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“Not Worthy of Hilton Name” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Hilton Garden Inn Lake Buena Vista/Orlando

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Hilton Garden Inn Lake Buena Vista/Orlando
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   11400 Marbella Palm Court, Orlando, FL 32836 (Lake Buena Vista)   |  
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Ranked #112 of 327 Hotels in Orlando
New Jersey
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
92 helpful votes 92 helpful votes
“Not Worthy of Hilton Name”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 28, 2011

Despite the extremely friendly staff, this hotel is one I would never recommend to any traveler to the Orlando FL area - there are so many from which to choose, don't choose this one if you have the least bit of allergic sensitivities. Upon our arrival I instantly had an allergic reaction to the room, something I have never experienced in my extensive travels. The air in the room literally made my eyes watery and red; the bedding smelled as if it had been cleaned in a vat of caustic chemicals. It was a clean room, the hotel itself being under two years old; and it was an average hotel room, being not too small. However, this was clearly not up to Hilton standards. I have to admit I have never stayed at a Hilton Garden hotel before, my experience with Hilton has always been their "regular" properties (and I always try to stay at Hilton because of their quality). If this represents what their Garden properties are like I will never choose another - ever. The room was clean, and contained all the amenities advertised, however the bed (the most important part of the room) was terrible. I'm no princess, but when I stay at a Hilton I expect certain things: quality of service (which this hotel had in abundance), and quality of bedding (which left me very ill). I seriously thought I was going to have to see a doctor or find a different hotel because of the horrible reaction I had to the bedding. The duvet and pillows were filled with feathers; I have never had a reaction to feathers so I did not request a hypo-allergenic room. I will in the future. After one night of sleeping on those god-awful pillows my eyes were extremely red, itchy and watery, my throat was closing up and I felt I couldn't get air into my lungs. After a solid week of sleeping in that atmosphere I could not wait to leave. I also picked up some kind of intestinal virus that had me vomitting and "other " delightful things which, according to a member of the staff, was "going around, everyone's got it here." Lovely. Not.

We got up early and hit the parks and the fresh air and sunshine worked wonders on my condition, however we'd arrive back at the hotel and instantly my body would react: red, itchy, watery eyes, scratchy throat, and my lungs felt like I'd never get enough air in them. I had a very difficult week of trying to sleep and had to use Advil PM several nights just to get enough sleep.

The staff was wonderful - Kevin the bartender is an awesome guy, the women who ran the breakfast were equally wonderful and friendly. The main desk staff was overworked at times and slow to answer the phone, however one person manning the main desk had their hands full.

Even though pantry items were expensive they were less costly than buying stuff in the parks; recommend buying up several bottles of water there and take them with you to the parks, as $2.50 for a bottle at the hotel was cheaper by far than the $3.50 bottle in Disney. You can bring backpacks with water and snack foods into the parks, so do it!

The cost of the room was adequate, however another Hilton property within the Disney hotel band was the same rate with 100% higher quality. I'd stayed at that other property before but could not get a room this trip - in comparison - for the money - the other Hilton was far superior in the quality of the room and the overall stay. This Hilton - the Garden Inn on Marbella Parkway - was more like a Holiday Inn. Infact, I believe the Holiday Inn express down the street would have been a better choice for several reasons: they offered free breakfast, and were very close to the Crossroads where all the restaurants and shops are located. Breakfast at the Hilton Garden was pretty good - the cost was great as everything in Orlando is horribly expensive, so $6.95 for continental breakfast and $8.95 for full breakfast was very cost effective, however the Hilton Garden Inn was not near anything so you had little choice where to eat or drink for other meals; it was a taxi ride or a bus ride to anywhere you wanted to go. They are only about 18 months old as of this writing, so they do have some "bugs" to iron out, but unless they change the way they clean the bedding, or change the bedding all together, they will never have me as a guest again.

Note: the Links bus system is the way to go if you don't rent a car in Orlando, research it before you go to the area as it is $2 for one ride or $4.50 for the entire day of transferring from one bus to the other to go all over Orlando; taxis charge $15+ for oneway from this hotel to the Downtown Disney area and $25 to any of the parks. The bus was $2. A no-brainer there... doesn't go to the major parks but the hotel offers a shuttle.

About the shuttle: I read a complaint on this site about the shuttle service before we left and chalked it up to just a complainer who couldn't be satisfied. I was wrong. The shuttle system was very limited. Three pick-up times in the morning, and three drop- off times in the evening. I was attending classes so I couldn't hop a shuttle after class to meet up with my spouse at the parks; we had to meet at the hotel, and didn't want to pay for a taxi to the parks. If the shuttle had been available at those times we'd have gone to the parks for the evening. The bus driver the first few days was nicknamed Grumpy because of his nasty disposition; we noticed he wasn't around the rest of the week and were glad. They work on tips, so you'd expect a nicer driver. Go figure. He was rude and nasty. The other drivers were very nice, however. But the pick up times were not very convenient. Not the hotel's fault, however this is the service with which they contract. Get to know the Epcot shuttle system well before you go, as you need to catch either a bus, boat or monorail to go to the other parks from Epcot. The shuttle system from the Hilton Garden only takes you to Epcot, which is the central hub for the Disney parks (all the shuttles work this way). Take the earliest bus out (7:55am); the parks mostly open between 8am-9am.

