We were determined to leave the zip code bidding a final farewell to summer. And as two women who rarely settle on anything in life, we were skeptical we would find both a luxurious and responsible way to travel. We craved a luxury oasis that was not in the middle of a city, provided lots of outdoor space and aquatic amenities for the kids, and most importantly, delicious food.We found all that and more at The Four Seasons Resort Orlando.
A Responsible & Luxurious Reopening
After a brief closing, the resort cautiously reopened and health and safety concerns were at the top of their mind. Four Seasons Resorts entered into a consulting agreement with Johns Hopkins Medicine International, the global division of health care and research leader Johns Hopkins Medicine, “to inform Four Seasons health and safety decisions during the evolving COVID-19 pandemic.” The new program, Lead With Care, is implemented by the Four Seasons properties around the world, including Orlando.
The Four Seasons Orlando Resort provided the best of both worlds, safety and luxury. Here are 9 reasons why the Four Seasons Orlando is still – and will always be – a good idea.
1. First Impressions
There is nothing like a first impression. You drive up, and right away you think how grand and breathtakingly beautiful the property is. Masked valet attendants warmly greeted us, and were more than happy to help us with the obscene amount of luggage we brought for two adults, three kids and a newborn. Upon arrival, there is a screening procedure that includes temperature checks and a series of questions regarding health and recent travel. It was here we were also informed that sterilizer is stationed at all major entry points throughout the Hotel. Additionally, the public areas are cleaned hourly with extra attention to high traffic areas. For now, it’s the new normal, but the execution created safety precautions without feeling intrusive.
2. Intelligent Design
When you enter through the doors, you’re looking at a grand staircase winding under vaulted ceilings. The featured light fixture hanging over the stair looks like fireworks bursts, some are as large as six feet in diameter. But it’s the small details that captivate you, like the circles on the stair railing. If you look hard enough, you can see one large circle and two small circles that together make Mickey mouse ears.
3. Spacious rooms
It’s not much of a stretch to applaud the Four Seasons for its interior design, but the cheery yellow and gray halls are my favorite of any hotel I have seen. Each trip back to our room made me fall for this place just a little harder.
The kids were greeted with the sweetest welcome gifts when we arrived in our rooms. The girls were given sparkly fairy wings with coordinating wands and the boys were given a sheriff outfit which included a cowboy hat, sheriff sticker, and bandana.
The hotel room was exactly what we had hoped for: incredibly clean. It felt like we were the first people to ever stay in our luxurious two-bedroom suites. Each had two huge furnished balconies running the length of the room overlooking Orlando (more on that below). I had come armed with enough Clorox wipes to clean every surface in the resort, but I never took them out. That was how comfortable—how confident—I was in the safety of our setting. If you choose to request housekeeping, rooms are disinfected daily with EPA approved products and will have blacklight inspection by room attendants.
DBM PRO TIP: Some views are insignificant, and some are worth every penny. We recommend you splurge for a park view room or suite while staying at Disney World. Park view balconies face due west with spectacular vistas of the pool area, and the horizon line adorned by Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Animal Kingdom, and Hollywood Studios. The sunsets are spectacular.
4. Delectable Dining
Dining options at the Four Seasons are a welcome treat for any foodie family visiting the Disney World area. There are five different restaurant options on site and each one is structured to accommodate families. If you are having a meal indoors, the resort has straightforward mask-wearing signage and directives. Wear masks when you enter. Take them off at the table. Put them back on if you move around the restaurant. All of the restaurants implemented limited-capacity seating that maintains social distancing recommendations.
The Restaurants of Four Seasons
- PB&G is the resort’s outdoor poolside restaurant. As we spent most of our days outside we indulged in the poolside dining here every afternoon. There are so many super fresh and healthy options as well as the not so healthy options for those wanting to splurge on vacation. The poke bowl and the blt salads were our favorite.
