A weekend getaway was needed and I looked into possible locations. As I would be working in West Palm Beach, I decided to head over to Orlando and the Space Coast. Now I needed a hotel and I wanted to try something new. I put eyes on the Hyatt Regency Orlando International Airport. As an aviation geek, I love airports and airport hotels, but the Hyatt Regency Orlando International Airport takes it a step further. It is actually part of the main terminal building. The decision was made, to go there if I would finish my project on Friday. As I wasn’t sure what would happen, I didn’t book the hotel yet and was hoping that the rates would stay the same. I checked Friday morning and the rate was still just under $160. By the time I got done with my project in West Palm Beach around 6 p.m., the rate went up to $209. I didn’t really want to pay that much and decided to not book the hotel just yet and take a leap of faith. My plan was to drive towards the Orlando International Airport and see if the rate would go down, hopefully not up. So I started my drive to Orlando. About half-way into the drive I stopped for gas and checked the again in the app. Holly cow! The price actually dropped again and I was able to book the hotel for just under $170. Done. I got gas and a confirmed reservation, what could possibly go wrong?
Well, the hardest part was finding the actual hotel entrance. I decided on self-parking rather than valet parking. By the time I arrived at the Orlando International Airport, it was already 10 p.m. and raining. I followed the signs for the Hyatt hotel but got lost at the very last “turn”. First, the directions to the hotel point you to drive toward Terminal B, but once there you have to make a quick decision to either go left into the parking garage which leads also up to the Terminal Top Parking and to the entrance of the hotel, or to go right for valet parking. There were too many lanes to cross and too many cars to make it safely to my exit. I had to circle the terminal building one more time before making it into the parking garage.
A rule of thumb to get to self-parking easy. Once you are entering the airport area, follow the signs for Terminal B. As soon as you enter the Terminal B area, get in the left lane and follow signs for Parking. Just after the ramp for Arrivals and Departures, you have to make a left into the parking garage. Don’t use the Sunpass Lanes, instead take a ticket.
Once you are inside the parking garage follow the signs for Hyatt Self Parking and Terminal Top Parking. You have to drive all the way to the top of the parking garage and from there, you will take a bridge across to the main terminal building. Once you drove across the bridge you can see the hotel entrance to your right. Park somewhere in this level if you find an open spot or on one of the other floors of the Terminal Top Parking Garage. From there you have the shortest way to the hotel entrance and you are not supposed to cross the bridge as a pedestrian.
I parked at a free spot not too far from the hotel entrance and made my way inside without knowing where the actual check-in area is. Intuitively I walked all the way straight until I passed the lobby bar on my left and saw McCoy’s restaurant in front of me. From here you can see the front desk down the hallway to your left.
Because of the time of the day, nobody was in line and I was the next one up to get checked in. The front desk clerk looked up my reservation and I asked him if they would have a suite upgrade available. He told me that he already upgraded me to one of their King Deluxe rooms. As I have a few suite upgrade awards left over which are about to expire, I asked if I could use one to get upgraded to a suite. He talked to the manager on duty and they were able to upgrade me to a Junior Suite.
He gave me the vouchers to be able to exit the parking garage. Little did I know, that I have to keep the ticket I pulled at the gate. Luckily it was still in my rental car when I exited. Just before I left the front desk, he gave me a quick overview of the property.
The elevators are located behind you when you are standing at the front desk. You need your room key to make a level selection or you can use your phone if you have it set up for Mobile Entry, which is supported by the Hyatt Regency Orlando International Airport.
Junior Suite with 2 Queen Beds (Room 9046)
After a quick elevator ride in the observation elevator, which gives you great views of the atrium in the main terminal building, I made it to my floor and had to look at which way to go. There are signs on either side of the hallway to guide you to your room on the shortest route. To get to my room, I had to go to the left. I followed the hallway around a corner and another corner as it opened up into an amazing mini-atrium. There are rooms on either side of this part of the building and my room is, unfortunately, facing inwards to the terminal atrium instead of outwards.
After stepping into the room and turning on the lights with the switches right next to the door, I noticed the gigantic flatscreen TV hanging on the wall to the right. In front of it a small round table with four chairs. In the corner between the TV and the room entrance is a niche with a work desk and chair. On top of the desk are a light, cordless telephone and some information about the hotel.
