Image: Presidential Suite
Walt Disney Company
The presidential suite at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge is perhaps the most luxurious accommodations in all of Walt Disney World. It's 2,115-square-feet of five-star amenities, including a remote-controlled fireplace, a Jacuzzi, even a private treadmill on the balcony (which overlooks the savannah's wildlife). Prices start at $2,140 per night.
updated 3/29/2008 4:40:12 PM ET 2008-03-29T20:40:12

Candlelit couples massages. Safaris at sunset. Dining at a chef's table in a five-star restaurant. When contemplating a trip to Walt Disney World, these probably aren't the experiences that immediately come to mind, but alongside the rides, fireworks displays and cartoon characters, guests can find full-service spas, gourmet dining and some of the most customizable services available at any resort.

For families planning an upscale vacation, amusement parks don't generally top the list. But Disney delivers the luxury goods.

"Disney is the only brand of theme parks that live up to the five-star service experience," says Hiapo Cockett of McCoy Custom Travel. With the kids clamoring to try new rides like Toy Story Mania at Disney World and the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage at Disneyland, there's no reason that the adults in a family shouldn't have their own vacation indulgences as well.

And, unlike at some resorts, there are plenty of options. "Disney offers something for every vacation type," says Disney spokesman Charles Stovall. "Guests wanting to indulge will find lots of opportunities, including one-of-a-kind experiences that only Disney could create."

While the children enjoy a supervised kids-only pirate cruise, or having tea with Cinderella and the princesses, or just being entertained by a Disney babysitter, parents can plan their own itineraries-including spas, horse-drawn carriage ride and championship-caliber golf courses. Need a little help with your golf game? Private lessons with golf pros will fix that stance, while a follow-up hydrotherapy massage may change your whole outlook on life.

Relaxing away from the kids may be nice, but Walt Disney conceived of his parks as a way for families to enjoy themselves together, in clean, safe environments. Unfortunately, he didn't say much about finding your way around, but that's nothing a little cash can't solve. VIP tour guides are available to take you around the four theme parks, scoring line-passing tickets to attractions, the best seats at the live shows and even locating that impossible-to-find souvenir, not to mention taking care of all your dining reservations.

"With a VIP guide hosting you, there's no need for guide maps or planning tools," says VIP tour guide Chris Wojcik. "They know everything from parade times to where the nearest bathroom is." That includes knowing where to find all your kid's favorite Disney characters as well, so no one goes home without that Mickey Mouse or Cinderella autograph. These are also the guides who escort movie stars around Disney. But, as Wojcik explains, "Even though we host a lot of celebrities, it's the families that mean the most to us. We're helping bring their vacation to life."

It's not just family vacations. If an engaged couple wants a fairy tale wedding, the bride can be picked up in Cinderella's coach and driven to the foot of Cinderella's Castle, where she can meet her Prince Charming. Wedding planners are on-hand to work with Disney bakers, decorators, florists, everything you need for a 500-guest affair to an intimate ceremony for family and friends. Don't worry if the party is too small: Mickey and Minnie or other characters can show up to your ceremony at the Wedding Pavilion at the Grand Floridian Resort. You can also get hitched in front of Cinderella's castle or even in the middle of your favorite ride.

Every little girl wants to be a princess for a day. For a little extra formalwear around the parks, she can done up at the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, a royal beauty salon that'll outfit girls (three years and up) in their favorite princess gown, crown and hairstyle. The "Fairy Godmothers-in-training" who style the girls can also add make-up and nail polish, then wrap the whole thing up with a professional-style photo shoot.

Image: Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique
Walt Disney Company
Fairy-Godmothers-in-training run the two Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutiques (one in Downtown Disney, one in Cinderella's castle), acting as stylists to girls three and older. Boys won't feel left out with the "Cool Dude" makeover, starting at $10. Reservations are recommended.

For Disney fans, there may be no more exclusive experience than getting a behind-the-scenes look at the theme parks. You can take a Segway tour of Epcot with a guide who provides insider trivia along the way. Or, walk through the fabled underground tunnels of the Magic Kingdom during a Backstage Tour; or scuba-dive in The Seas with Nemo & Friends, a 5.7-million-gallon salt-water tank. You can even take a safari out into the Animal Kingdom Lodge's savanna as the sun goes down, followed by a four-course gourmet meal at Jiko, home of America's most exclusive South African wine list.

While Orlando may not have the beach access of coastal Florida, Disney wouldn't let their guests go home without enjoying a little water fun. Adventures include bass-fishing tours on lakes inside the resort and surfing lessons, but there's nothing quite like watching the fireworks at the Magic Kingdom from onboard the Grand 1, a 52-foot yacht. Romantic dining and private butlers are available for cruises as well.

Image: Chef's Table
Walt Disney Company
Victoria & Albert's is the only restaurant at Walt Disney World with an age restriction: Adults only. A frequent award-winner, Victoria & Albert's candlelit room is topped only by a meal at the Chef's Table, inside the restaurant's kitchen. Chef Scott Hunnel customizes a menu for his diners at a cost of $175 a person (add a wine pairing for an additional $70).

Disney World actually scatters gourmet award-winning restaurants around its resort. Book a private room at the California Grill, or enjoy a personalized three-course wine tasting at Citricos. Chef Todd English's bluezoo brings an imaginative flair to seafood, but it's the chef's table at Victoria & Albert's that will give pause to even the most seasoned foodies. Chef Scott Hunnel amazes guests with a menu developed solely for them.

Clearly, if your wish includes the pampering of a lifetime, your Disney hosts can grant it. And they're not content to rest on their laurels, either. "We're always looking for new ways to make guests' vacations extraordinary," says Disney's Stovall. "And we'll continue to try to exceed their expectations with unique, over-the-top experiences that only Disney can deliver."


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