Posts Tagged ‘Walt Disney World’

Free Disney Ticket is Feature of Summer Package at Two Hilton Hotels in Orlando

June 30, 2011

Families can get a free Disney ticket with a two-night stay at Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek and the Waldorf Astoria Orlando, through September 9 © 2011 Karen Rubin/

Two Hilton hotels in  Orlando – the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek and the Waldorf Astoria Orlando – are offering special deals for families this summer – even a free Disney ticket

  •  SummerBlast! at Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek (through Sept. 9) — a summer-long program filled with special events, like Radio Disney pool parties, DUCKTONA 500 rubber duck races in our lazy river, and other recreational activities. Most notably, it is providing a free Disney ticket for every two nights booked.  Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek is located inside the gates of Walt Disney World® Resort. This new resort is filled with amazing amenities, including a lazy river pool, an award-winning golf course, a luxurious Spa by Guerlain and popular dining options.  To make a reservation, visit, or call 888-353-2013.
  • Enchanted Evenings at Waldorf Astoria Orlando (through Sept. 9) – a summer-long program filled with special events, like Martini Madness, WeirdScience Ice Cream social, Twilight Golf, spa happy hour specials and other recreational activities. Here, too, for every two nights booked at Waldorf Astoria Orlando, you get a Free Disney ticket. Waldorf Astoria Orlando is newest luxury resort, conveniently accessed inside the gates of Walt Disney World® Resort. Resort amenities include a zero entry pool, a separate private pool with cabanas, an awarding winning golf course, a luxurious Spa by Guerlain and popular dining options. To make a reservation, visit, or call 888-353-2009.

See also:

Disney Still Has That Magic

Inside Universal Orlando’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter and slideshow

Clarion Inn Lake Buena Vista has deals during Braves, Astros spring training

February 19, 2011

The Clarion Inn Lake Buena Vista offers easy access to Universal Orlando's Wizarding World of Harry Potter © 2011 Karen Rubin/

ORLANDO (February 18, 2011) –

Braves and Astros fans can get a homerun deal on Orlando vacations from the AAA Three Diamond Clarion Inn Lake Buena Vista (LBV) during spring training.

Baseball fans can book and stay at the hotel now through March 31, 2011 and pay just $49.99 per night, plus tax.   The hotel is located only three miles from Atlanta Braves and Houston Astros spring training in Orlando, so baseball fans are just minutes from all of the action.

For just $10 more, guests can enjoy a special game day-lunch for two that includes two fountain sodas, two hot dogs and two small chips from the hotel’s Lite Bite restaurant.  As an added bonus for baseball-loving parents, children always stay free and children under 9 eat for free (one child per each paying adult).  A commemorative souvenir will be given to the first 50 bookings at check-in.

The family-friendly Clarion Inn LBV is easily accessible to Walt Disney World Resort® theme parks, Universal Orlando ®, SeaWorld Orlando® and Aquatica®, with complimentary daily scheduled shuttle service.  There are also scheduled pick-ups for Orlando Premium Outlet shopping at Vineland Avenue.  A 24-hour video game room is open for kids of all ages.  Outdoors, guests can enjoy the hotel’s lush landscaped grounds and a children’s playground, as well as two seasonally heated outdoor pools, one of which features the new Ozzie’s Splash Zone for kids.  Guests can choose from a wide variety of onsite dining options to fuel up before the game or they can grab a post-game bite at the Boardwalk Buffet, Lite Bite Mini-Market/Deli or Comfort Zone Bar and Grille.

Extensive multi-million dollar renovations were recently completed at the hotel, which led to the new AAA 3-Diamond rating.  Every guest room received new American-made furnishings of a contemporary design including new ergonomic desks, as well as new carpet, window treatments, upgraded art work, luxurious Simmons Beautyrest pillow-top mattresses and stylish, yet comfortable bedding treatments.  Private bathrooms now feature granite-finish vanity and modern decorative lighting.  Each guest room offers a mini refrigerator, microwave, coffee maker, electronic safe and cable television with in-room movies.  Guests also enjoy complimentary WIFI in guest rooms and public areas and free onsite parking.

