Shades of Green Resort – A Disney Resort for Military Families
One of the most popular comments I hear is “tell me everything I need to know about Shades of Green”
Since 2016, my family has been fortunate enough to travel to Disney World several times because of the amazing value of Shades of Green® on WALT DISNEY WORLD® Resort.
It is one of 4 AFRC (Armed Forces Recreation Center) properties and is a Military resort located on Walt Disney World property. Originally built as Disney’s Golf resort in 1973 and then later purchased by MWR in 1996. Shades of Green is situated between two PGA golf courses, Disney’s Palm Golf Course and Disney’s Magnolia Golf Course.
Where is Shades of Green?
The Shades of Green Resort is on Disney property and is a few minutes from Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. It is a short walk to Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort. And now with the new walkway between Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa and Magic Kingdom, it is possible to walk from Shades of Green to the front entrance of Magic Kingdom (roughly 25-30 minutes).
We have found that the biggest benefits of staying at Shades of Green are the incredibly affordable prices, large comfortable standard rooms, the close proximity to the Transportation and Ticket Center and Magic Kingdom and that the resort has its own Attraction Ticket Office.
Can anyone stay at Shades of Green?
Yes and No. Members who are Active Duty, National Guard, Reserves, Retired and select others can stay year round. Veterans with a DD-214 ARE eligible to stay in January and September. You can check all the eligibility requirements here. Eligible service members can sponsor up to 3 rooms for friends and family members. Dependent spouses are able to book and sponsor rooms on their own, as long as they present their military ID upon check in. Sponsored guests will not be able to check in without their sponsor and the sponsor MUST be present during check in. Sponsored guests must also check out before or on the same day as the sponsor.
Room rates are broken down in to 3 different rate categories. Rates may vary depending on your travel dates
|CAT I||CAT II||CAT III|
|E1 – E6||E7 – E9|
W01 – CW03
O1 – O3 Widows
|CW4-CW5 / O4-O10|
Disabled Veterans Equal Access Act
There are 6 different room types. Including 4 different types of suites. The suites do fill up extremely quick, as there are a limited number of suites and rooms can be booked a year in advance.
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The resort has two wings. The Magnolia, the original part of the resort, is closer to the pools, spa, and Evergreens Sports Bar. The Palm, which was built in 2002, is closer to the parking garage, fitness center, Mangio’s, Garden Gallery and Bistro To Go.
Standard rooms are roughly 450 square feet and are often referred to as the “largest rooms on Disney property”. The standard rooms sleep up to 5 adults and cannot exceed that occupancy (there is an additional charge for a 5th adult or over the stated limit).
In each Standard room there are 2 Queen beds and a Single sleeper sofa. You will also find a coffee maker, mini fridge, a small dining table and chairs, a large dresser and nightstand (enough space for a family of 4).
The resort also has an AAFES Exchange that supplies a variety of souvenirs, snacks, drinks, toiletries, premade sandwiches, breakfast grab-n-go items and as well as beer, wine and spirits.
The resort has 2 pools. Both pools are heated, have self serve towels and life jackets available. There are tables with umbrellas or chase lounge chairs for adults looking to supervise or lay in the sun. Life guards are on duty while the pools are open and each pool has bathrooms conveniently nearby.
Mill Pond Pool Mickey shaped pool with a water slide for kids 47″ and taller and a Splash park
Magnolia Pool & Hot Tub A zero entry U shaped pool and hot tub
Laundry On Site
Each wing has it’s own laundry room. 2nd Floor of the Magnolia and 3rd Floor of the Palm. Laundry rooms have several washer and dryer machines that take card payments as well as the soap dispenser. Each laundry room has a microwave and a bathroom.
There are several dining options at the resort and are very reasonable considering you’re on Disney property. There is a total of 3 sit down restaurants and 2 take-out options and 1 quick grab ‘n go.
Offering a variety of food and drinks with dining room or take out window. It’s a great location to sit and have a meal, watch a game or order a drink for the pool. There is also an arcade along with pool tables.
Table service restaurant offering traditional breakfast items and an Italian dinner menu.
Mangio’s also serves as the kitchen for Bistro To Go (take out or room service option)
Full service buffet style restaurant for breakfast and dinner. With daily dinner themed meals.
Shades of Green has their own complimentary bus system that will take you to and from the parks. Located in the lower lobby, you will be able to take 1 of 3 busses to either the Transportation & Ticket Center (which you will then take the Monorail or Ferry to Magic Kingdom), Epcot & Disney Springs or Animal Kingdom & Hollywood Studios. These buses do run on a schedule and it is important to know when and how often the busses come because some of them only come once an hour. **You can still take any Disney bus anywhere on Disney property, they just don’t travel to Shades of Green
The other option is the Shady Shuttle
If you go to the Bell Hop desk, you can ask for a ride on the Shady Shuttle. One of the Bell hops will drive you down to the edge of the resort, where you can then walk over to Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort, Transportation & Ticket Center or Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa and take a Disney bus, Ferry or the Monorail. NOTE: This is a CURTESY shuttle and the Bell hops kindly accept tips for their trouble 🙂
I know this was a lot of information all at once. Hopefully this helped you get a better understanding of Shades of Green and do away with that preconceived notion that this resort is similar to a hotel on a military base or post….I know that’s what we thought before our first trip. If you feel like I missed something or have further questions, please feel free to leave a comment below and I would be happy to help!
Spreading magic one post at a timeKristin