Something EVIL has taken over Disney…in a good way.
The Disney Vacation Club lounge at Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort has been closed for several months (though it opened briefly in 2021). But things are changing here, in a more sinister way. The lounge will officially be reopening on July 11th with a whole new Villains(!) theme and look! We got to check it out for ourselves and now we’re taking you with us for a FULL review.
Top of the World Lounge — A Villains Lair is located at the top of Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort, which means it has really great views of Magic Kingdom!
You’ll start your night by checking in at the podium on a lower level.
Then it’s time to take the elevator to the lounge!
We’re HERE to tell you all about the reopening of the Top of the World Lounge as A Villains Lair Stay tuned for allllll the deets pic.twitter.com/2E7D8xCAIQ
— Disney Food Blog (@DisneyFoodBlog) July 7, 2022
Once inside, you’ll enter a beautiful space. How gorgeous is that chandelier?! There have been some changes made to the decor here, but you’ll still get those stunning Magic Kingdom views. Throughout the spa,ce you’ll find chairs, tables, and couches for you to lounge around on as you enjoy drinks and eats.
The lounge’s theme has been changed to be about those Disney villains — the ones we all LOVE to HATE! According to this spot’s updated backstory, when the lounge closed, it quickly became “a devil’s playground” for some of Disney’s worst bad guys.
When the Cast Members returned, the villains quickly dispersed, but left things a little rough. The drapes were in tatters, the carpets were destroyed, and things were a MESS! Of course, Disney came in and fixed things up, which is why you might spot some fresh and more modern furniture and carpets. But, they liked some of what the villains left behind (and they didn’t want to make too many people angry — not a good idea to be on a villain’s bad side), so they kept some things in there!
— Disney Food Blog (@DisneyFoodBlog) July 8, 2022
All around the space, there is “curious couture” and artwork dedicated to these villains that Disney left up.
The walls are covered in new portraits. You’ll find images of multiple villains in the space, including Maleficent, the Evil Queen, Jafar, and more!
Ursula even gets some villain love here!
And there are little nods to classic Disney villains around the lounge. It seems some of the villains left their belongings behind.
Can you guess who these belonged to? According to the Cast Member we spoke to, there will actually be more stands with villain costumes soon. And guests are encouraged to dress up when they visit!
So the story goes — when the Top of the World Lounge was closed, the Disney Villains took residence! Seems they may have left behind some things (even their recipes ) #mediaevent #hosted pic.twitter.com/KFHrgz3AA6
— Disney Food Blog (@DisneyFoodBlog) July 7, 2022
To add to the ambiance, they even had some Halloween music playing. How fun!
During our visit, we were also gifted some fun glasses…
…that turned the lights on the chandelier into little Mickey heads! How cool is that?!
We also got the chance to watch Disney Enchantment from high in the sky. The fireworks look spectacular from over here!
Those same glasses we mentioned earlier also turned the fireworks into little Mickeys. What a fun touch!
— Disney Food Blog (@DisneyFoodBlog) July 8, 2022
But enough about the atmosphere, let’s get into the food and drinks — which have also gotten a villainous makeover!
What can you order during your visit? Let’s talk menu!
Be sure to read through the front of that menu carefully as it goes into all kinds of details about the backstory of this place when the villains took over, and how even the ruthless need to relax!
As with any other lounge, there are a variety of adult beverages. You’ve got a selection of beers and wines, not to mention unique cocktails and mocktails.
On top of that, you’ve also got some small plates/appetizers that you can order to munch on during your visit. There are seven different apps to choose from, as well as a dessert.
But that’s enough looking, let’s do some tasting!
The lounge now has some “rebellious recipes” from the Disney villains available for guests to snack on.
Some of the food items include the herb-roasted “Unfortunate Souls Shrimp,” “Lair-Made Hummus,” and “Who’s Afraid of Pork Belly Sliders.” We gotta give it up to whoever created these names. 10/10 on the puns friends, 10/10!
The Lair-Made Hummus was plated with pita and topped with tomatoes, cucumbers, and olives.
Then there was the Who’s Afraid of Pork Belly Sliders. They’re shredded pork belly sliders topped with barbecue sauce and house-made pickles for $14.
The bun was really fresh and the pork was good, but it wasn’t the type of pork that we were hoping for. We were hoping that it would be more like the pork belly that you find at the Brazil booth during the Food & Wine Festival at EPCOT, but instead, it was more akin to a standard pork slider. However, it was still very delicious!
