Even though I’ve lived in Florida forever, I don’t spend too much time theme park hopping in Orlando. I used to live there for college (I went to UCF) and I had season passes to Universal Studios for a few years, yet I never seem to make the trip back. Ever since I’ve met my husband we have spent a weekend in the Florida Keys as our “vacation.” Now that we have a little one, we decided to give Orlando another try. It had been years since either of us had been there. The last time we went to Orlando together was when we first met, and I dragged him along to a Huey Lewis & the News concert at Universal. It was legendary, of course.
Since we wanted a family weekend away, we were going to try Disney. We wanted to stay somewhere affordable but also nice. Traveling with a toddler can be tricky. Small hotel rooms aren’t my thing, and I like having the space to prepare snacks and meals if we want to. That’s why the Lake Buena Vista Resort Village & Spa has become our new favorite. All of the rooms are suites and were very spacious. We had a full kitchen, two bedrooms with TVs, a washer and dryer (seriously, traveling with one is so helpful especially if you need bathing suits to dry!), a gigantic tub for bubble baths, and a patio with a view of a pirate ship pool. Yes, there is a pirate ship at this hotel and it just happens to have a water slide.
Consider that the highlight of the trip.
Our two year old wouldn’t have known Disney from the hotel, so I almost considered just lounging poolside the entire time. The view was nice, the weather was warm, and the adjacent tiki bar served up delicious drinks. I know because I had too many of them one night…
There was also a Pizza Hut and a convenience store on property so we had a short walk to grab extra essentials (or stock up on cheap wine).
We both had friends who lived in Orlando, so we had a reunion of sorts after the kiddo went to sleep. The pool didn’t close until late so we were able to enjoy the outdoor bar and order food. Mai tais were 2-4-1 so we may have ordered a few.
Seriously though, our son loved the water area near the pool.
It was zero entry so it was easy for us to get in and out.
There were a lot of water toys that the hotel provided, and there was a children’s area.
Seriously, couldn’t get this kid to pay attention to anything but the water!
Throughout our stay there were a variety of activities (including meet an alligator, how very Florida), but we only participated in one…arts and crafts. At the time, it seemed like the best idea ever. Paint and stickers and PIRATE accessories.
My son loves to color and paint and do anything crafty. You can tell he is used to daycare arts and crafts, because he just kept painting his hand. He thought he had to make a hand print.
The idea was cute but messy.
After his creation was complete, he couldn’t get enough. HE WANTED MORE PAINT. Cue toddler tantrum and a nap, and everything was all right again.
Other highlights of this hotel stay included the grounds. Everything was beautiful and kept up. Parking was covered and easy to find.
Oh, and I did mention that tiki bar, right?
As for the distance between here and Disney, it was a breeze. It took maybe five minutes or so to get to Typhoon Lagoon and Downtown Disney. While we were not on Disney property, I felt like we were. It was affordable, easy to find, and the rooms were amazing. The next time we head to Disney (hopefully in December for the Magic Kingdom’s Christmas party!) we will certainly be booking a room here.
Besides, I need another one of those mai tais!
When was the last time you headed to Orlando?
Stick around for our adventures at Typhoon Lagoon with a toddler, spending a day at Disney Quest (even though everyone told us not to go), and experiencing Downtown Disney.
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