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5 Hidden Gems at Disney Springs

Disney has upgraded to Disney Springs which has brought new shops and dining locations opening. Take advantage of the new parking garage to find a spot quickly and it gets you close to everything on the West Side. You can catch a boat to or take a short walk to everything else. If you are staying at a Walt Disney World resort please take one of the complimentary bus transportation or boat transportation from your resort directly to the DS area. Parking is free and admission to Disney Springs is free. Come visit the Disney magic for free!

5. Basin is an unassuming looking shop off to the side that people just walking down the main walkway will not see, but once you walk in and start using their testing containers you may get hooked on something as simple as washing your hands! Go ahead, try that Sugar Scrub on your hands you will see what I am talking about. They care a wide array of soaps, body cream, shampoo soaps, soaps for pets, lip scrubs, bubble bath soap, wax treatments, etc. Several of the soap makes use of different soap coloring to show things like Nemo inside each slice of soap. They are fun and may encourage children to wash their hands more too. I discovered it after visiting the Ghirardelli shop who hand out a free piece of chocolate to guests entering their shop. You don’t want to miss that either!

4. Guest RelationsMany guests don’t realize there is a Guest Relations desk at Disney Spring West Side. Here you can swap ticket certificates for your actual ticket and if you need help with a reservation, linking your ticket to your MagicBand, answering any questions you may have about Disney, and you can even trade in your “Disney points” from your Disney Visa card and get the monetary value of those points put on gift card that you can use while you are here at Walt Disney World for food, merchandise, resort stays, and the like.

If you do not have a Disney VISA card by Chase you could open an account while here. The line is usually shorter than the GR’s in the Parks so you could save yourself some time by visiting this location while you are enjoying the shops and dining options. If you decide you have to have “just one more day at Disney” they can help you get a reservation, etc. to make your stay possible. Inside the World of Disney you will also find an unassuming Guest Relations desk where you can ask them to find you a particular item, or character, etc. that you may have seen and now cannot find, or to search for an item you think they have but cannot find. They will search and write down the results for you, if you need them to, telling you where you can find that item on Disney property!

3. Chapel Hats is a new shop that comes as part of the Disney Springs expansion. This shop is so much fun to visit. There are hats stacked from the floor to the tall ceilings. You can find a hat in here for every occasion. Don’t look for Mickey Ears in here, these are upscale hats. My favorite were the Steam Punk varieties for both men and women.

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2. There is a boatload of Entertainment to be found in Disney Springs. With the evening comes many singers/guitar players all around the area. There are many outdoor eating areas and there is usually someone performing in that space, and some that are just large spaces without eating. You will hear all styles of music as you walk through DS. There are other forms of entertainment that include bowling at Splits Ville, movies and dining at the AMC Fork & Dine that gives you comfortable large seating and you can order complete meals to eat and alcoholic/non-alcoholic beverage served to you just prior to the movie start. You can watch the movies in regular theaters that are still a step above what you normally find as the seating is large, has large cup holders, recline, etc. IMAX theaters are in the complex as well. The House of Blues provides excellent entertainment. La Nouba by Cirque du Soleil is the ultimate in entertainment in DS – West Side.

1. The Art of Disney store has the largest collection of Disney authorized paintings, giclee prints, cells, drawings, collectibles, Art Of…book series, mugs, etc. that are not only fun to look at and collect but they become investments just like any other kind of art. I don’t see very many people looking here as it is the very last building at the farthest end of Disney Springs Marketplace reaches, adjacent to Rainforest Café. Design-a-Tee is in the same building and you can get T-shirts designed for everyone in your party! Another shop that sells another form of Disney “art” is the Co-Op Marketplace that has a section selling home goods based on popular Disney Park attractions that are great fun to use at home.

About Cassie

Cassie L. I am a lifelong Disney fan. I attended Walt Disney World in 1971, and was there during the opening week of EPCOT, and have visited the Disney Parks for than 30 times. I have had the privilege of visiting Disneyland as a child, and then again with my children. My family recently moved from the northeastern United States to the Walt Disney World area. I now have cast members in my family and enjoy hearing the magical stories at the end of a shift. I love visiting all of the parks and getting to try more Disney food and being able to share it with you to help you plan your own magical day at Disney.