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Gaylord Palms Resort and Convention Center

At a Glance

    Pros

  • you could have a great vacation without ever leaving the grounds
  • free shuttle to Disney

    Cons

  • daily resort and parking fee
  • rooms can be pricey
  • not much within walking distance (although the hotel is so big that you can take quite a hike inside the building)
  • shuttles to Universal and SeaWorld are available for a fee

Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating:  

Gaylord Palms Resort and Convention Center Review

Built in the style of a grand turn-of-the-20th-century Florida resort, this huge building is meant to inspire awe: inside its enormous atrium, covered by a 4-acre glass roof, are re-creations of Florida destination icons such as the Everglades, Key West, and old St. Augustine. Vast meeting spaces mean lots of conventioneers, but families are definitely not ignored. The Cypress Springs Family Fun Water Park and Splash n' Screen movie events are just two of the family-friendly entertainment offerings, and there are two other sparkling pools. Rooms continue the Florida themes with colorful, tropical decorations. Between in-house entertainment and the huge Relache spa, the hotel connives to make you never want to leave.

    Hotel Details

  • 1,406 rooms, 86 suites
  • Rate includes no meals.
  • Credit cards accepted.
Updated: 04-30-2014

Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating:  
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    All of Florida under one roof

    Walking into the Gaylord Palms hotel is like walking into a gateway into another world. The hotel, which is situated in an impossible patch of nothingness on I-4, has an elegantly appointed lobby that opens into an amazing atrium where some Florida's greatest landmarks are under one roof -- from a replica the Castillo de San Marcos in St. Augustine, to South Florida's Everglades, complete with baby alligators. For families, the Gaylord Palms is a treat. Dreamworks-themed activities keep children busy with character greetings, pool parties and a scavenger hunt, all included in the price of staying at the hotel. The new pool area is a water park with four slides, a pool and a water activities tower. Adults, meanwhile, can luxuriate at an adults-only pool reminiscent of South Florida resorts. The atmosphere in Gaylord Palms' atrium is conducive for romantic strolling, especially at night. The glass roof allows for moonlit walks. One extra Pro: Service. I have never had bad service in all the time we've stayed at Gaylord Palms. They have never given us a hard time for charges we've contested, every staff member is attentive and friendly. And they offer great deals for families and for teachers. One extra Con: Even if your hotel room is inexpensive, everything else isn't. You pay resort fees and parking fees, food is expensive, even if it is good.

    by ChristieZizo, 9/24/12
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    A one time deal

    I went there for a conference and I kept wondering why every time I told someone where the conference was, they always seemed to have a lack of excitement about it and were very ho-hum about the Gaylord. Now I understand why. It's a nice place with interesting things to see in the atrium including a variety of aquatic animals. Pool has construction going on, so not very peaceful right now. The food was very tasty, even the banquet food and the Italian buffet which is hard to pull off in my opinion, so kudos to them for that. There are limited options for breakfast though, only the coffee shop or the buffet. I just wanted a couple eggs and didn't want to have to pay the large buffet price to get them. The service was also generally very friendly compared to other large hotels I've stayed at in Vegas for similar conferences. The rooms met my expectation, but were nothing special. The rates are pretty expensive and the food is too, so staying for a whole week gets pretty expensive and the excitement of the decor and attractions wears off in a few days. Nothing within walking distance, so to go anywhere else you need a car, otherwise your stuck eating there. They charge a parking fee on top of the daily resort fee, so the dollar signs keep piling up on the hotel bill if you have do have a car. They do have a free shuttle to Disney, but schedule was very challenging and didn't seem to allow for an after dinner return. Cost to go to Universal if you arrange shuttle transport the day before is $19 per person round trip, but if you don't plan in advance (or if you weren't clearly notified by the concierge that advance booking was needed like I wasn't) it ended up costing $40 each way by taxi. So if you want to go to somewhere other than the Disney parks, I'd probably stay elsewhere. Now that i've been there and done that, I likely won't go back, even for another professional conference.

    by koala, 9/27/12

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