The Palms Hotel & Resort in Orlando, Florida is an affordable, family-friendly property conveniently located to area theme parks and attractions, with one or two-bedroom suites that can accommodate larger families or groups. They also offer amenities such as an outdoor pool and whirlpool spa, free wi-fi, complimentary breakfast and shuttles to theme parks. Read on for more about The Palms Hotel & Resort.
Review: The Palms Hotel & Resort in Orlando Florida
When planning a family vacation in Orlando, Florida one of the most difficult decisions is always where to stay. Every family has to consider their specific needs, including family or group size, how much time will be spent at the hotel or resort vs. at theme parks or attractions, and what their budget is.
Central Florida is certainly not lacking options for accommodations of all sorts and for any budget. If you’re looking for family-friendly, affordable accommodations that fit larger families or groups and combine the basics with easy park access, The Palms Hotel & Villas is ideal. This Walt Disney World Good Neighbor property offers 125 one or two-bedroom condo-style suites and is conveniently located near Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando, Sea World and other area attractions, right off of I-4. The Palms also offer complimentary continental-style breakfast, high-speed wi-fi, and shuttles to the theme parks to make your Orlando family vacation as easy as possible.
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I recently spent a night at The Palms alone, but will definitely consider bringing my family when we next travel to the Orlando area. With a family of five, it can be difficult to find affordable options for accommodations and this one meets all of our usual list of must-haves, including a pool for the kids to swim and play in, free breakfast, free wi-fi, and suites that have the sleeping area separated from the living space. I found the staff to be helpful and considerate and greatly enjoyed my stay.
What Works for Families
- Suites with separate sleeping areas are perfect for letting kids sleep while adults relax.
- Each unit provides a sleeper sofa to accommodate larger families or groups.
- Large, centrally located pool within easy walking distance from any of the units, with separate whirlpool spa and children’s wading pool.
- Sandbox, outdoor grill area and outdoor seating in both shade and sun so parents can keep a close eye on their kids while relaxing themselves.
- Complimentary breakfast for guests.
- Coin-operated laundry, game room and fitness room on-site.
- Handicap-accessible lift in the pool area to accommodate those with special needs.
- 24-hour on-site security
What Doesn’t Work for Families
- Two-story buildings, with no elevators. If carrying luggage up and down stairs is a concern, or if you need wheelchair accessibility, then you’ll want to request a ground-floor unit.
- The pool area can be noisy, so if your kids need quiet to nap or sleep, you’ll want to request a unit that’s not adjacent to the pool area.
- The property has direct freeway frontage so if quiet is a necessity, you’ll need to specify that you want a unit away from the freeway.
- Some units have a walk-in shower with no bathtub, so make sure to request a tub if you need one.
- The television signal was iffy – some channels were crystal clear while others were grainy or barely came in at all.
- Families with crawlers or early walkers will want to note that the units have tile floor, not carpeting.
Hotel and Room Details
The Palms Hotel & Resort provides free parking to guests as well as complimentary shuttles to the theme parks. They are a Disney Good Neighbor property, so Disney park tickets (as well as tickets for other parks and attractions) can be purchased right in the lobby. High-speed wi-fi is complimentary to guests as well.
Each suite has a separate sleeping area (one bedroom sleep up to six and two bedroom sleep up to eight) from the main living space. Suites also include full kitchens with a 2-burner stove, oven, refrigerator/freezer, microwave and yes, even a dishwasher. With two queen beds, the one-bedroom unit would easily fit my family of 5 if we utilized the sleeper sofa – or more likely one of my girls would be thrilled to sleep on the chaise section of the couch as a novelty. There are televisions in each bedroom as well as the main living space.
The beds were comfortable and I appreciated that the windows had both blinds and curtains to block out or let in light as needed. The unit was clean, comfortable and provided all the basics with upgrades here and there adding a slight touch of luxury. I loved the simple beach glass feel of the soap dish and tissue box in the bathroom, and the stainless steel appliances in the kitchen provided a clean look and feel. I did not cook, but there were pots and pans, dishes and silverware provided so that you could easily cook and serve a full meal. The breakfast bar seats no more than three, but there is a coffee table in the living space for additional seating for meals.
The outdoor pool is well-maintained and a good size. Smaller kids can enjoy the separate, shallow wading pool if they’re not quite ready for the ‘big’ pool. A small whirlpool spa is also available. There are no lifeguards and children under fourteen must be accompanied by an adult in the pool area. The pool is within easy walking distance from all of the units, but depending on location you will have to cross parking areas to get to it. There is plenty of seating around the pool – both tables (some with umbrellas for shade) and chaises. In a separate area, one outdoor grill is available with several picnic tables. Kids can also play in a fenced sandbox area – no toys are provided so bring your own buckets and shovels.
The on-site fitness room is very basic but offers weights, treadmills and an elliptical. If kids tire of the pool, there is a small game room with arcade games and an air hockey table, but note that this is a very small room, with no seating for parents. There is also a coin-operated laundry facility with several washers and dryers, plus counter space for sorting/folding.
The complimentary breakfast is available from 6:00 to 9:00am daily and includes a variety of hot (eggs, meat) and continental options such as cereal, toast, bagels and pastries. Beverages include coffee and a selection of juices. It’s not gourmet food, but basic fare that I know my kids are more likely to eat. There is no on-site restaurant, but a local company does provide room service with a $15 minimum delivery. Menus are available in each unit. With a full kitchen in each unit, guests are welcome to prepare their own meals as well.
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Room rates vary depending on timing of your trip and availability, but seem to average around $100-125/night. Group rates are available for as low as $62/night. They are happy to work with school, sports or youth groups.