Natalie H. (NDM#268) (56 Posts)

Natalie grew up in Nashville, TN. Married with one son, she lives on a farm. As if this weren't enough to keep her on her toes, Natalie also works around the clock due to being self-employed . Natalie often travels to both Walt Disney World and Disneyland, giving her a vast knowledge of the Disney Resorts which she shares in her posts on The Disney Driven Life. She loves the research on the resorts and appreciates input for these articles as well. In recent trips, Natalie has begun making a habit of meeting people while in the parks. This habit inspired her personal website, Meet the Magic, This site helps her connect to others as well as hold space for Disney fans to post information about their Disney related sites. Her goal with this venture is to help people to "Meet the Magic" of their choice.

photo credit: Dennis Brown

The Grand Floridian is an absolutely beautiful Disney Resort!  The Resort opened on June 28, 1988 as the Grand Floridian Beach Resort and was renamed Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa in the fall of 1997.  There are 867 rooms among the six buildings.  The rooms are spacious averaging around 400 square feet per room.  For those families needing extra space, a room is situated to accommodate up to 5 guests.

The resort is located in the Magic Kingdom resort area and is a deluxe Disney Resort.  The Resort is situated on the Seven Seas Lagoon and is on the monorail loop.  The Resort houses some of the best restaurants Disney has to offer, such as Narcoossee’s, Cítricos and the famed Victoria & Albert’s.  Many Disney fans review these restaurants and are overly pleased with their meals and experiences there.

For the holidays, the Grand Floridian offers one of my favorite holiday decorations: a Gingerbread House!  In years past, I have boarded the boat from the Magic Kingdom to the Grand Floridian in search of this Gingerbread House.  I will say that this was a popular idea, at least on the day we went, since we waited an hour and a half for the boat (we would have changed to ride the monorail, but with a stroller, etc. we could not get out of the line easily!)

As we arrived at the Resort, we were all a bit excited and ready to see the House. We walked in the door to the Resort and immediately smelled the gingerbread!  Then we walked into the Resort’s large vaulted ceiling lobby and saw that Gingerbread House, we gasped!  The house is so large, and what a GRAND display it makes!

This year’s Gingerbread House is 16 feet tall and took over 160 hours to decorate!  I’m not sure about you, but if I cook for an hour, I am absolutely done with the project.  160 HOURS!  Are you kidding me?  That’s so amazing.  This year’s house includes many details, even the ability to see the inside of the house all decorated!  It is really something to see!   Also, guests can purchase gingerbread cookies and other gifts from 10AM-10PM throughout the holiday season.  I will confess that I am not a fan of the type of gingerbread cookie sold there.  In general, I love gingerbread, but the recipe used 2 years ago was rather bland.

My suggestions are to ride the monorail so you don’t get stuck in the boat line trap.  Seeing the house was great, but it took us a very long time!  We did take the monorail back over to the Magic Kingdom and had no issues.  For those of you who don’t want to take time away from the parks to see the Grand Floridian Gingerbread House, you can instead head to America in EPCOT.  Inside the Liberty Inn (America’s food court) is a smaller Gingerbread House.  It’s very impressive as well!  This location also includes a stand for purchasing gingerbread cookies.  I would suggest that, if you think you’d like to purchase one, buy a “try it” one, then if you like it you can purchase the “take it home” ones:)

Happy holidays!

Contributed by: Natalie H. (NDM #268). Natalie is the Disney Driven Life’s resident resort expert and creator of Meet the Magic!


  1. We love the gingerbread cookies at the Grand Flordian. We always get them to take home, it’s a tradition for us.

  2. Ya know, I clicked over here from Twitter just to see what picture you had of the GF GB house! Cause as many as I have seen, and taken myself, (and I am a decent photographer) I realized I have not yet seen THE picture of that- the one that really nails it! Hmmm… 🙂

  3. I made a point of seeing the Gingerbread house on my trip this past weekend right before I attended the inner mouse event and I can say that the Grandness of everything in the GF resort made me feel like I should have been decorated and placed under the tree with a bow on me. 🙂

What do you think?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.