We are staying at the Swan and Dolphin this summer and the dress code says "business casual" for the signature restaurants and I was wondering if the children need to follow this same dress code? It seems like a hassle to get out of park attire to go eat and then change again. If the food is really good and the convenience of being at the resort it might be worth it. The reviews are very high for these places and I am getting ready to make dinner reservations in a few days.
FYI - this ended up in the DisneyLand area rather than WDW so you may not get the answers you're looking for.
Unfortunately I have no experience with the Swan/Dolphin restaurants - Touring Plans doesn't mention anything as far as dress code for the Swan restaurants.
I think it depends on how far you are going to bend it. If they are in nice shirts and a nice T-shirt I think you will be fine. I would avoid tank tops for boys - and if you aren't going to go with a Polo shirt - at least as nice a T shirt as possible with non flip-flop types of shoes.
I am sure you can call and find out. However I am a firm believer that the codes are there for a reason - we follow them and as a diner I really do expect others to as well
I would ask @bswan26. He seems to have a good lock on dining things at Disney World.
I know we ate at a number of Signature locations and saw all sorts of ways people were dressed that I would not consider 'Business Dress" but did not eat at the Swan or Dolphin.
I have been to a signature restaurant with a two year old. Some families may dress up a little (my grown son will change his Mickey shirt to a polo- but there is no need. The only exception is Victoria and Alberts but children are not allowed. I will also tell you that the last time I went to Jiko almost every table had a child at it!
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I heard my name called...
I have never eaten in the Swan/Dolphin so I can't comment specifically about those, but "business casual" at the Disney signatures, typically for me, means khakis and a polo shirt (or sweater in the winter); no jeans, no flip-flops. I would say that's the "norm", although you will see everything from t-shirts to suits. Cindy typically wears a dress or slacks with a "dressy" top (I don't speak women's fashion very well). In-park signatures (e.g. Le Cellier and HBD) tend to be a bit more casual as most people don't bring a change of clothes to the park with them for lunch/dinner. I can't comment on kids; I don't have any, and if I did I wouldn't take them for signature dining.
So, we ate at BlueZoo, and I saw a few kids there, but honestly, I did not look at what they were wearing, and I doubt anyone else did either. The place was pretty and nice, but not at all stuffy, and I'm fairly certain that we walked in with our usual park attire as well, which would have been shorts and short-sleeved shirts and sneakers. I did not get the sense that a dress code was enforced there, nor did the staff seem to pay any attention at all to what we were wearing. The entrance was off the main area on the ground floor, with doors to the outdoors. It was perfectly relaxed.
So this has gotten me thinking. How do people dress when they go on vacation?
My wife does a great job of trying to have everyone look nice. Kids usually have short with either a nice T or polo. Daughter sometimes wears a dress. Wife wears jeans, nice top and nice shoes (not heals). But always tries to look "put together". I usually wear nice shorts and a polo.
When in Europe we try to dress like locals. No sneakers, nicer casual clothes, slacks instead of jeans.
What do others do?
We didn't go to any of the other, "Signatures," but I can tell you we went to Kimonos for dinner in our park clothes with our 7 yr old. I'm pretty sure I was in shorts and sandals, and a ripped shirt because I normally dress like a hobo (and I truly don't care.) We were not out of place at ALL. The karaoke got pretty rowdy, btw. Fun place, very decent sushi - very decent prices.
I'm a bit like your wife..... I do try to make everyone look 'nice'. Maybe because we holiday a lot in Europe and away from the beach etc you do tend to dress up! Even when flying I make sure everyone is fairly presentable. In the parks it's t's/polos, nice shorts/jeans for the boys and I tend to wear loose cropped trousers and linen tops. We never wear flip flops unless it's by the pool/beach. And it's usually Converse or pumps rather than sneakers.
Thank you so much for your reply!
My usual "park attire" is cargos (shorts,slacks, or kilt, depending on weather) and a t-shirt (sometimes a muscle shirt or tank top if it's hot or a hoodie if it's cold). Pretty much the same for flying; I want to be comfortable and do not feel the need to "dress up" for my fellow travelers.
I think I am the oddity in the fact that I like looking nice (now I do certainly look like a slob at times). But when we are tooling around town and on vacation - we do want to look nice. I think it is an extension of our personalities. I feel better when I am dressed nicely. When at a nice place - I want to look appropriate. I hate being under dressed for an occasion.
My wife is very good at ensuring the kids look presentable. She is also great at letting them be fun and make a mess - but when that time is done - we clean up and move on.
Yes - we are both high strung type A that also like to let loose!
My feet are literally not surviving Disney World in anything less than sneakers!
I'm always comfortable in my clothing and dress to please myself
For us on this trip, signature meant get kind of dressed up - shirt with collar, dress shirt for her. Table services, well that was more what we had on. I just felt that getting dressed up was betther if we could.
With the exception of HBD at HS, the Disney Signature restaurant dress code is:
"At this signature dining experience, Guests are asked to adhere to the dress code.
Men may wear khakis, slacks, jeans or dress shorts and collared shirts. Sport coats are optional.
Women may wear Capri pants, skirts, dresses, jeans or dress shorts.
Not permitted are tank tops, swimsuits, swimsuit cover-ups, hats for gentlemen, cut-offs, torn clothing and t-shirts with offensive language and/or graphics."
When we've done them with the kids, I've put them in their "dressiest" park clothes - basically sneakers, a polo OR clean-not-ripped t shirt, and shorts. Not sure how different the Swalphin signatures are, but I'd assume the same.
We ate at Flying Fish last week (wish we were still there!) and I packed clothes specifically for dinner. DH likes to wear those nice "bowling" or Hawaiian style shirts with khakis and dress shoes. Still comfy but a little more polished than a t-shirt. DD11 & I both wore dresses (nothing formal) and flats.
I never want to be underdressed. It happened to me once right after I graduated from college and I felt like a fool. I went to a graduation party and was really looking like a bum - ripped jeans, messy shirt... I still remember that feeling when I realized all the recent Pharmacy grads were wearing really nice clothes and I felt out of place. Thanks for the therapy session!!
I think ALL guests - children included - should change into clean, nicer clothes before eating in a Signature Restaurant. They have several more casual places to eat at the Swan/Dolphin if that is your preference.
The Swan/Dolphin restaurants are not IN the parks and not all guests staying there are visiting the parks. So while I would wear sneakers to a nicer restaurant actually in a park, I would never do that in a hotel.