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Part 6 ~ The Gaylord Palms

Discussion in 'Trip Reports' started by Slowhand, Oct 26, 2009.

  1. Slowhand
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    Slowhand Cruise Director Forum Host

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    The first time we visited the Gaylord Palms Resort was on Saturday Sept. 26th when we had dinner there with Ray & Jill, our property managers. [We have become very good friends with this British couple who we have known since they emigrated to start their company in 2004. As we only rent out our villa to folks that we know and can trust to take good care of the place, we have a unique relationship with Ray & Jill and we always meet up for dinner whenever we visit WDW, trying out a different restaurant each time.]

    Jill had made a reservation for dinner at the Villa de Flora restaurant at the GP which tonight were hosting a Spanish themed “all you can eat” buffet dinner.
    Now I`ve never been a big fan of buffet dinners, but nevertheless we went along with Ray & Jill`s choice of venue, also I don`t “do” spicy food, or rather spicy food doesn`t like me, so we went along albeit with a bit or trepidation! :unsure:

    In the event, we shouldn`t have worried as the food was excellent and very varied. Chef`s were on hand to help me to give anything spicy a wide berth, and there was also a carvery section where prime rib was on offer, and even here was a choice of well done or medium cooked meat.
    Every time we returned to our table in between courses we noticed that the very attentive server had folded our napkins and placed new cutlery in our places which we thought was a very nice touch. :thumbsup:

    After we had finished our dinner we went for a stroll around the central area of the resort which was a tourist attraction in its own right and we said that we would return during daylight hours to spend more time there although sadly we ran out of time on this one later in our vacation.
    There are huge palms and trees all around and the landscaping beneath the central huge and lofty glass roof is breathtaking….they even have live alligators and turtles in one of their pools!
    One area is themed along the lines of Key West. There is a lake with a full size yacht which is used as a bar moored along the shore, and on the beach area are a couple of fantastic sand sculptures. You cannot believe that the sculptures are real, they are so detailed. Ray & Jill told us that they do magnificent ice sculptures here over the festive season which are really worth seeing too.

    Gaylord palms.jpg

    Sand sculpture.jpg

    Based on this experience, we re-visited the resort again the following Saturday, this time with Wendy & Chris.
    On this occasion we tried to have dinner at their Old Hickory Steakhouse which looked really inviting. Sadly they were very busy and were only operating on a reservation only basis, so again we went over to the Villa de Flora where again we all enjoyed the experience.

    Being determined to give the Old Hickory Steakhouse a try, I made a reservation for my DW and I to dine there on Saturday Oct.10th.
    Oddly enough, this time, the restaurant was a lot quieter so a reservation would not have been necessary on this occasion…just my luck. :shrug:
    Now I`ve enjoyed many a good steak in the Orlando area, but the one I had tonight was well among the best yet, and my DW was equally impressed with the fish dish that she ordered.
    The service and quality of the food was excellent, and if anything a tad less expensive that many of the fine dining restaurants at WDW.
    This place is now definitely on our “must do” dining list for the next time we are visiting the area. :thumbsup:
     
  2. keith
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    keith Camera nut Staff Member Administrator Forum Host

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    Brilliant! I've always wanted to try that restaurant but without any reviews I haven't bothered. I'll definitely add it to our list!
     
  3. daveann
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    daveann Addicted to Mickey

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    i havent heard of gaylord pines before where abouts is it slowhand? so you dont need to be staying there to go and have a look around? :)
     
  4. uscwest
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    uscwest Senior Cast Member

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    If you follow the 417 signs out of Disney GP will be on your right just before you get to the toll portion of the road.
     
  5. Tink
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    Tink Cead Mille Failte! Staff Member Administrator

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    Gaylord Palms is a very nice resort hotel. :yes: It's just to the "left" of Disney's Wide World Of Sports if you are facing the entry road to that facility. You'll take a left at that intersection and follow the road to the first exit ramp on the right. You can see Gaylord Palms to the right. Simply follow the road. :yes:

    Did you have to pay to park Slowhand? I know that they sometimes charge for parking.

    We've had dinner at the buffet before; it was for Christmas with guests who were visiting from out of state. It was maybe 2002? :unsure: Can't quite remember.

    Nice to know that the steakhouse restaurant is good! :yes:

    They often have room specials there. ICE is one of their Christmas events, too. I think it's about $20 per person?
     
  6. Isafari
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    Thanks for the great write up about Gaylord Palms Terry.
    We have tickets for ICE on the 21st December and were hoping to have a meal there also. However, after reading your report, we may have difficulty getting a reservation so may eat before we go.
     
  7. Tink
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    Try to make the reservation, Issy. :yes:
     
  8. Ursula
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    Ursula Cast Member

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    Ooh want a report on the Ice thingy... we hope to do that next year for Christmas if we can.
     
  9. Tink
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    Tink Cead Mille Failte! Staff Member Administrator

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    You'll have to wear borrowed parkas if you don't bring your own. :lipwobble: Ick.
     
  10. Isafari
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    :thumbsup:

    Will take lots of photos :yes:
     
  11. Ursula
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    Ursula Cast Member

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    Thanks Issy XXX and eeeeeuuuuuuuw ick Tink! Ooh someone elses grubby collar on my neck...... euw euw euw!
     
  12. Tink
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    Tink Cead Mille Failte! Staff Member Administrator

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    And armpits... don't forget about the armpits...

    Collar...neck...hair...lice... :eek: I'm sorry but I'd FREEZE first! :eek:
     
  13. Isafari
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  14. Ursula
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    flings grubby parka to the floor and runs like helllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll
     
  15. Tink
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    Tink Cead Mille Failte! Staff Member Administrator

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    :yes: That's a good girl. Just remember to bring your own. :yes:

    It's cold in the ICE room, and you'll want a warm coat, and maybe mittens and a hat, depending. I'd just shove my hands in my pockets, but others might want mittens.
     
  16. keith
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    keith Camera nut Staff Member Administrator Forum Host

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    yeah I must admit, I wasn't a huge fan of the borrowed coats, they didn't look too nice at all :/
     
  17. Slowhand
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    Slowhand Cruise Director Forum Host

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    You don`t have to be staying there to have a look around.
    We found that the quickest way there from our villa was to take US192 East and turn left at the traffic lights at International Drive [look out for a Walgreens at the junction]. Gaylord Palms is on the left after about ½ mile or so.
     
  18. Slowhand
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    Slowhand Cruise Director Forum Host

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    If you valet park then that cost is halved if you dine at the resort.
    If you self park, then so long as you dine at one of the restaurants and get them to stamp your parking ticket, then it`s free.
     
  19. Tink
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    Thanks! Nice info to know. :yes:
     
  20. Britchick
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    we stayed in the Opryland hotel in Nashville which is the same sort of thing and really enjoyed it
     

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