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Holiday Inn Club Vacations At Orange Lake Resort
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Reviews (6,462)
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Reviewed February 23, 2013

We booked this stay for 2/2/12 for two weeks. This was no ordinary hoiliday, but our honeymoon. Usually the mrs and I like to try different places to stay but being our honeymoon we decided to go back to Orange Lake, our previous visit being 4years ago.

After a 10 hour flight we arrived to check-in. Everything was going smoothly untill we were escorted to a 'resort services' desk.
Now i've read the reviews about people taking the 'property tour' only to find out it's a timeshare scam, and getting pressurised by salesmen into buying in. We were told at the desk by a very eager member of staff that we would be given credit on our room if we attended a 'short tour of the resort'. When he was told politely by myself that we were not interested, he then preceded to try and haggle how much money we would recieve!
By this point my wife had walked off and having been told 4 times by myself that we were not interested, the individual became quite agressive towards me for not agreeing to attend the tour.

The awful customer service didn't end there. 5 days into the holiday and there was no sign of housekeeping to change towels and bedding. When we enquired at reception guess what we were told? "Go back to you're unit and ring housekeeping from there, it's their problem not ours!!"

The unit was serviced after we had rung but at the same point the following week another call was made to request housekeeping. This time we were told by staff that we would have to pay a fee as in a two week stay we were only intitled to one free maid service.
When I pointed out that in all my time staying in hotels & resorts all over the world that I had never heard of such a thing, I was told that if I didn't want to pay a fee then I should feel free to use the washer in our unit to wash the resorts towels and bed linen for them!

The unit we were given was a 1 bedroom in the west village clubhouse which I would advise to highly avoid. (The smart 1 and 2 bedroomed villas situated around the golf courses are deluxe units.)
The units are situated in noisy corridors so getting woken early by other guests banging doors became the norm. The other main issue with the units are the complete lack of natural light or fresh air.

The only positives I can offer for this resort are: the cleanliness of the resort is excellent and the location being right next to WDW is also another huge plus.

I'm sorry Orange Lake but we won't be coming back. 4 years ago we had the holiday of a lifetime. This time we just wished we had stayed somewhere else.

Room Tip: Don't stay in the west village clubhouse.
  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank mark s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HIClubVacations, Guest Relations Manager at Holiday Inn Club Vacations At Orange Lake Resort, responded to this reviewResponded March 15, 2013

Hello and thank you for taking the time to reach out to us regarding your recent stay with us. We truly appreciate hearing from our guests, especially our return guests. You are correct that we are unlike a traditional hotel stay in some ways. Like your previous stay, it is true that we do not offer traditional daily housekeeping to our guests. For our guests staying longer than one week, we do offer housekeeping services during the middle of their stay. However, you are correct that housekeeping services are available on demand. We apologize if you felt that your needs and concerns were not met with the care and concern that our guests have come to expect. We would love the opportunity to host you again in the future to show you just how much fun vacationing with us can be.

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Reviewed February 22, 2013 via mobile

We own a timeshare villa here and have done for 13years,this resort has grown over this time and we feel that service levels have decreased.The villas are very well equipped everything you could wish for in the kitchen,with the added bonus of a large washing machine and dryer.There is plenty to do here for all ages relax at one of the many pools the stage pool in the west village is the quiet pool usually child free with plenty of sun loungers but would benefit from more chairs and tables especially at bingo time.Splash logoon and River Island are where families tend to use,the lazy river at river island is good fun you can hire a tube to go round but you can manage without one. Most of the villas overlook golf courses,you will see lots of wild life walking around sometimes coming up to the villa especially the Cranes.We played golf here on the Reserve which is in very good condition beware if you are a non golfer but want to go out on the golf cart they charge $25 for a rider.There are plenty of resturants on the resort,a shuttle bus runs around from early morning till midnight so getting to the resturants is no problem.Just outside the resort are new resturants.Check in sometimes can take a while!when you have been travelling for hours especially from England with the 5hr time difference all you want when you get there is your villa you are given a coupon which is to exchange for free tickets to Disney free golf ,free food etc ,someone is waiting to pounce to take the coupon from you and take you to another desk where they invite you to breakfast to update you on the resort when you tell them you don't want it there attitude is awfull if you refuse this don't think you've got away ,they phone the villa starting at 8/15,if you don't go to the presentation they have now started calling at the villa for a survey,all they want is to sell timeshare,BEWARE.Saying that we love the resort.

  • Stayed: February 2013
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1  Thank minnieDoncaster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HIClubVacations, Guest Relations Manager at Holiday Inn Club Vacations At Orange Lake Resort, responded to this reviewResponded March 15, 2013

Hello and welcome home from your most recent stay with us. We love hearing from our longtime owners about how they are able to enjoy their vacations year after year. We’re happy to hear from your review that you enjoy your multiple trips to stay with us. We certainly appreciate your thoughts and suggestions on how we can improve future vacation experiences. We also want our guests to know that our activities staff leaves you a message in your villa every day to let you know of happenings around the resort and special amenities. Please note that you may request no calls be placed to your villa at check-in. We can’t wait to see you back again for year 14!