To book online or for more details and the 2011 Spring Training schedules for the Atlanta Braves and Houston Astros in Orlando, visit, or call 800-999-7300 and ask for the Spring Training rate.

The Clarion Inn Lake Buena Vista – a Rosen Hotels & Resorts property – is located at 8442 Palm Parkway, Orlando, FL 32819 and features 640 newly renovated guest rooms in four high-rise buildings,  a playground and two swimming pools, one of which features the new “Ozzie the Otter Splash Zone.” The free scheduled shuttle provides transportation to Walt Disney World Resort® theme parks and Downtown Disney as well as Universal Orlando, ® SeaWorld Orlando® and Aquatica®. The hotel is located just off I-4, approximately 20 minutes from Orlando International Airport.  For more information, visit or call 800-999-7300.

See also:

Inside Universal Orlando’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter and slideshow


Walt Disney World Orlando is Still the Place for Magic and slideshow

For more features, visit and

Walt Disney World’s Summer Nightastic is Fantastic

July 24, 2010

Walt Disney World's Summer Nighttastic Fireworks Show at Magic Kingdom is spellbinding (© 2010 Karen Rubin/

I admit it: I was as thrilled as any six-year old to see the bursts of fireworks over the magical Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom.

Summer Nightastic! Fireworks Show, on through August 14, is truly one of the phenomenal spectacles that only Disney Imagineers could pull off (when the bursts formed the pirate skulls, that was jaw-dropping amazing).

We very cleverly checked the schedule of activities in order to make the best use of our two days of Park Hopper tickets, spent our first day at Hollywood Studios (it was open until 8 p.m. that night, then we were too tired to go to another park); then spent our second, amazing day at Animal Kingdom knowing that Magic Kingdom was open until 11 pm., with the Electric Parade on at 9 and 11 pm. and the fireworks at 10 pm.

We took the ferry over from the parking lot (instead of the Monorail), for an exquisite view of Magic Kingdom, and arrived just as the Main Street Electrical Parade was getting underway, miraculously managing to get a spot right on Main Street.

Magic Kingdom's Main Street glitters at night, with Cinderella's Castle in the background (© 2010 Karen Rubin/

And then to have Magic Kingdom almost to yourself at night, in the dark, to do the rides and attractions! We got to do the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad (my favorite coaster), then dashed to Tomorrowland (it makes you smile to see a 1950s “vision” of the future) to Space Mountain coaster, getting in the last ride of the night. Coming back, the 11 p.m. Electrical Parade was underway and we got to see the end from a different perspective, right in front of Cinderella’s castle.

Magic Kingdom’s Main Street Electric Parade comes to Cinderella’s Castle making a spectacular sight (© 2010 Karen Rubin/

At Epcot’s nighttime display, the skies explode with lasers, fireworks and music for the IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth that glitters and glows over the World Showcase Lagoon.

There’s no question, Disney’s got it.. The Magic. You can’t even put your finger on it. As an adult, you appreciate the artistry, the creativity, the imagination, and then simply get lost in a child’s delight. You are swept up in the enchantment, taken to other worlds, no matter how old you are or where you are in your life, or where you are from.

In fact, walking with the crowd as Animal Kingdom was closing for the night, you sense that there is no place on earth that has such a conglomeration of humanity. As it happens, it was around the Tree of Life, but we felt it again on Main Street in the Magic Kingdom. For the time you are under Disney’s spell, it almost seems that there is nothing else beyond these magical worlds.

