Swan and Dolphin Hotel Review

When planning a trip to The Most Magical Place on Earth, one of the first decisions you need to make is whether to stay at an official Disney World hotel or another option on or near the sprawling Central Florida theme park playland. And there are no non-Disney resorts more iconic than the Swan and Dolphin Hotels – just look for the namesake swans and fishy-looking dolphins on the hotel rooftops. 

So, how does staying at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort compare to the Disney-operated hotels? Who should book a reservation at the Disney Swan, Dolphin or Swan Reserve? Read on as we go over everything you should know about staying at this pixie-dust-free retreat in the heart of the Disney magic.

Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotels During COVID-19

As you can probably imagine, things look a little bit different around the Swan and Dolphin due to the pandemic. Throughout the resort, enhanced cleaning protocols are in place, from convenient hand sanitizer stations to disinfected key cards. In the guest rooms, non-essential items have been removed to prevent germ transmission and housekeeping has been reduced. 

There are also several other procedures in place to further support health and safety measures. These include disposable menus and other single-use items, reduced seating at restaurants, mobile check-in and the option to pay at your table. 

Aside from that, it’s important to note that much of the amenities offered at the Swan & Dolphin remain available to guests. From the pools and dining outlets to the fitness center and kids camp, all are open and operating. However, there may be some temporary modifications in place to negate the spread of infection. 

Finally, as with the rest of Walt Disney World, face masks are required for all indoor locations. This includes areas like lobbies, restaurants and other public spaces (indoor rides, ride queues and Disney transportation, too) and applies to all guests regardless of vaccination status.  

Staying at the Disney Swan and Dolphin 

Dolphin Hotel at dusk

If you’re looking for a break from all the Disney magic (don’t worry, we won’t hold it against you), or you’d like to use your precious reward points to book your trip, then the Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin Resort is for you. 

Part of the Marriott family (Bonvoy members rejoice!), the Swan, Dolphin and Swan Reserve each fall under a different brand. The Swan is technically a Westin, the Dolphin a Sheraton, and the Swan Reserve is an Autograph Collection property. 

However, while you won’t find Disney characters around every corner (aside from a regular character breakfast in pre-Covid times), this trio of hotels in the heart of the Epcot Resort Area does boast all the convenience and many of the perks of Disney-operated hotels (plus some!), along with vacation must-haves like an impressive pool. 

Add in a massive convention center at the Disney Dolphin Hotel and design that feels a bit like a tropical paradise meets Las Vegas, and you’ve got a resort that’s great for couples, kids with families, friends on an adult Disney trip and business travelers alike. A pixie dust palate cleanser, if you will.

Swan and Dolphin Resort Rooms

There are a variety of room types available depending on which of the hotels you stay at. So, no matter if you’re traveling with your significant other for an extended Disney date night, on a family vacation or doing an adult Disney trip, there’s the ideal room to suit your space needs. 

In general, all standard rooms and suites at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort come stocked with the following amenities: a hairdryer, iron, ironing board, coffee maker, mini-fridge, alarm clock with radio and dual USB charging stations, in-room safe, telephone with voicemail, free voicemail and flat-screen TVs with Hulu, Netflix, YouTube, HBO, Showtime and Pandora. All rooms also feature Westin’s Heavenly Bed, a cushy pillow-top mattress crowned with four fluffy pillows. 

Disney Swan Hotel

When it comes to the original Swan and Dolphin duo, the Walt Disney World Swan is the more refined of the pair. With a soothing palette of pale blue and stately grays and fanciful, botanical-inspired pillows reminiscent of sun prints, it’s a relaxing retreat at the end of a day in the parks.

Traditional Room 

  • Comes with 2 queen beds or 1 king bed or 1 king bed & 1 sofa bed
  • Sleeps 2 adults & 2 children 
  • Connecting room available

Dolphin Hotel at night

Deluxe Room 

  • Comes with 2 queen beds or 1 king bed or 1 king bed & 1 sofa bed and a furnished balcony
  • Sleeps 2 adults & 2 children 
  • Connecting room available

Family Room 

  • Comes with 1 king bed & 1 sofa bed and an alcove for dining and working
  • Sleeps 2 adults & 2 children 

Executive Suite

  • Comes with 2 queen beds or 1 king bed or 1 king bed & 1 sofa bed and a separate living area
  • Sleeps 2 adults & 2 children 
  • Connecting room available

Grand Suite

  • Comes with 2 queen beds or 1 king bed or 1 king bed & 1 sofa bed and a suite parlor, available in one and two-bedroom suites 
  • Sleeps 2 adults & 2 children 
  • Connecting room available

