Grand Floridian pool


When I close my eyes and think of excellent customer service, very few companies come to mind.  Topping that list is the Walt Disney World Resort, which should come as no surprise.  From check-in to waiting in line for attractions, Disney cast members are famous for their hospitable nature (or maybe that’s training?).  No matter which resort we choose or park we enter, I continue to be dazzled.  A recent stay at the Grand Floridian astonished even more!


Grand Floridian specific welcome packet

The moment we arrived, an energetic and cheerful gentleman greeted us.  He quickly took a bag and chatted with us all the way to check-in, offering a birthday button…for my daughters’ doll.  Everyone can celebrate at Disney, apparently.  Our welcome packet was offered and it was then that I knew Disney’s flagship resort was something extra special.  Instead of the typical blue welcome envelope, this one was a deep green packet embossed with the Victorian-esque “GF.”  It was fancy.


A visit to the pool was top-notch.  The staff at the Beach Pool bar, Rebecca in particular, took the time to remember not only what we were drinking, but that my husband enjoyed two orange slices instead of only one.  Nice.

Our room was lush, posh and felt lavish.  The beds had a little more fluff, the soap had massaging nubbies and even the toilet paper was embossed just like the welcome packet (it’s the little things).  So far, pampering had commenced!


"Nubby" soap

Yes, I took a picture of toilet paper. Wouldn't you?

Did you catch that “so far” in the previous paragraph?


Sumptuous resort room

After a full day in the sun, a wonderful meal and a monorail ride, we decided to turn in.  Oh, turn down service and chocolates are an excellent touch!  We cozied into those oh-so-sumptuous beds, and dozed off for sweet dreams until…a blaring alarm woke us at 2 am!  Thinking it was a true fire alarm, we started to get the kids outside when all of a sudden- it stopped!  We checked around and discovered that no one else seemed to be leaving their rooms so we went back to bed…only to have it happen again!  Just like the time before, it turned off as quickly as it started.  After the 3rd time, my husband called down to the front desk.  More alarms and a visit from maintenance later, we were back asleep, eager to be able to snooze late.  We never did find out the cause of the ruckus.  At 8am, Mousekeeping knocked on our heavy-eyed door to find out what time we were checking out.  Ugh.


Pillow chocolate

As you can probably imagine, we were not too pleased, especially given the price tag associated with such a resort.  We don’t generally complain lightly.  In this case my husband approached the manager and explained what happened.  There was obviously a malfunction in the smoke detector in our room and he needed to know about it.  Mousekeeping was certainly trying to get our room ready for another guest; a guest who would surely enjoy sleeping through the night!

In the end, the manager apologized, asked questions to enable the resolution of the malfunction and offered to take one of our meals off the bill.  Had we been staying another night, we would have received a room upgrade.  Most of the time when I think about ethical questions concerning Disney World I think of the guests themselves.  However, Disney has it’s own moral code to follow as well.  Was it met by Disney’s flagship resort, in my opinion?  Well, Disney is not able to return lost sleep, but I at least feel as if our discomfort was taken seriously.

Have you ever had a time when Disney needed to perform within a moral code?  Were your expectations met?


Contributed by: Ami B. (NDM#381) Ami is the DDL Ethics and Marriage Blogger. She is also the creator of Disney Park Goddess.


  1. First I would totally take a picture of the TP!  Second, the is ONE time~ONE mind you in the dozens of times we have stayed at Disney….When I had and ADR for Tusker House and the perk was seating a certain time at the Nemo show…..Our reservation was at 1 to eat then the show time was 2:15 or 2:30…I even asked the cast memeber when making the ADR if we would be able to make it on time~She said it would be no problem if we arrived a bit late.  Well it happened to be a more crowded/hot day that day.  After rushing my kiddos to eat, and then having my two older boys hustle across the park while I was running into their feet with stroller (stop complaining and stop STOPPING so we can get there)  we were “kindly” told be a cast member that the line was full!!!!   I tried to plead my case but he was very disinterested, offered no solution (not even to come to the next show)  He basically told me “oh well” and then looked at my kids told them “your not getting in!  Can you please move on out of the walkway.”    VERY  unDisney~but one moment we won’t forget….Maybe we will laugh at it someday…..maybe…..

  2. Ugh, Ami-so sorry to hear that-especially since you had such high expectations. Too bad they couldn’t carry over that room upgrade for a future trip-I would have lobbied for that. Actually, I would have let my DH be the “bad cop” and see what results he would get-he tends to have better luck with that sort of stuff! But it sounds like you operated within your moral code and didn’t act inappropriate at all. I wouldn’t expect anything less from you though 😉

  3. My experience has always been a good one with problems at Disney Resorts.  I always remember to tell them what is wrong in a respectful tone of voice and they have always taken care of the problem from dripping faucet to a request for another shower matt.  My next visit to the Grand Floridian will be at the end of this month to celebrate a friends birthday.  I’m counting the days!

  4. Typically, I can’t complain either- which is a big reason I keep coming back….and back….and back!  I am sure they appreciate the respectful tone!  I can’t imagine how many people get up on their haunches and throw temper tantrums (I witnessed one this last trip…not pretty).  Have a wonderful visit in a few weeks!

  5. That is very un-Disney and I am sorry you had that experience!  Typically when there is a seating perk they save you a seat!  Or so I thought anyway!  Did you try to come back for a later show?  Sometimes it is a matter of which CM is working.  

    As for the TP—it was cool, right? 🙂

  6. That is very un-Disney and I am sorry you had that experience!  Typically when there is a seating perk they save you a seat!  Or so I thought anyway!  Did you try to come back for a later show?  Sometimes it is a matter of which CM is working.  

    As for the TP—it was cool, right? 🙂

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