The Wyndham Grand Orlando Bonnet Creek: The Perfect Hotel for Your Walt Disney World Vacation

I’ve lived in Orlando for ten years now, and one of my favorite things to do is to visit the famous theme parks in the area. Having said that, I can definitely attest to the fact that these theme park vacations can get expensive very quickly. Getting to Orlando and paying for theme park admission can be worrisome enough, and when you factor in the costs of lodging, activities, food and drinks, and of course, transportation within Orlando…well, it’s enough to make anyone reconsider their vacation destination! Wyndham Grand Orlando

While I am lucky to be able to visit the Disney parks for next to nothing throughout the year, one thing that is still out of my reach is a stay at one of the Disney resort hotels. Sure, there are plenty of perks to staying onsite, like free transportation to and from the airport, convenient free transportation options around the resort, and even free baggage check in at the resort for participating airlines. But are those perks really worth it, when you consider how pricey some of those Disney hotel rooms can be?

Screenshot of Disney hotel pricing for September 2017, Lowest to Highest
For context, here is a screenshot of hotel pricing for a one-night stay at ANY Disney resort hotel from September 15-16, 2017. Keep in mind, these prices are organized lowest to highest. The only place under $100 is a campsite at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort, and even then, that’s $100 for an RV-friendly site alone. No lodge, no tents, no nothing. Just some electric hookups, some dirt, and a concrete parking slab.

Yes, a stay at a Disney-owned hotel can be expensive, especially for longer vacations or families needing multiple rooms. But I’ll let you in on a little secret: you don’t have to stay at a Disney resort in order to make the most of a trip to Walt Disney World. Save your coins and head on over to the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek, a Walt Disney World Good Neighbor Hotel. Located less than three miles from Disney Springs, and within ten miles of any destination on Disney resort property, the Wyndham Grand provides gorgeous, comfortable rooms, a slew of exciting amenities, and even transportation to and from the Disney theme parks, all for just a little bit more than you’d pay for that $100 campsite shown above.

The Wyndham Grand Orlando. Image: Booking.com

I visited the Wyndham Grand for the first time to celebrate my fiance Dan’s birthday last year. I’d reserved a table for two at STK, an upscale steakhouse and the most expensive restaurant at Disney Springs. Thanks to STK’s participation in Visit Orlando’s Magical Dining Month, we were able to celebrate at STK for just $35 per person!

Since I’d already saved quite a bit of money on dinner, I decided to book us a hotel room near Disney Springs and continue the fun birthday vibes the next morning with an afternoon at Epcot. I knew I could not afford anything at Disney at the very last minute, and that, as you may have guessed, is how I stumbled across the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek. The upscale, four star resort is less than three miles away from Disney Springs, but you’d never know it. This is no value hotel stuffed to the brim with screaming children and soggy, overpriced sandwiches. Rather, it is an elegant, beautifully-decorated escape with all the modern conveniences you could ever need. Truly, after staying one night, I don’t know why anyone on a budget would ever choose to stay at a Disney resort hotel.



First Impressions

The vacation vibes were flowing as soon we turned onto Chelonia Parkway, the serene, tree-lined avenue on which the Wyndham Grand is located. There were no other cars in sight, just a couple of lanes leading us away from the rush of the highway and the theme park world in general. I could already tell as we cruised along that this would not be an ordinary hotel experience. This was a true getaway. We passed beautiful lakes and fountains, rolling golf courses and manicured hedges, and arrived in minutes at our hotel.

I didn’t actually plan on reviewing this hotel when I booked it. I simply wanted a place to unwind and enjoy a romantic getaway with the birthday boy. All of that changed when we walked into the lobby of the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek. The place was just gorgeous, with plenty of beautiful furniture, unique architectural details, and a color palette that literally made my heart skip a beat. Who knew it was possible to fall in love with a hotel?

