We just returned from a 7 night stay at the Shades of Green and had an excellent time. This is a beautiful, modern lodge. A set of waterfalls greet you as you drive up to the lodge and there is also another waterfall cascading down the rocks that you pass as you walk up and down the stairs to the bus stop on the 1st floor. Landscaping on this property is gorgeous - plush greenery with lots of palm trees, small lakes and golf courses. We had a room in the new wing and our view was of the golf course. It was very relaxing to return to our room after a day in the busy theme parks and enjoy the peaceful scenery of the putting green, palm trees and lake with no one in sight except occasional golf carts buzzing along the winding trails.
Our room was very spacious with 2 beds and a sofa bed. Walls are a cream color with forest green carpeting and floral bedspreads that complemented both of those colors. The bathroom has 2 double sinks set in a dark granite countertop. The toilet and bath tub/shower are in a separate room just off the sink area. Flooring was a slate tile. A small coffee maker is provided as is a packet of coffee. If you are a tea drinker, be sure to bring your own tea as none is provided. The refrigerator is built into the chest of drawers. It is small - it holds not much more than a 2 liter bottle of soda and a few small containers of milk or orange juice but we were certainly glad to have it for those items! The room was spotless and kept that way by housekeeping for the duration of our stay. The central type A/C ran very quietly and was adjustable to as low as 65, which we found to be adequate. The ceiling fan also helped to keep us cool. And be prepared for some very long hallways. It was a full 5 minute brisk walk from our room to the bus stop.
The public areas in the hotel are also attractive. Very pretty lobby with lamps scattered around numerous separate sitting areas and a fireplace that was running, even in late August/early September. A slate tile walkway leads off the lobby to AAFES, Guest Relations and the ticket sales desk. AAFES is open 0700 - 2100 and has a small but nice variety of souvenirs. It also carries sodas, some snacks, and essentials you may need such as band-aids and aspirin. In the hallway near AAFFES there are 2 computers that provide internet access, but at $6.95 for just 15 minutes, they are no bargain.
We bought our Disney World tickets here and found it to be a quick process as we encountered no lines. The ticket salesperson wasn't extremely personable but did provide adequate answers when asked specific questions. Should you need to obtain boarding passes for your flight home, Guest Relations can do that for 50 cents per printed page.
We did take-out from the Evergreen Sports Bar several times. The buffalo chicken salad, turkey club sandwich and fish and chips were all good at prices in the $6 - $7 range. They have a take out window that is open several hours in the evening and service there was efficient. We went once when that window wasn't open so we had to order from the bar. The bartender neglected to give us utensils, dressing for our salad or the dip for our onion rings, but that was easily remedied. We checked that we had everything before we made the long trek back to our room- so we just stepped back inside to obtain the things we needed.
We found bus service to be extremely efficient. The buses run frequently and on time. They leave every 15 minutes starting at 0730 to the Ticket and Transportation Center (a 5 minute ride) where you catch the monorail or ferry to the Magic Kingdom or the monorail to Epcot. There are also busses which run you directly to MGM or Animal Kingdom once per hour. I had planned to drive to the parks but found the busses very convenient and so we took them instead. Many times we were the only ones on the bus. The only complaint I have is that when the parks close, they could run a bus that leaves the park shortly after the fireworks extravaganza rather than keeping to their usual schedule. For instance, we stayed for Fantasmic at MGM, which started at 2030 (the scheduled closing time for MGM on this particular evening) and ended at about 2055. We made our way through the crowd and arrived at the Shades of Green bus area at about 2110 and had to wait until the regularly scheduled once per hour bus to arrive at 2150. It was a long wait in a pretty desolate area of the parking lot - we were the only ones waiting for the bus.
Fortunately we were able to get in on the End of Summer Special (stay 7 nights, pay for 6), so that made an already great price for this lodge even better. The location is excellent. As I said, only a 5 minute bus ride to the Ticket and Transportation Center. And about a 10 minute walk (if you are lucky the Shady Shuttle, a golf cart that seats about 5, will come along the trail and give you a ride to the property border, which makes it a short walk across the street) to the Polynesian, where you can also catch the monorail. The Grand Floridian is also nearby and we enjoyed catching the monorail there one evening to sit on the beach and watch the Magic Kingdom fireworks and boat parade.
I would not consider staying anywhere else. We had a wonderful time and will be back!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Shades of Green Resort is a military-owned resort within Walt Disney World and is exclusively for military guests and their families. Information on eligibility and reservations can be found on the Shades of Green website. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Shades Of Green Resort Disney World
- Shades Of Green Resort Walt Disney World
- Shades Of Green Resort Orlando