Lazy Rivers, Monster Burgers, and Bacardi Buckets Oh My.

“I want to vacation so long, I forget all my passwords.”

– Unknown

True story due to complications coming home from vacation, I forgot my email password. BUT we had a fantastic time celebrating my 30th last week prior to that. This is not an ad review, this is just us absolutely loving our time at Orange Lake Resort.

We arrived at the Holiday Inn Club Vacation Resort at Orange Lake on Feb 6th and honestly, I will never stay anywhere else when I’m in Orlando. I don’t have any complaints regarding this resort at all. The staff was fantastic from check in to the restaurants to the gates at the entrances. We were blown away by how large it was too, and well kept considering the size. I don’t think I saw a single piece of trash anywhere, which says a lot.

My mother bought into the HICV a couple of years ago since we’ve enjoyed all of our stays at the various Holiday Inn hotels. Honestly, best idea she’s ever had. All of the HICV resorts so far have been incredible, but with Orange Lake being the flagship the expectations were high. They met them all and then some.

We stayed at the River Island portion of the resort, which we were told at check in was the best area to be in. I can see why. It has the lazy river, two pools, a water slide, three bars and two restaurants. You could easily just stay there for the week and never have to leave River Island. Which we plan to do in the future.

We had a cozy two bedroom, two bath condo on the top floor with an excellent view of Magic Kingdom’s nightly fireworks. The master bathroom came with a lovely jetted soaking tub which was used pretty much every night. Especially after all the swimming we did at Discovery Cove and walking at Epcot. Piece of advice: your last day of vacation should have no plans at all to recoup after the busy week before your drive or flight home.

The real joy to this are of the property is the pool area. There are plenty of loungers that you can either be right in the action or tucked away from everyone else in a quiet little nook surrounded by palm trees. We hung out in the main pool area on our “day off” before heading home on Thursday. Even though it was only in the high 60s, those pools are kept at a lovely 82 degrees all year so if you go at the beginning of February like we did, it’s gonna be nice. I spent most of my time drinking poolside while soaking in the sun that refused to appear the day before when we were at Epcot. I’m not bitter or anything.

That morning, we had breakfast at one of the many resort restaurants: Riverside Grilling. Normally, I avoid resort restaurants. They tend to be small portions and overpriced. Riverside Grilling was neither of those. Alex ended up with pancakes the size of his face and my breakfast bowl had me set until dinner. Also, best breakfast potatoes ever.

The food was fresh, cooked to perfection, and delicious. We were pleasantly surprised by just how good it was. It was so good we ended up at the restaurant/bar next door for dinner. Tradewinds had a spectacular bartender by the name of Jenna who took care of us from the time we rolled in until we left around 9 pm. I ended up with the Monster Burger, an amazing mix of brisket, beef patty, and pulled pork. No, I didn’t finish it. It was massive.

Yes, that is a Bacardi bucket. No, I do not regret it. Moving on.

All in all, I can’t wait to spend some more time at Orange Lake Resort. It’s a 10 out of 10 from us. We can’t thank them enough for how relaxing our time at the resort was, it was such a smooth check in and check out too. If you haven’t already, look into one of HICV’s 28 resorts across the country. I just really love Holiday Inn Club Vacations, they’re worth every cent.

Keep an eye out later in the week to hear more about what else we did while we were in Orlando! As usual, travel safe and travel often.

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