Gran Destino Tower at Coronado Springs

Gran Destino is the newly opened tower at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort. Despite being vastly different from the rest of Coronado Springs, the tower is still just considered to be part of the resort. This means it must be booked as a “Tower Room” though the Coronado Springs page.

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Upon arriving, the parking lot for the tower is off to the right of the building. It’s worth noting that there is not always spots available here and you may need to head over near El Centro and walk.

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Disney’s Magical Express will pick you up / drop you off here near the lobby.

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As we entered the lobby, we were immediately greeted by a cast member with  an iPad to assist us with check in if needed. We had already checked in online, but it was nice to have the help available.

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There are several work stations in the upper lobby for anyone who wants to work remotely and make this their office for a day.

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Couches equipped with charge outlets are a nice touch as well.

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In terms of theme, Gran Destino is themed to the “Destino” short film collaboration between Walt Disney and Salvador Dali. This is mainly conveyed through surrealist art pieces and the iconic bell imagery from the film. Overall, the theme is fairly muted and it comes off as more Las Vegas style than anything else. Let’s take a look around the main lobby and some of the surrounding common spaces.

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While the hotel is definitely subtle when it comes to theme, its still quite beautiful. Everything about it feels luxurious. It totally has a deluxe resort feel, despite the fact that its still priced along with the rest of the resort as a moderate. Our stay cost us less than $200 per night w/ our AP discount.

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The main entrance to the lobby is actually on the 2nd floor. There are no doors outside in the lower lobby. Instead, you need to head off through the doors on the left side of the room to find the path leading outside.

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A digital map is located just outside the lower lobby to help you find your way around the resort.

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The Barcelona Lounge is the lobby bar. We really like the vibrant warm color backdrop.

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Let’s head on up to our room…

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The way the elevators operated was something we had never seen before. You select which floor you are going to from the outside, rather than the typical up or down buttons.

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It will then immediately direct you to whichever letter elevator will be arriving first.

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This is pretty cool but took some getting used to. One thing to note: once you’re inside the elevator cab, there is no what to change what floor you are stopping at. All the floors with scheduled stops are indicated on the screen perpendicular to the door.

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Immediately upon exiting the elevator, your are greeted with vibrant floor patterns and wall art. The resort relies heavily on warm colors throughout: oranges, reds and yellows. This is a welcome sight given some of the more minimalist designs Disney has adopted with its recent string of hotel room renovations.

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While it’s not overly Disney, its still a big improvement over the current trend of white on white.

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There are still some Disney touches as well. We loved this Mickey dandelion… and there are no shortage of hidden Mickeys in the carpets / wall art.

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Upon entering your room, you are greeted with your name already up on the tv. This is something fairly common in high end hotels outside of Walt Disney World.

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Let’s take a thorough look at the room itself.

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You enter to find the bathroom on your left with the living / sleeping area straight ahead.

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We were in a two queen bed room. There are one king bed rooms available too if you prefer.

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While the headboards are nice, there is definitely a lack of artwork in the room. You’ll notice there is a mirror on the wall next to the bed where a painting or photo would typically be hung. We found the placement of this mirror to be odd, and not particularly useful.

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Opposite of the beds you will find the typical work desk / dresser / mini fridge and coffee combo that is common around all the rooms at the resort these days. There is also a comfy orange chair so that’s nice.

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The newer fridges in all of Disney’s remodeled rooms look nice, but it’s less convenient than the old ones which had storage on the door.

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There is also a lighted armoire for any clothes you may need to hang up. There is plenty of space to store your bags as well with ample room under the beds, as well as a sturdy luggage rack in between the desk and the armoire.

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When you enter the room you will find the curtains just to either side of the window.

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Upon pulling them back, you will see they are actually just blocking the wall with the window being smaller than it initially seems. This makes sense when you look at the building on the outside, but a wider window would have been nice.

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Still, the views are pretty great. Our room was in the “water view” category which puts us on side of the tower facing the rest of the resort. Ironically, the standard view is probably the cooler option as it faces the opposite way with views of Epcot and Hollywood Studios. Just make sure to online check in as early as possible and request a higher floor.

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Still, nothing to complain about here. We’ve always found Coronado to be one of the prettier resorts and waking up to this every morning was joy!

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The room itself is very well lit thanks to well placed lamps, as well as some welcome uplighting from the head boards.

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The headboards also feature individual reading lights on each side which is a nice touch.

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Disney has also done a great job recently of providing ample charging ports, most of which are accessed by plugging directly into the lamp bases.

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The bell design found on this lamp is one of the most iconic images from the short film. Similar designs can be found throughout the resort.

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Disney has also been doing a great job lately of providing ample charging ports, many of which are accessed by plugging right into the lamp bases.

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On to the bathroom… this was a real highlight for us!

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Everything about the bathroom feels luxurious!

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It’s rare these days to still find bottles of different toiletries in WDW hotel rooms, but we got a decent amount here.

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The shower is still equipped with refillable bottles for shampoos, body wash and conditioner however so don’t expect to be bringing any of that home.

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Speaking of the showers… they are fantastic. Featuring a full glass entry, some nice tile work and combo rainfall / handheld shower heads, these things are posh!

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One thing to not however is the lack of a tub for families with smaller children. That’s really not the demographic this hotel is going for however.

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Another design which may negatively effect groups staying here is the fact the the sink is in the same room as the shower. Seeing as the shower has a glass door, only those particularly intimate with one another will be able to use the sinks and shower simultaneously. This could lead to some long getting ready times if you have 4 people who all need to use both the sink and shower separately.