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Reviewed February 22, 2013

Hi! We had booked 5 nights in a 2 bedroom condo (early February), and when I read some of the previous reviews, they were all over the place with the 'good and the bad'! Thought about cancelling and booking elsewhere, buy - hey, I was just too lazy to go to all that trouble!

Check-in was smooth, given a very clear map, and we drove right to the unit...in North Village. Nicely decorated, kitchen had all expected dishes, glasses, small appliances, etc. (for 8); comfortable and clean furnishings, nice screen porch with table and 4 chairs - and actually quite spacious considering some other condos I have stayed at in the Orlando area! Comfortable, clean bedding with good pillows - well lit - lots of outlets for our various electronics, including on the screen porch. Next to us was a family with 2 small children, but apparently the units are well insulated, because we did not hear anyone over there!

The only negatives we found were minor - one burner on the stove did not work and the shower water pressure was minimal in one shower. But if you want a clean, comfortable, well-decorated place, this might be the one for you. And the location near Disney was excellent; Publix grocery is even on premises!

The resort is absolutely huge, with about 4 or 5 pool complexes, which we checked out, and they seemed to have a lot to offer, whether you are a couple or traveling with children. Our unit was on a golf course, and we really appreciated not being by a pool complex with squealing kids! This was ideal for us! Short walk to the heated pool and lots of lounge chairs and towels available. Only negative in this regard is the lack of a designated walking lane on the sides of some of the roads, and where there was, some cars (some even resort cars) ignored the lines for the walkers! I guess you get more exercise jumping off the pavement onto the grass from time to time! Grounds were beautiful, although I wish they would wait to mow the golf course until after 8 am!

We talked with several 'owners', and they ALL were delighted with their units and the management of the resort. I can see why after being there. We did go to a 'sales' presentation, but they sized us up as 'no buyer' and we were out in about 2 hours - no hold up on getting back to our car, gift delivered promptly, so it was not a hassle at all, and it is always interesting to see the 'current deals' - maybe we were just clear about our intentions early on, and really they do not want to waste their time on a 'no buyer'.

I would go there again. Maybe I wouldn't stay in the East side near Animal Kingdom (I could detect a bit of an odor, but it wasn't really offensive). And I hear that some of the West side units are being updated, but we were delighted with our 2 bedroom in the North Village!

We are seasoned world-wide travelers, and can vouch this as being a comfortable and relaxing place. The negatives are minor, the positives are huge!

Room Tip: North Village - can either stay near pool or on golf course depending on what you prefer.
  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank lovetogo2heidi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HIClubVacations, Guest Relations Manager at Holiday Inn Club Vacations At Orange Lake Resort, responded to this reviewResponded March 15, 2013

Hello and welcome home from your recent vacation stay with us. It’s always great to hear from our guests. It’s always great to get out and explore the resort like you did. It helps you find out exactly what amenities fit your vacation style. You give a great overview of what guests can expect from a stay with us. We appreciate you taking the time to attend one of our property presentations. We understand that vacation ownership may not be for everyone, but we appreciate you considering owning with us. We hope to see you again soon!

