous Disney movie-themed mosaics in the tunnel to the sky liner.
There are two gigantic arching hand-laid mosaics featuring designs from tangled and Peter Pan lining the walkway to the sky liner and inside the resort, you’ll find more gorgeous artwork as the resort hosts more than 40 original Disney inspired pieces. The resort rooms are just as beautiful as the rest of the hotel seriously high in detail and finishing not to mention the truly stunning bathrooms in every single room. Also having the separate freestanding tub and walk-in shower in more than one room per villa is luxury.
You’ll find this layout in both the two-bedroom and the three-bedroom grand villa. This resort is designed to be the creme de la creme of luxury at Walt Disney World at least in terms of style and dining. And the price tag certainly matches that. While the sky liner is a convenience. It’s a convenience that can be had at half or a quarter of the price by staying at Caribbean Beach or pop century. Arguably with a lot less luxury.
One extra little thing
Finally, one extra little thing we wanted to talk about. With a huge emphasis on luxury at this resort and the fact that Riviera seems to be set up as a vacation within a vacation. We find it surprising that the resort doesn’t have a spa on-site. So that’s something to note too. If you’re spending this level of money and not have a spa available to you that’s a little different from what we normally see at Walt Disney World.
So absolutely beautiful resort, great food, yay for the Skyliner. But those prices are out of whack. It’s just unbelievable to see what the prices are. I’m interested to see what you guys think. But I wanted to give you a little food for thought on Disney’s new Riviera Resort.