Next up we had the Twisted Tales Pretzel for $11, which is a soft Bavarian pretzel served with whole-grain mustard. Honestly, there’s not much to say about this one — it’s a pretty standard pretzel. It reminded us a lot of the one that you can get at Pongu Pongu in Animal Kingdom, so if you like that and you’re craving something straightforward, maybe try it out!
The Unfortunate Souls Shrimp were up next. These are herb-roasted shrimp popping with flavors of Romesco sauce, olive, tapenade, and marinated tomatoes. You can order them off the menu for $15.
These were one of our favorite things of the night because the shrimp themselves were delicious! There really wasn’t a strong fishy taste here, and the sauce was light and tasted more like a ceviche-style dish. The tomato flavor was strong (so keep that in mind), but we enjoyed it a lot!
Like most lounges, there’s a charcuterie on the menu! The Empress’ Charcuterie Board is $18 and comes with a seasonal selection of meats, cheeses, and accompaniments. It’s basically exactly what you’d expect from a Disney lounge charcuterie. The cheeses were all very good and flavorful, and we enjoyed it, but nothing was particularly standout about this appetizer as compared to the others.
There were also two flatbreads available. First is the Tomatoes of Terror Flatbread for $13. This is a Margherita flatbread topped with Roma tomatoes, tomato ragu, and mozzarella.
We opted to try the plant-based option instead, the Cosmic Power Flatbread. It’s topped with plant-based za’atar-spiced “beef,” caramelized onion spread, pickled onions, and “tzatziki.” You can get it for $13 and it’s honestly a shame that this lounge is so exclusive because we would love to eat this ALL the time. Of all the plant-based flatbreads our reporter has tried at Disney World, it was their favorite!
It had a sweetness to it, likely from the caramelized onion spread, that created a delicious and more intense flavor combination with that spiced “beef.” It wasn’t too spicy or salty — it just had a sophisticated and super tasty flavor profile. The loose greens on top gave it almost a salad-pizza vibe (which we love) and the creamy “tzatziki” sauce added that dairy feel without utilizing a “fake” cheese. It was something our reporter said, again and again, was their favorite plant-based flatbread in all of Disney World!
And for dessert, you know we had to try the Seven Lair Cake, which was suuuper delicious. It’s $12 and is drizzled with salted caramel sauce! The chocolate and sweetness weren’t too overpowering, but you’ll definitely need to like rich desserts to enjoy this one. It was very thick and creamy, and pretty heavy, so don’t make any plans except to go to bed after eating this cake.
And after all that, we’re simply STUFFED, but we have to talk about the drinks, right?!
The cocktails here include a bunch of themed drinks, with things named “The Other Side,” “The Underworld,” and “Mirror Mirror Moonshine.” We started our night off with some Villains Champagne. Seems appropriate right?!
— Disney Food Blog (@DisneyFoodBlog) July 7, 2022
Then it was time to dive into The Underworld. This drink is made with handcrafted traditional Spanish Opici, white sangria, peach puree, and blue curacao orange liqueur. To order it, it’ll cost you $15. It’s definitely an ominous-looking thing, served in a completely black glass.
The drink itself is a potion-y green color, topped off with a floral embellishment. We actually really loved it because the flavor was light and almost melon-like. It was fairly refreshing and we think it would be a great drink choice for those escaping the summer heat!
Next up was The Lion’s Uncle, which is actually a mocktail on the menu. It’s made with orange sherbet, Sprite, and grenadine and will cost you $7.
This drink definitely needs to be stirred unless you just want a big sip of grenadine, but we think kids will really love it with that scoop of orange sherbet on top. It was also fairly light.
We also tried the Cursed Pirate for $15. Another green drink to add to the list, it’s made with Diplomatico Planas Rum, Gosling Black Seal Rum, passion fruit, pineapple, lime juice, cane sugar, and of course, blue curacao.
Of the drinks that we tried, this one was definitely on the stronger side! The rum and the passion fruit were the two standout ingredients, and overall it was rather sweet. There’s a lot more going on with this one, but fans of sweet drinks and rum may want to try it out!
The Man in the Forest is also on the menu and is priced at $22. It is a handcrafted Widow Jane Straight Bourbon Old Fashioned made with Martini & Rossi Sweet Vermouth, Blandy’s 10-year Madeira, baking spices, and ginger bitters.
