My first trip for 2020 was to the Vero Beach area to stop by McKee Gardens and Disney’s Vero Beach Resort.
The resort is small, but it’s a great place to vacation. Obviously, the name Disney means entertainment for the entire family and the Vero Beach property doesn’t disappoint.
On this visit, I was honored to get a tour by one of the cast members – a Legacy Award-winning cast member, in fact. The Legacy Award is one of the most prestigious awards for Disney staff. You can immediately tell if a cast member is one of the rare recipients by their blue name tag instead of the ubiquitous white everyone else wears.
My guide took me on the grand tour of the facility. Much of the resort has been renovated since 2020 is its 25th anniversary and any resort needs refreshing after that long. The overall look of the resort has changed little, however but it’s been popular since day one.
The entire place has a great feel of relaxation, exactly what I look for in an oceanfront resort. There’s plenty to do however with a pool, croquet lawn, bonfire circles, walking trails, art classes and of course the Atlantic Ocean. They even have the famous Disney Dole Whip for guests to enjoy.
We got to visit the arts and crafts room to see some of the projects like a tye-dye Mickey t-shirt as well as see some terrific chalk art by one of the artists-in-residence (actually just another talented cast member!)
Since Vero is on Florida’s Treasure Coast it’s not surprising that the resort is lightly themed to the classic Disney movie Peter Pan. Tick-Tock the Crocodile welcomes guests near the main entrance (ignore the fact that saltwater crocodiles are native only to the southern tip of the state). The topiary proved so popular that the living version which was original to the resort has been replaced by an artificial one because it was nearly impossible to take care of and still let the guests get their selfies. My only criticism is there’s not enough Tinkerbell representation around. I was hoping for a “Tink Suite…”
Lastly, I want to mention that the resort teaches about and participates in conservation. The beach along that part of the coast has been eroding for years which has several consequences including a reduction in the area available for sea turtle nesting. Disney’s Vero Beach Resort helps with efforts to assist sea turtles. Since female sea turtles return to the same beach from which they were hatched, it’s simply not in their programming to head to some other beach. That’s partly why conservation efforts are important and why Disney teaches their guests. Yay for them.