So we had the opportunity to do a one night stay at the Legoland Hotel in Florida this past weekend. Carson and Courtney had been BEGGING us to visit there since May 2015 when we were last at Legoland and saw them building the hotel. When we found out we were going to stay at the Legoland Hotel, I made the mistake of telling the kids two weeks before it was going to happen….. yes, EVERY day Courtney would BEG for it to be one more sleep… you see we count down by number of sleeps until something happens. She was convinced all she had to do was keep asking for 1 more sleep. But the best was when we would be driving home and Carson would tell us to go the wrong way and end up at Legoland Hotel. So to say they were excited leading up to this little visit, well that is an understatement!
The morning of the day we were supposed to leave, they both woke up and only wanted to leave NOW. Check in time is 4pm for the hotel so we didn’t want to show up too early and not be able to get into our room and start exploring, so we decided to leave around 1:30 so we would get there in the 2 – 2:30 range. I wanted to hit WalMart on the way for a few last minute items and hotel room snacks. I packed us all up in our American Tourister Duralite 20inch suitcase (I LOVE OUR SUITCASES!!!), grabbed all my photo gear and packed up our Town and Country mini van and we headed out.
The drive from our house to Legoland Hotel is about 30 minutes of all highway. We made two stops, one to WalMart and one to 7-11 (needed to grab a Powerball Ticket and a couple of beers for Pat). Of note, within 5 miles of Legoland Hotel is a WalMart, 7-11 and even a Publix across the street, as well as many restaurants and fast food choices.
Once we were in sight of Legoland we turned on the Video Camera…..
As you can see, Carson and Courtney were EXCITED to FINALLY be there….
Once parked, I headed in. All I can say is WOW, the sheer number of Legos around the hotel is staggering. It is like you have walked in to a child’s Lego fantasy world. With large pits 5 inches deep in Legos, walls that you can wrap in Legos, a Lego ship with more pits and Lego tables and all of it in the open for kids to run around and play in. Seriously, it is very impressive. The size of the lobby and play area isn’t very large, roughly about 5000 square feet, it is perfect for you to watch your kids run around and play with everything, yet feel like they are a safe distance in case something happens.
I went to get us checked in to the hotel and learned a few things that I wasn’t quite expecting. I grabbed Pat’s business credit card, as my new one (old one expired) had been stolen out of our mailbox and I was still waiting on the replacement. I didn’t think anything of it, as I regularly swap around cards with him without any issues, I figured they would want to see his id to make sure he was okay with me using a card in his name, but nothing other than that. Well, I was wrong. You see at Legoland hotel, the person named on the reservation must also being paying with a card in their name. So after the customer service person made a to do about it, they ended up adding Pat to the reservation so his card could be used. Of note, I did offer to use a personal card in my name, but they said they would take care of it. I asked a few follow up questions about this. “What if I had made the reservations in my name or my husbands, and his parents were coming along and wanted to pay for the room. Would you allow that?” I was told no. If their name is not on the reservation then they can not pay. Only the person whose named on the reservation. While I understand the theory behind this, kind of, it does seem a little weird and strict. As a family who makes a lot of hotel reservations around the US, I typically will call and put it in my name and then we show up, Pat will go in and check us in, never had an incident like this before. So yeah, be sure your reservation is in the name of whomever is paying.
Also, while checking in they inquire what time you want to have breakfast the next morning, as a free buffet breakfast at Bricks is a part of your stay. Carson sleeps a lot lately, so I wasn’t too sure what time to say, but I also knew we wanted to get into the park in the morning as well, so I said, oh probably 8:30 to 9:30ish… I didn’t think anything of it, until she handed me a slip that said we could go to breakfast between 8 and 8:30am. Ummmm, yeah, I knew there was no way we would make that, so I asked if we could please get 8:30 – 9 or later please, and she informed me those were all gone all ready. I found that really odd, being how I was checking in 2 hours early, I couldn’t get a breakfast time that was more suitable for my family. I expressed my concern on us being able to make it down to breakfast at that time and she let me know not to worry. She said that we could show up at anytime with our ticket and they would let us in to eat. Okay, well that should work then.
