Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Suite Dreams

Two weeks ago, my family stayed at Rosen Shingle Creek in Orlando, Florida. We were given a Premium Executive Suite with two Queen Beds for three nights and access to the Concierge Lounge for breakfast, evening appetizers, and desserts. It was one of the greatest hotel experiences I've had. Just to compare, I've stayed in suites at other hotels during visits to Washington DC, some in the range of 5k/night. My experience at Rosen Shingle Creek was much different from those experiences. Rosen Creek is a grand hotel and the staff is very professional. The only thing missing is the chill. This hotel is very warm and inviting (even though it was formal, it was comfortable and cozy thanks to the numerous intimate groups of seating and the elegant but welcoming choices of furnishings and decor) and the staff worked together to make sure all the guests were happy.
Rosen Shingle Creek is situated on 230 beautifully manicured acres. Everything, from housekeeping to maintenance, is carefully orchestrated to create the ultimate get-away for guests. I don't think anything was out of place anywhere on the property during our visit. If it was, it was immediately taken care of as quietly and quickly as possible. One morning we watched groundskeepers place bags of mulch around while another crew opened them, and they were followed by another crew that swept the lawn clean of any debris. It was as if they were performing a choreographed dance. They might not appreciate that, but they were amazing to watch!
The hotel is stunning and the long drive to the entrance only added to the dramatic effect. After you walk through the entrance and enter the grand lobby, you'll wish you never bought theme park tickets or scheduled dinner away from this property. It's that special. You'll leave all your worries at the door!
I checked in and I was given all the information I needed for our stay. My family couldn't wait to see the room and we were surprised to find the sweet welcome that awaited us! Luscious, plump strawberries, dipped in rich chocolate, tempted us all. A thoughtful basket of sweets was quickly found by my children. They thought it was the most wonderful surprise of all! They were completely oblivious  to everything else until they had a sugar fix!
I couldn't wait to see every inch of this suite. It was clean and fresh. Our suite featured a generously sized standard room with two queen beds and a large bathroom. For late sleepers, room darkening shades will keep out all traces of light. Maybe one day I can go back and actually use them! I'll tell you one thing, if that ever happens, I will not leave the hotel under any circumstances. Why would I? The Creek Sleeper Beds were incredible and I wanted to take one home with me. I've never (ever) experienced a more comfortable night away from home.
The linens were superior quality, perfectly smooth and inviting. I couldn't wait to slip between the Egyptian Cotton sheets each night and wake feeling ready to take on the world. Or at least the theme parks, the crowds, and miles of walking. Extra pillows could be found on a shelf in the closet. Each night, little gift bags containing two chocolates were placed on the beds. They were delicious! A chair by the window created the perfect place to read just before bedtime. Take my advice and bring a book. Spend as much time as possible in your room because you will want to! When you need a break, see the hotel and walk the beautiful grounds. Ladies and gentlemen, this is your destination!
Each room comes with high-speed Internet connection capabilities, two telephones, and a coffeemaker. The desk gave me the space I needed to check my emails and prepare my blog features. There was a safe in the closet to store my laptop during the day. I found a mini fridge in the dresser below the 32" flat screen tv. Plush robes were provided along with first-class toiletries that make you forget about anything you brought from home. They made you feel alive and rejuvenated! I need to find out if they sell them because I miss the scent as much as the hotel. The large bathroom featured a lovely bathtub/shower combination surrounded by beautiful tiles.
The parlor was large and featured a gorgeous bathroom just off the entry. A tiled shower with a beautiful glass door made getting ready each morning a real pleasure. If you have guests it's a great addition! There is a Murphy Bed hidden in the wall. If you are traveling with friends, parents, or in-laws, this suite is ideal. You can close the doors between the parlor suite and bedrooms and have the privacy of a two bedroom suite. Or, you could choose a different layout and add another room to the suite for even more options.  
The adjoining Parlor Suite features a mini kitchen, microwave, coffeemaker, and mini fridge. There's also a small sink. There are several shelves, but the cabinets are not usable. The dining area is spacious and the table has six chairs. There are also three bar stools at the "kitchen" bar. Our first night in, we ordered pizza and enjoyed a quiet family meal together. It was a great way to unwind.