To the left of the TV is a shelf with an in-room safe, coffee maker, and refrigerator. At the top are additional bed sheets for the sleeper sofa which is on the opposite side of the room against the wall. In front of it a small table and two more chairs. On each side of the sofa is a stand to put down stuff.
Walking into the room, you find two PJs hanging on the wall followed by a dressing mirror and bedroom bench. When you look straight ahead when walking into the room, you see the only window of the room. It seems small and faces the atrium of the terminal building. It is an interesting view for the first few moments but otherwise boring. I actually wouldn’t even call it a “view” as half of the view from the window is obstructed on either side. Because of that, it’s also hard to tell what’s going on the outside. The atrium has a glass roof but it’s hard to see from my hotel room what’s going on outside. You can distinguish between sunshine and night, but if it’s cloudy I don’t see if it rains as well. This is because my room is so high up and the struts from the supporting framework block most of the view.
The layout of the Junior Suite can be described as L-shaped. Once you walk in and look around the corner you will see the two queen beds on the right. Each bed had two individual reading lights and a headboard light behind the headboard. The headboard light is very bright and lights up this part of the room very well. Each of the headboard lights has two switches to turn it off and on from either side of the bed.
In between the two beds is a nightstand which comes with another hotel telephone, bible, reading material (advertisement), alarm clock, and even two pairs of earplugs. I have to be honest, the room is very quiet. You won’t hear the planes at all and I haven’t even heard my “neighbors” in the room next to me. You will never use them, except your travel companion is a heavy snorer. In between the two beds are also power outlets and USB charging ports for your devices.
Directly opposite to one of the beds is another gigantic flatscreen TV. While it is easy to watch from this bed, it’s not so nice if you are trying to watch from the second bed in the room. You can fold the TV out, but it’s still a little off.
Because we are talking about viewing angles. It’s even worse at the screen in the living room while you try to watch from the sofa. Because of the shelf with the refrigerator, safe, and coffee maker, you have now a small wall blocking your field of view. You have to pull the TV-screen all the way out to actually be able to watch the whole screen from the sofa. This shelf should have been on the other side of the TV. On the other side, you have a great view from the small round dining table in your room but lack the comfort of a sofa compared to the chairs around the table.
At the very end of the L-shaped room is the bathroom which is huge. But before you walk into the bathroom you will see two displays mounted on the wall to the left of the bathroom door. These two control the air conditioning units in your room. I don’t know why you have two instead of one. Even if you can control the living room and bedroom independent, there is nothing separating these two from each other. Anyway, they are there and I put both in the same setting.
In the corners of the wall with the bathroom doors are a closet with an iron and ironing board inside and on the other side a shelf with hangars and some drawers to stow your clothes.
As mentioned, the bathroom itself is huge. When you walk in, you see a dressing mirror right in front of you with a little chair. Perfect for the lady to get ready for an exciting evening out. On the right side of the bathroom is the shower-bathtub combination and on the left the toilet and vanity with mirror. The mirror has an integrated digital clock, which is neat and fancy.
This room is really huge and gives you plenty of space, no matter how many bags you have in tow on your trip. For me, I would rather have this room facing outside than inside. Other than that, I can’t complain. I set up my phone with Hyatt’s Mobile Entry and it worked without issues during my whole stay. Also connecting my device to their Chromecast service was easy. It just took a minute to receive the email with the confirmation code and another minute to find the channel on the TV which would allow me to stream my content from my smartphone to these amazing and huge television sets.
The main action here takes place at the lobby level, which is on floor 4 of the terminal building. Here is everything from the front desk to McCoy’s Bar and Grill, Lobby Bar, meeting rooms, and much more.
The lobby level is really great to hang out and relax. The concierge next to the front desk can help you make arrangements for sightseeing or off-hotel dining and many other activities. There are also two PCs next to the concierge for guest use, but they were “temporarily out of service”. If you need to use a PC, walk to your left while facing the front desk, towards the meeting rooms. As you walk straight ahead you will see a sign for restrooms on the wall and there are additional PCs and printers for your use. I don’t know why, but the nearby bathrooms were locked, even though they had meeting rooms rented out. I was actually looking for the bathroom and found these PC’s by accident on my hunt for a bathroom.
