We checked in on a Friday afternoon, preparing for the Disney Marathon weekend. I asked that the majority of our groups rooms be near each other, which we had no problems with. Check in was quick, valet was polite, even after declining and parking is very secure (you need your hotel key to access the lot). I can see where it would fill up on a busy event weekend, but was never full while we were there. Even though I thought I had reserved a king suite, we got a double suite which worked out better anyway.
The glass elevator up to the room was a nice way to see the entire atrium lobby. Bright and colorful as well as very "leafy". I stepped in our room and was pleasantly surprised. Upon walking in, there is a tv, coffee tables, table and chairs with seating for 4, sleeper sofa (we didn't use it but heard from our neighbors it was comfortable for a sleeper), small bar area with a coffee pot, microwave, mini fridge and sink. The bathroom was ok sized--just like any other hotel bathroom. The bedroom area was oversized, with two double beds, armoire with tv, vanity with sink, night stand and dresser. Also had a door to close off the bedroom to the rest of the hotel room, for added privacy. Great for changing when multiple people were staying in the room. About 15 minutes after making my way to the room I received a call from the front desk asking if everything was as expected. I was surprised and thought it was a nice gesture.
From 5:30 to 7:30pm there is happy hour in the atrium bar area. They offer beer, wine, "call" liquors (basic vodka, tequila, rum, gin, etc...) as well as a speciality drink for the evening. They also provide popcorn and pretzels. Don't be fooled by the soda/juice machines throughout the atrium area. They are turned off during non-breakfast hours. Actually, I'm not even sure the soda machines work during breakfast. Anyway...the happy hour was very nice and since there were 2 bartenders the lines moved very quickly.
We returned to our room to find a phone message from the hotel manager. Apparently a fire alarm went off and he was calling to assure us that everything was safe. We also had a phone message later from the timeshare sales people. That is the only run-in we had with them the 3 days were were there.
Saturday morning, at around 7:30, we went to breakfast. They offer an "express lane" and cooked to order breakfast. The express lane had scrambled eggs, potatoes, bacon and sausage. The cooked to order breakfast was eggs (any way you want them prepared and as many as you want, including omelets), pancakes shaped like Mickey and Minnie, french toast (they alternate days when they cook the pancakes and french toast), potatoes, grits, oatmeal, sausage and bacon. The line was not terribly long. In fact, we were the only ones in line Saturday morning, and Sunday morning at 9:00 there were about 5 ahead of me. I think I waited in line for MAYBE 5 minutes. They also have a fruit bar with fresh oranges, grapefruit, bananas, bagels, bread, donuts, pastries, cereal, etc... Saturday, after the marathon we made it back to the hotel around 10:20 am. Most of the donuts and pastries were gone, the unripened bananas were left and hot breakfast was scarce. There was cereal left. But, considering breafast closed at 10:30, I wasn't incredibly surprised.
The kids loved the indoor/outdoor pool. Especially since it was cold outside that weekend. The pool temp was still in the 80's which didn't stop them from using the outdoor portion. The game room was average, fun for kids with your basic arcade games and air hockey.
There is a Pizza Hut express in the lobby which I thought was INCREDIBLY convenient. The largest pizza you could order was a medium, and the price was average, around $11 for a speciality pizza (meat lovers, supreme, etc). They also had personal pan pizzas for $4 and breadsticks and wings. Very easy service, you pick up the phone, tell them what you want and it's generally ready in 15 minutes, or so. There is a Starbucks in the atrium area which stays open until 11pm, but during the busy time the server didn't know how to make cappucinos or lattes, so it was a long wait for someone to make one. There is also an italian restaurant within the Starbucks area in the atrium and surprisingly their prices were very moderate. Spaghetti and meatballs for $8.95, Shrimp Ravioli for $12.95 and several other choices. We ate at an italian restaurant outside the hotel the first night and wish we would have known about the restaurant within the hotel, because the prices were right, food was good and service--well, the service was just ok. They also have a sandwich bar (in the area where the breakfast was served) which was very overpriced and not very good.
Our only major complaint (which wasn't that major) is when housekeeping came at about noon we weren't ready for them to clean and when we returned to the hotel at 4:30 they had yet to come to restock our towels or straighten our room. They showed up at about 5:30pm, so we did have clean towels just in time to get ready for dinner. Also, we booked our rooms all at the same time and unfortunately didn't ask for a group rate, but when other parts of our party checked in they were given a different rate (cheaper) but didn't offer that rate to everyone in our party. Overall, it was very convenient (only 3-4 minute drive to Disney, depending on traffic) and we would definitely return, with or without the kids!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Our all-suite hotel is on the doorstep to the Walt Disney World® Resort. We offer a complimentary, scheduled shuttle to and from the Walt Disney World® Resort theme parks. With our complimentary cooked-to-order breakfast each morning, tennis courts, fitness center, and multiple on-site restaurants, we are a perfect location for your next Orlando, FL family vacation. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Embassy Suites Orlando/Lake Buena Vista Hotel Orlando
- Orlando Embassy Suites