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“Great value within walking distance to Universal”

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Holiday Inn & Suites Across from Universal Orlando
Ranked #171 of 340 Hotels in Orlando
Reviewed 11 March 2012

My husband and I chose this hotel due to the proximity to the gates of Universal Studios. We couldn't be happier with our choice! We were able to leave our car parked at the hotel (for free) and do the 15 minute walk each morning to the parks. Having the TGIFriday's down below also came in handy for a quick bite to eat in the morning or at night. The room was very comfortable and clean, although the wifi was a bit spotty, especially in the evening hours (maybe due to a large amount of users?). We would definitely recommend staying here!

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank hfritzinger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 11 March 2012

We arrived in Orlando (having driven up from Key Largo) earlier than expected and were pleased to be able to check-in early, We were even more pleased to be upgraded from a double room to a one-bedroom suite! (Priority Club member). Even for just two of us this was a huge bonus: certainly saved all those 'discussions' about who gets the comfy chair and who has to sprawl on the bed!

Both rooms were spacious and clean. Some of the wooden furniture looked a little tired but we had no issues with sticky/broken drawers or wobbly handles. Housekeeping was good, although when we got back to the hotel at 6.00pm after our first day at Universal,the room had not been done. Frankly, we weren't bothered (still plenty of fresh towels) although we did phone housekeeping because we wanted more coffee for the next morning. Within 10 minutes a housekeeper had arrived and offered to do the room there and then if we wanted. We didn't, but did get lots of coffee sachets for the next morning - and continued to get plenty provided for the rest of our stay. If I was going to nitpick about this it would be to ask why the hotel doesn't provide a coffee maker that can make two cups at once.

Other reviewers have done a good job of describing the rooms & providing photos, so I won't repeat that. The hotel offers a free shuttle to and from Universal (need to book and times are limited) but it's only a 10 minute walk: I swear it takes nearly as long to cross the roads as it does to walk there! We were very tired at the end of one day and got a cab from Universal to the hotel (which only cost $5) rather than walk or wait for the shuttle.

There's a TGIFriday attached to the hotel where you can get an all-you-can-eat breakfast for (IIRC) $8 which we didn't use so can't comment on, but we did eat there in the evening and also used their Room Service. This has a reduced menu available, but still broad enough to suit most tastes and was excellent at good prices. Certainly better value than the in-house room service offered at many 4- and 5-star hotels!

We didn't use the pool area at all, so can't comment on that. All the staff we spoke to were courteous and helpful - with a special mention for Marlene on Guest Services whose sense of humour and cheery disposition was fantastic :)

Overall, I give this hotel 5 stars for spacious, clean & comfy rooms; convenience (the sole purpose of this stay was to visit Universal Studios) and value for money.

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank welshwench
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 March 2012

These hotel rooms are updated with a modern style. They are clean and have a mini fridge and microwave in the room. When we had an issue with our air conditioner, they sent someone up immediately and when it couldnt be fixed, the cheerfully found us another room to stay in. They were friendly and accommodating. It is super close to the universal studio gates. You could walk there in 20 minutes or take a taxi there for about $5. They run a shuttle at set times in the AM to universal studios that is free to ride back and forth to the park. There was a gentleman who worked in the AM for the tickets and shuttles for the hotel who was consistently rude to us but the lady who worked in the PM was lovely. I would definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed: March 2012
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1  Thank Starryskies227
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 March 2012

I so wanted to like this place. I booked it through the Universal Parks and Resort website which enabled us to get into Islands of Adventure early. It is an easy 1 mile walk to the parks. It has a TGI Friday onsite.

The room was nice and the beds were very comfortable, even though we had 2 double beds and not 2 queen beds. It was clean and recently decorated. However, this hotel attracts a young party crowd - there was a fire fighter convention and a couple bachelorette parties in residence, and I found myself having to steer my 11-year old away from many unpleasant drinking situations.

The pool is very nice - heated and large but the crowd made it very family unfriendly.

The housekeeping seemed overwhelmed - we didn't get our towels replaced the first day. They accidentally threw away my prescription medication that was on the bathroom counter. the second day our room wasn't cleaned until 5 pm - we had to wait downstairs when all we wanted to do was take a shower and go out for a night on the town.

The adjoining room had some party girls and they made a lot of noise.

We will not be staying here again despite the convenience....

Room Tip: Do not get an adjoining room if you are not with the folks next door. The double beds are not queen...
  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled with family
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1  Thank Mamahippy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
IHGCare, Guest Relations Manager at Holiday Inn & Suites Across from Universal Orlando, responded to this reviewResponded 25 March 2012

Mamahippy,

Thank you for your review and being so detailed in the good, the bad and the very good! Whilst I am pleased with the good and the really good comments, I truly value the bad comments as this gives us the opportunity of improving what we already do. We will address these points and I hope that when you return you will see the improvements that have been made.
Thank you again for your review.

Ben J
IHG Care

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 March 2012

Our stay for the week, as part of a package deal, included a one-bedroom suite with kitchenette. Overall, we were thrilled with the room and would recommend staying there. The space was nice and kitchen allowed us to all rise at different times, but still have the ability for early risers to have coffee and breakfast...while watching cartoons.