Governor Suite

  • Comes with 2 queen beds or 1 king bed and an additional lounge area with an entertainment center, conference table and wet bar
  • Sleeps between 2 adults to 2 adults & 2 children 
  • Connecting room available

Presidential Suite

  • Comes with 2 queen beds or 1 king bed, fully stocked kitchen and an additional lounge area
  • Sleeps between 2 adults to 2 adults & 2 children 
  • Connecting room available

Disney Dolphin Hotel

Dolphin hotel lobby

The Swan’s beachier sister, the Walt Disney World Dolphin is a comfortable, laidback escape just a stone’s throw from Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios. A restful blend of seafoam greens and sandy wood finishes with pops of silver, blue and teal make for an appropriately Florida-chic hideaway. 

Traditional Room

  • Comes with 2 double beds or 1 king bed or 1 king bed & 1 sofa bed
  • Sleeps 2 adults & 3 children 
  • Connecting room available

Deluxe Room

  • Comes with 2 double beds or 1 king bed or 1 king bed & 1 sofa bed and a furnished balcony
  • Sleeps 2 adults & 3 children 
  • Connecting room available

Family Room

  • Comes with 2 double beds & 1 sofa bed or 1 king bed & 1 sofa bed and an alcove for dining and working
  • Sleeps 2 adults & 3 children 

Grand Suite

  • Comes with 2 double beds or 1 king bed or 1 king bed & 1 sofa bed and a suite parlor, available in one and two-bedroom suites
  • Sleeps 2 adults & 3 children 
  • Connecting room available

Governor Suite

  • Comes with 2 double beds or 1 king bed and an additional lounge area with an entertainment center, conference table and wet bar
  • Sleeps between 2 adults to 2 adults & 3 children 
  • Connecting room available

Presidential Suite

  • Comes with 2 double beds or 1 king bed, fully stocked kitchen and an additional lounge area
  • Sleeps between 2 adults to 2 adults & 3 children 
  • Connecting room available

Walt Disney World Swan Reserve

The newest addition to the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort, the Swan Reserve offers contemporary, design-forward rooms with plenty of charm. Crisp, white linens are the perfect backdrop for luxe brass accents, water-inspired photography and vibrant blues and greens. Think aquamarine-hued pools and emerald palm leaves.  

Traditional Room

  • Comes with 2 queen beds or 1 king bed & 1 sofa bed
  • Sleeps 2 adults & 2 children
  • Connecting room available

Junior Suite

  • Comes with 1 king bed & 1 sofa bed and an alcove for dining and working
  • Sleeps 2 adults & 2 children 
  • Connecting room available

Signature Suite

  • Comes with 2 queen beds or 1 king bed & 1 sofa bed with an additional lounge area
  • Sleeps 2 adults & 2 children 

Chairman Suite

  • Comes with 1 king bed & 1 sofa bed and an additional lounge area with a six-person conference table
  • Sleeps 2 adults & 2 children 

Presidential Suite

  • Comes with 1 king bed, fully stocked kitchen and an additional lounge area
  • Sleeps 2 adults & 2 children 
  • Connecting room available

Disney Swan and Dolphin Rates

Unlike the hotels operated by Disney, room rates at the Swan & Dolphin change from day to day based on a variety of factors. This can include everything from the weekend or a holiday to if there’s a big convention in-house. 

So, unfortunately, it’s impossible to give specific Swan and Dolphin room rates like we do with other Disney World hotels. However, according to Trip Advisor, the Walt Disney Swan Hotel averages between $239 to $457 for a standard room, while the Walt Disney Dolphin Hotel averages between $225 to $511. The Dolphin does tend to be the cheaper of the pair, although that isn’t always the case. As the Swan Reserve is still newly opened, average pricing is yet unknown. 

Now, for all the Marriott Bonvoy members out there, you’re probably wondering how many points a stay at the Walt Disney Swan and Dolphin Resort will cost you. Both the Swan and Dolphin, as well as the Swan Reserve, are Category 6 Marriott hotels, or around 50,000 Marriott points per night. 

Finally, you’ll also want to keep in mind the property’s daily resort fee. Priced at an additional $35 per night, this fee covers complimentary Wi-Fi, free rides on one of the swan paddle boats and instructor-led group fitness classes. Unfortunately, this fee is not optional, so remember to mentally add it to your daily room rate. 

