As I write this I am lounging in our room before getting ready to go to Mickey Not So Scary Halloween Party. This trip had its hick-ups with booking. We had to reschedule and were unable to get the military rate for the resort we had. There were no resorts available for the last week of October with a military rate. Our only option for the time we needed at the rate that we wanted was at the Shades of Green.
Now we have been here to purchase tickets before and when we had family in a room here, but we haven’t actually stayed here ourselves, so we are newbies at the Shades of Green. Here is our impression. This is a trip we took without the kids, so that really plays into our viewpoint.
When we arrived our room was not ready. They let us pre-check-in and took our number. We could have waited at the resort, but we chose to head to Epcot to the Food and Wine Festival. This was at 11AM. They text me about an hour later that the room was ready. We came back to the resort about 4PM and had to stand in line again to get our room key and number. That was a pain, because by then the line was long. Wish they could do it like the other resorts and just tell me my room number since I was already checked in and paid.
I had requested a room near the business center, as hubby had to attend to some business. They put us in the Palm Wing, on floor 1, at the very end. I feel like they put us in the room the furthest away from the business center. Now I haven’t been out to the Magnolia Wing, but it is quite a hike to the Lobby from our room.
The room is quite large. It has two queen size beds. There was no king size bed option. Our room opens up on to a patio right on the golf course which is nice. The bathroom is very nice. The toilet and bathtub are in a different section with a door, so no steaming mirrors. I enjoy that. There is also no desk with a lamp. There is a table that hubby is using to work on. They have a couch. I believe it pulls out, but if we had to use that option it would run into the foot of the second bed. There is a mini fridge, a safe, hairdryer and an ironing board and iron. Overall it is a standard hotel room. Nothing really special.
Now let’s talk about soundproofing. We have stayed at a number of Disney Resorts and never heard the people in different rooms. Here we aren’t so lucky. You hear everyone. And even though we are on the end we hear all the way down the hallway and the people above us. I had read online that the Palm Wing was the quieter wing. I hate to imagine what the other wing sounds like.
Dining at the Shades of Green is different from other resorts as well. There is no dining plan. We have eaten at Mangino’s and the Express Cafe. Magino’s is a sit down restaurant. It was very good. (I will blog on that later). The Express Cafe is like a quick service. It is only open from 7AM til 2PM. It is right off the entrance/exit to the buses. It was also good. Java Cafe in the Lobby serves Starbucks coffee and pastries. They are a great option and rarely has a line.
There is a shopette as well. That is a nice perk. Has a lot of great needs. I got an eye glass repair kit for example. They have snacks and alcohol as well. You have to show a Military ID to purchase the alcohol. They have a few Disney items as well, but not like the other gift shops.
Parcel delivery here is different as well. Many places in the parks didn’t know that you could have packages delivered here, but you can. You just pick them up at the front desk the next day. You have to present ID and then sign for them. Easy Peasy.
Transportation here is… well I really want to be nice, but here I have a really hard time. It is inconvenient. You pay to park your car here ($7 a day). There is no parking at the parks unless you pay. That is another $20 for regular parking or $40 for preferred. That price is per day. If you are here for 6 days that is $120. Not to mention that driving around here I always get lost! So I like the buses. Here, not so much. The buses only run on the hour. They leave here at the half hour and their destination on the hour. The only buses are a bus to Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, The Ticket and Transportation Office and Disney Springs. You want to go to Magic Kingdom or Epcot you go to the Ticket and Transportation and catch the Monorail. I hate having to time my vacation around bus schedules.
The good thing is the Polynesian Resort is only a short walk away. It takes about 15 minutes and it is a nice path the whole way. Once there you could jump on the monorail to the Magic Kingdom or the Ticket/Transportation for the Epcot Monorail. Or they have busses you can use as well. We have fallen in love with the Polynesian resort. I am sure you will hear more about that as well!
Now this option is great for just hubby and I. We don’t mind the walk at all. It is flat until you get to the SOG where you walk uphill to the lobby. Would I have wanted to do it when the kids were little? Ummm no. They do have a golf car that will take you to the edge of the property, in other words, right to the edge of the Poly. The thing is, it only fits 5 guests. When you have 4 kids that doesn’t work well.
And lastly the internet. It may be that we are off in the Dungeon as hubby calls it. Internet and even phone signal is horrible. Hubby has a verizon hot spot though and that works well down here.
So my over all impression of the Shades of Green? It is a nice resort. It does have a spa, yoga classes, a bar and two golf courses. None of that is why I came to Disney. The pool looks pretty nice, but I have yet to motivate myself to get ready and make it all the way over there. It lacks the Disney feel. And the people who work here are not cast members, and it does reflect in their attitude. While very nice it isn’t the happy smiley places that the Disney Resorts are.
Would I stay here again? Yes, but not on vacation. It would be great if I was in Orlando for some other reason. But when I am here at Disney for vacation, I want to be in Disney!