From the front desk, walk halfway around the atrium and you get to “Wyckoff’s View”. Its a nice viewpoint just outside all the meeting rooms. Worth to walk by and check it out.
Seems the only bathrooms open all the time in the lobby are the once between McCoy’s Restaurant and the parking garage hotel entrance. At the lobby level, you can actually walk all the way around the atrium and get good views.
The glass windows behind the front desk, concierge, and around the corner, just opposite of McCoy’s Restaurant offer views of the security checkpoints and entrances to the people mover taking people back and forth to the satellite buildings.
Another cool amenity is the outdoor heated pool, which is located on the 6th floor. Exit the elevator and walk down the hallway to your right all the way to the end and you will see the doors leading outside to the pool. From the pool area, you have also great views of the satellite buildings and runways. Makes it great for some plane spotting. The views are not ideal for that, as you are pretty far away but you get a good glimpse at the international satellite building, with all the big planes from different countries. There is a sightseeing binocular mounted outside to view the planes. Outside, just past the doors to the pool area is a telephone and you can order food and drinks and have it brought to the pool. How amazing is that?
The StayFit Fitness Center of thy Hyatt Regency Orlando International Airport is located close to the pool and has entrances from two different hallways. This fitness center is pretty big and has everything for a complete workout. The whole fitness center was well maintained and clean. There is a window which gives you a view of the airport atrium and a full-size bathroom with vanity, toilet, and even a shower. It looks like a bathroom in one of the regular rooms.
By the way, if you want to go for a run, there is a track on top of the terminal parking garage. It runs around the helipad and this part of the building offers some of the best views of the runway. To get there go down to the lobby level and exit towards the self-parking area. Once you are in the parking garage you can see another set of elevators on the other side of the garage just a bit to your left. From there take the elevator all the way up to the 11th floor. Probably not many people know about this place.
On either side of the hotel is a mini-atrium, that’s what I call them at least. It’s an amazing spot as it makes you feel you are outside in a park with all the plants, trees, and fountains. Heck, the lights even look like street lights rather than lighting for the interior of a building. There are a few benches and seats at either one of them to relax and hang out. But please respect the quiet time at night and keep your voice down. The Hyatt Regency Orlando International Airport even shuts down the water fountains to give their guests the extra piece of tranquility. These areas are nice to hang out in and actually get you away from all the busy airport life. It lets you calm down and relax.
The elevators next to the front desk will also bring you all the way down to the motor court aka valet parking. There is actually not much to see down there. You can walk outside all the way to the street where you can see a big fountain. That’s about it and I put it on the list just to complete the list.
Besides all the hotel amenities, you can easily enjoy the amenities the airport has to offer. Most of the shops and a lot of restaurants are located in the atrium area which is pre-security and you don’t need a boarding pass to be there. Just to let you know, there is a Disney Shop and a Kennedy Space Center shop there for some last-minute purchases or souvenirs. To get to the airport level, you can use the elevator or use the escalators which run from the lobby level (Level 4) down to the airport level (Level 3).
A little hidden gem is the B-52 Stratofortress Memorial Park which you might wanna check out while staying at the Hyatt Regency International Airport. This is a reminder that the Orlando International Airport is built on a former Air Force Base.
The Hyatt Regency Orlando International Airport offers two main dining locations. The first one you might notice is McCoy’s Bar and Grill. It’s located on the lobby level and you will pass it on your way to the front desk from the self-parking garage. McCoy’s is open for lunch and dinner. Even though they are open until 12:30 a.m., be aware that past 11:00 p.m. they only have a smaller menu and only limited selection of food. It’s more like a bar menu. Speaking of the bar menu, the same food of the Late Night Menu is also served at the Lobby Bar just outside of McCoy’s. It’s funny because the Late Night Menu is the same menu as for lunch. My server during my arrival night was awesome. He really took pride in his work and did an awesome job. I believe his name was Rich.
