Hotel dining is meant to offer convenience, but in most cases isn’t that memorable. Orlando establishments turn that stereotype on its head with some exceptional options for dining without ever leaving the confines of the resort. Some of the area’s finest restaurants are located in hotels. They boast celebrity chefs, million dollar views, and of course great food and wine.
Here’s a rundown of places that make dining in better than going out:
Todd English’s Blue Zoo – Disney World Swan and Dolphin
The exquisite Jeffrey Beers-designed restaurant is a favorite of business travelers, but families flock there as well because they can take advantage of complimentary child care in Camp Dolphin while enjoying a relaxing meal. The star chef’s signature property has received a coveted AAA four diamond award as well as designation as a Fodor’s Choice.
Emeril’s Tchoup Chop – Loew’s Royal Pacific Resort
Lagasse’s restaurant at Universal Orlando takes its name from Tchoupitoulas, the New Orleans street where his flagship eatery is located. Tchoup Chop features Asian-Polynesian cuisine. The dining room is lined by a large reflecting pool that adds to the ambience.
The Venetian Room – Caribe Royale
It’s hard to imagine that such an elegant restaurant could be hidden in the pink monstrosity that is Caribe Royale. The Venetian Room is AAA four diamond ranked and routinely voted the most romantic restaurant in Orlando. This place is all about service with nice touches like an amuse bouche to start and a tiny sorbet between courses to cleanse the palate.
Victoria and Albert’s – Grand Floridian Resort & Spa
Snagging a table at the crown jewel of Disney dining is next to impossible, but those lucky enough to enjoy an evening there rave about the experience. Everything from start to finish is perfection in this elegant five-star dining room.
Norman’s – Ritz Carlton Orlando
Star chef Norman Van Aken’s namesake restaurant features New World cuisine served in a beautiful lakeside setting. Tables have stunning views of the lake or golf course. The food too is unparalleled in its execution.
deep blu Seafood Grille – Wyndham Resort Bonnet Creek
A raw bar, sushi and the freshest seafood selections in town make this gem in the relatively new resort among Orlando’s best. It received the Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence in 2014.
Napa – Hyatt Regency
It stands to reason that Orlando’s nicest hotel, the former Peabody, would also have one of its finest restaurants. Napa is all about the wine and servers can assist diners with making the perfect pairings.
The Boheme – Grand Bohemian Hotel
The downtown restaurant’s menu is highly eclectic, befitting its name. The Sunday Jazz Brunch is one of Orlando’s best-kept secrets and a great way to cap off a vacation.
Wolfgang Puck’s Café and Dining Room
Celebrity chef Puck’s haven for foodies in Downtown Disney’s Westside is consistently ranked as the best value for guests using the Disney Dining Plan. Although not technically in a hotel, it’s walkable from Saratoga Springs Resort and an easy boat launch trip from Port Orleans. The café is quick service while the dining room offers more upscale selections and full service.
Bull & Bear – Waldorf Astoria
This outpost of the famed Manhattan restaurant was recently voted Best Fine Dining establishment by Orlando Home & Leisure magazine. Big juicy steaks and the famous Veal Oscar are the go-to choices at this clubby dining room.
Spencer’s for Steaks and Chops – Hilton Orlando
Locally sourced prime beef and fresh-caught seafood are the stars at this upscale establishment near SeaWorld and the Orlando Convention Center. Guests who check in on Facebook or Foursquare receive a wine upgrade, which is hard to refuse considering a bottle of red makes everything taste better.