During our two-day visit using the Disney Park-Hopper ticket, we were able to enjoy three of the parks:

Some of the highlights of our visit:

Hollywood Studios (the Extreme Stunt show is not to be believed; the Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith is a music-charged zoomfest that takes you through loops, twists and turns inside; a new addition is the American Idol Experience); Animal Kingdom (Expedition Everest is an amazing coaster set in a realistic re-creation of Nepal; Harambe safari is stunningly realistic; we had an amazing trek of our own seeking the silverback gorillas on the Pangani Forest Exploration Trails, the daytime Mickey’s Jammin’ Jungle Parade is wildly creative, and the new “Finding Nemo” Broadway-style musical is Tony-Award caliber that will delight everyone; and “Tough to be a Bug” 3-D experience in the base of The Tree of Life is as marvelous as ever); and Magic Kingdom.

Planning tips: Wednesday is the least crowded day at the theme parks. Check the Walt Disney World website to get a schedule for the parks – which are open late, when the parades and the fireworks are scheduled, or special events.

I suggest, if possible and the schedule works out, save your favorite park for the second day in order to get the full enjoyment: you are tired after traveling and it takes a day to get oriented to the Disney way the parks operate.

Take advantage of Disney’s FastPass system – where you can get a time to return (it spans an hour) and you just breeze in, so you don’t have to wait on the standby line. You can only use the pass once an hour, though.

Get all the info you need and do your vacation planning at

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–Karen Rubin, Travel Features Syndicate

Pet Care Resort Opens at Walt Disney World

July 4, 2010

Pet lovers visiting Walt Disney World Resort can now plan to board the family pet in fun, luxurious new accommodations. Reservations are being accepted for pet boarding stays beginning Aug. 27, 2010, for the new Best Friends Pet Care Resort.

The one-of-a-kind resort comprises more than 50,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor space, including 17,000 square feet of air-conditioned indoor space, 10,000 square feet of covered outdoor runs and play areas, and an expansive private dog park exclusively for the use of pet resort clients and their dogs.

The facility will accommodate up to 270 dogs and 30 cats for both daytime and overnight boarding. A wide selection of suite choices for dogs includes air-conditioned indoor rooms, 48-square-foot indoor-outdoor suites, and four expansive VIP (very important pet) suites with television, raised bedding and private outdoor yards.
Feline guests will spend their visit in the separate “Kitty City” pavilion – away from the dogs – in two- and four-room condos.  All suites and condos are designed to provide comfort and privacy and will be cleaned daily with hospital-grade disinfectants.

The pet resort is operated by Best Friends Pet Care (

“Best Friends has long been the industry leader for boarding, and this will be our crown jewel. We’ve taken the ‘best of breed’ in every category to create the perfect environment for pets,” said Dennis Dolan, president and CEO of Best Friends Pet Care. “Our goal is to ensure that pets staying with us have a fun, action-packed vacation – just like their families vacationing at Walt Disney World.”

The resort’s exclusive dog park features a fenced walking trail bordering the natural wetlands around the park. Inside the trail, guests can choose from a variety of different play areas, including a 3,300-square-foot area covered in artificial turf, a 4,500-square-foot area with shade trees and a 1,300-square-foot “canines only” water park. There are several large areas for owners to sit, relax and watch their dogs play.   The entire park is secured from outsiders and is illuminated for use after dark.

Other features of the resort include: a grooming salon, which will provide go-home-fresh baths and haircuts for pets; two 1,100-square-foot “camp rooms” for play group and doggy day camp, each opening onto an outdoor play-yard; and a special facility for the boarding of “pocket pets,” such as hamsters, guinea pigs, rabbits and ferrets.

Pet parents can choose from a wide range of a la carte activities for pet guests from one-on-one playtimes and social playgroup with other doggy guests, to cuddle time and bedtime stories with staff. Additional amenities and upgrades include Ice Cream Treats, Bottled Water and Premium/Orthopedic Bedding.

Feline guests can also enjoy private playtimes, activity toys in their suites and treats such as Cookies and Milk or Tuna on a Ritz.

The pet resort is located across from Disney’s Port Orleans Resort at 2510 Bonnet Creek Parkway in Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830.  Pricing and other details are available at or by calling 877/4-WDW-PETS.

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