To get some good and delicious food make sure you dine in before 11 p.m. One of my favorites is available throughout the day. You have to try the Thai Chicken Tenders. I love them. They are a little spicy but not too much and just perfect. It’s a small appetizer and goes with every meal. I had it with my McCoy’s Signature Burger and the Chicken Alfredo. Try them! Just in case you didn’t know, why the name McCoy? The Orlando International Airport was built on the former McCoy Air Force Base. Inside of McCoy’s Bar & Grill is also a bar area and a sushi counter, where you get your sushi prepared for you in front of your eyes.
The Lobby Bar is open late until 1 a.m. and perfect to hang out and relax. You might not know, you can also come up here while you are waiting for your flight and if you let them know you have a World of Hyatt account, you can earn points even without staying here. The bar is also perfect to watch sports as they have a few TVs set up.
Last but not least the highlight of the dining experiences at the Hyatt and even the whole airport – Hemisphere Restaurant. It is located on the 9th floor and has a huge floor to ceiling windows which over a great view of the airport action. This is the only place that serves breakfast at the hotel and is open early. They open the restaurant already at 5:30, seven days a week. Which is great if you have to catch an early flight. As there is no Regency Club at this hotel, World of Hyatt Globalists receive complimentary breakfast at the Hemisphere Restaurant. The restaurant also serves dinner from Monday through Saturday. Because of my Globalist status, breakfast is included otherwise it would be $19.95 plus a 17% service charge. All this get’s waived for me as a Globalist, but there shouldn’t be a service charge, especially because it was just me dining there. Yes, the waiter did bring me my coffee and juice and took away used plates, but does that qualify for a service charge? I rather just tip instead of service charge and tip. How much I tip is affected by how good the service was, but even with bad service, the service charge has to be paid either way. Don’t worry, the service during breakfast was outstanding. The waiters take their job seriously and are very meticulous. I was able to observe one waiter while he wiped off a table after the guests left. He didn’t just do a quick wipe, he looked at the table and wiped it again, making sure there are no spots anywhere. It’s rare to see such meticulous staff.
Of course, the hotel offers room service. Roomservice is even available 24hours a day. There is a small paper menu hanging on your doorknob. You can fill it out and place it outside on your doorknob to have breakfast delivered to your room the next morning when you specify it. Also, in the morning they have coffee to grab and go at the elevator lobby on the Lobby Level (4).
All the detailed information of the restaurants can be found on the Hyatt Regency Orlando International Airport website.
Well, what should I say? If you having an overlay at MCO, this is the best hotel to stay. You can’t get any closer to the airport, no shuttle needed to get to the hotel and back and you can call the bellman and they even help with your luggage from and to the airport. This is service! But the Hyatt Regency Orlando International Airport is not just a good choice while having an overlay of flying out. You can also consider it for a stay in town. It’s just a few miles south of downtown Orlando and only 45 minutes from Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral, and Cocoa Beach. If you come to watch rocket launches, this is a great hotel as well and maybe even cheaper as hotels in the area around the cape. Prices there literally skyrocket for the days of a rocket launch.
The service at the hotel was great and the staff was amazing. I really like this property. My only recommendation if it comes to room choices would be a room with an outside view. It’s amazing how seamless their Mobile Entry feature works here. With mobile entry, you can use your smartphone in conjunction with the Hyatt app as your room key. It worked not just for my room but everywhere else I need to use my room key like the elevator or fitness center.
Also worth mentioning: There are multiple locations with an ice machine and soda vending machine throughout the hotel. It seems every one of them also had a microwave so you can warm up something.
Hyatt Regency Orlando International Airport
- On-Airport Hotel
- Great Dining Options
- Awesome Service
- Heated Outdoor Pool on Roof
- Running Track on top of parking garage
- No Regency Club
- Some Rooms facing the Atrium
Peter has a passion for Traveling, Photography, and Geocaching. These are the best ingredients for amazing adventures all over the globe. “Traveling is fun, no matter if you stay in a luxury hotel or travel like a backpacker.” Peter shares his experiences on his Blog www.gatetoadventures.com
Some of Peter’s photos are published on corporate websites, in-flight magazines, travel guides, and much more.