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30 Sep

Coasting into Harmony

 

 
Every now and then you need to get away from it all, unplug from life and let your imagination run free. What better place to ignite imagination than Orlando, Florida, made famous by the great Walt Disney? Home to some of the most popular theme parks in the world, Orlando was the perfect setting for my much-needed recess. 
 
Located in the heart of the city, The Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort was going to be my home away from home. The Mediterranean-inspired resort is designed with Ponce de Leon’s magical discovery of the state in mind and that vision was perfectly and elegantly executed. 
Upon arrival we were greeted with a tour of the vast 500-acre estate complete with a championship golf course, luxury spa, several pools and lagoons, coffee and gelato bar, and award-winning restaurants. Easily accessible to all the magic and fun of the surrounding theme parks, the Wyndham hotel has everything one would desire. This makes the resort perfect for couples, families or singletons alike. 
Anxious to relish in the Florida sun, after we settled in we made our way to the pool and happily sipped coladas while tropical music set the tone for a relaxing day. For dinner it was off to Deep Blu Seafood Grille, the on-site restaurant that specializes in contemporary fusion fare such as sustainably caught seafood, handcrafted sushi and delightfully creative cocktails for the tasting. I opted for the red snapper, cedar baked with a delicious meyer lemon beurre blanc sauce. I paired this with grilled white asparagus and blue crab mac and cheese and let the food and company take me into an indulgent bliss. 
 
The next morning it was off to swim with the dolphins at Discovery Cove. An experience like no other and a highlight for animal lovers, this was what memory making is all about. Next up was Seaworld for the opening of their new Antarctica Exhibit. This fantastic exhibit is all about everyone’s favorite waddling bird, the penguin. To start my Antarctic adventure I hopped on their new trackless ride that takes you through the life of a penguin. You have two options on how enjoy this adventure: the thrilling or the calm. We all know I went for the thrills and spills! 
 
Seaworld truly transported me to as close as I’ll probably ever get to the South Pole. It perfectly mirrored what you’d imagine the majestic beauty to be. This exhibit was absolutely amazing and the penguins are adorable little entertainers. Watching these ‘best dressed’ waddling birds slide around on their round bellies and go for a swim made me want to take one home and cherish it forever. 
 
A wonderful day it was, from the different exhibits to the wild rollercoasters. It was everything I needed to make me feel like a kid again. What you don’t remember is how tiring it can all be and so when we made our way back to the hotel for some rest before dinner, it was all I could do to not fall into a late afternoon slumber. 
Alas, there was dinner awaiting us at the Reunion Resort so we headed to Kissimmee for an elegant dinner at Eleven. This glamorous year-round indoor-outdoor rooftop lounge offers stunning views and hand-crafted cocktails. The steakhouse menu has one delicious option after another and we opted for shared salads and Mongolian grilled lamb pops. I can still remember how I content I was when I was finished, tired from a day of exhilaration and a perfect meal complete with great friends and good wine. This was life like it is supposed to be. 
 
A short trip indeed, but I still managed to divulge in a spa treatment at the resort’s Blue Harmony Spa. This peaceful oasis offers luxurious amenities, an outdoor spa garden and more. I tried the Signature Blue Bliss Massage where the unique exfoliating relaxation experience seduces the senses and imparts exquisitely silky skin. I was there for over an hour but it went by faster than I had hoped. It’s always like that when you’re enjoying yourself, isn’t it? 
 
Vacations fly by in a blink of an eye, so while you’re considering your next one, may I suggest The Wyndham Grand Orlando Resort in Bonnet Creek. Whether you are old or young, adventurous or cautious, you’ll find everything you’re looking for right there in Orlando, Florida, wrapped in a little bow made up of childlike splendor.
 
 
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