So here’s the unfortunate truth about character meals at Disney World — they can be kind of hit or miss. I know you’re at the most magical place on earth, and that you want everything to be perfect, but some of these restaurants tend to rely more on character appeal than good food. Personally, when I’m paying upwards of $30 a person, I want both good food AND characters present at my dining experience. The Crystal Palace is a shining example of what a Disney character meal has the potential to be. The Crystal Palace marries ambiance, characters, and great food in a prime location.
Disney’s Crystal Palace is modeled after the Crystal Palace that was built in Hyde Park in the 1800s. At the time it was built, it was the most amount of glass ever used in a building — therefor it used mostly natural light to light the inside of the interior. The same concept, on a much smaller scale is true at Disney. WDW’s Crystal Palace is constructed of glass walls, and is full of natural light. It give’s it a light, airy feel, which combined with The Hundred Acre Wood Topiaries they keep maintained at all time, makes for a great ambiance.
Tigger, Eyeore, Winnie the Pooh, and Piglet are constantly circulating the floor, and the character interaction is good. They also do a ‘friendship parade’ around the restaurant for children (or adults that want to act like children), where they can dance with characters.
The dinner menu changes some, but you can always count on there being a carving station, grilled salmon, garlic mashed potatoes, and an abundance of fresh salads. There’s a dessert bar, and while I try to always remain neutral on matters of sugar, I have a t-shirt and a fan club for their marble cheesecake.
The Crystal Palace is also prime Disney real estate — smack dab in the middle of the Magic Kingdom, with a view of Cinderella’s Castle. While a lot of character meals are at Disney Resorts, this one is nice, because you don’t have to factor in park commute time to get there.
Overall, we give The Crystal Palace two thumbs up. We endorse it, we love it, we can’t wait to eat there again, and we might hurt you if you take the last piece of marble cheesecake.