For the rest of the hotel: the pool was tiny, but it was open until 10pm with bar and restaurant walk-up service. You share it with another property, the Residence Inn. The restaurant had adequate food - not great, but not awful either. Priced within means, didn't break the bank for meals. The bar was small but Kevin the bartender was excellent. Overall I was disappointed in this hotel property. Not worthy of "Hilton" status, but not a terrible hotel. If it were any other brand I wouldn't be writing this review.

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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520 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Raleigh, North Carolina
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2011

One day while changing in my room, the housekeeping manager knocked on the door and I told her I was in there and she proceeded to come in while I was naked. Instead of leaving immediately she started to inspect the room (I am still standing there naked) with the door open and people walking by. I had to walk to the door and ask her to leave immediately and she kept going on and on about her duty of checking the room. When I approached management I was told about 'my duty to keep the sign on the door'. I never got an apology!! I am astonished! They must have a problem with their beds, they both smelled fungus like. Very disgusting! The rooms were dirty too. Good location, but you have a million other options in that area. Breakfast was okay.

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 15, 2011

A very clean and contemporary looking hotel with friendly staff in a location that is surprisingly isolated and quiet for that part of Orlando. Minutes east of the Downtown Disney area but far enough off the beaten path to feel a little out of the way (though it is not). Only minuses: no fans in the bathroom (a problem we've seen at other Hiltons) and the shower design makes it easy to wind up with a wet floor (so put down a towel ahead of time to avoid slipping when exiting).

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sugar Land, Texas
Top Contributor
77 reviews 77 reviews
49 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
226 helpful votes 226 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 8, 2010

Having been unhappy with my booked hotel within DIsney proper I settled on HGI as in the past I could always rely on a clean room-solid staff. This one, while not bad, was a little dicey. The staff was confused about the package I booked and informed several hours after checkin it would not be honored. Very weird. The carpets were dirty- it sounds trivial but that bugs me. It felt like a very basic hotel room and that is what the entire place was-basic. Not the star of the HGI family. Location was ok, but there were no tips from the staff on how to get anywhere, I found that if I turned right out of the hotel parking lot it led me to virtual nirvana of less traffic and better stores (i.e. Whole Foods). I can't reccommend this hotel. Which makes me sad, since I like Hiltons. If I ever return to Orlando (doubtful, unless for work) I would have to go back to Buena Vista Suites-the only reason I left there was I had a prior booking at another hotel within the grounds of Disney. But that is another story.....

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Dallas, TX
Top Contributor
92 reviews 92 reviews
82 hotel reviews
Reviews in 48 cities Reviews in 48 cities
108 helpful votes 108 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 7, 2010

This hotel is great. Being outside the Downtown Disney area by about 1 mile or so, I understand it is still apart of the Good Neighbor Hotel program by Disney.

The hotel is a standard Garden Inn with the new RFID room keys which make getting into the room so much quicker. The parking is shared with the Homewood Suites next door.

My only complaint regarding the hotel besides the distance from food and Disney was the fact they do offer shuttle service, but on a very very limited schedule. They have 2-3 pickups in the morning hours and 2-3 at night .. which doesn't work for alot of people that want the freedom to come and go to the parks and hotel.

I was upset about this but found my way around this by parking at Downtown Disney for free and hoping a bus back over the EPCOT. I would not recommend this however, as they may tow a car, but this was a Saturday night and there was a concert that night so everything was open late.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Belo Horizonte, Brazil
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 3, 2010

I've stayed at this hotel a few weeks while working at Orlando. It has all good convenience you may expect from a nice hotel plus a nice and convenient location if you are interested in visiting Orlando parks and attractions. Breakfast is nice, nice beds and rooms, and nice service at the front desk and restaurant. One weak point to mention though: food at the restaurant (besides the breakfast) is terrible.

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rosario
Top Contributor
116 reviews 116 reviews
116 hotel reviews
Reviews in 63 cities Reviews in 63 cities
86 helpful votes 86 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 21, 2010

We spent 4 nights in this hotel to visit Disney World and Universal, and we were more than satisfied with this hotel. The rooms was amazing in size and comfortness; the location is really good being only 5 minute drive to Disney, Universal and also to the little shopping centers in the area.
My only complaint is that it would have been nice to receive some help with our luggage....but I guess that's the policy for Hilton Garden Inns.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Additional Information about Hilton Garden Inn Lake Buena Vista/Orlando

Address: 11400 Marbella Palm Court, Orlando, FL 32836
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Central Florida > Orlando > Lake Buena Vista
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#46 Business Hotel in Orlando
#89 Family Hotel in Orlando
#133 Romantic Hotel in Orlando
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Hilton Garden Inn Lake Buena Vista/Orlando 3*
Number of rooms: 137
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Also Known As:
Hilton Garden Inn Lake Buena Vista/Orlando Hotel Orlando

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