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Reviewed February 21, 2013

If you want a variety of things to do, in a place that is beautiful and very well maintained, a short drive from the Disneyworld property, this is your place. This is my 3rd time there and most recently we stayed after this past Christmas thru New Years and enjoyed every minute of it. So much to do on the resort even though we all went off site to do things too at different times. We had more than 20 family members there ranging in age from 2 to 75 and there was something for everyone.
12 things you really need to know...
1. Buy the endless refill pop glass with lid and straw, its like 13 or 15 dollars, you get it refilled free at anyplace that has fountain pop on the resort for your entire stay at all the bars, restaurants, and snack bars. Make your kids share, get a free water cup and split the drink. When you are tired of pop in the sun, they will also give you ice water in it too. The Bacardi refill cups are a deal too.
2. Most people (adults)use the tubes the first day and then ditch them to walk the lazy river the rest of the time. Less hassle and easier to get around at your own pace. Kids use them...but lose interest through the week too.
3.You can buy one play pass for the kids and have them alternate who uses it on different days. This is okay with OL personnel, they told us about the option. Kids love the fun zone the first day...then interest wanes...everyone wants to try things once. In the lazy river kids share the big tubes anyway. You cannot bring your own flotation devices to River Island, if you kids are small get the suits with floats in them.
4. Buy the mini golf play pass, much cheaper than full pass and the mini golf is great there. 36 Holes at River Island and 18 at West Village. Pass is good for both places. Very very nice courses and worth your time. We played multiple times, kids love to beat adults and its something Grandparents can play with kids. Great photo ops there on the coarse.
5.Think about a 3 day pass if it makes sense..are you going to be at the resort everyday? Do your running early in your vacation and end with relaxing time at the resort. After being out with the public seeing and doing things that Orlando has to offer, you will appreciate what an OASIS Orange Lake is.
6. If you love to golf, this is your place. I'm not a golfer but many in my family are and some if them vacation there just to play the courses. They are stunning and immaculate.
7. Don't spend everyday at River Island. A lot goes on at the West Village, two good sized pools and one is an adult only pool for those of you that can use time away from other peoples kids. If you have smaller kids the the North Village pool complex is for you. Big enough to spread people out, but small enough you don't lose your kids. Shallow water pool and splash pad along with a winding pool. Nice little outdoor cafe and bar, thee least busy of the 3 areas and actually my favorite. If you really want privacy there are 2 nice small pools in East Village.
8. The resort is big, but ride the shuttles and pretty quickly it becomes familiar and those drivers are very friendly and a wealth of knowledge. Don't guess about things ask questions, all of the staff is very friendly across the resort. Shuttles go in loops of the resort, but not down every street. There are shuttles going opposite directions in these loops, just ask the driver when you getting on to save yourself time, they might have you get off and get the other direction shuttle.
9. This is not a hotel, it is a home away from home with a washer and dryer. I love the fact that we don't have to worry about anybody but us being in our villa for a week! Pack light because you can wash your clothes. Washing towels every other day is easy or dry them right when you get out of the shower since the humidity doesn't let them dry easily, you aren't paying the utility bill. You just took a shower, the towel can't be that dirty! Wash and dry your sheets mid week for that fresh room smell and crisp feel when you get in bed.
10. Go for a walk around your the village area you are staying in. You will be amazed at the amount of wildlife throughout the resort. If you go in the early morning you get to see the how and why the resort is so well kept, the workers are busy everywhere on the courses grooming and in villas cleaning a bit later.
11.To really appreciate what an oasis Orange Lake really is, leave at suppertime and fight the traffic and the masses of people waiting in line to eat out in the public places or on the Disney properties,a complete madhouse that time of year. We tried that 2 times during our stay, once we waited about an hour to get in somewhere, the other time just gave up and we came back to OL. We never made a reservation at the Legacy Grill or River Island Grilling company, or Breezes ( even on NY Eve) we were able to eat when we wanted with no wait. Would classify Breezes like an Applebee's type of place, Legacy like an more upscale Bennigans, and River Island not like a chain, just great steaks and seafood, but good other economical choices. I will say kids meals everywhere there are cheap and pretty good.
12. The best thing about this resort is you feel safe and can really relax there (as much as your kids will let you if you have some along) You can stay super busy with planned activities, do absolutely nothing but soak up sun, or brave it and go offsite to do what you want. At the end of the day you have a very nice, spacious, clean, secure place to stay and sleep. Isn't that what you really want away from home? Guess that is why we keep going back.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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15  Thank Dawn B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HIClubVacations, Guest Relations Manager at Holiday Inn Club Vacations At Orange Lake Resort, responded to this reviewResponded February 22, 2013

Hello and welcome home from your recent family getaway. We can only imagine how much fun you and your family had celebrating New Years together at our resort. You give a great account not only about what guests can expect in a stay with us, but also some of the best ways to enjoy yourself around the resort. We love it when our guests take their time to explore the resort, and find what areas fit their vacation style the best. We truly do try and offer something for everyone. You give a great tip about our PlayPass and unlimited soda deals. They are a great way to have fun and save money at the same time. We can’t wait to have you all back again. Hopefully soon, for more vacation fun!

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Reviewed February 20, 2013

This is a large time-share resort located very close to Walt Disney World. We traded in for a week in February and were delighted with the experience. We stayed in a golf villa in the West Village, the oldest section of the resort and while the unit showed some signs of its age, the property is maintained in immaculate condition and calls for maintenance were answered in what seemed like minutes. The 2BR, 2 B unit was well-furnished and stocked for convenience. The resort is huge and spread out, containing 3 golf courses, about 7 pools, several water parks, and complimentary shuttle services on the property and to adjoining shopping. Shuttle service is also provided to area theme parks. There are food services on the property and literally unending options outside the resort. There are planned activities all day, every day, for all age groups in the various recreation areas.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with family
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2  Thank LFA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HIClubVacations, Guest Relations Manager at Holiday Inn Club Vacations At Orange Lake Resort, responded to this reviewResponded February 22, 2013

Hello there and welcome home from your recent family vacation. We couldn't be happier that you were able to gain everything that you were looking for in a family vacation during your stay with us. Our staff is constantly striving to make sure our guests have the best vacation experiences possible. It’s great to hear that you gave yourself the time you deserve to enjoy the amenities around the resort. We would love to see you again soon.

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