I finally had a vacation and got a tan. I'm no longer a pale Filipino. I ate all the calories I burned in my spinning classes in Equinox- back. Then I burned it all again by using the TRX machines in JW Marriott Grande Lakes Orlando. This is not a sponsored post, but I will have to rave about the hotel. I love the lazy river and the gym. The New York life made me uncomfortable just not doing anything in the river. It's hard for me to have make my mind relax, but they also served drinks which have helped.
Weekends are filled with families, but the weekdays are less packed (so honeymoon-ers, dont go on a weekend).
What I love about the hotel are definitely the restaurants. When I arrived there, our good friend, which will coin as "Snapdaddy" just scored a lot of projects for his firm. He treated us to a very decadent comfort food in Norman's at St Regis of raw and baked oysters, Yucatan stuffed shrimps and sea bass. We ended the meal with a Deconstructed Rhubarb and Strawberry Cheesecake. I highly recommend the shrimp.
On our second day of mindlessly floating in the lazy river, we decided to snack in Whisper Creek Farm's : The Kitchen. We had salted house pretzels, WCF: the brewery "surplus" ale cheese fondue, seared diver scallops with fennel, sweet pepper coulis, bacon vinagrette, and roasted chicken with grain mustard mash potato brocollini and prociutto crumbs and sherry reduction. Our snack became a meal, no space for dessert. But of course, I got their cheesecake at 11 pm. (Facepalm)
For dinner, we ate in Highball & Harvest. Like all the restaurants there, their ingredients are sourced in local farms or in their own gardens. I had a giant serving of Chicken and Waffles and Ootot had Yardbird. The servings are huge. I suggest sharing one entree for it is enough to feed a family of 4 in the third world.
The next day, guess what we did again? We ate! FYI, we do not have parasitic worms in our stomachs. We ate in Bleu. It was a poolside restaurant but the food is not the typical cheap hotdogs or fried chicken bbq type. We had fish tacos (highly recommended) and blackened fish burger.
Out of the blue (no pun intended), moon soon downpour happened. It didnt deter me from finishing the dish. I was focusing on my food more than saving my Iphone from being drenched. The servers were very helpful. They provided everyone towels and tried keeping us dry even when winds were howling and leaves were flying everywhere. It was literally flooding. I was waiting for gators to fly right by. It reminded me of the typhoons we had in the Philippines. The servers and even the maitre'd braved the storm to get everyone towels and they kept moving the tables to the less flooded portion of the restaurant. When the rains and winds tempered down a bit, the waiters even showed us the shortcut to dry land and tried to cover us with an umbrella with futility.
As a Harry Potter fan, I had to visit Universal studios for the second time around. We were hoping to take awesome photos, but expect children photobombers. I don't think the parents would be happy if I posted their children's photo here. I tried Butterbeer once, didn't try it for the second time. I wanted to try the rides all over again, but it rained. Some rides were temporarily closed. I visited the shops in Hogsmeade - again. As always, it never failed to amuse me.
Luckily, I got to try the new King Kong ride. It was part 3D and part mobile ride. Skulls were everywhere and it reminded me of the set of King Kong. Universal Studios always delivers the best special effects for every ride. We watched Jack Black and Naomi Watts in 3D. Then watched oversized bats (like manananggals) kidnap Naomi Campbell only to be eaten by velociraptors who got lost from the Jurassic Park Ride. Then those bat-eating dinosaurs will battle it out with K. Kong. Team Kong wins and rescues the damsel in distress. Expect dinosaur spit and innards to land on you during the ride, and Kong winning your heart.
To be continued...