Remember how we said the last drink was strong? Well, this one is even stronger! It tastes a little fruity going down, but there’s a powerful bourbon flavor at the end. If you need a strong drink at the end of a long day in the parks, this should be your go-to.
And the last drink we tried was the other mocktail, The Queen’s Garden. It’s $8 and is made with seedlip garden, peach, lime juice, mint, and sparkling water.
It’s a very floral and herbaceous drink and there was a ginger syrup at the bottom (which was a little spicy, like ginger) that we probably should’ve mixed in more to get the full experience — stirring it would’ve made the drink much sweeter. However, our main thought about this beverage is that it’s pretty much like drinking a garden… which makes its name pretty spot on. It tasted like green juice, but looked like a clear soda, making its visual appearance really fun.
And that’s a look at what we ate and drank at this lounge!
Nosh or Not
We’re still including a “nosh or not” here, but we do want to mention again that Top of the World Lounge is exclusive to Disney Vacation Club Members. So, unlike other Disney spots that you can regularly visit, this one is a little more restrictive.
Head to Top of the World Lounge — A Villains Lair if:
- You’re looking for a place with a fantastic view — The view of Magic Kingdom here is pretty spectacular.
- If you want to fully embrace the villain culture — If you’re a huge fan of the Disney villains, this is a great spot to check out. It’s not overwhelmingly villain-themed, but the naming of the cocktails/food and the little villain touches throughout make it really fun!
- You want a place to relax at the end of a long night at Disney — Between the fun theming, tasty food, unique drinks, and fantastic views, Top of the World Lounge can be an awesome place to unwind at the end of the night.
Skip Top of the World Lounge — A Villains Lair if:
- You’re looking for cheap eats — If you want to grab a full meal on a budget, this might not be the spot to visit. While the food isn’t terribly expensive, they’re also not the standard full meals with sides that you’ll find at, say, a Disney World quick-service restaurant.
- You want a place that’s in the middle of the hustle and bustle — While this spot is just a hop, skip, and jump away from Magic Kingdom, it isn’t IN the park. So if you’re wanting to stay right in the center of the action, this might not be it for you.
- You want a place that is overwhelmingly themed to the villains — This isn’t exactly a place exploding with villains theming. There are touches here and there, especially when it comes to the food/drink names and pieces of decor. But it’s not as though you can sit on Hades’ throne or meet the Evil Queen. This has a more limited villains theme and an overall sophisticated feel.
Overall, this is a great spot to end your night if you’re eligible to stop by. There are some fun and interesting cocktails on the menu, and the food that we had would be a great late-night snack before you head back to your hotel room or a nice light dinner. The new villain-theming mostly consisted of some photos and little details, plus the music, but we would have loved it if they dove into that ambiance even more. (Think West Wing vibes from Be Our Guest Restaurant — how could would that be?!)
All in all, we had a good time at the Villains Lair and we would recommend it to DVC members looking for a chill place to hang out for a while. We’re glad to see it reopen soon!
The Villains Lair will officially open on July 11th to Disney Vacation Club members. It will be open daily from 6PM to midnight (but hours are subject to change). Also note that seats are on a first-come, first-served basis, so there are no reservations here!
Disney Vacation Club Members with access to Membership Extras and who are staying in Disney World Resort hotels can enjoy this revamped lounge, and guests staying on Members’ reservations are also eligible! Disney notes, “At least one Member in the traveling party must accompany the group and present their current MagicBand, digital Membership card and government-issued photo ID in order to gain admission to the lounge and observation deck.” So just keep that in mind!
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What do you think of this new lounge? Tell us your thoughts in the comments!
Disclosure: In nearly all circumstances, Disney Food Blog writers and photographers pay full price for their own travel, hotel, food, beverage, and event tickets. We do this because it’s important to us as journalists to ensure not only that we give you unbiased opinions, but also that you can trust us to do so since we’re paying our own way. On rare occasions, when we are invited by a company to attend a preview as media, and when we choose to accept that invitation, we will always make you, our readers, aware of that situation. We were invited by Disney World to attend their media preview of Top of the World Lounge — A Villains Lair. Note that when we attend events as media we are 1) Not required to review that event/food on any of our channels, and 2) Not required to review that event/food favorably. You can always count on DFB to give you a 100% unbiased and honest review of any event that we attend, food that we eat, or beverage that we drink. You can see more in our Disclosure Policy. Thank you for reading. — AJ
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