Refurbishment of Sago Cay Exterior Nears Completion at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort

Shannen Michaelsen

The refurbishment of the Sago Cay building exterior seems to be nearing completion at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa.

Sago Cay Building Construction

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When we rode by the building on the Monorail in the morning, several crew members were working on this area of the roof.

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The building’s shingles had been removed earlier this month, leaving the weather-proof sheathing beneath exposed.

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Just a few hours later, the crew members had restored almost all of the red shingles. Just a strip of the roof was not yet complete at the top.

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Another group of crew members was working on the stairwell, which had been demolished and is now being reconstructed. Since our last construction update, railings had been installed on most of the stairs. Extra steel poles have also been added to the corners, so the stairwell is ready for paneling soon.

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Crew members have also been working around the chimney at the very top and center of the building, but it’s harder to see what exactly they’re doing up there.

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Scaffolding went up around the chimney a few days ago. The flat pieces of wood are beneath the scaffolding to keep the roof protected.

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Crews have also been working inside the building, but we won’t see that refurbishment work until Sago Cay reopens.

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The roof was also refurbished at the far end of the building.

Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort Refurbishment

Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa lobby

Reportedly, when now-former CEO Bob Chapek took over the Parks & Resorts division in 2015, he felt that the Grand Floridian was not up to standards. The comparisons to a Four Seasons didn’t befit the current state of Walt Disney World, and so it was no longer suitable as the flagship resort. But rather than shift focus to another resort hotel, the company decided to make changes.

The major overhaul of Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort began with the Enchanted Rose Lounge, which replaced Mizner’s Lounge. It was given a “Beauty and the Beast” theme. Cítricos followed with a new “Mary Poppins”-inspired design. When the Grand Floridian Spa reopened in January 2022, it was revealed that it, too, had been remodeled. All the rooms of the resort are still being updated and some “Mary Poppins” theming has been added throughout guest buildings.

Narcoossee’s was closed from June 2022 to April 2023, and reopened with a revamped interior and “land and sea” menu. Read our Narcoossee’s review.

1900 Park Fare, the character dining buffet location at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, is still closed for refurbishment. The restaurant has not reopened since it closed in March 2020 with the rest of Walt Disney World Resort due to COVID-19. When physical distancing measures were still in place, 1900 Park Fare was used as overflow seating for Grand Floridian Café for a short period of time.

The Grand Floridian Resort’s lobby will also be updated in the near future.

Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa will celebrate its 35th anniversary on July 1, 2023.

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  • Shannen Michaelsen

    Shannen has been a Disney Parks fan and lover of dogs since childhood, despite Pluto's attempt to eat Shannen's Minnie Mouse doll the first time they met. They've made up now. You can email Shannen at