The Fountains Resort....A Must Stay When in Orlando
The Fountains Resort
Impressive Resort Yields a Relaxing Vacation
We stayed at the Fountains in July, which tends to be the busy season for Orlando. From the moment we stepped onto this property we were awestruck. This resort is absolutley incredible. and the staff are very friendly and accommodating of your needs. Once checked into our room we were simply amazed at the size of our room. The rooms were complete with everything a fmaily would need to have a great stay and then some.
The resort grounds were impeccable and one could tell that the staff work hard to keep the landscaping groomed. The landscape also fits well with the theming of this resort, as is true with most Bluegreen Resorts. The lakes are also quite impressive in size and offer fishing to those who are interested in this. You also can rent a swan shaped paddle boat on the larger lake near the main area of the resort. They also have a tennis and basketball court and several grills on site for you to grill.
The pools are just amazing! There are two large sized pools. One is called Wakoola Springs and is located away from the main area of the resort. It boasts a zero entry kiddie area for younger kids and a water slide for older kids. There are at the least 5 sections all large in size (even with many people in each section it is not crowded). Wakoola Springs also has a rather large hot tub on site that can accommodate quite a few people. Throughout the week this pool is the hub of many planned activities for adults and children alike. In addition, the pool area has a food/bar area in the event that you get hungry and/or would like a drink.
The indoor/outdoor pool is also very large and has a separate kiddie pool with a fountain. In he indoor section of this pool there is a volleyball net for those wishing to play pool volleyball, as well as a steam room, hot tub, and pool table. This also happens to be where the bar is located.
We stayed in a two bedroom villa that was equipped with a full kitchen (they had everything you would need to cook and all dishware was also in the unit). At check in you are also provided with dish detergent, paper towels, clean dish linens, and laundry detergent. Our room had two separate bathrooms and one of the rooms had a jacuzzi in the bedroom. We also had a private balcony overlooking one of the lakes near Wakoola Springs.
This resort has impeccable grounds and offers a full array of activities for adults (happy hour, music by the pool, games,etc) and children alike (dancing contests, raft races, movies and pizza, karaoke, etc). If you have the time you really need to take advantage of their facilities and planned activities. For each day of the week they had scheduled activities at the pool and in other areas. On the weekends they had a Dj at Wakoola Springs.
Orlando...A Premier Vacation Destination
What makes Orlando Florida a premier vacation destination is its many recreational activities and none other then Disney World, Sea World and Universal Studios. Orlando is the vacation capital of the world and for good reason. However, it can also give your bank account a huge hit if not done properly. Most people trek to Orlando for its world famous Theme Parks, among them Disney. Anyone who has been to Disney knows just how expensive it can be and quick. The tickets alone cost you an arm, leg and part of your torso. Then you add in the room, transportation, food and other miscellaneous expenses. By the time you are done, you would have thought you planned your daughters wedding.
You don't have to spend your entire life savings going to Disney or Orlando. In fact, in 2004 my family of 4 (at the time) spent 3 weeks in Disney and only spent $3,000, which included all meals, the tickets, the room, and some souveniers. Oh and the room stay was 1 week in Port Orleans and 2 weeks in Disney's Animal Kingdom. By now you are probably saying to yourself, "yeah right, this crazy woman must be kidding me". However, rest assured I am not. You see, before we decided to endeavor in spending 4 weeks in Disney on a Disney Property I researched like a mad scientist trying to find the best deals and the best way to save on EVERYTHING. I researched sites like mousesavers.com and allears.net and many, many more. After doing that I came to the conclusion that vacation packages in Disney simply were not worth it and created my own package for my family.
The Tickets and Room
After much research it was determined that annual passes were the best way to go in Disney, especially for as many days as we would be there. At that time, annual passes were so much cheaper but they also offered us other benefits that we would not have otherwise had. Our room rates were low and I knew that traveling to Disney's Deluxe and Moderate resorts at this time was considered a downtime for them. On top of the low rates they offered, we got 50% off the rack rate for these rooms. Essentially, we paid $109 a night for a savannah view in Disney's Animal Kingdom (we booked a regular view but they upgraded us upon arrival-another technique I read about in my research). For Port Orleans we paid $79 a night and again it was due to receiving 50% off the rack rate.
One of the best deals running at this time was offered through h otwire.com Hotwire sold Disney meal tickets that are commonly sold with Disney Vacation packages but could be purchased separately on Hotwire. Knowing we would be there 3 weeks, I purchased several of the fast meal tickets and several of the full meal tickets, which included the tip and tax, as well as a complete meal. Since our family was small and the kids were young, one meal ticket could easily feed a parent and child. This method proved to be cost effective for us. When we wanted to eat something different, we used our discount offered on food through the annual pass and often ate during lunch hours to save money (lunch is the same as what is offered at dinner time but at a reduced cost).
Although it is much more difficult to save money while in Disney, it is still quite possible. For instance, if you plan on eating in the parks at all, try to eat at the fast food restaurants that have a condiment bar. These bars typically have more than just ketchup and mustard, with many having lettuce, tomatoes, onions and pickles. For the person who eats very little or likes salads, this is a FREE meal or at least an add on to a side meal. Also, a quick tip for when your thirsty but don't want to spend $3 a bottle on water. All Theme Parks have to give you a FREE cup of water if you ask, otherwise they could be held liable if you collapse due to heat exhaustion. Then when you are done you can use that cup again at a water fountain. using these few tried and true tips will save you quite a bit of money in Disney Parks.