GOOD LAYOUT
The one-bedroom suite offered a separate bedroom away from the living room, with both divided in a clever way by the sink area for the washroom as a walk-through (the toilet and tub were in another separate room of their own - perhaps a bit cramped, though). This division allowed for a buffer zone when we put our child to sleep, and wanted to stay up later watching television. With a child, we opted for two double-beds in the bedroom; if you're just a couple, then you could opt for a king-sized bed instead.

KITCHENETTE
The kitchenette provided in the suite is basic, but useful. The fridge is large, so you can store plenty of groceries and drinks, and there's also a small coffeemaker, microwave, toaster and small two burner electric stove top. The catch is, that there's only basic dishes and cutlery - no pots or pans. We made a trip to the nearby SuperTarget for groceries and the necessary corkscrew! In reality, we only needed the fridge, toaster and microwave for basic breakfast and lunches to go (saved a fortune and ate better too).
*COFFEE TIP: The coffeemaker works on individual packets, so if you like coffee as much as I do, then tip the maid and ask for more - we did, and received MANY. :-)

TENTH FLOOR
Our suite was on the tenth (10) floor, which other reviews have mentioned as ideal. We found that it had been refreshed and was quite decent. It appears that the rooms can be adjoining, as ours had a door available to the next suite.

TGI FRIDAYS ATTACHED
There's a TGI Fridays attached to the hotel, and kids eat free with adults, but you have to ask the front desk EACH time you want a coupon for a meal - do yourself a favour and ask for three at a time and ask them to date them ahead for you (otherwise they date each one for day of). We never once ate at their breakfast buffet, but heard it was popular. The lunches and dinners were good value, and fair variety to please many tastes. Typical US-sized portions, so nobody will go hungry.

GOOD THINGS
- there are actually TWO sets of elevators, so find the ones closest to your room location for speedier service
- pool has towels available on site
- there's a fenced-in kiddie pool, BUT it was much colder than the adult pool
- obviously close to Universal, but it's also a short drive to Disney
- close to lots of malls, including SuperTarget, Millenia Mall, Prime Outlet Orlando
- close to lots of other restaurants

WATCH OUT FOR
- in the lobby there's a desk that looks like it offers tours, but is really trying to sell timeshares...if a couple of bucks is worth it to lose half of your vacation day, then forget my warning
- apparently, the official smoking area is right at the front of hotel doors - yikes, a minefield of smoke to dodge with a kid in your midst
- ditto (almost) the restaurant that has benches on the side of the building by their doors

Room Tip: Tenth floor suites appeared refreshed.
  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled with family
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3  Thank my-itinerary
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 March 2012

I made a reservation at this hotel, and then had to cancel it. I dealt with iHG (international hotels group) and both they and the local staff at the hotel (specifically Brenda at the front desk) were very helpful and understanding, and provided excellent customer service.
I would definitely stay at this hotel in the future.

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled with friends
    • Service
1  Thank im_the_travel_fairy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 February 2012

Nice Hotel very close to Universal. About a 10 minute walk to City Walk. The room was huge, and clean. A little waer and tear, but great value for the price. Suite has a little kitchen with full size refridgerator, Microvave, small sink, dishwasher, and toaster. A good room for the family. Sleeper sofa in the living area, and 2 queens in the other room. I would definitely stay again. Plenty of room to move around.

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled on business
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1  Thank Stan J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Holiday Inn & Suites Across from Universal Orlando

Address: 5905 Kirkman Road, Orlando, FL 32819-7925
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Florida > Central Florida > Orlando
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#147 Family Hotel in Orlando
Price Range: $103 - $229 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Holiday Inn & Suites Across from Universal Orlando 3*
Number of rooms: 256
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Holiday Inn & Suites across from Universal Orlando is located in the heart of Central Florida's exciting attractions, convention and shopping area. Visit our recently renovated hotel just across the street from the Universal Orlando Resort. Our property features a variety of room types to fit any traveler's needs from Deluxe Guest Rooms with two double beds or a king size bed, and spacious One or Two-Bedroom Suites with nicely equipped kitchenette including microwave and refrigerator. Must be at least 21 to stay. Fabulous amenities to enhance your visit to Orlando such as Game Room, Gift Shop, Guest Laundry Facilities and Valet Service, Fitness Center, Business Center, Outdoor Heated Pool and Kids Splash Zone and the Destination Universal Guest Services Desk with discount attraction tickets to Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure, and SeaWorld. Complimentary Limited Scheduled transportation to Universal Orlando and SeaWorld. Transportation to Walt Disney World also available. Shuttle transportation schedule subject to change seasonally, service provided through the Destination Universal Guest Services Desk, advance reservations required. TGI Friday's Restaurant on-property serving Breakfast Buffet, Lunch and Dinner, Bar offers Happy Hour daily. TGI Friday's also serving room service. Banquet/Meeting facilities feature 13,000 sq. ft. of flexible function space including 6,500 square foot ballroom and 8 break out rooms. Our experienced team will make your stay or event with us special. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Holiday Inn & Suites Main Gate To Universal Orlando Hotel Orlando
Holiday Inn And Suites Main Gate To Universal Orlando
Holiday Inn Orlando
Holiday Inn & Suites Across From Universal Orlando Florida

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