Disney World Swan & Dolphin Resort Amenities

While not part of the official family of Walt Disney World hotels, like Animal Kingdom Lodge and the BoardWalk Inn, the Swan, Dolphin and Swan Reserve are considered deluxe resorts. As a result, you can expect an array of thoughtful amenities. With a buffet of dining options, thrilling pools and other entertaining recreation activities, a full-service spa and more,  there’s plenty to keep you and your crew busy all vacation long – plus some! 

Want to know when the shuttle leaves or what time the pool opens? There’s an app for that! No seriously, there’s really a Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin app with anything you need to know about the hotel’s amenities. You can even text the front desk team if you need any help with your stay.   

Restaurants at the Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin and Swan Reserve

With a whole world (showcase) of dining options just a short walk away, you may wonder why you should even eat at your hotel. Well, let us give you 20 different reasons. That’s right, there are 20 different dining outlets available for guests to try at Swan, Dolphin and Swan Reserve, including everything from seafood and steak to Italian and Japanese – and those are just the signature restaurants

Plus, don’t forget about all of the other quick-service and table-service outlets, pool bars and lounges. Sounds like the makings of an epic hotel food tour to us! The only thing missing is a Disney dinner show – about a swan and dolphin, of course. 

And just like other Disney World resort restaurants, you don’t need to be staying at the Swan and Dolphin Resort to eat there, which is great news because there are some tasty places to try. 

Then, if you’re still hungry, Disney’s BoardWalk is home to a host of other delicious dining opportunities and is just an easy walk away. Or head in the opposite direction for some park hopping around the Disney’s Yacht Club and Beach Club Resorts

Amare | Swan Reserve

Take a trip to the Mediterranean at Amare, an upscale casual spot dishing up everything from fried calamari and salad niçoise to flatbreads and souvlaki with pita bread.  Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner

Cabana Bar and Beach Club | Dolphin

Overlooking the Dolphin lap pool, Cabana Bar and Beach Club cooks up a fresh mix of salads, bowls, sandwiches, seafood and more, along with fruity cocktails and cold beer. Open for casual dining and drink service

Chill | Swan

Need to cool down? Head to Chill for frozen concoctions (mocktails too!) and a selection of snacks.  Open for casual dining and drink service

The Fountain | Dolphin

Taking its inspiration from the quintessential American diner, The Fountain slings palate-pleasing classic the whole family will love, including burgers, salads, sundaes and shakes. Open for lunch and dinner

Fresh Mediterranean Market | Dolphin

What better way to fuel your day than with some wholesome, fresh and seasonal? Kick off your day with filling morning classics or refuel for your afternoon on light eats like salads, wraps and hummus. Open for breakfast and lunch

Fuel | Dolphin

Get your caffeine fix at Fuel in the Dolphin lobby, a convenient stop for everything from fully loaded frozen yogurt to late-night pizza. Open for snacks

Garden Grove | Swan

Sit beneath a 25-foot, lantern-bedecked oak tree twinkling with fairy lights as you greet the day with AM favorites like eggs, waffles, pancakes and French toast. In pre-Covid times, Garden Grove also played host to a character breakfast starring Goofy and Pluto. Open for breakfast

Grounds | Swan Reserve

Fuel up for the day at Grounds, your grab-and-go destination at the Swan Reserve, offering pastries, sandwiches and, of course, coffee.. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner

Il Mulino | Swan

A southern outpost of acclaimed New York restaurant chain, Trattoria Il Mulino brings the flavors of Abruzzo, Italy, with a casual-chic atmosphere. Or, sip on a glass of Italian wine or a signature cocktail as you nosh on some light bites at Il Mulino Lounge, a sophisticated wine bar with a private outdoor patio.   Open for dinner and drink service

Java | Swan

Jumpstart your day in the Swan lobby with a stop by Java, a counter-service spot serving up pastries and coffee drinks for your morning (or all day long, we don’t judge) and sandwiches and salads to go in the afternoon. Open for breakfast and drink service

Kimonos | Swan

There’s nothing more Japanese than sushi and karaoke. Fortunately, Kimonos has both – sushi every day and karaoke on Friday and Saturday nights in the Kimonos Lounge. Munch on expertly cut fish and gyoza and sip on some sake, then sing your heart out to your favorite song. Open for dinner and drink service

Phins | Dolphin

Whether returning from the theme parks or unwinding after a day at the convention center, Phins, the Dolphin lobby bar, is a refined place for a drink and elevated bar bites with colleagues or friends. Open for casual dining and drink service

Picabu | Dolphin

For a quick and easy restaurant the kiddos will love, swing by Picabu, the Dolphin’s cafeteria-style restaurant, which dishes up family-friendly, all-American favorites. Open for breakfast and dinner

