Calling all newlyweds! The theme-park capital of the world promises endless thrills, no matter your age or appetite for Disney. But there’s plenty of other things to do besides spending time with Mickey and Minnie in Orlando for honeymooning couples. Here’s our pick of where to stay.
Live out your Hogwarts fantasy in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, come face to face with marine life in SeaWorld, watch crocs wrestle in Gatorland, or go the full Mickey Mouse and hit all the Disney resorts. Let us help you plan your post-wedding getaway.
The Alfond Inn often tops the Florida Best Hotels list, so you know you’re in for a treat here – and something a little different to the standard resort offering. The boutique hotel, in glamorous Winter Park, showcases contemporary artwork from the Cornell Fine Arts Museum through its communal spaces; you can book a guided Happy Hour Art Tour on the first Wednesday of every month to find out more. The award-winning Hamilton’s Kitchen is a great spot for dinner, with Macallan scotch pudding its signature dessert.
There are only six suites at Dr Phillips House – a boutique guesthouse with grand 19th-century architecture that’s also a national historic landmark – so you can expect truly personal service here, and it’s a far cry from the Disney theme park experience. If basketball is your thing, the home of Orlando Magic is the Amway Center, only a 20-minute walk away. Alternatively, enjoy craft cocktails at the password-protected speakeasy Hanson’s Shoe Repair a few blocks north.
Courtesy of Grand Bohemian Orlando, Autograph Collection / Expedia
The Grand Bohemian, in Downtown Orlando, is an opulent honeymoon destination: luxury boutique rooms come with marble bathrooms. There’s also a secluded rooftop pool and for hand-crafted cocktails and live piano, head to the elegant Bösendorfer Lounge. Also on-site at this AAA four-diamond hotel is the Poseidon Spa, which offers several relaxing treatments. Meanwhile, there’s the Boheme, for top grub, and the Grand Bohemian Gallery for art lovers.
Honeymooners can “rough it in comfort” in one of the cabins at Disney’s fabulous Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground, set in a 750-acre (300ha) pine and cypress forest teeming with birds and wildlife: look out for deer, rabbits and ducks. The cabins offer a bit more privacy than the Fort Wilderness Lodge, which can be privately rented, and you can even have groceries delivered to your door.
The design behind the Ritz-Carlton Orlando – an upscale, full-service resort set in 500 acres (202ha) of grounds – was inspired by Italy’s grand palazzos. One of the most magnificent honeymoon hotel destinations in Orlando, it features luxury suites, plenty of dining options, a top spa, three outdoor pools and an 18-hole Greg Norman-signature golf course. During your stay, you can plan your own sports experience to enjoy activities such as fishing.
With award-winning customer service, sumptuous rooms and a wealth of pampering amenities, the Rosen Shingle Creek® Hotel is one of Orlando’s premier honeymoon hotel destinations. The natural setting complements the Spanish-style architecture/decor to create a space where you can relax and disconnect from the chaos of central Orlando. There’s also a golf course, a full-service spa, several dining options and four seasonally heated pools that take relaxation and rejuvenation to the next level.
The JW Marriott Orlando, a sophisticated, award-winning hotel that ticks all the honeymooning boxes, sits in the lush Grande Lakes District. It has several on-site cafes and restaurants to choose from, plus a full-service spa, an 18-hole golf course and a swanky outdoor pool. Elegant rooms are fitted with marble bathrooms and huge comfy beds with quilted, high-quality bedding, so it’s just as well there is 24-hour room service for bumper buffet breakfasts and candlelit dinners.
The Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World® is the only resort in Central Florida with an AAA Five Diamond Award – and it has the Four Seasons stamp throughout. Chic, contemporary rooms feature marble bathrooms with tubs; some come with a private balcony. Check into a Park View room for a front-row seat at the nightly fireworks show. Super helpful staff can help you plan a Couples’ Escape, which includes time at the Oasis adults-only pool, a stint in the spa, a table at the romantic rooftop steakhouse and a round of golf on the private course.
The Loews Royal Pacific Resort at Universal Orlando™ is the perfect honeymoon hotel destination if you’re looking for somewhere with a beach-holiday feel. Luxury suites back on to a private lagoon and a white-sand beach, and the laid-back vibe, tropical decor and themed restaurants make you feel as if you’re on a South Pacific island. A stay here also gives you exclusive benefits at the Universal theme parks, including free water taxis and skip-the-line entry to the likes of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ and Universal’s Volcano Bay.