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7 Best Orlando Hotels for the Staycation Mom To Relax

Updated: Mar 15

As often as once a month I get to have my very own “Pretty Woman” moment. You know the one, where Julia Roberts is draped in a dress finer than she can afford, showing a lot of leg in the hotel lobby bar, waiting for her man. That’s me, except maybe in more of a Ross Dress for Less outfit, with my daughter tugging on it for my attention.


In this scenario I am more often than not on a staycation in Orlando for the night while my husband works at the hotel conference room. Since my husband already has a room for the duration of his conference, my daughter and I get to join and enjoy going to the pool, the playground, walked the grounds of some of the best Disney resorts and luxury stays Orlando has to offer, and we do it all as guests to my husband.



In fact, we’re not alone - lots of families are starting to join their spouses on their work trips, and why not? Free hotel stays, luxurious bed sheets, and the smell of chlorine in all your belongings? Sounds like vacation to me. Here’s a round up of some of the best Orlando hotels to do a little staycation-ing yourself.


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Best Orlando Hotel To Feel Like You're Somewhere Else


Gaylord Palms Resort and Convention Center


Palm trees and sunshine at the interior atrium of the Gaylord Palms
The atrium at the Gaylord Palms Resort in Orlando

The interior atrium is a vacation in itself. Lush and tropical, the sound of waterfalls trickles through alligator pools under a walking bridge full of young gawkers who have never seen a baby gator.


Gator pool at the Gaylord Palms in Orlando
Gator pool at the Gaylord Palms in Orlando

The atrium facing rooms drool with opportunities to people watch with wine glass in hand, and the outdoor water park takes your average hotel swimming pool to the next level.


Come for dinner on a faux sailing ship perched over an indoor sea, and stay for their annual Christmas festivities featuring Cirque du Soleil performances and an icy wonderland for kids.



Address:

6000 W Osceola Pkwy, Kissimmee, FL 34746

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Best Orlando Hotel For Date Night Vibes

Disney's Coronado Springs Resort


With nightly s’mores by the campfire, multiple man made beaches, water fountains and Hispanic restaurants, this place is like a cruise on land.


The gorgeous Barcelona Bar at Coronado Springs Resort
The gorgeous Barcelona Bar at Coronado Springs Resort

Offering four sit-down restaurants and several bars and quick-service options, Coronado Springs is a scripted date night from taking in hand crafted Gin and Tonics in the Barcelona Lounge to tapas at the 16th floor rooftop, you can finish a romantic or family-focused evening at the nightly movie on the lawn, featuring Disney animated films.


Watching Moana on the lawn at Coronado Springs Resort
Watching Moana on the lawn at Coronado Springs Resort

The pool has a giant Mayan Temple towering over a neatly enclosed area, bordered by a cantina, playground and volleyball court. If you get bored here, just take one of the convenient shuttle buses right to the nearby Disney Parks.



Address:

1000 W Buena Vista Dr, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

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Best Orlando Hotel For The Pool


Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress Resort


palms trees with a blue sky background

Just 3 minutes drive to the Disney attractions, the Hyatt in Lake Buena Vista has long been a wonderful spot to visit as a local. Their pool area is hands down the number one reason to stay at this resort. Featuring caves and waterfalls, this resort pool is a stunner. The pool bar and restaurant serves up standard fare from quesadillas to chicken fingers, and the neighboring man-made beach is great for sunbathing or launching one of their rental kayaks.


Address:

One Grand Cypress Boulevard, Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, FL 32836,

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Best Orlando Hotel To Access Disney


Disney's Swan and Dolphin Hotels


One of the major attractions here is the proximity to Disney's Epcot theme park. Connected to the park by Disney's Boardwalk, a stay at the Swan or Dolphin hotel makes a trip around Epcot's world showcase an easy one. Accessible through the secret entrance by France and the Ratatouille ride, visitors can stroll in from the resort and Boardwalk area or they may choose to arrive by the very convenient water taxi.


A beautiful pastel palette of color at the Swan Hotel lobby
A beautiful pastel palette of color at the Swan Hotel lobby

Commonly thought of as one hotel, the Swan and Dolphin Hotels are actually separate to book. The major difference is the cost. The Swan nearly doubles the current daily rate for the Dolphin, so keep that in mind.


Between the two hotels there is something like half a dozen pools and nearly 20 restaurants, so you really don't need to leave. The Boardwalk also offers plenty of dining options, and the beach path to and from the hotels offers a really relaxing way to finish out a day at the park or visiting nearby Disney Springs.



A night view of the Boardwalk and Swan and Dolphin hotels at Disney
A night view of the Boardwalk and Swan and Dolphin hotels at Disney


Address:

The Swan: 1200 Epcot Resorts Blvd, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

The Dolphin: 1500 Epcot Resorts Boulevard, Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, FL 32830

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Best Relaxed Orlando Hotel


Orlando World Center Marriott


An impressive hotel, the Orlando World Center Marriott used to be a pit stop for entertainment in our early days living in Orlando. Accompanied by a visit to the nearby outlets, my parents would take us there to ride the elevator and see the cool effect from dropping 20 floors in all-glass surrounds. In the '90s, this was cool stuff!


Today, this well-situated hotel to both SeaWorld and Disney parks is a treat to relax at with family without having to go far from home.


With plenty of dining options, we enjoyed a delicious (albeit overpriced) meal at Siro Urban Italian Kitchen, and were delighted to see an option for Mikado Japanese Steakhouse onsite as well. Be aware that this popular teppanyaki dining establishment will require reservations in advance on OpenTable if you don't want to be disappointed.


The pool bar offers great (expensive) cocktails, but amenities don't end there. Play lawn games by their fireplaces and common areas and their pool is a highlight for all guests. Attend a dance party by the pool in the evenings and catch a movie when the sun goes down.


Just before the laser show at the pool at Orlando World Center Marriott
Just before the laser show at the pool at Orlando World Center Marriott

The shallow wading area of the pool is perfect for when they bring the lights down for a laser light spectacular.


Older kids can enjoy a water park, while parents have their own 'adults-only' pool to do laps in as well.


Address:

8701 World Center Drive, Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, FL 32821

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Best Orlando Hotel Near SeaWorld


Renaissance Orlando at SeaWorld


One of the obvious draws to this hotel is its proximity to SeaWorld. In fact, it's the perfect place to get your kids to SeaWorld before the crowds hit because it is literally a 5 minute walk across the parking lot to get there. Not only can you be there when the park gates open without hassle, but you can visit half of the park before the maddening crowds arrive later in the morning.


The lobby and atrium at the Renaissance offers guests a handful of options from a tapas bar to a sports bar and restaurant, all providing the typical high priced mealtime goodies. The sports bar does have some well portioned appetizers, however, which can easily fill up anyone for happy hour.


Well-portioned bar snacks in the lobby sports bar at the Renaissance Orlando
Bar snacks in the lobby sports bar at the Renaissance Orlando

The pool is always a mention because let's face it, why else do we staycation in a town offering SO many tourist attractions? The Renaissance pool area offers three pools and a kiddie fun zone. Fun for all, they even have lawn games and a small arcade to entertain the kids.


Kids pool area at the Renaissance Orlando at SeaWorld
Kids pool area at the Renaissance Orlando at SeaWorld

Rooms overlook SeaWorld or, on the opposite side, sprawling views of the Universal Resort area. We enjoyed a spectacular fireworks show from our massive balcony during our stay.


Address:

6677 Sea Harbor Drive, Orlando, FL 32821

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