Savor a taste of Spain at the brand new Toledo – Tapas, Steak & Seafood, the rooftop restaurant at Gran Destino Tower, the newest addition to Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort.
In 2003, Disney Studios released “Destino,” a unique animated short film originally conceived by one unlikely pair — Walt Disney and famed Spanish Surrealist artist Salvador Dali who met each other in 1944. Financial pressures caused by World War II and other commitments forced the studio to shelve “Destino” and in 1999, Roy E. Disney decided to finish the studio’s work on “Destino” while completing the production of “Fantasia 2000.” The Gran Destino Tower is named after this short film, with artistic influences from the surrealist master.
Stepping into the lobby of the new Gran Destino Tower, the gorgeous design immediately makes a striking impression – with intricate mosaic tiling and lanterns inspired by Moorish architecture and Spanish modernism. The hotel also has quite the expansive views (perfect for viewing the nearby nighttime fireworks) and high ceilings.
Just outside of Toledo on the top floor of Gran Destino Tower is Dahlia’s Lounge, named after Dahlia, the main female protagonist of “Destino”. The chandeliers and paintings mimic the dandelions found in the film.
Here you can sample some of the fabulous cocktails provided, including the Gran Gin Tonic, the signature drink of Gran Destino Tower made with Tanqueray Gin, House-made Saffron-Orange Tonic, and Soda Water.
Gran Gin Tonic
Tanqueray Gin, House-made Saffron-Orange Tonic, Soda Water
Toledo itself features gorgeous panaromic views of Walt Disney World with a set of two live olive trees inside – a Spanish culinary staple with olives often found in tapas and olive oil in their many dishes. Toledo – in another nod to its Spanish artistic influences – is named after the Spanish city that was home to avant-garde writers and artists in the 1920s and ’30s.
Chef Robert Sayles (previously at Tiffins in Disney’s Animal Kingdom) serves as the chef for Gran Destino Tower at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort and helped to create most of the menu at Toledo. He spoke with us about the opening and his background as a chef at Walt Disney World.
An artist at heart who enjoys being creative and getting his hands dirty at a young age, Chef Sayles draws inspiration from his past experiences working at five signature Walt Disney World restaurants as well as Greek- and African-themed restaurants. He started his career as a student in the Disney Culinary Apprenticeship Program.
Chef Sayles tells us that Disney’s Food and Beverage team has a “heightened attention for local, sustainable, and plant-based offerings are among the main focuses now days. Seasonality plays a huge part in menu writing for Toledo.”
For the opening of Toledo, Chef Sayles and the team researched the many various tapas from the many regions in Spain as well as the cultural aspects of Spanish cuisine.
So far since opening, according to Chef Sayles, the guests have raved over the views, Toledo’s extensive wine list, on-stage open tapas kitchen, and the many menu options to choose from. The most popular dishes have been Savory Churros, Seared Scallops, Golden Tilefish, and of course the grilled Hangar Steak. For dessert, the Toledo Tapas Bar and Crema Catalana are crowd favorites.
Some of Chef Sayles’ favorite dishes at Toledo are the Pintxos, small bites of fantastic flavors. The Valdeon Blue cheese pintxo is his individual favorite with the “balanced flavors of pungent, sweet, and herbal.”
Here is an Inside Look at Some Dishes at the New Toledo:
“Pan Con Tomate” Tomato Bread
Grilled Bread, Crushed Tomato, Olive Oil, Garlic
Traditional “Tortilla Espanola” – Spanish Potato Omelet
Jamon Serrano, Picholine Olive Relish
Valdeon Blue Cheese
Crushed New Potatoes, Salsa Verde, Greens, Charred Peppers, Yellow Pepper
Petite Potato, Cauliflower, Fennel, Valencia Orange Sauce
Chef’s Vegan Presentation of Classic Seafood Presentations – Vegan Crab Cakes , Calamari, Scallops, Citrus-Infused Coucous
Fava Hummus, Olives, Harissa Vinaigrette, Roasted Carrots, Yogurt Powder
The Toledo Tapas Bar
A Progressive Dessert Tasting with the Flavors of Spanish Coffee, Crunchy Chocolate, Raspberry Mousse, and Lemon Curd
Toledo – Tapas, Steak & Seafood
Gran Destino Tower at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort