REVIEW: The New Gran Destino Tower at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort

Opening just last week on Tuesday, July 9th 2019, the Gran Destino Tower at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort had the Disney community talking.

A view of Gran Destino Tower from the Guest parking lot.
A view from three bridges.

Why was the Disney community talking? The tower was highly-anticipated among many Guests due to the incredible makeover as a “Reimagined Resort Hotel”. In order to build the tower, the old business class building had to be taken down. According to a cast member I spoke with, the tower addresses a lot of Guest feedback from the older building; most of it had to deal with the lack of amenities for business class Guests. Let’s find out what the tower has to offer.

The Lobby

View from the left-side of the lobby.

As you enter the grand two-story lobby, you’ll immediately notice how the decor honors the rich cultures and landscapes of Spain, Mexico, and the American Southwest. You are greeted with beautiful pillars and an intricate chandelier that pulls you in and “asks” you to approach the glass divider. As you do and look down, the Barcelona Lounge is directly underneath you accompanied by various styles of seating.

You would be standing right behind the glass divider at the top of the picture.

On either side of the lobby are seats with USB chargers so you can charge your phone, tablet and/or laptop.

The USB chargers are tucked into the arm rests (2 in each one).

On the left side of the lobby are desks for Guests so they can get some work done while visiting.

Each lamp has USB chargers.

There are two touch displays available for your convenience across from these tables.

Touch screens to help you get acquainted with the resort.

You can check out the resort’s offerings like dining menus, resort map, featured activities and park hours.

Smart elevators. Find the Hidden Mickeys in them. 😀

The elevators are located across from the desks and are something we’ve never seen before. In between on either side is a panel where you choose the floor you want to go to. The panel will then tell you which elevator to take. For example, you would touch 15 to get to floor 15 and the panel will return a message letting you know you will be taking elevator A.

The lower lobby offers plenty of seating for Guests.

 Seating areas include large murals, including art with Walt Disney and Mickey Mouse. 
Credit: Disney Parks Blog
The fractal pieces in the pillars reflect the sun as it passes through the window.
The Barcelona Lounge menu.
The bar has a beautiful stained glass backdrop.
Hidden Mickeys can be found in the murals downstairs next to the meeting rooms.

Amenities

There is a fitness center located on the lower lobby. It has a great selection of equipment.

Cool off with some ice-cold water during and after your workout.

There is a laundry available on the third floor with 24-hour access. Each machine is equipped with a card reader for you to use.

Check-In Process

As you walk through the doors of the main entrance, check-in is to the right. There are 14 kiosks each inspired by Spanish tile patterns.

If registration is busy, a Cast Member will take you to one of the nice sitting areas in the lobby and check you in on their iPad. Coronado Springs’s focus is towards business conventions, but don’t worry about getting backed-up with a convention attempting to check-in before you. There are talks about having convention attendees use the old Coronado Springs lobby.

We stayed in a club-access room located on the 15th floor. At the deluxe resorts you are greeted in the lobby by a Cast Member and escorted to the elevators to the club level floor where you enjoy a quiet and personal check-in. The Gran Destino Tower does not offer this type of check-in process; perhaps because it is a moderate resort.

The Room

We stayed at the Tower – Standard View – Club Access which sleeps up to 4 adults.

Double sink with your H2O products to enjoy.
Two queen beds (single King available too).
A warm welcome letter from Vincent Murcurio.
The new smart TV welcomes you.

The smart TV allows Guests to choose their experience whether it’s finding your favorite station to watch (Classic Cartoons? Yes!) or, get this, even viewing your PhotoPass! Yes! How cool is that?

You can listen to Disney Park Music on the TV. Or, you can do this in our jukebox. 🙃
The closet has two robes and a plastic bag if you need some dry cleaning services.
The table lamp has USB ports. On either side of the beds are reading lights; pull up and they will light up.
Coffee station. ☕
View from the room.
The room we enjoyed was facing the back of the tower. Perfect!
View of “Happily Ever After” from the room. Turn on the jukebox to pipe in the music.

