September 5, 2011

Spoiled Rotten

Orlando is a great place to spoil the kids. There are the world renowned attractions like Disney, Universal and Sea World and thousands of spinoffs. In fact from afar it may seem like it's all about kids. Almost every area hotel and every restaurant has an oversized animated theme. After a few park trips you may begin to wish it were possible to drop the kids off and pick them up on your way back from some tranquil retreat (if Hogwarts were real you could). Don't get me wrong, I'm a true thrill ride fan but, even I can reach theme park overload (not so for most kids). I'd be lying if I didn't state that kids are the main focus of the area but, there are some pretty impressive places for grown ups too.
I had the recent good fortune of visiting one such place. It just so happened that a friend had to attend a conference in Orlando and asked if I might like to tag along - to The Ritz Carlton - didn't have to ask me twice! Let me tell you, I got spoiled rotten here!
The Ritz Carlton and the JW Marriott Grande Lakes Orlando, are a destination all their own. Connected by a large conference and event center, the two luxury hotels comprise numerous restaurants, bars & coffee shops, large pools, a lazy river pool, a beach type volley ball court, Bocce Ball court, life size chess board, a golf course and they offer kayaking tours of the nearby Shingle Creek. Clearly there's plenty for the kids to enjoy here but, you won't find any costume clad characters running amuck nor will you be subjected to endless hours of themed music and I don't believe their waffles have ears. There's a time and a place for all that but, equally important is the necessity to take a break from it. Just don't let the kids know that this place is really about the grown ups! That will be our little secret.
I don't think I need tell you how beautiful the hotels or their rooms are or that they have great restaurants. I think we're all familiar with the brand so we'll skip that. I will say, in case you're not familiar with them, that lazy river pools are wonderful and their's looked very alluring. Who wouldn't enjoy floating around on a tube through a tropical setting! Alas I was here for but a short time so I toured the grounds, lounged and dined exquisitely.
A crown jewel of their restaurants is Primo. Their bread alone is to die for.

Before you indulge your taste buds however, to truly experience Primo you should start with a tour of their organic vegetable and herb garden. In Orlando fashion it's a kind of attraction all on its own - an edible one. How's that for unique! I really can't say anything more important about Primo than it is fresh, delicious and very memorable.
You know most kids will promise anything to go to Orlando. I completely understand. For this Orlando experience I promise to eat all my vegetables if someone will just take me back.

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