- Capa is their rooftop restaurant and bar. Spoiler alert: The best restaurant at Orlando’s Walt Disney World isn’t inside the park. Make your way to the 17th floor of the Four Seasons, and here you will find foodie heaven. Caps has a Spanish influence with the best views of the fireworks (currently on pause due to Covid) from all three parks. We had a late dinner the final night of our trip and enjoyed every bite of our delicious meal. The wine list was excellent as well!
- Ravello is the resort’s Italian restaurant. We ate at Ravello for breakfast two of our mornings. We had options like avocado toast, green juices, sweet potato breakfast potatoes, quinoa, and fresh fruits of all varieties. I am still dreaming about their green juice. This is also where they have their Goofy and Pals character breakfast on select days but they offer the same breakfast upstairs in the lobby bar area if characters are not a need for you.
- The Four Seasons offers two exceptional versions of coffee and ice cream in their lobby café, Lickety Split. Because Florida and hot beverages aren’t as appealing, the Four Seasons imported a special cold-pressed brewing machine that makes the smoothest, most complex iced coffee I’ve ever tasted.
- Their grab n’ go venue has not just great coffee options, but macaroons, gelato, baked goods, wraps, yogurt parfaits, and quinoa bowls. There are options for everyone in your travel party and every mood
DBM PRO TIP:Order room service instead of dining in if you think the kids are too exhausted dealing with the mask policy. You can also request a contactless delivery where your meal is left outside your door for added safety.
5. The Service
With the emphasis on safety, we weren’t sure what to expect and how that would change the resort experience. The Four seasons made us feel safe without compromising five star service. A few important service points for families:
- They will deliver a pack and play to the room and it comes with these amenities, but they also deliver a diaper genie.
- Attendants offer a scavenger hunt to children upon checking in, and walk around with chips poolside during snack time.
- If you have Disney related questions, ask. The Four Seasons Disney desk in the lobby staffs some of the most helpful and knowledgeable Disney cast members around, too.
6. “Lead With Care”
All guest rooms come with a Lead with Care kit that includes masks, hand sanitizer, and wipes. Each Four Seasons property appointing a Hygiene Officer focused on implementing enhancements to already stringent procedures.
7. Limit Contact With The Four Seasons App
The app created an easy alternative for managing our stay. The app made it easy to engage with the staff. We were able to quickly make and manage reservations, request luggage pickup, airport transfers, room service, restaurant and spa reservations, and much more. Wait-free check-in and check-out is also offered. Of course, you can also call the concierge if you prefer.
8. Make A Splash At The Five Acre Water Park
The pool grounds, expanding more than five acres, enables every guest to stake their own slice of paradise and feel like the only guests there. And that we did. It was here that we were really able to soak in the view of the hotel and property and reflect how fortunate we were to be on this getaway.
The pool complex is truly the best we’ve seen in our travels. There are four different areas: an adult only pool, a large zero-entry family pool with a toddler- sized waterslide, a splash zone with two full-sized waterslides and an LED lit splash zone, and the final is called the Cove— intended for teens. It is the final stop of the lazy river adorned with a volleyball net and basketball hoop and incredible poolside loungers.
9. The Property
In a word? Immaculate. I’m obsessed with landscaping. It’s not that they do it better, it’s just that they landscaped so elegantly. You very much feel like you’re in Florida with the palm trees everywhere and flower beds, but the addition of gorgeous container planters, water features, and built-in shade with oversized trees made us give the grounds a major thumbs up. It’s Florida at its best.
Although they say Disney World is the most magical place on earth I actually think they mean Four Seasons Orlando. We had a relaxing vacation, complete with delicious food and family-fun in an opulent setting, while still getting to experience just the right amount of magic.
Here Are Some Essentials That Made Our Stay Extra Special
- Melissa & Jeri’s Dresses: Gaslamp Gift Gallery
- Child Sunglasses: WeeFarers
- Relaxation Slippers: Terrelique
Photo Credit: Kamilla Idelguzhina, an Orlando Photographer. For more great photos, follower her Instagram @by.stravnw.
Want to visit more places but not sure what to expect? Check out what to know before you go at MOAS.