Experience the Essence of Europe at Disney’s Riviera Resort

by | Dec 17, 2019 | WDW Blog, WDW Resorts

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Disney’s Riviera Resort is officially open!

Yesterday, WDW Magazine was invited to experience the grand opening of Disney’s newest resort hotel, Disney’s Riviera Resort. The ceremony was elegant with a little Disney flair, much like the resort itself.

Mickey, Minnie, Donald, and Daisy welcomed guests to the resort dressed in outfits inspired by European artists. Can you guess what type of artist each character is dressed up as?

Disney's Riviera Resort Grand Opening Ceremony

Mickey, Minnie, Daisy, and Donald welcome guests to the new Riviera Resort at Walt Disney World. Photo by Courtney Reynolds

Guests can actually meet the characters in these unique outfits at Breakfast à la Art—the new breakfast character dining experience at the resort’s rooftop restaurant, Topolino’s Terrace.

Disney’s Riviera Resort Basics

Let’s talk about the basics real quick. Disney’s Riviera Resort is a Disney Vacation Club (DVC) resort. Guests who are DVC members can book a room using their DVC points.

If you’re not a DVC member, don’t worry! You can still book a room at Disney’s Riviera Resort by either renting points from another DVC member or booking directly through Disney. Keep in mind though—if you’re not a DVC member, DVC rooms can be quite expensive.

If you prefer to have a travel agent to help you out, we recommend contacting our friends at Destinations To Travel.

Views from Disney's Riviera Resort

A view from the balcony at the Riviera Resort. Photo by Courtney Reynolds

A Look at the Tower Studio

After the grand opening ceremony, we were able to tour two rooms: the Tower Studio and the Grand Villa. These rooms are complete opposites. The Tower Studio is the tiniest hotel room I’ve ever seen, and the Grand Villa is one of the biggest. Let’s take a look at the Tower Studio first.

Tower Studio

The Tower Studio room is the smallest room available at the Riviera Resort. Photo Courtney Reynolds

 

Tower Studio Bathroom

The Tower Studio has a full bathroom. Photo by Courtney Reynolds

The Tower Studio is the most affordable room option at the resort, but it still boasts a premium price tag for non-DVC members. It’s much smaller than your standard hotel room, but if you have your heart set on staying at the Riviera this might be your only option depending on your budget.

Tower Studio Pull Down Bed

The Tower Studio sleeps two adults on a pull down sofa bed. Photo by Courtney Reynolds

Each studio sleeps two adults and has its own private balcony overlooking the parking lot. Personally, I don’t think these rooms are a good value at all. You can find plenty of nicer rooms for less both on and off Walt Disney World property.

DVC owners will find this to be a better value, with per-night point allocations starting at just 11 points.

A Tour of the Grand Villa

The Grand Villa is the largest room option at the resort and is one of the biggest hotel rooms I’ve ever seen. I would estimate it’s three times larger than my one-bedroom apartment in Southeast Orlando—and a one-night stay is double my monthly rent…

Scary price aside, this villa is incredibly beautiful. It sleeps up to twelve adults and has three bedrooms, a full kitchen, and three full bathrooms.

Grand Villa Bedroom

The Grand Villa has three bedrooms and sleeps twelve. Photo by Courtney Reynolds

 

Grand Villa Bedroom

The Grand Villa also has a full kitchen, dining room, and three full bathrooms. Photo by Courtney Reynolds

If you can find twelve close friends to split the cost with, the cost per person might actually be a better value than the Tower Studio. I’d much rather chip in a couple hundred bucks for a night in the Grand Villa with friends than spend the same amount of money on one night by myself in a closet-sized studio.

Grand Villa Bathroom

The bathrooms in the Grand Villa has both showers and bathtubs. Photo by Courtney Reynolds

Grand Villa Bathroom

The Master Bathroom has a walk-in shower. Photo by Courtney Reynolds

Curious about the One-Bedroom Villa and Deluxe Studio? Click here to see a tour.

First Impressions

Disney’s Riviera Resort is a nice addition to the DVC Resort line-up, but I’m not sure it’s for everyone. If you’re not a DVC member, the price alone might hinder you from ever staying here.

If the price isn’t in your budget, I still think the resort is worth visiting! You can easily get there by bus, Minnie Van, or Disney Skyliner.

Disney Skyliner

The Riviera has a Disney Skyliner right at the resort. Photo by Courtney Reynolds

Here are a few things you can enjoy at the resort without staying overnight:

  • Grab a drink or a quick bite at Bar Riva
  • Breakfast à la Art with Mickey & Friends at Topolino’s Terrace
  • Enjoy a signature rooftop dining experience at Topolino’s Terrace
  • Sip on a specialty coffee or wind down with a glass of wine at Le Petit Cafe
  • Sit down for a casual lunch at Primo Piatto
  • Explore the resort’s gorgeous Disney-inspired artwork and decor
  • Play a round of bocce ball or lawn chess
  • Watch the sunset over the Disney Skyliner
European-Inspired Artwork

Throughout the entire resort, you’ll find beautiful Disney artwork inspired by the art styles of Europe. Photo by Courtney Reynolds

Rapunzel Tower Mosaic

You can find this Rapunzel Tower mosaic in the breezeway near the entrance to the Disney Skyliner. Photo by Courtney Reynolds

If you missed our live coverage of the grand opening, click here to watch our Instagram Stories. Make sure to follow us and turn on notifications so you don’t miss out on future event coverage.

Thank you to Disney Vacation Club for inviting us to experience this event!

Written by Courtney Reynolds

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Courtney is a Photographer for WDW Magazine and former Disney Cast Member. She is originally from New England, but is currently enjoying life in Orlando where you will often find her with a camera in one hand and a coffee in the other. She also loves tacos, Donald Duck, riding roller coasters, and celebrating Halloween. For more about Courtney, you can follow her on Facebook and Instagram.
Courtney Reynolds

Written by Courtney Reynolds

Courtney is a Photographer for WDW Magazine and former Disney Cast Member. She is originally from New England, but is currently enjoying life in Orlando where you will often find her with a camera in one hand and a coffee in the other. She also loves tacos, Donald Duck, riding roller coasters, and celebrating Halloween. For more about Courtney, you can follow her on Facebook and Instagram.