Shula’s Steak House | Dolphin

Originated by Don Shula, football’s winningest coach, Shula’s Steakhouse takes its inspiration from the 1972 Miami Dolphins, serving up impeccably cut and aged meat that’s as perfect as the Dolphins’ undefeated season. Or, for the ultimate game-watching experience, stop by Shula’s Lounge, where you’ll enjoy a full menu courtesy of Shula’s Steak House, fine cigars, beer and wine. Open for dinner and drink service

Splash Pool Bar and Grill | Swan

Nestled near the Swan lap pool, Splash Pool Bar and Grill offers beachfront seating, refreshing drinks and classy lunch dishes like Maine Lobster Club, Mediterranean Shrimp Salad and an Angus burger crowned with charred avocado.  Open for casual dining and drink service

Stir | Swan Reserve

With its creative cocktails and other boozy brethren, The Stir lobby bar in the Swan Reserve is a chic place for a post-theme park or after-meeting drink. While the atmosphere says tropical, the menu is all Mediterranean, from charcuterie and flatbreads to hummus with pita and grilled souvlaki. Open for casual dining and drink service

Tangerine | Swan Reserve

Gazing out over the Swan Reserve pool, the Tangerine pool bar serves an assortment of light bites and chilled drinks. Follow up your lunch with something sweet like Tangerine’s signature popsicle – tangerine flavored, of course.  Open for casual dining and drink service

Todd English’s bluezoo | Dolphin

Inspired by the “blue zoo” his son saw the ocean as when he was a young child, Todd English’s bluezoo is a swanky choice for coastal cuisine with international flair. If you can’t grab a table, Todd English’s bluezoo Lounge offers up refined bar bites to accompany your cocktail or, more appropriately, some bubbly. Open for dinner and drink service

Swan and Dolphin Pools

It wouldn’t be a trip to Florida without going for a swim. Luckily, whether you’re trying to cool off or just looking to unwind after all your theme park adventures, there’s a watery escape for you at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort. 

While it’s true that the Swan and Dolphin do share their pools, with four hot tubs, two lap pools, a relaxation pool, a spring pool and the huge grotto feature pool, there’s still no shortage of watery escapes for guests to enjoy. The littlest resort guests also have their own private retreat at the nearby kiddie pool. 

The sprawling Grotto Pool is the resort’s pièce de résistance, with a rushing waterfall to soak yourself in if you’re so inclined. Claim a poolside spot in one of the lounge chairs or splurge on one of the Swan & Dolphin poolside cabanas. Stocked with lemon-infused water, fresh fruit, comfy furniture, a stocked mini-fridge and even an HDTV, it’s the perfect way to upgrade your vacation. 

Set amid groves of palm trees alongside white-sand beaches, the pool complex at the Swan & Dolphin is a tropical paradise. Designed to accommodate guests of all kinds, from families to conventiongoers, you’ll find a variety of settings to suit whatever vibe you’re after, including private hideouts away from the hustle and bustle of the feature pool, livelier party areas occasionally helmed by a DJ and even the best hotel lap pool in the U.S. (according to Athletic Minded Traveler).  

Complimentary life vests and beach towels are included (just show your room key). You can also rent a tube or raft at the Cabana Beach Hut near the Dolphin Spring Pool. 

Other Recreation at the Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin Resort 

Aside from getting to enjoy the aquatic paradise that is the Swan and Dolphin pool complex, one of the many perks of staying at the Swan and Dolphin is the slate of other recreational offerings. Feeling competitive? Challenge your fellow Disney-goers to an intense game of ping pong or pool on the outdoor tables, a beach or water volleyball match or an oversized checkers tournament. Or, take the competition inside at the resort’s game room. 

Hoping to get a workout in? Go for a jog along the shores of Crescent Lake through Disney’s BoardWalk and the Beach and Yacht Club Resorts or head into the health club. Or, to make the most of that resort fee, be sure to take advantage of the group fitness classes led each day by an instructor. There’s even an on-site gear lending program for those who left their equipment at home. 

Looking for a reprieve from the kids? Book them a reservation at Camp Dolphin. With food provided in the cost along with a whole schedule of activities, it’s a thoughtful service for parents needing some alone time while on vacation. Once you’ve dropped them off, we suggest you head to the Mandara Spa, a Balinese-inspired retreat that’s in the heart of the Dolphin yet feels worlds away. 

And while it isn’t technically at the Swan and Dolphin, if you’re still looking for something else to do, Disney’s Fantasia Gardens Mini Golf Course is right next door. One of our favorite things to do outside the theme parks, they have two courses to choose from: a whimsical putt-putt course and an actual golf course in miniature. 