Full Wall Portrait of Queen Elizabeth I at the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek
This portrait of Queen Elizabeth I was the first thing we saw upon entering the hotel from the parking lot. The portrait is two stories tall! Talk about making an impression!
Staircase and Elevators at the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek
Staircase leading back down to the main level, where the pool, breakfast diner, and spa are located.
A Lush Sitting Area at the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek
The Wyndham Grand is packed with luxe little sitting areas like this one, just inside the entrance from the parking garage.
Tormund the Wyndham Rewards Wizard
Tormund Giantsbane welcomes you to the Wyndham Grand! If I wasn’t excited before, I was after seeing this guy!
Main Lobby Lounge Area at the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek
A beautiful sitting area in the main lobby
Modern Touches in the Hotel Lobby of the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek
Modern Touches in the Hotel Lobby

I felt like I’d found the deal of the century as we checked in and were reminded of how affordably priced our weekend in paradise would be. We went up to our room, and I was elated to see that it was just as thoughtfully-decorated as the rest of the hotel. I looked at Dan, who already knew what I was about to say, and whipped out my camera to begin documenting the hotel stay after all. I’m lucky to have a guy who patiently supports my blogging endeavors, even on his birthday weekend!

The Rooms

The Wyndham Grand Orlando offers several room types to accommodate all kinds of visitors, from standard King and Queen rooms to full on suites for those seeking a little extra dash of luxury. Some rooms even have additional bunk beds, making the hotel a budget-friendly pick for families visiting Walt Disney World. Since I booked our one night stay via Hotwire Hot Rates (read more about how Hot Rates works here), we did not get a say in which room type we were given, but rather, put in whatever room happened to be available. While we would normally prefer to sleep in a King guest room, this time around, we had a deluxe room with two Queen beds.

Dan Relaxing in our Standard Queen Bed Hotel Room at the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek
Dan relaxing and watching TV while I took photos of the room
Relaxing in Style at the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek
I loved the decor style of our room, particularly these cute little chairs. This is the perfect in-room breakfast nook!

In addition to our two Queen beds, the room came equipped with a cozy little sitting area, a beautiful dark wood six drawer dresser for clothes storage, a large changing mirror and clothes closet, a Samsung television, and a cute little coffee bar. There was also a separate bathroom equipped with soft white towels, a roomy shower, a hairdryer, and complimentary toiletries such as shampoo and body lotion.

The standard Queen room guest bathroom at the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek
You can be sure I had no plans to document this trip, based on the fact that I left my nice DSLR at home!

Of course, these are all things that I have come to expect out of any resort hotel stay. What really wowed me was not the in-room amenities, but the way in which the room was styled. Things like the elegant sitting chairs, the mother-of-pearl-esque inlay on the dresser and the vanity, and the subtly patterned double curtains continued the funky but comfortable vibe of the resort’s common areas. I love a room with style!

View of the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek from our Room at the Wyndham Grand Orlando
Our view for the evening

From our window we could see the main road, the parking garage, and the Hilton Orlando and Waldorf Astoria, located across the street. While it’s no pool view, it’s good to know that even the least desirable vantage point came out looking so pretty! We loved looking out over the streets and seeing Orlando lit up later in the evening!

Amenities

The Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek wouldn’t be a four star resort if it didn’t offer plenty of extra amenities! We took a little walk around the resort after checking in to see what else it had to offer.

Entrance to the Blue Harmony Spa at the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek
Entrance to the Blue Harmony Spa

First up is the Blue Harmony Spa, which offers classic spa treatments and beauty services to truly pamper and indulge the senses. We were short on cash and did not indulge, but if I were ever to stay at the resort again, I think I would at least splash out on a relaxing mani/pedi combo! For a full list of available services, be sure to check out the Blue Harmony Spa Menu. Hotel guests receive 10% off any spa service! There is also a separate fitness center down the hall.

The Pool and Poolside Grill and Bar at the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek
The main pool at the Wyndham Grand

Located near the spa is an indoor game room, and just past that, a lagoon style pool with plenty of lounge chairs, umbrellas, a poolside bar and grill, and even a poolside concierge. We didn’t bring our swimsuits, but we lingered for a moment to enjoy the view over the lake and manicured walking trail, which passes through the neighboring Wyndham Bonnet Creek Resort. The pool and other amenities at this sister resort are also open to Wyndham Grand Orlando guests, so be sure to grab your swimsuit and take a spin on the lazy river! Between the two properties, there are five pools, two lazy rivers, two kiddie splash parks, and nine hot tubs. Nine!

