One of the most well-known traditions of Walt Disney World’s holiday offerings are the gingerbread houses located around the resorts. The oldest of such, the Grand Floridian gingerbread house, has been a staple of the resort’s decorations for nearly twenty years. In the following years, we’ve seen gingerbread creations added to the Contemporary and Beach Club resorts, as well as a location inside Epcot’s American Adventure – which, I believe, is the first such display inside a park. To begin our journey, we will start off with Epcot.
In years past, this was the location for the Hanukkah storyteller during Epcot’s Holidays Around the World celebration. With the story of The Maccabees being told musically at a new outdoor location, we now have this massive gingerbread house, featuring a special appearance by Honest Abe himself. If my math is correct, it would take one person four score to consume this entire gingerbread National Mall.
While our next stop on the Gingerbread House tour is not necessarily made of gingerbread, the Yacht Club has erected a train set in its lobby. One thing I’ve always enjoyed about Christmas was my grandfather’s train set that he would build in his dining room each year, adding more track, villages, and train cars as the years went on. If you look closely, you’ll notice some special details about this particular train setting. Characters from Frozen, Cars, and the Fab Five can be seen throughout the village, as well as signs promoting Cape May and Ship Shape, which are located within the resort itself.
Walking nextdoor to the Beach Club, we find our next gingerbread house…err, decoration. Made of gingerbread.
Fitting in perfectly with the beach theme, this gingerbread house in the Beach Club lobby features a merry-go-round that could be found on any seaside boardwalk. Lilo and Stitch have decided to help decorate – or is it destroy, in Stitch’s case? Either way, I quite enjoy the character figures as they are intricately detailed and very colorful. I’d have to claim this as my favorite gingerbread house this year. Side bar: Disney, if you need help disposing of all that chocolate at the end of the season, Derek Burgan and I could probably help out with that.
Now we’ll travel to Bay Lake to visit the iconic gingerbread houses on our list.
The Contemporary Resort’s Cinderella-inspired gingerbread house is featured in a new location this year, situated on the North end of the main concourse in front of the balcony overlooking the Magic Kingdom. Cinderella and Prince Charming are designed in the same style that the Frozen characters were in previous years. While this is somewhat out of the way for guests, it does provide more room to stand and enjoy the ambiance, rather than being in a busy thoroughfare as it was in years prior. As always, you they have gingerbread and gingerbread accessories for sale so you can take home some of the magic with you.
**No Gingerbread Men were consumed in the baking of this article**
Our final stop on this gingerbread house tour takes us to the Grand Floridian, which has been an annual tradition now since 1999. Unique to this gingerbread house is the fact that not only is it entirely made of gingerbread, but it also serves as a shop for gingerbread and other holiday goodies.
Depending upon the time of your visit, you may be able to experience a gingerbread decorating seminar from one of the Walt Disney World chefs that helped create the masterpiece.
As with every Disney creation, take time to admire the smaller details of the structure. You never know what familiar patterns or surprises you may find.
I hope you have enjoyed our look at the gingerbread houses around Walt Disney World, and that you and your families have a wonderful Christmastime! The gingerbread houses will be on display until the end of the year, so if you have time to visit, it makes for a perfect family holiday outing.