Sometimes you just need to get away! That’s exactly what we needed on our trip to Orlando, Florida. We had some hard-to-use Marriott points that had been sitting around in my husband’s account for a while, but as luck would have it, we found out we could use them at Marriott’s Castle Hotel! Having not been to Europe in over a year, a Bavarian Castle-inspired getaway sounded like the most perfect experience to have. Here’s our experience staying at this boutique hotel near the Disney World Parks!
*This post is not sponsored. We did redeem 35,000 Marriott Points to receive one night free of the two nights we stayed. We paid for the other night ourselves (and earned more points doing that!). Check out my Ultimate Guide to Redeeming Hotel Rewards for more!
The Castle Hotel is an “Autograph Collection” property by Marriott, which means it’s a boutique-style hotel, not simply a generic Marriott hotel that could be located anywhere. This particular hotel is inspired by the castles of Bavaria in Germany.
Because of that, the hotel is very popular for parents with young children, especially girls. Because come on, every little girl’s dream is to go to Disney World and stay in a castle! There were many children staying here, so if that influences your choice one way or the other, it’s good to know!
Another determining factor in whether or not you choose the Castle Hotel is the fact that it is pet-friendly! This may be a deal-breaker for you if you have allergies, or a must-stay if you love to travel with your dog. The hotel does try to make sure all guests with pets stay on the second floor, but sometimes guests do not notify the hotel in advance that they have a pet. Please be honest and declare your pet!
Also a fun read: The World’s Best Hotel Luxuries
The room we had was on the 8th floor, and it was quite spacious! I appreciated the detailed decor, with its Bavarian-inspired flair and castle-esque feel. I love when a hotel provides ample storage, which this one does well. We had a dresser with plenty of drawers, and a flat surface that was not overly dominated by the TV or other things that take up much-needed space. Steve and I pack light, but we still need places to put the things we do pack!
I always appreciate having a mini fridge in the room. Coffee is usually not very good at hotels, especially chain hotels. However, my husband wants me to add here that the coffee pods at the Castle Hotel were actually worth drinking! They were Starbucks brand.
Read next: The Pros and Cons of Staying at a Hotel
Again, I was delighted to find plenty of counter space in the bathroom! Steve and I don’t actually share a bathroom at home (maybe one of the reasons we still like each other so much?), so it’s sometimes a challenge to share one on travel! But here, we both had more than enough space to spread out our toiletry items. The towels were soft, too, which is not something terribly common to find at hotels anywhere!
Travel lighter: The Ultimate Guide to Solid Toiletries
The Fitness Center
While we didn’t actually use the gym during our stay (the weather was too nice not to run outside!), I did scope it out–of course! And actually, I was pretty impressed. If you visit during COVID, you will have to reserve your gym time in advance, but that is easily coordinated at the front desk.
There was space to move around freely, which is not always the case in a hotel gym. It also boasted three different options for cardio equipment (ellipticals, a recumbent bike, and treadmills), a wide range of hand weights, two workout benches, yoga balls, medicine balls, and a stretching mat.
More here: Our Favorite Legendary Hotels of the World
This was one of the reasons we chose this accommodation! I’m not much of a swimmer, but I do love to lounge by a pool. It relaxes me! Our trip to Orlando was actually a writing retreat for me, so I made sure to spend a few hours there to work on my next book. There was quite a lot of seating, and the fountain in the middle is a nice touch.
We did visit during the COVID-19 pandemic, so there were some extra guidelines, requirements, and exceptions, including:
- No Housekeeping: This is standard for all accommodations during the pandemic. I was impressed that the woman who checked us in actually told us about this; no other accommodations where we’ve stayed during the pandemic have mentioned this standard.
- Face Masks Required: This applies to indoor areas at the hotel, with the exception of the guests’ own rooms.
- Cleaning Practices Between Guests: Click here for Marriott’s Cleanliness Council and Guidelines.
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