Next I asked her about the Master Builder sessions for that day, as we were only doing the hotel and not the park. Park day was the next day. I was informed that all the sessions were full for that day. Okay so getting there 2 hours before check in doesn’t help you in anyway…. I asked about getting in a session for the next day then, and was informed they start at 2pm and go to 6pm, but you can’t make a reservation for a spot until the day of. That I should ask about it when I come down for breakfast and that they fill up fast as only 12 are in each class. I wasn’t too sure what to do about this, being how we were planning on being the park the next day, and leaving the park to come to the hotel to do a builder session didn’t seem like a very wise time management plan. Needless to say, we didn’t get to experience the Master Builder Sessions.
The Disco Elevator
The kids had seen a few videos about the Legoland Hotel elevator, and Courtney had been talking for two weeks about her special dance for when she was going to be in the Disco Elevator… I on the other hand had not watched anything on it, and only had heard about it from the kids. So I kind of had an idea of what to expect. We walked up to the elevators, and the kids pushed the button and we waited…..So when the elevator arrives and the doors open, this classical elevator music is playing….. but the real fun begins when those doors close….
The Kingdom Room
We were put in a Kingdom Room, 2nd floor and on the backside of the resort. Upon walking to our room, we passed the Lego Friends rooms, and Courtney was dying to go in one of them, so I think on our next visit, we will have to request a Lego Friends room for her to experience. But our room was AWESOME. I absolutely LOVED the carpet. The kids got a kick out of it. There was a welcome mat in it, a few bugs, and a spilled cup of coffee. Courtney would walk up to the cup of coffee and exclaim, “Oh No I spilt my coffee!” It was fantastic! The details in the room were perfect, from 4 water bottles to Lego bugs and the treasure chest with surprises for the kids. I had NO IDEA about the Treasure Chest and that was such a HUGE hit with the kids. They also liked the box of Duplo Legos that were in the room to play with.
The room includes 4 beds, 1 king, a bunk bed and a trundle. A Keurig Coffee pot, Mini Fridge and hairdryer. Rooms do not include Microwaves and best I could tell, there isn’t one in a common area for guests to use.
There is a note on the wall about if things go missing from the room what you will be charged for it, first time I have seen a hotel do that. It was a little intimidating, as at first we weren’t sure if the treasure chest items and mini water bottles were included with our room, or part of the forbidden list.
Each day, or rather evening and night, there are scheduled activities for the guests. After the kids played with the water Legos in the lovely 86 degree heated outdoor pool, we headed in to get ready to check out some of the evening events.
Carson has been not feeling 100% and at this point wanted to stay in the room and watch the 24/7 Lego Movie Channel, but after about 45 minutes he decided he was hungry and was willing to head to the Lobby to check out the evenings Game Time and PJ Party.
One thing we really loved as adults/parents, the bar and seating right next to the kids area and activities. It was very nice to be able to sit and watch the kids have fun while enjoying a beer and chocolate martini. We did order food, but ended up sending it all back as it was burnt, badly. I don’t think we would choose to eat at the Skyline Lounge again after dealing with the service and food issues. We would order drinks, probably by ourselves from the bar directly, and sit there while the kids played again though. The setup was very nice.
Now something you will want to know if you are dealing with any sensory issues, the play area nighttime activities area is VERY loud. They use speakers and it is all ready a smallish area. We had some issues with Carson and the noise level, but Courtney loved it and loved all the interaction. I wish we had thought ahead to bring some ear plugs for Carson, as I think he would have enjoyed himself so much more. Next time we will.
Needless to say we had fun and would DEFINITELY recommend heading over to the Legoland Hotel for a night or two. You will enjoy it and even without a ticket to Legoland, there is so much to do in the hotel and surrounding area, it is only an hour to the beach from there as well.
For all you photographers, I can’t recommend a stay here enough. The absolutely breathtaking views from the Legoland Hotel Boardwalk during sunset are exquisite, learn more about taking pictures at Legoland Hotel over on Distographers….