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You know how there are resorts that appeal to kids as well as adults? Hyatt does really well in this particular area. So yeah, Legoland Beach Retreat ain’t it. Sure, there are some aspects that are nice. It’s located by the lake, and the atmosphere is peaceful.
But for the most part, if you book a stay here, you have to do so with the realization that your fun will mainly consist of watching your kid/kids have a great time. You will pay quite a bit of money for a tiny room with subpar furnishings. Then there is a basic pool that is barely a notch above something you can find in a roadside motel.
But if your kid is anything like mine, at the end of the trip they will probably say that when they grow up, they will buy a duplex in Legoland Beach Retreat. And that’s the highest praise I can think of.
Most people visit Legoland park as a day trip from Kissimmee area by combining it with a Disney vacation. Hopefully, my post will help you decide whether it’s worth it to pack all of your junk and treat your offspring to a night in Lego-themed hotel. I’ve written a post with details on the booking, so won’t repeat myself. The short version is that I paid $250 all-in via AAA rate, and chose Legoland Beach Retreat instead of on-site hotels because it was $175 cheaper.
Originally, only my husband and son were supposed to stay here. But on the morning of check-in, my daughter got sad because she didn’t want her brother to have all the fun. So, we all went. I anticipated something like that, which is why I made the reservation for four people.
The layout and amenities of Legoland Beach Retreat
First, let’s address the negatives. The reason this property is usually quite a bit cheaper than Legoland Hotel and Legoland Pirate Island is because it’s not located by the entrance to the park. The drive is relatively easy and takes about five minutes. Plus, there are shuttles that go back and forth every fifteen minutes, though only on Friday and Saturday. Still, you do lose the convenience factor.
How much it’s worth only you can decide. To me, it certainly wasn’t worth an extra $175, but I would probably book the on-site property if the difference was $100 or so. Now, I haven’t stayed at the other two hotels, so can’t make an apples-to-apples comparison. But I’ve done enough research to have a pretty good idea. So, basically, you can view the Retreat as cheaper version of the brand if you will.
You have to check in for your stay via drive-thru. It was relatively easy and painless, so I give this one a thumbs up. Of course, if you have five or six cars in front of you, it can take awhile. The resort consists of several sections, and only two parking lots located close to the entrance. Here is a map to give you an idea on what I’m talking about:
The biggest issue to me is potentially getting assigned to the furthest section and having to drag all of your stuff there. This would be a nightmare during summer, especially if you have to do it in the rain. Unfortunately, there is no way to reserve a unit in a specific section, so it’s the luck of the draw. If you do book a unit here, request a Seagull’s Cove, as it’s located close to the parking lot as well as restaurant and the pool.
I didn’t say anything at check-in, and we were assigned to stay in Lifeguard’s Cove. It was close to the parking lot, so that was a plus. However, the unit was right next to the road, so we could hear the traffic. At night, there wasn’t any major noise, though. It wasn’t the best location, but it was ok for one night.
The resort has a restaurant that looks like a lighthouse:
That’s where you get your complimentary breakfast, served family style
The food was actually decent, and the coffee was out of this world. The waitress told me they buy gourmet coffee because they know the parents will need it. Yup.
The pool (heated) is decent, though nothing to write home about. The biggest appeal to my son was the abundance of soft lego bricks floating around. He was entertained for hours. The pool wasn’t packed at all when we were there.
There is a fire pit where you can do s’mores, something both of my kids really appreciated.
A fun fact: when I booked the hotel stay, I had an option to add a s’mores kit for $10. I decided to skip it and bring my own. Well, the check-in person gave me a complimentary kit and said it was included with all rooms. So why charge $10 at booking time? Very odd.
Another odd thing was the fact that according to Legoland website and the sign on the property, the pool doesn’t open until 11 AM. This upsets many parents since the checkout time is also 11 AM. But then I saw a lifeguard telling a guest that they actually open the pool at 9 AM. Maybe it’s a crazy Florida thing.
I was told that the guests staying at Retreat can use all the amenities at the other two hotels. We didn’t really take advantage of it, since it required driving at night and finding a parking spot. But this is a decent perk since the other pool is a bit nicer and has a slide. Plus, they have a pajama party and other lego activities.
My husband did take my son to Legoland Pirate hotel for twenty minutes the next morning.
I can’t not address the elephant in the room. Due to Covid pandemic, staying in Legoland Beach Retreat will obviously be safer. You don’t have to worry about crowded hallways or elevators. Plus, due to new variant, infection rates in Florida may go up within a month or two.
Personally, this didn’t really affect my decision a whole lot. We chose to wait until all in the family were vaccinated. Plus, infection rates in Florida are very low at the moment. My thinking is, if you are comfortable going to an amusement park, you should probably be comfortable staying in a traditional hotel. But that’s a decision each family has to make for themselves.
Each duplex has two units in it, so you only have one family as your neighbors. This could work out well if you are vacationing with in-laws, as long as both units are available.
You and your spouse can relax on the patio (preferably with wine) while your little ones are burning off the energy.
The room itself is quite small, probably around 300 square feet or so:
There is a bunk area for kids, separated by a curtain:
Everything is lego-themed, even the bathroom:
The sitting furniture consists of one wooden stool:
They leave a couple of complimentary lego sets for kids:
My son is obsessed with legos, so he was basically in heaven here.
My daughter? Not so much, though she did enjoy swimming in the pool and roasting marshmallows.
Should you splurge on one night here? Only you can decide. You should be able to use Ultimate Rewards portal, though it won’t give you a AAA discount. I do recommend staying in one of the two on-site hotels if the difference in price isn’t too great. As for me, I don’t regret booking this place at all. My husband and I had so much fun watching our son enjoy himself.
The pandemic has been hard on the kids, as we had to cancel a lot of our travel plans. Plus, my son has been in virtual school for close to two years, and craves interaction with other lego-obsessed kids. This place was a huge hit in that respect.
That said, I don’t need to ever do it again, though he is begging me to book him another night at some point. Eh, maybe I will. But don’t tell him that!
Leana is the founder of Miles For Family. She enjoys beach vacations and visiting her family in Europe. Originally from Belarus, Leana resides in central Florida with her husband and two children.