This Floridian resort city is home to top theme parks, including Walt Disney World, Universal Studios, SeaWorld and a more recent arrival, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Plus there’s Gatorland, a giraffe ranch, Cape Canaveral and Everglade airboat rides. As such, it’s immensely popular with families and sees a high number of annually returning holidaymakers. However, there are plenty of adult-centred amenities to choose from too, including serene spas, eco-tours, championship golf courses and gourmet restaurants. These high-class hotels ably combine traditional Florida fun, with elegant sophistication and attentive service.
Offering villa living within a hotel complex, each of the 37 residences here has at least three bedrooms and a pool. The resort provides guests with a full-service spa, an 18-hole Greg Norman Signature Golf Course, 11 restaurants and bars, tennis courts, children’s activities, babysitting services, water sports and fishing in the neighbouring Grande Lakes. Covering 500 acres, the venue has been inspired by its natural surroundings and provides on-site eco-tours. And for those wanting some adult-only time, there’s a child-free pool area. It’s a relatively new addition to the Orlando hotel scene (and the Ritz-Carlton portfolio), having opened its doors in 2018.
JW Marriott Orlando
Standing tall on the city’s horizon, the JW Marriott is just across from the Ritz-Carlton. A lazy river and family-oriented pool with plenty of sunloungers contrast three peaceful hydrotherapy pools found in the full-service spa (but even this caters to kids with a menu of children’s treatments). There’s a whole retail avenue inside, including shops, a Starbucks and a healthy cafe. Large bedrooms have Revive bedding in soothing colour schemes, coffee makers, iHome docking stations, Aromatherapy Associates toiletries and 65 inch TVs. Farm to table cuisine is served in the many on-site eateries, ranging from fine dining to a sushi bar and poolside grill.
Waldorf Astoria Orlando
If you’d like to stay as close to Disney as possible – but not in one of their themed hotels – this is the place to book. Part of the Bonnet Creek complex, it’s a short drive from the theme parks, yet a beautifully calm oasis to escape the tourist bustle. Featuring local artwork, a Rees Jones-designed golf course, fancy boutiques and a glamorous cocktail bar, it’s deeply refined. However, kids are warmly welcomed too, kept occupied with their own programme of activities and dedicated pool – allowing the adults to enjoy some freshly baked croissants, in-room Nespresso coffee, beauty treatments or even a poolside Prosecco Popsicle.
Four Seasons Orlando
A brand renowned for its culinary offer, this Four Seasons holds up its reputation. Ravello serves fine Mediterranean cuisine alongside fine vintages – as well as hosting a bi-weekly Disney character breakfast. Stay here and you can enjoy the early entry theme park privilege otherwise reserved for Disney’s own on-site hotels. You’ll be transferred via private coach service from this gated community to the four parks. The architecture is reminiscent of Spain, while interior decor echoes contemporary Italian style. Two infinity pools enable families and adults to enjoy some sun-time separately – the child-friendly one has waterslides and a lazy river.