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The toilet does get it’s own door at least. It also features the only piece of hung artwork in the room.

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The main door to the bathroom is this sliding barn door similar to what can be found in the other remodeled rooms at Coronado.

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If you look closely, you will find on of the few Mickey’s in the room.

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Others can be found in the wall design on the tv side of the room.

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Disney has touted this smart tv within the rooms quite a bit. Televisions like this are already fairly common in upscale hotels around the world, but its nice to see WDW catch up. The tv has several neat options.

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The “Disney on Demand” section lets you choose from several different Disney movies to watch right in you room.

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“Must Do Disney” is basically the channel that plays by default in your typical WDW hotel room.

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The “Connect My Device” tab lets you cast apps such as Netflix or Hulu from your phone to the tv. This worked quick and easy. I was streaming a movie from my phone to the tv in seconds.

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You also have the option to view any photos from your trip which are linked to your Photopass account.

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Finally, you can view information about your resort, as well as check out park hours around all of WDW.

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It would be nice to be able to view the bus times from here as well, but as it is there is still lot of neat options with this tv.

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Overall, we really love the rooms at Gran Destino. They are luxiorious, offer a slew of nice features, and feature some of the better hotel room views in all of WDW! We wish there was a bit more artwork and wider windows, but they are still great as is!

Let’s take a walk around the rest of the resort while we are here…

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Our full review of that, along with the adjacent Dahlia lounge can be found here.

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The new signature restaurant of the tower is Toledo: Tapas, Steak & Seafood.

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A long hallway with several arch windows connects the new tower to the old El Centro building.

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All guests are now required to check in at Gran Destino, no matter where they are staying around the resort. This is a bit of an odd choice as it would be much easier for most guests to just enter via the old lobby.

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It’s also a shame because the old check in area was beautiful and its now just sitting here completely unused.

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You will still need to visit this area if you wish to visit Panchito’s gift shop or any of the quick service restaurants in this building. Maya Grill and Rix Cafe are both here for table service as well, but with all the other great dining options added here there isn’t much reason to visit either of those.

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The gift shop was stripped of most of its theme during a recent refurbishment. This common trend is why we are so pleased with all the vibrant colors in design of Gran Destino!

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For those interested in learning more about the collaboration between Walt and Dali, I suggest giving this book a read.

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New merch for the resort focuses mainly on the new tower.

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We love all things Three Caballeros here at WDW Therapy!

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A fun option for kids, twice a week you can paint a wood carving right here at the gift shop!

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The resorts main quick service option is El Mercado De Coronado. This was formerly the Pepper Market and is one of Disney’s better hotel quick service options. It has several stations serving different fares of food similar to Sunshine Seasons at Epcot.

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Heading outside, the main Dig Site Pool is a short walk from the tower itself. You exit out into the courtyard and over the bridge directly in front of you.

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These benches look nice but they had signs on them warning guests that they get extremely hot during the day.

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I went into it a bit in our Three Bridges Bar & Grill review, but I don’t find the new tower to be as much of an eye sore as many folks have been making it out to be. I admit it looks somewhat out of place, but there are still many great views to be found around the lagoon.

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The Dig Site Pool has always been one our favorite Disney pools. We rank it second only behind Storm Along Bay at the Yacht / Beach Clubs!

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It also features the both the longest water slide, and the largest hot tub at any WDW resort!

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A fire pit provides a nice place to relax after dark.

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If you want to head over to Three Bridges Bar and Grill for dinner, bear a left once exiting into the courtyard.

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We have a full review of Three Bridges Bar and Grill here. In that, we dig into the impact the new on the water restaurant and its bridges have on the views around the resort.

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The Casita’s section of the resort, located the left of Gran Destino is advertised as the quiet pool for the tower when you check in. In reality the Cabana’s quiet pool is probably a bit closer.

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The entire resort is looking great right now thanks to recent renovations / refurbishments! We have seen rooms back in the Ranchos section here for as low as $121 a night on priceline express deals. That’s a crazy good bargain!

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We decided to walk to the Ranchos bus stop after having dinner at 3 Bridges. The bridges make getting from one side of the resort much easier than before.

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Speaking of the buses… we love the ability to check estimated bus arrival times via the Disney World app.IMG_0728

Still, always be sure to arrive a few minutes early as these are just estimates. At the same time my phone gave a bus arrival time of 6:21, the board at the stop said 6:19, which is exactly when the bus arrived. Had we arrived at 6:21, we would have missed it.

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We arrived after a fun night of park touring to see the hotel lit up with a bright blue light.

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It’s not a big deal, but the blue lighting didn’t work well in our opinion. It doesn’t go with any of the other colors around the hotel. This is definitely a nit pick though.

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If you are taking the Disney buses, the Gran Destino stop is still located at the old stop near El Centro. There are stairs to head on down just to the right of the main lobby entrance canopy.

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The lobby looks even more beautiful at night with a warm glow and colors that really pop.

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Overall, while not a complete home run, Gran Destino is pretty close! It’s not the place you want to book if traveling with young kids, but it’s pretty great for adults looking for a luxurious stay and don’t need a ton of theming.  With great guest rooms, solid dining options and a top notch pool, you are basically getting a deluxe hotel experience at a fraction of the price. That alone would rank this near the top of our hotel choices for adult only trips!

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Coronado has always had a sweet spot in our hearts. It’s where we stayed during our first trip together and I’m sure we will continue to stay there occasionally throughout the years. Having Gran Destino as an option as well now only makes it all the sweeter!

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