Swan & Dolphin Merchandise Locations

Whether you’re on the hunt for that perfect Disney souvenir, simply looking to replace something you forgot at home or everything in between, chances are you’ll find it at one of the shops at the Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin Resort. 

For snacks and sundries, Picabu restaurant in the Dolphin, along with Disney Cabanas at the Swan, offer all the essentials. As you can probably tell from the name, you’ll also find all things Mickey Mouse related at Disney Cabanas, as well as the Disney Gift Shop at the Dolphin. 

The Cabana Beach Hut between the Grotto Pool and Dolphin lap pool stocks anything you might need for a day at the pool or beach, while Accents in the Dolphin is the place to go for swimsuits, resort wear and beachy gifts. Finally, to treat yourself on your vacation or back at home, the Dolphin’s Mandara Spa sells a selection of European spa products. 

Complimentary Transportation Around Walt Disney World

Just like the Disney hotels, one of the benefits of staying at the Disney Swan & Dolphin is its location, plus a variety of complimentary transportation options. A free shuttle service leaves the entrance of each hotel around every 20 to 30 minutes, driving guests to Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom and Disney Springs

Alternatively, you can also take the scenic route by using the complimentary water taxis to Hollywood Studios and Epcot. Or, after a short walk to the back entrance of Epcot, you can also hop on the Disney Skyliner.

Disney Swan & Dolphin FAQs

Want to know more about the Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin and Swan Reserve? Read on for answers to some commonly asked questions. 

Is the Swan and Dolphin Resort owned by Disney?

Although the Swan and Dolphin are located on Walt Disney World, they aren’t actually owned by Disney. In fact, these hotels are part of the Marriott brand family. That’s right. You can book your stay using Marriott Bonvoy program points. More specifically, the Swan is considered a Westin, the Dolphin is a Sheraton and the new Swan Reserve is an Autograph Collection hotel.  

Do Swan and Dolphin get Extra Magic Hours?

Just because the Swan and Dolphin Resort isn’t technically owned by Disney doesn’t mean that their hotel guests don’t get to enjoy some of the same great perks. While no longer called Extra Magic Hours, Swan and Dolphin guests can take advantage of Early Theme Park Entry. This allows guests to gain access to any of the Walt Disney World theme parks 30 minutes before park open. 

Aside from the Shades of Green military resort, the Walt Disney World Swan, Dolphin and Swan Reserve are also the only non-Disney hotels to benefit from Extended Evening Theme Park Hours. Unlike Early Theme Park Entry, Extended Evening Hours allow guests to stay in a select theme park each day for two hours past park close. 

Other special Disney benefits include a Disney Planning Center for all your ticket and vacation-planning needs, complimentary theme park parking, advance tee times and more. 

Do the Swan and Dolphin share a pool?

Given their neighboring locations, the Swan and Dolphin do share the grotto feature pool and a few other swimming holes, though each hotel does have its own leisure pool and hot tubs. 

Does Swan and Dolphin have club level?

Unfortunately, the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin does not offer concierge-level rooms. However, if you’re looking for a bit of Disney luxury, we recommend you book a stay at one of the club-level rooms at Walt Disney World resort hotels for VIP perks like a dedicated concierge and daily hors d’oeuvres. 

Is Swan or Dolphin closer to Epcot?

One of the keys to a successful Disney World vacation is location, location, location, and the Swan and Dolphin have that in spades. The two original resorts and the new Swan Reserve are each a reasonable 15-minute walk from Epcot’s International Gateway entrance. If you’re heading to Hollywood Studios, the Disney World Swan is the closest, at a roughly 15-minute walk, while traveling from the Disney World Dolphin or Swan Reserve will take you approximately 25 or 20 minutes, respectively. 

Well folks, that concludes our guide to the Swan and Dolphin at Disney World. Refreshingly free of pixie dust though with a downright magical location, these Marriott-owned hotels have a lot to offer. While little ones won’t be able to get enough of the waterfalls and slide of the Grotto Pool and fun amenities like swan-shaped paddleboats, adults will love the convenient location, delicious dining options and more subtle design.  

During your stay, make the most of your time at Walt Disney World with our 1-day plans for Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios, and Animal Kingdom. Want to save some cash instead? Check out our discounted Walt Disney World tickets

Have you ever stayed at the Swan and Dolphin? Which of the Disney hotel duo do you prefer? Are you excited to stay at the new Swan Reserve? Let us know in the comments!

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