Funky Fun Sitting Area at the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek

Of course, my favorite part of visiting any nice hotel is checking out the dining scene. There are three restaurants, one lounge area, and one casual grab and go eatery at the Wyndham Grand Orlando. The resort’s signature restaurant, Deep Blu Seafood Grille, is a contemporary restaurant serving up fresh, innovative seafood and more. I actually would have loved to dine here, had we not gone to STK at Disney Springs. Deep Blu is another regular participant of Visit Orlando’s Magical Dining Month, and their prix fixe menu included mouth-watering options such as Summer Seafood Cioppino or Petit Braised Beef Short Rib, and for dessert, Florida Corn & Bourbon Crème Brûlée with Plant City strawberries and raspberry coulis. Ah well, there’s always this year!

Entrance to Deep Blu Seafood Grille and Bar 1521 at the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek

Just outside of Deep Blu Seafood Grille is the stylish Bar 1521 lounge area. In addition to wine, beer and sake, Bar 1521 serves up delicious sushi and creative cocktails such as the Floral Libation, which combines Hendricks, yuzu juice, lavender simple syrup, sparkling wine, orchid ice, and a lavender sugar rim to top it all off. The specialty cocktails are a bit pricey at $15 a pop, but for the budget-conscious, there is a daily happy hour from 4PM to 6PM. Totally worth indulging and soaking up the cool lounge environment!

A Selection of Wines at Bar 1521 at the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek
A selection of wines at Bar 1521
Bar 1521, the Lounge of Deep Blu Seafood Grille at the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek
Bar 1521 features a sleek bar setup, cozy tables, a beautiful piano, and its very own sushi kitchen

Other amenities of the Wyndham Grand Orlando include a business center, various event and meeting spaces, access to the Waldorf Astoria Golf Club, and shuttle service to Disney Springs as well as the Disney theme parks. While there is no complimentary airport transportation, there are concierge services to help arrange a ride through Maingate Transportation.

Our Experience

After settling in and taking a short nap in our room, Dan and I ventured out to explore the rest of the hotel. Here we found more of the same chic decorative accents, funky lounge furniture, colorful artwork, and of course, delicious dining options. We considered using the shuttle service to Disney Springs (perfect for those looking to imbibe without limitation!) but decided to just drive over to the Springs for Dan’s birthday celebration at STK.

Our experience at STK was underwhelming, to say the least. We waited over an hour for our table, despite having a reservation, and once we were finally seated, the service was slow and inattentive (warm $8 bottled beer, anyone?) and the food mostly disappointing. To their credit, the entrees at STK were fantastic, but it wasn’t enough to convince us to ever make a return visit. Unsurprisingly, the restaurant shut down temporarily after Magical Dining Month ended, presumably to rework things and come back stronger than ever. Throughout the whole meal, I found myself wishing that we had just gone to Deep Blu back at our hotel and enjoyed a post-dinner drink or two in the lounge.

The Outdoor Patio with Neon STK Sign at STK Orlando, Disney Springs
STK Orlando. At least the outdoor patio looked cool…?

Luckily, the evening was not ruined! It was almost fun laughing at how terribly the dinner part of the evening was going, and when we finally escaped from STK, we took a stroll around Disney Springs and did a bit of shopping. We were able to relax and just have a good time, with the knowledge that the hotel was just a short drive away whenever we were ready to go home. No need to worry about traffic or highways or road closures. I imagine this would be especially comforting to out-of-town visitors who don’t know the area very well. The Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek is super accessible: just take a right out of Disney Springs and a left on Chelonia Parkway, or you can take the resort shuttle and not worry about a thing!

The next morning, we lingered in the room and enjoyed coffee in bed. Breakfast was available at an additional cost downstairs in the Tesoro Cove casual dining room, but we opted instead to get dressed and take the car over to Epcot for an afternoon of eating and drinking around World Showcase. After all, it was just a four mile drive away; we were practically there already.

Dan Enjoying the View at the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek

Final Thoughts

The Wyndham Grand Orlando is an ideal location for anyone looking to visit Walt Disney World. The stylish hotel has rooms for everyone, from business travelers to entire families, and has many of the same amenities as the Disney-owned resorts, but at a much better price. Considering how dated some of the Disney hotel guest rooms can be, I actually think you get more bang for your buck at the Wyndham. The rooms are large and beautifully updated, with a variety of dining options to satisfy any budget. Add in services like a free resort shuttle, a variety of pools, and a world-class spa, and you’re looking at a getaway to rival anything found at the Disney resorts.

Dan and I enjoyed our stay so much, I’ve already recommended it to several people looking to save some cash on their Disney vacation. I could not believe that such a beautiful and well-located hotel could exist at such a low price point.



Book Your Stay Today!

Remember those pricey Disney hotels I mentioned at the beginning of this review? If you weren’t convinced then of the value of looking elsewhere for a hotel, then maybe this will convince you. A one night stay at the Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort Bonnet Creek for those same dates (September 15-16, 2017) only costs $139, and you can stay there for an even lower cost of $112 by booking in advance. Your Disney vacation just got way more affordable.

To see current room rates and book your stay, click here.



21 thoughts on “The Wyndham Grand Orlando Bonnet Creek: The Perfect Hotel for Your Walt Disney World Vacation”

  • Thanks for sharing your Disney secret! Both of us have never made a trip to Disney yet because of many reasons (many of which you outlined in beginning). Love the photos of the hotel and quite apt to our taste as well.

    • Staying at an offsite hotel definitely makes a Disney trip more affordable! More money to spend on their extra excursions and tours, and eating in the nice resort restaurants!

  • This does look like a great alternative to Disney destination properties, although I have some pretty good memories from Camp Adventure as a kid. You probably aren’t going to see the fireworks from here but you can save some money and get air conditioning too.

    • Oh, I love camping as well and would love to stay at the camp sites one day. I love visiting at Christmas and seeing the campsites all decorated, and I can’t deny that you do get a great view of the fireworks from the water! I just think the sites are crazy overpriced, especially when compared with some of the non-Disney hotels nearby.

  • I like the idea of staying off campus at the Wyndham Grand Orlando. What an elegant hotel with a lot of interesting decor. I also like the looks of the wine bar at 1521. Dispensing wines from that groovy machine looks like you could have a small taste of a variety before committing for the evening.

    • It’s a beautiful place to unwind and kind of escape from the noisy crowded theme park world, and I agree, the bar is the perfect place to kick things off!

  • Due to unfortunate circumstances, we had to stay in a Disney hotel in France last minute for several nights and that was a very expensive accommodation. We try to stay away from all touristy things like that while travelling to help the budget.

  • Thanks a lot for the post! Orlando is sure a lot of fun! I don’t usually think hotels would affect my travel decisions but it’s nice to experience through the blogs and I feel like I am on vacation already! @ knycx.journeying

    • Same! I love browsing through reviews of hotels I know I can’t afford or get to right away. Call it living vicariously, ha!

  • Wyndham Grand seems like a great hotel! I love that big pool ! I can’t wait to visit Walt Disney World one day! I haven’t been there yet but I am such a Disney fan!

    • The Disney parks are so fun! Crowded and overpriced, yes, but such a fun place to relax and indulge a little bit. Have you been to any of the other parks? I’d love to see the other ones around the world.

    • Absolutely! Fun pools and Disney access for the kids, and a relaxing, hassle-free place to stay and enjoy the parks.

  • This hotel looks amazing! Although I have to say out of everything, the Tormund painting is by far my favorite thing! 🙂 I haven’t ever been to Disneyworld, only Disneyland, so my husband and I have been looking into going in the next few years. I will definitely be keeping this hotel in mind!

    • Ha! That is how we felt when we saw Tormund as well. This place HAS to be good. It’s a great little spot if you want to stay close to the parks without paying those sky-high Disney rates! It’s been a while since I was last at Disneyland, but I’d love to return! It has its own special charm as the OG Disney park.

    • I haven’t stayed at any of the Disney resorts yet, but I would love to in the future! Which one is your favorite?

  • This looks lovely and definitely seems more affordable. I think with the Disney resorts, you are definitely paying a premium for the brand name, regardless of the overall quality.

    • Absolutely. I love wandering through the common spaces of the Disney hotels, but the rooms seem a bit dated, for the most part. I felt like I got more for my money at the Wyndham, without sacrificing convenience.

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