By Jackie and Matt Roseboom
A brand new Holiday Inn recently opened on Disney property. The 14-story, 323-room hotel, located near Downtown Disney on Hotel Plaza Boulevard, opened in the spot formerly occupied by a Marriott Courtyard.
The Courtyard closed about five years ago after it sustained damage during a bad hurricane season. The hurricanes virtually demolished everything. Just about everything except the basic structure is new. The new hotel has a posh new look sure to please seasoned travelers. Fun design elements provide a warm and inviting feel.
“There is no more exhilarating feeling than opening a family-friendly Holiday Inn resort, on Disney property and hiring more than 100 employees to welcome our community and guests,” said Tony Johnson, regional vice president of operations and general manager of the 323-room hotel.
Because of its location on Disney property, the hotel is able to offer a host of privileges, such as complimentary transportation to all the Disney parks, guaranteed access and preferred tee times at Disney golf courses, advance reservations at Disney restaurants and free delivery of Disney attraction purchases to the hotel. An on-site Disney retail store will be opening this summer.
Relaxing and contemporary, the guest rooms were designed with a soft color palette and outfitted with a 32-inch HD television, white bedding with pillows that come in two comfort levels: “soft” and “firm,” complimentary wired Internet access, a coffeemaker and an electronic safe that accommodates laptops up to 17 inches. Every double room features two queen beds, rather than two double beds. The double queen rooms come with a bath/shower combo. Each king room includes a sleeper oversized chair and a walk-in shower or bath/shower combo. Many of the rooms have balconies – some with a pool view, some overlooking I-4 and some with a view of Downtown Disney.
The new modern feel of the hotel extends to the dining as well. Fusion cuisine is a nice change from the old greasy spoons from Holiday Inns of the past. The Palm Breezes Restaurant offers all three meals. Kids 12 and younger eat free at all Holiday Inns when ordering from the kids’ menu in the hotel restaurant and accompanied by a dining adult. There’s also a “grab and go” location for quick snacks. A pool-side restaurant is also in the works. There are a lot of nice small touches in the hotel, such as purse/bag hooks under the hotel bar.
Along with the Disney advantages, the hotel features a state-of-the-art fitness room, a jogging and exercise path, a zero-entry heated swimming and connected lap pool, a hot tub and sun deck and a game room. There’s no kids room, but an off-property company can come to the hotel to provide babysitting if needed. The front desk can help make the arrangements. The business center and lobby areas provide free wi-fi. There are also party and meeting rooms for wedding receptions, business meetings and the like.
The average price for a night’s stay is around $120, but can go up or down depending on the season. One nice perk is there are no “resort fees” added onto the room price. But they do plan on adding a $10 per day parking fee in the near future. Valet parking is also available.
The Holiday Inn is located at 1805 Hotel Plaza Blvd. For more information, or reservations, visit hiorlando.com or call 407-828-8888.
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