There was plenty of lighting throughout the suite, but during the day, massive windows bathed the room with soft, natural light. Looking out, we had a view of the creek, gardens, pools, and golf course! The David Harman designed, 18-hole, 7,149 yard championship golf course features undulating fairways and interconnecting waterways bordered by the natural backdrop of dense oaks and pines along historic Shingle Creek. It's so beautiful, one couple chose it as the back drop for their wedding party photos one evening during our stay.
With 14 restaurants and lounges, there is something for everyone. The luxurious Rosen Shingle Creek offers guests a wide selection of cuisine. Dine at an award-winning steakhouse, fine dining Italian bistro, an elaborate buffet and à la carte menu for breakfast, lunch, dinner and everything in between — all in the beautiful setting of turn-of-the-century, Spanish revival architecture.
For guests, two lighted tennis courts, basketball, and sand volleyball will keep you on your toes. For more laid back guests, seasonal fishing is available by reservation. There are nature trails and walking trails for your enjoyment too. A Video Game Room is the perfect place to send your teens while you take in the spa!
With four heated pools, we had trouble deciding which one to use for our evening dips. The Lap Pool, Zero Entry Family Pool, Quiet Lounging Pool, Kiddie Wading Pool were all beautiful features. We spent most of our time in the Zero Entry Family Pool. It was large and a popular choice for evening guests! Two hot tubs made sure we would have a shot at relaxing our tired muscles. What a wonderful way to relax before going to sleep!
For a more rejuvenating retreat, there's a full-service, 13,000 square foot Spa at Shingle Creek. It boasts nine treatment rooms and an amazing menu of soothing services, as well as a state-of-the-art Fitness Center. I was pleasantly surprised to find that spa services are comparable in price to spa services in my area.
Each morning, we indulged in muffins, fresh baked bread, fresh fruit and a delicious assortment of other breakfast foods. It was all artistically arranged and the variety ensured that not even the pickiest eater in our family would go hungry. It was so much more than a standard continental breakfast. We spoke with other guests and shared vacation plans. It was a wonderful way to start each day!
We also spent each evening here, mingling with guests, and experienced many new things! The two to three bite appetizers were beautiful to look at and they tasted amazing. The desserts were my favorites. They were visually stunning and the flavors were intense. Deep, dark, and sensuous chocolates were among my favorites. Some were topped with fresh fruits while others were topped with exquisite chocolates. Sometimes we were lucky and both ended up on top!
This was definitely an experience we will all remember. Sam and Logan experienced something new each day and they loved it all so much! Sam was convinced that we had found a new home. He knows a great thing when he sees it! We did find a home away from home!
Downstairs, be sure to check out the Zebra Finch Family. They are the luckiest birds! Imagine, living at the Rosen Shingle Creek! Sam stopped each day to greet the birds during our visit. If it was getting late, he reminded us to go down with a sweet little tweet tweet of his own. The birds were friendly and they seemed very happy!
Rosen Shingle Creek features a combination of superior service and cutting edge technology. It's located within minutes of Orlando International Airport and the Orange County Convention Center. They are convenient to Walt Disney World® Resort, SeaWorld® Adventure Park and Universal Orlando® Resort. Rosen Shingle Creek is also an exceptional setting for all types of events and social occasions. They offer impeccable planning services and they can help you create perfect memories to last a lifetime. Their innovative cuisine and elegant venues ensure that your expectations are vastly exceeded.

They can put together an intimate ceremony for 20 or an elaborate banquet for 2,000, and they have every ingredient covered, from entertainment and flowers to exquisite cuisine and dazzling venues. We saw one set-up for a wedding reception and it was beautiful. The arrangement took full advantage of the breathtaking scenery. What a lucky couple and what a perfect way to begin a new life!
I hope you will consider Rosen Shingle Creek for your business, personal, and family travel. They will make you feel like a part of their family from the moment you walk through their doors. It's an unforgetable experience. They have great specials and packages available and they are quite reasonable. I hope you'll take my advice and take things slow. You'll want to spend your days here. Each day we left our room, we had regrets. It takes a special place to make that happen. Especially when those regrets come from the kids!
Disclosure: I was given a three night stay in order to complete this feature. Honest opinions given. Please feel free to send me an email if  have a you have a question about my experience. I hope you will consider Rosen Shingle Creek.

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