Chronos Club

When you stay club level you get access to the Chronos Club located on the 15th floor. Open from 6:30am – 10pm, you can enjoy coffee (6:30am – 7am), breakfast (7am – 11am), light snacks (12pm – 4pm), dinner options from the restaurants located at Disney’s Coronado Springs (5pm – 7pm) and dessert and cordials (8pm – 10pm). The dinner selection are samples from the resort’s restaurants and each night is different. Dedicated Cast Members will be on hand to assist you with your vacation plans—or to help you unwind after a day of adventure.

The Chronos Club is the biggest lounge on Disney property. It can accommodate up to 80 rooms whereas most others can only handle 50. If you are staying in a non-club access room, for a limited time you can choose to gain access to the club lounge for $39 per person per night. This is on a test-basis and Disney does not know when they will discontinue this offer.

As you enter, you are greeted with your dedicated Cast Member to assist you throughout your stay. Tom and Tolédo’s Chef Heather were extremely helpful when it came to our special dietary needs. 👏🏻 👏🏻 👏🏻 #CastCompliment

Cards, chess and other board games are available to play.
Fruit, chocolates, cookies and Kind bars are available throughout the day.
This is the kids area. If you open the trunk you’ll find games!

The children’s play area is not the same as what you’ll find in other deluxe club level lounges. There is no TV playing Disney’s Classic Cartoons or Disney Junior. There is a TV mounted on the wall adjacent to this where you could politely ask a Cast Member if they could change the channel.

Breakfast (7am – 11am)

Fruit, cereal, scrambled eggs and bacon.

Light Snacks (12pm – 4pm)

The beer is available from 12pm – 10pm, although you can ask for it anytime.
The wines are kept cool for your enjoyment.

Dinner (5pm – 7pm)

The dinner menu changes nightly. You can ask a Cast Member what the menu will be for that evening so you can plan your day accordingly.

The Shrimp “Paella Style” was filling and delicious.
This plant based “Crab” cake is tasty and has a nice spicy kick to it.

Desserts (8pm – 10pm)

All of the desserts offered were delicious! Our favorite were the truffles.

Around the Tower

A new hub of activity, Villa del Lago—the “Lake Villa”—is a collection of one-story, wood buildings set in the middle of Lago Dorado. This is home to Three Bridges Bar & Grill, a lakefront restaurant serving up tasty cuisine.

The fire pit located directly behind the tower. You can roast marshmallows on select nights.

Dining Options

Disney dining is pretty important, right? At the Gran Destino Tower you can experience Tolédo – Tapas, Steak & Seafood and Dahlia Lounge located on the 16th floor. And out on Lago Dorado, guests will find the new Three Bridges Bar & Grill, an open-air, waterfront restaurant. We did not experience these locations; however, we do have reservations to enjoy a special night event for Annual Passholders and DVC members later this month at Tolédo. A complete review will be available after that event. 👍

Conclusion

The Gran Destino Tower is a magnificent structure and with all the inspiration from Spain, Mexico, and the American Southwest, it’s a lot to take in and enjoy. From the dazzling Moorish hanging lanterns, the glow around registration areas, whimsical lighting and illuminated twinkle lights, Guests can spend hours just sight-seeing.

There were times when we forgot this was a moderate resort. We did miss the balconies in the room; you can only get them in a deluxe resort. Having the option to stay in a club-access room makes a huge difference since this is the only moderate resort on Disney property that offers it. We did not visit the parks on this trip; however, the Chronos Club is a great way to start your day before touring Walt Disney World’s theme parks. And after your park experience you can stop into the lounge and grab a dessert and night cap before recharging for your next day’s adventure.

Keep in mind that it is geared towards business class and convention crowds are inevitable. With that said, if you enjoy the moderate resort experience then the Gran Destino Tower is definitely a location you should check out.

Steve is the founder and administrator of D-COT. If anything breaks on the site, @TheSwedishChef is the founder and administrator. 😅😋

6 Comments

  1. Wow!! That was just a concrete shell last time I saw it! :surprised:

  2. Wow!!! The lobby looks amazing!!!! Now I really want to see it in person!!! Great job, Disney!!!

  3. Oh wow!!! That looks amazing! It definitely doesn’t look or feel like a moderate level. They took it way up a notch! The food offerings at the Club Level look delicious!

  4. Wow! :heart: so can you stay there if you’re a regular park guest or is this reserved for business attendees there for conventions?

  5. Thank you for the review Steve, you can watch Destino in the lobby but the 16th floor is breathtaking seeing the land and the cityscape of Orlando.

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