RC Orlando3 Visit Orlando planned a little retreat for the weary at the stunning, Ritz-Carlton, Grande Lakes Orlando when Traveling Moms arrived the day before boarding the Disney Fantasy.The Ritz shares the luxurious Grande Lakes property with the JW Marriott. 

We were given a tour of the hotel, including the Club Level lounge where guests can indulge in various culinary offerings throughout the day, use the computer station and a concierge attends to your personal needs. Take in the views from the private balconies of the 4,000 sq. ft. spa and pool, golf course and lakes while unwinding with a cocktail. Their from-scratch Bloody Mary was one of the best I’ve had.


Ritz Kids was a fun stop on our tour. With fully supervised activities and special programs for kids ages 5-12 available seven days a week, parents get their own time to play. The environment was so whimsical, I wanted to stay and play awhile myself.

RC Orlando1Ah, the Spa. 40,000 square feet of luxury, secluded by lush gardens and a peaceful lake. The philosophy here is sanitas per agua, or “health through water.” Featured treatments honor water therapies famous throughout the world since ancient times. And, since it is Florida, the Spa also highlights many citrus-inspired health and beauty treatments.


Not to be left out, are the Spa’s honey-infused treatments that take advantage of the natural skincare benefits of honey – honey harvested from the hotel’s own on site apiary. That’s right, the Ritz has beekeepers.

In keeping with their commitment to sustainability and conservation, harvesting their own honey is one way the Ritz and Marriott minimize their “food print.” The culinary team serving Grande Lakes Orlando, uses the honey in their unique restaurant menus such as at the award-winning Norman’s.

“Harvesting honey on-site has given the JW Marriott Orlando culinary team another opportunity to show how passionate we are in sharing the best local flavors with guests. Knowing where the product comes from is important to us; all be it grown the earth, a sensible ocean selection, or one of nature’s sweet pleasures,” explains Executive Chef Chris Brown.  

RC Orlando2So why use honey on the skin too? Honey is packed with vitamins B1, B2, C, B6, B5, and B3, which make skin glow. The thick, binding texture of honey also moisturizes and helps skin stay hydrated (while filling out wrinkles). Particularly useful in pedicures, honey’s anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties make it a natural antiseptic.

Snacking on delicious butler-served hors d’oeuvres and cocktails, seven of us were treated to Classic Citrus Indulgence manicures and Bee Pampered Pedicures complete with a whipped honey scrub down that smelled like fresh baked cookies.

Other sweet indulgences include the signature Grande Lakes Honey Treatment or the Harvest Glow Hot Honey Treatment.

It’s no wonder Grande Lakes Orlando is considered the “Queen Bee” of luxury resorts.

Chris is a designer, WAHM and pilot’s wife living in Colorado. She writes as Standby Traveling Mom as well as at MamaBirdsBlog.com. Follow her on Twitter as @BirdBanter.

Disclosure: The Ritz-Carlton hosted Traveling Moms for the purposes of writing this review. No other compensation was provided. All opinions expressed are my own and without influence by the Ritz-Carlton.