Review: Tea at Garden View Lounge at the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa

Editor’s Note: The menu for Afternoon Tea at Garden View Lounge has changed since this review was written, and many of the items featured here are no longer available. For more details, see our news post about the changes.

Today, we’re taking in afternoon tea at the Garden View Lounge. This charming spot, which occupies the far end of the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa’s cavernous lobby, is the perfect place to relax, dress up a bit (perhaps), and slow down, while you enjoy traditional offerings and steaming pots of tea.

Menu Cover

Menu Cover

It’s become a rather hot ticket, though, so if you like what you see, be prepared to make your advance dining reservation well in advance.

Tea at the Grand has become a tradition of sorts for my mom and me, and so we were excited to head there for this special treat.

Atmosphere

Upon entering the Grand Floridian, take a moment to notice the details of the soaring atrium. With natural light flooding the seating areas during the day, the large birdcage, and the beautiful domed skylights, it really is lovely.

Lobby and Atrium Garden View Lounge

The Lobby and the Atrium Put the “Grand” in Grand Floridian

I’ve often heard people suggest that the Grand suffers from a “lack of themeing”. I’ve never thought so. To me, the setting is beautiful — elegance with a light touch, befitting Florida’s subtropical climate. And even with families around me rushing to catch the monorail, I’m transported when I enter it to a less-rushed time and place.

Whether you visit during the day or evening, you are likely to catch some form of live musical entertainment here. During the day, you’ll enjoy piano music. In the evening, be sure to catch Grand Floridian Society Orchestra playing jazz standards from the bandstand located just outside of Mizner’s Lounge on the second floor.

Piano Music in the Grand's Lobby

Piano Music in the Grand’s Lobby

The Garden View Lounge is located at the far end of the lobby, directly opposite from the main entrance.

View of the Tea Room from the Lobby

View of the Tea Room from the Lobby

Flanking either side of the lounge are these adorable mosaics of inlaid marble.

Mrs. Potts Mosaic

Mrs. Potts Mosaic

Be sure to look down occasionally while walking around the Grand! They redid the floors a few years ago and added mosaics like these throughout. They are absolutely stunning.

Chip Mosaic

Chip Mosaic

Garden View is also the setting for the Perfectly Princess Tea Party, a character and storytelling experience.

Tea Info

Tea Info — Click to Enlarge

The Lounge itself is an open-air spot, separated from the rest of the lobby by a wall featuring “windowless” windows.

Flowers Garden View Lounge

Looking Into the Lounge from the Lobby

We arrived a few minutes early for our advance dining reservation, and were told that our table would be ready shortly. I’m not sure what all of the luggage by the hostess stand was about! There was a full house inside, however. And it seemed as though a few people were dressed up for a special occasion of some sort.

hostess stand Garden View Lounge

Hostess Stand

We relaxed nearby in the lobby. Soon, our pager went off, and we were shown to our table.

Entrance

Entrance

Marble statues flank both side entrances of the lounge. Other than that, the space is sparsely decorated.

Entering the Lounge

Entering the Lounge

The center of the room is dominated by [Read more…]

Dining in Disneyland: Seasonal Treats at Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe

The Disney Holiday season is in full effect at the Disneyland Resort!  I love that the Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe is always introducing us to new seasonal items.

In fact, because I never know what I’ll find, I’ve make it a point to check in on nearly every visit to Disneyland!

Jolly Holiday Bakery

Jolly Holiday Bakery

On my last trip there were a handful of new items that are special for the Disney holiday season.  Also in the bakery cases were some returning favorites. 

Eats

The popular Santa Mickey Candy Cane Cupcake is back.

The cupcake is chocolate, topped with a mound of red & green “sure to stain your teeth” frosting, and finished off with a candy cane.

Mickey Holiday Cupcake

Mickey Holiday Cupcake

I’ve actually never tried one of these because 1) I’m not a huge chocolate fan and 2) it looks way too messy for me to deal with in public!

Close Up

Holiday Cupcake Close Up

There are also Snowman shaped [Read more…]

News! A Spoonful of Sugar and Other Limited Time Treats Come to Disneyland’s Jolly Holiday Bakery

One of our favorite spots in all of Disneyland is Jolly Holiday Bakery. We never get tired of looking through their pastry cases for something new to delight us!

And right now, they’re stepping up their game with some new, limited-time offerings.

Limited Time Offerings at Jolly Holiday Bakery

Jolly Holiday obviously has a Mary Poppins theme, and this adorable Spoonful of Sugar offers a lot of flavor AND visual interest in one bite!

The treat includes pâte à choux, chocolate caramel ganache, sprinkles, chocolate pastry cream, dark chocolate, white chocolate, a tiny penguin made from sugar, and marshmallows! Whew! That’s a LOT of detail!

Spoonful of Sugar

Spoonful of Sugar

If you love the looks of this little guy, you better get to Disneyland quick — he’s only available August 22-31!

But there are several other pastries and desserts making a limited time appearance at Jolly Holiday Bakery. Look for these to stick around into September.

Get a load of this gorgeous Red Velvet Whoopie Pie!

Whoopie Pie

Red Velvet Whoopie Pie

Recently, our Dining in Disneyland columnist Heather Sievers showed us some of the other delicious new treats that are available now through September at Jolly Holiday. We fell in love with the Mickey-Shaped French Macarons.

The Passionfruit Macaron is sweet with more sweet, but we love the sparkly embellishment on top.

Passionfruit French Macaroon

Passionfruit French Macaroon

We much preferred the [Read more…]

News! Royal Court Royal Tea on Disney Cruise Line’s Fantasy

We have news about a very special new experience that you can book with Disney Cruise Line!

Disney’s newest ship, the Fantasy, is now offering the Royal Court Royal Tea, an interactive experience featuring some of Disney’s most popular characters — the Disney Princesses.

Cinderella Greets Guests During the Royal Court Royal Tea

Hosted by Lady Chamomile and Chef Brule — two new characters created to bring the event to life — guests are invited to interact with several princesses while they dine on traditional teatime fare.

Lady Chamomile Brings the Royal Court Royal Tea to Life

Young guests also receive gifts. Girls are presented with tiaras and boys receive swords as they are announced to the assembly.

Belle at Tea with a Young Guest

But that’s not all. Boys will also receive a Duffy Bear in cruise finery, pins, and shields. Girls will be surprised by a [Read more…]