We've been to the orlando area over 30 times. We've stayed onsite at Disney (Old Key West, Beach Club, Animal Kingdom, Polynesian, and just about all the rest), we've stayed onsite at Universal (Portofino Bay), and we were with a group and had to stay at Mystic Dunes (avoid at all costs!).
But a couple of years ago, we tried Marriott Harbour Lakes. It really is the best of the choices in Orlando if you're traveling with Kids. We've now stayed here three times, so we know the resort pretty well. Here's why it's the best choice:
1. Condo-style rooms. Your kids get their own room, you get a kitchen to cook a few meals, you get a washer/dryer for laundry, and you get SPACE with a living room, private balcony, and so on. The same style room at Disney will cost you about 3 times as much (and we were in the Disney Vacation Club, and rented from DVC members as well). Once you've gone condo-style with kids, you will never, ever go back to a single hotel room. For less money than a single room on property, you get to RELAX when you're back at your hotel.
2. Onsite activities. They have their own 18-hole minigolf course. You pay $30 per stay per family to play as much as you want (not per person, not per night, but for everyone in your party for the whole stay). We played every night on this last trip, and were the only ones on the course. No lines, no waiting, it was awesome. They have several pools with fun activities for kids of all ages. They have scheduled activities like movie night, magicians, games, and all the fun stuff. They have two basketball courts, a fire pit, gas grills, ping pong tables, and so on. It's a wonderful place to unwind after a stressful day at one of the area parks.
3. Upkeep. let's face it, some of the Orlando-area hotels are resorts start out really nice, but get worn down quickly after a few years - then never put the money back into maintenance. The great thing about the Marriott brand (and yes, the vacation clubs are now technically a separate company again, but still have the Marriott brand associated with them), is that they have high standards for maintaining rooms, common areas, and the grounds. This place is still like-new, and they quickly fix any issue you might have. The rooms amenities are a cut above disney (stainless steel fridges for example) and feel much more upscale.
4. Location. You're right between Universal and Disney, next door to Sea World, and 5 minutes from a super walmart and Whole Foods. You really are in the middle of everything, but feel like you're getting away from it while you stay. The trip to and from the airport is only 20 minutes, so you aren't wasting your time driving.
So give this place a try, they often have AAA rates that are supercompetitive with regular old hotels in the area.
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Marriott`s Harbour Lake Hotel Orlando
- Marriott Vacation Club Orlando
- Marriotts Hotel Harbour Lake
- Marriott Orlando
- Orlando Marriott
- Horizons Marriott Vacation Club Orlando
- Horizons Marriott Orlando
- Marriott's Harbour Lake Orlando, Florida