Family-Friendly Villas Close to Orlando Theme Parks
Newly renovated in 2012, the Best Western Premier Saratoga Resort Villas are located within 15 minutes of Walt Disney World® and fewer than 10 miles from SeaWorld and Discovery Cove. The hotel’s complimentary shuttle service makes it easy to travel to Epcot Center or Lake Buena Vista Factory Outlet Mall, and afterward you can take a relaxing dip in the property’s Mickey Mouse–shaped swimming pool. Recreational facilities near the family-friendly villas include a basketball court and playground.
The hotel sits on 18 picturesque acres dotted with two-tier gazebos and waterways stocked with tropical fish. Tree-lined sidewalks connect guest buildings painted in shades of yellow, red, and orange. Inside, you’ll find two-bedroom villas outfitted with full kitchens and contemporary furnishings. For a fee, you can place grocery orders with the hotel three days in advance of your arrival to ensure that the refrigerator will be stocked with goodies. Living rooms and private waterfront balconies provide plenty of space to unwind, and flat-screen TVs in each bedroom and living room area offer 65 cable channels.
The centerpiece of the resort is a large outdoor swimming pool surrounded by umbrellas, trees, a hot tub, and a furnished lounge area. At the Saratoga Tropical Grill and Bar, you can sample seafood dishes and fruity cocktails out on the patio. Some of this getaway’s options come with daily breakfast at the restaurant.
Kissimmee, Florida: Easy Access to World-Famous Theme Parks and Major Orlando Attractions
Located on the banks of Lake Tohopekaliga, Kissimmee sits about 22 miles from downtown Orlando and just 16 miles from the Walt Disney World® Theme Parks. The world’s most-visited entertainment resort spans roughly 30,000 acres, encompassing four theme parks, two water parks, five golf courses, and the Downtown Disney® Area. There’s no shortage of things to do here: begin your day at Magic Kingdom® Park by boarding Space Mountain® Attraction, a rocket-shaped three-seater that climbs to 180 feet before entering a deep black tunnel and racing past stars, satellites, and constellations. After that, ride past the ghastly goofballs inside The Haunted Mansion. For dinner, head over to Epcot® to sample cuisine from Morocco, Mexico, France, Italy, and several other countries at the World Showcase. As one of the most popular family destinations in the world, sunny Orlando is home to other theme parks including Universal Orlando Resort and SeaWorld Orlando.
Those hoping to shake up the typical theme-park-dominated itinerary can head into downtown Orlando’s vibrant arts district. The neighborhood boasts venues such as the CityArts Factory, a multifaceted patchwork of gallery spaces, and SAK Comedy Lab, which holds improv shows five nights a week.
About a 10-minute drive north, you’ll find several cultural institutions surrounding Loch Haven Park, including the Orlando Museum of Art; the collection features pieces by Georgia O’Keeffe, Robert Rauschenberg, Ansel Adams, and Andy Warhol. The park is also home to the Orlando Shakespeare Theater and the Orlando Science Center, where you can take a rover across a simulation of Mars or race model cars down a 70-foot pinewood-derby track.