Cabana Bay Resort Universal, Orlando, Florida
Walking into the lobby at Universal Orlando’s new Cabana Bay Beach Resort is like stepping into the 1960s cartoon “The Jetsons.” The vibe is both retro and modern, with funky, midcentury-inspired furniture designs in orange and electric blue shades. The Swizzel Lounge, a nod to the famous stir sticks found in martinis and other iconic drinks of the 1960s, shares the lobby with a huge terrarium that leads up to a skylight, flooding the space with Florida sunshine. The Cabana Courtyard is home to a dive tower and a 100-foot water slide that curves before dumping you into a huge zero-entry pool. Most of the rooms here are family suites that sleep up to six with two double beds and a pull-out sofa. Each has its own kitchenette that includes a small refrigerator, sink and microwave, so you can whip up a snack or breakfast without leaving your room. Cool wooden pocket doors separate the living area from the bedroom and give you (and the kids) privacy when you need it. The bathrooms were brilliantly designed as three separate areas: a room with a shower and sink connects to an open dressing area and a second sink, which connects to a third room with a toilet. If you have little ones, it makes it so much easier to get ready at the same time when every family member can claim a spot and you can keep an eye on everyone. Two flat-screen TVs?one in the living area and one in the bedroom?are a godsend if you?re not into late-night cartoons like your kids. Fun details like analog clocks, Zest soap and V05 hair products add the perfect throwback touch.