With summer quickly passing by, we made plans for one last road trip with the kids a couple weeks ago. Orlando is well-known for family-friendly entertainment, and we usually visit to play at one of the Disney parks every year. But this time, we wanted to switch it up and planned a stay at Waldorf Astoria Orlando to just eat, play and rest all at the hotel!
We were worried the kids would miss going to Disney for sure, but the property does such a fantastic job capturing you with their expert customer service and creative culinary experience, that… gasp, you kind of forget all about Disney. If you don’t believe us, come along today to see what a magical day at Waldorf Astoria Orlando looks like!
Waldorf Astoria Orlando is especially great for families because of their luxurious and generously sized suites. We were graciously upgraded to the Presidential Suite, which was enormous with a living room, office area, kitchenette, dining room, master bedroom and bathroom, sitting area and half bathroom. They also offer smaller options like deluxe rooms and deluxe suites, which are still very spacious for families. In the morning, we would order room service and let the kids jump on the bed or go downstairs and indulge in waffles, pancakes, eggs, bacon, and fresh cold pressed from the buffet at Oscar’s Basserie!
After breakfast, the kids were eager to swim in the pool, of course. We reserved a private cabana and the staff was very attentive and helpful in making sure it was stocked with rafts of all sizes and age levels for the kiddos. While the kids played on the swan and popsicle rafts, Beth and I ordered their signature Prosecco Popsicles that were made poolside for us from the nearby restaurant, Aquamarine. We also walked over to the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek to float around their lazy river and take turns on the super fun waterslide!
After the pool, we returned to our suite to cool off and rest for a bit. Thanks to our cousin who came along to help with the kids, Beth and I were also able to sneak away to the Spa for a heavenly Honey Butter Massage and an Illuminating Mineral Facial!
Then we changed for lunch and headed down to the special picnic the hotel planned for us. Unforgettable experiences are what the Waldorf brand is known for, and it is where they reallllly shine. A few experiential food stations were set up, and we watched the talented chefs grill corn on the cob and beef for sliders and make homemade ice cream with liquid nitrogen in a stand mixer for the strawberry shortcake dessert. The table was custom made for our family, and we’ll never forget the time and attention to detail that went into all of it!
On this afternoon, we had a private golf lesson scheduled at their Golf Academy, but we got rained out. Instead, we walked the property and played games in our suite until it was time for happy hour. Then we went downstairs to Peacock Alley, the “living room” space in the lobby, so the kids could dance to live piano music and the adults could try a craft cocktail. Our kids had a blast dancing to their favorite Disney tunes, and the drinks were delish!
After happy hour, we dined on the world’s best Fried Chicken <it takes 3 days to make!> and Nova Scotia Lobster at Bull and Bear, their AAA Four Diamond steakhouse. For the other dinners during our stay, we tried and highly recommend La Luce, where the kids made their own fireside pizzas with the chef, and Zeta Asia for sushi – both in the adjacent Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek property. At the end of the night, we relaxed by the pool and made s’mores before retiring to our rooms to have a front row view of the park fireworks!
Photography: Sandra Morlet
Accommodations: c/o Waldorf Astoria Orlando