We stayed here for 5 days at the end of Nov 2012, leading into December. We came to Orlando to go to Disneyworld but I did not want to be around Disney all day long. This was absolutely perfect. Not too far and not too close either.
We arrived on a Weds around 11am. We walked right into registration and were told that our room was ready. We were not presented with champagne or the candy bracelet or ice cream for the kids like others mentioned. They did have the kids sign in desk where your child could write their name on a leaf that was later put on a small tree at the front desk. Check-in took all of 3 minutes if that long.
Our room was on the 9th floor towards the front of the building. We had a king bed with the chaise lounge. We have a king bed at home and the 4 of us can sleep fine together. This was not the case with this king bed. Our children (thankfully small) were able to sleep on the chaise lounge together. The next day however we changed to a room with two full size beds. We were also celebrating my birthday during this trip and the Ritz knew this. They left a small gift which was a bath salt fizzle thingy and a card. The bathroom was spacious, with the standalone shower, toilet and tub. We did have an issue with cold air blowing through the closet. No matter how high we turned the heat up there was still cold air blasting through one of the vents in the closet. We called the front desk and requested that it be fixed while we were out. When we came back the temperature was fine in the room. We encountered the same problem in the second room but just left it because it wasn’t blowing as hard or cold. The second room that we received was on the side of the hotel. We were able to see the lake and part of the pool. At night we were able to see the fireworks in the distance from Sea World, which was great.
The beds were extremely comfortable as were the pillows and the linens were very soft.
We put the car in Valet each day, they gave us the option of the self park but for a difference of $7/day we just went for convenience. Also we were traveling with a 5 and 2 year old who were wiped out by the time we got back to the hotel each night. The valet made it easier to get out and walk straight to the elevators with the sleeping kids and toys. The self parking is not far by any means and I honestly think that we would have used it if it were just my husband and I. If you use the valet, have your ticket handy and you can call from your room to let them know what time you need your car by. Every time we called the car was ready and they always offered cold water. They remembered our names which was also a small detail that I appreciate when on vacation. The only issue we had with valet, (this was no fault of the hotel) was when we were checking out that Sunday. There was a car show on premise and the wait was really long. They also were not allowing you to call for your car from the room. This was a slight inconvenience but the guys out front warned us the night before so we knew what to expect and that helped us plan our departure as well.
We only ate at the Vineyard Grill for breakfast. It was included in our room rate and was definitely worth it. I had the best grits of my life here at this hotel. I’m not sure what or how they cook them but my hat goes off to the chef. We ate the breakfast buffet which included hot and cold items. An array of fruit, pastries, cheese, breads, cereal, yogurt, etc. There was also an omelet station and the chef was very nice an accommodating. He saw that we were trying to get breakfast with our children and he always had someone bring our food over to our table. Also the maitre d gives crayons and coloring books for the kids to keep them occupied, which is always great. My only complaint at this restaurant was one of the servers whose name I have now forgotten. One day I asked for tea, he said one moment and walked off. He came back and began cleaning the table next to us and putting new linen on it. Still no tea, then he looks up as if he forgot, ran off and brought me tea. The next day we had a different waiter and when I asked him for tea he ran off about 10 different kinds and then brought it immediately. The last day that we were there I had the same waiter again. Again I asked for tea but this time I said which one I wanted, he still ended up bringing an earl gray and didn’t bother to run down the tea list for me. I ended up asking another waiter for the tea I wanted and he promptly brought it to me. While this is a small thing, it stuck out because this was the only person who I felt didn’t give the full “my pleasure” service that the Ritz is known for.
The pool at the ritz was great. It was the perfect temperature and clean of course. Next to the towel stand there was fresh fruit and cold water for you to consume. On our last day there we went to the lazy river at the JW Marriott next door. It’s attached to their pool and you need to have your own tube or you can buy one for $7 or $8 a piece. Since we went on our last day/last hour of our visit it wasn’t worth it for us to buy a tube. So we just walked through the paths as others were doing. The poolside food area was very lively, I think there was a football game on and there were a lot of people by the pool.
I never found this and I couldn’t find anyone to ask about it outside. There is a path made of stones that goes around both properties but it cuts off at the parking lots. I ended up running though the parking lots and around both pools and eventually made it to my goal of 2 miles.
All in all, I would definitely come back here again if I was in the area. The service overall was great and the hotel is located far enough from the mayhem but close enough to get there quickly. Feel free to email me with any questions.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.