As most of you know, EPCOT’s Food & Wine Festival is fast approaching. This year’s dates are September 25 through November 16, 2015. There are a ton of things happening at the festival from food, wine, and music to seminars and much more. Part of this “much more” is a special location put on by Chase, the festival’s sponsor. This place is called the Chase Lounge.
I originally learned about the lounge in 2013. This was my first time really making an effort to learn about what the Food & Wine Festival had to offer. If you are casual Disney guest and don’t really do a lot of research on what is happening, you may miss this opportunity. I was the casual Disney fan for a long time where I was just happy to be there, but didn’t really know what was going on around me. The Chase lounge is something that I think the hardcore Disney goers and the casual fan would want to know about.
For the past two years, the Chase lounge has been located upstairs in the American Adventure Pavilion. It is hidden, so you would either need to know where you are going or accidentally get in a line you saw forming. You will find the entrance to the right of the main attraction entrance. There will be a Cast Member standing there, near a roped off queue that seems a little out of place.
Once you are in line you will show the CM your Disney Chase Visa and you’re in. Everything that I have seen directly from Disney states “Disney Chase Visa”, but every year I use my Marriott Chase or my Amazon Chase card and I get in. I have never been turned away for not have a Disney Chase card. It is completely up to the CM who is checking cards on whether you will get in with something other than a Disney Chase. I just have never had an issue. You are able to take up to 5 guests in with you. So, if you’re hanging out with a group of friends and one of you has a Disney Visa, you all may be able to get in.
Once inside you will have to climb some stairs, but there is an elevator if needed. At the top of the stairs you will walk into a hall where a CM will guide you to wherever you want to go or explain what is going on up there. To the right you will find the beverages. Complimentary soda and water as well as some alcohol for purchase. To the left you will find a seating area with chargers for your devices as well as bathrooms. This is an air conditioned room which is very nice on a hot day. There is also a limited number of people they will let in a one time. Once capacity is hit there will be a one out, one in, policy so the line can get long outside.
You would think that air conditioning, seats, electrical outlets, and complimentary soda would be enough, but there is more. Over the past 2 years that I have visited the Chase Lounge, there has been an opportunity to get preferred seating for illuminations and the Eat to the Beat Concerts. I have never taken advantage of this, but it seems like a great perk. These wrist bands are given out on a first come first served basis and there has been no official word, from Disney, if this will be happening again for the 2015 festival.
One thing I noticed is that parents like to bring their kids up there and sit for an extended period of time. Most kids I know are bored with EPCOT already and now their parents are making them sit and do nothing. Many of these parents do not supervise their kids and the kids tend to run wild and cause issues for other guests. There are board games available in the tables which will occupy most kids for about 10 minutes, but please, if you bring your kids up there, supervise them and respect the other guests. This request actually applies to life in general. No matter where you are.
Overall, this is a great opportunity to sit down, have a beverage, and recharge. If you have the opportunity to visit the lounge, I would highly suggest it. Even if you can’t stay long it is an awesome opportunity to feel like you are getting something free at Disney. I will be there many times this year I’m sure. As long as they let me in with my Marriott or Amazon Chase cards.
Until next time
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