We went to Disney Springs yesterday on the first day of reopening after the March closing of the parks, resorts and Disney Springs for COVID-19. The parks are not open yet, but Universal Studios is now likely opening in the first week of June, so I expect we will hear on Walt Disney World soon too. But for now, Disney Springs is opening in phases – though it was a pretty big step yesterday with over 40 stores and restaurants opening. More are opening now, and tomorrow we’ll see Morimoto Asia, Pizza Ponte and Vivoli il Gelato open. And on May 27th, World of Disney and more will also be available for guests.
Masks are required, as is social distancing. We went in the morning, and I’ve been asked often since the visit if masks were enforced. It wasn’t needed in the morning because most people had them on. Later in the day – after we left – I’ve heard it wasn’t so enforced and hopefully that changes quickly. It was only the first day. Here are photos and information about yesterday.
The Orange Garage was the one open when we arrived, and the one I always prefer. Lime did open later.
The third floor had plenty of parking. There were no cones or Cast Members to help enforce distancing, but the upper floor did not need it (the first floor was pretty busy when we arrived).
Here is our video from opening day including the temperature check and a walk around.
There are all kinds of signs here and inside Disney Springs. COVID-19 isn’t gone and guests are at their own risk (just as going outside the house right now is).
There is a temperature check before heading into Disney Springs.
I will talk about the floor markers later, but you aren’t supposed to stand in it but behind it.
Jeff has his temperature taken. It was quick and easy, but I found this area wasn’t as socially distanced at times (not bad, I’m just not used to so many people in the same vicinity after 2 months away).
Disney Springs was actually busier than I expected in the morning. There are no tourists in town, so it would be mostly locals. It doesn’t look busy here but some areas got a little congested – surprisingly the Marketplace, even though little is open there.
I found myself learning to not touch surfaces very quickly – for example, the escalator. I put my hand on it without thinking but there is hand sanitizer and hand washing nearby. This would probably be one of the most touched surfaces. Most of my out-of-the-house experiences lately – not including exercise outside – is grocery shopping, where I touch a lot of different surfaces but carefully and I have a routine.
Planet Hollywood was opening on the 20th, but we arrived before most restaurants opened and left before many opened as well. We are going back next week for Pizza Ponte.
Chicken Guy! was opening, and had signs outside including about maintaining 6 feet. Lines were long on opening day for some of the restaurants.
There are health and safety reminders.
There are a variety of shops open.
Disney Springs is one of my favorite areas to walk in, and it was nice walking through Town Center again.
The Welcome Center is open.
This drink location was not open when I passed by, but there are distancing markers on the pavement.
A-Frames can be found around as well.
Uniqlo was opening on the 20th.
Cast Members were greeting guests. There were a limited amount of Cast Members compared to usual as Disney shopping locations were not open.
The Polite Pig was getting ready to open for the day.
Jeff was filming while in his Star Wars mask (thanks to our friends The Pixie Dust Chicks who made us masks).
The Daily Poutine was not open yet.
World of Disney is days away from opening.
These photos are in front of World of Disney. I was hoping that the floor markers would show where to stand and not where not to stand. There is a very wide area of pavement around them – plus most guests are used to standing in circles for rides and attractions. I expect guests will stand to the sides of the rectangles as well as inside them and in back and front.
The Marketplace was busier than I expected considering how little is currently open here. I didn’t know Starbucks would be open, it is now also open on the West Side (it wasn’t yesterday). Basin is open, Earl of Sandwich and the 4 Rivers truck. But a lot isn’t open yet.
The Starbucks had a line, as is usual – including for a Welcome Drink that could be ordered. I mentioned areas of Disney Springs could be a little congested and this was probably the busiest area.
Joffrey’s also was open, and had a short line (off to the left).
Looking back to the World of Disney area, which should be much busier once open.
The Welcome Back drink special is noted here.
Brickley the LEGO sea serpent.
Paddlefish is not yet open. While over 40 shops and restaurants are open, there is still quite a bit that is not. But it was a pretty big start.
Over at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort, the Mickey florals were not filled in.
The shape of Mickey could be seen.
Walking across the bridge to more of the Marketplace.
Disney Springs, “The Source of Inspiration”. I thought that was a good thought now.
Rainforest Cafe was not open, but T-Rex was.
There are markers on the ground.
Days of Christmas is one of my favorite shops, and not yet open.
Earl of Sandwich did open with Disney Springs.
Once Upon a Toy has no opening date yet.
Buzz Lightyear is surrounded by ground markers.
Neither the train or carousel are running yet.
Stitch was spitting at World of Disney.
Mickey was pouring water at the Marketplace. He used to be a real topiary but that changed in the last year or so. It is still one of my favorite fountains and is out of the way.
The 4 Rivers Cantina truck is open.
You can see a decent amount of guests past the sign.
Looking across the water.
The T-Rex had a line.
Arrows on the pavement point the way in each direction.
Cookes of Dublin was closed but I did see someone working inside.
Sprinkles was not yet open.
Raglan Road relies on Irish performers for entertainment, I’m not sure when it will open.
The bridge toward Sprinkles and Frontera Cocina has arrows as well.
There are a lot of seats outside of Cookes and toward Paddlefish.
The Boathouse had a line, it is my favorite restaurant at Disney Springs though there are many wonderful ones (Wine Bar George, Frontera, Jaleo, Raglan Road, etc.)
Maria & Enzo’s and Enzo’s Hideaway usually have servers from Italy, just as other Patina restaurants in the Italy pavilion of Epcot do. I don’t know if that will change for a while once they reopen. Pizza Ponte is about to open here.
The arrows are on this bridge also.
Characters in Flight is not running yet.
The West Side mostly was closed, though Starbucks is now open.
It looks busier here than it was.
Splitsville is still closed.
Jaleo has not announced an opening yet. Chef José Andrés has been busy feeding the world, but hopefully Jaleo can open pretty soon too.
The M&M’s Store is being built.
City Works was not open but I think we will see that soon.
The House of Blues sign was really fun, “You may have noticed some of the other neighborhood bands are back to rocking! We’re still fine-tuning and will be ready to welcome you back to our house in no time! Thank you for your patience”.
Cirque’s “Drawn to Life” was set to open just before everything closed. There is no opening date right now.
Looking at the “Drinks to Go” area of City Works.
Please keep 6 feet.
We left around noon and plan to go back Tuesday morning for a walk and pizza to go. Pizza Ponte is one of my favorite restaurants to pick food up at.
It was a beautiful day and hopefully the parks and Disney Springs will open safely.