LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Walt Disney must have been one romantic guy! After all, Walt’s world is filled with famous romances: Cinderella and Prince Charming, Lady and the Tramp, Beauty and the Beast, not to mention Mickey and Minnie.
It turns out the legendary Disney magic can touch even the romantically impaired, who refer to Feb. 14 as just another Hallmark holiday.
Not mentioning any names of course, but even my husband had fun celebrating our wedding anniversary and discovering some of that Disney romance for ourselves. Whether you’re an “old married couple” like us, or just beginning your own fairy-tale relationship, here are a few ideas for feeling the love at Walt Disney World:
Engagements, honeymoons, anniversaries and especially weddings are all celebrated at Disney World, were more than 1,000 couples tie the knot each year. Wedding ceremonies come complete with Cinderella’s coach and, if you choose, wedding rings carried in a glass slipper.
I couldn’t talk my husband into renewing our vows during our anniversary trip to Disney World, but we did sneak a peek at a couple getting married in the Wedding Pavilion. Perched on its own romantic little island, the chapel even has Cinderella’s Castle perfectly framed in the window behind the altar.
And when it comes to where, when and how to “pop the question,” it seems a bit of Disney magic and dazzling fireworks to back you up can help prompt the answer you’re hoping for.
DINNER FOR TWO
Couples can get an exotic taste of romance at Epcot’s World Showcase, where the brand new Spice Road Table has tasty tapas platters for two and a waterside view of spectacular nightly fireworks. It’s only one of several places suited to romantic dining:
— Catch the sunset, stars and Magic Kingdom fireworks during dinner at the newly renovated California Grill atop Disney’s Contemporary Resort.
— Share a secluded table for two at Victoria & Albert’s in the iconic Grand Floridian Resort & Spa.
— Dine in fairy-tale elegance at Be Our Guest restaurant in the Magic Kingdom’s New Fantasyland. Known as the place where Belle and Beast fell in love, the grand ballroom in Beast’s Castle is set for romance as “snow” falls gently on the “French countryside” outside the windows.
— Also at Epcot: Toast your love with French champagne at Monsieur Paul Restaurant at the France pavilion. Sip margaritas by moonlight at a riverside table in Mexico’s San Angel Inn. And, not to be outdone, our own Canadian pavilion offers a private wine cellar experience at Le Cellier Steakhouse.
— Our favourite romantic stay is Disney’s Polynesian Resort with its South Pacific charm and tiki torches casting a tropical glow while stunning fireworks light the sky over the Magic Kingdom. We even indulged in a couples’ massage at the elegant Grand Floridian Resort & Spa next door.
— Go wild at Animal Kingdom Lodge, where you can watch exotic wildlife roam through savannahs while you cuddle on your own peaceful, private balcony.
— Port Orleans Resort is whimsically wrapped in the lacy wrought-iron railings, gracious gardens and private courtyards of New Orleans’ historic French Quarter.
— Disney’s Board Walk Inn and the Yacht Club Resort are two perfect places to get romantic. Stroll the starlit boardwalk, dine at great restaurants like The Flying Fish and dance the night away at the retro Atlantic Dance Hall.
NEED TO KNOW
For information on Walt Disney World romance packages, hotel and dinner reservations, and park passes, visit disneyworld.ca.