The Hyatt Regency Orlando is a wheelchair accessible hotel in Orlando, Florida. The hotel’s location on International Drive and across from the Orange County Convention Center attracts both business travelers and tourists. With 1,639 guest rooms, the Hyatt Regency is one of Orlando’s largest hotels.
My stay at this Orlando hotel was brief – just one night. I was impressed with the property’s location and my beautiful wheelchair accessible hotel room. With connections to Lynx city bus routes and the I-Drive shuttle only blocks away, the hotel is a fantastic retreat from the craziness of the amusement parks, while still within walking distance of the burgeoning tourist district that is International Drive.
Reservation & Check-in
My reservation was for a Saturday night, and I was able to take advantage of a special weekend rate of $98 plus tax, for a total of $112. I made my booking through the hotel website, and was able to reserve a wheelchair accessible room with a roll-in shower.
Check-in was a breeze, and my room was ready before the standard 3 p.m. check-in time. This allowed me to get settled in and prepare for a night of fun and drinks with family & friends on I-Drive. At check-in, I was informed that the hotel charges a $22 resort fee per night. The resort fee covers things like the hotel pool and fitness center, which I did not use. I meant to ask for the fee to be waived at check-out, but forgot. Most hotels will consider refunding resort fees to guests with disabilities, so it never hurts to ask!
Wheelchair Accessible Hotel Room #21-810
My hotel room was located on the 21st floor. While there are ADA rooms on lower floors, I always ask to be as high up as possible… the view is better there!
Hotel rooms at the Hyatt Regency Orlando are beautifully appointed and feature the luxurious Hyatt Grand Bed. The bed is lowered, and roughly matched the height of the seat of my wheelchair, making transfers quite easy. The standard ADA rooms are 400-square-feet in size and are spacious enough to comfortably accommodate the operation of a wheelchair. Contending with tight spaces and corners in a hotel room is always frustrating, but that was not the case here!
The rooms also contain a sofa/love seat and a chair by the window – plenty of space for you or your companions to relax.
The two photos above depict different perspectives of the bed and room. In the first, you’ll be able to judge the height of the bed more easily. The top of the mattress is lower than the nightstands on either side.
Sadly, there are no power outlets within reach of the bed, nor are there any built-in to the nightstands or bedside lamps. In the second photo above, which depicts the end of the bed, desk area and flat-screen television, I have highlighted in blue the location of power outlets.
I plugged my power wheelchair’s offboard charger into the outlet closest to the bed, which is on the wall directly alongside it. Access to power is also available at the desk. The office chair at the desk is on wheels, and can be pushed away easily to make room for a wheelchair.
Wheelchair Accessible Bathroom
The room has scored well to this point, but what about the bathroom facilities? Let’s take a look, first at the roll-in shower…
With so many different roll-in shower designs floating around out there, we all have a preferred layout – one that suits our individual needs best. The arrangement of the Hyatt Regency Orlando’s roll-in-shower is definitely of the design I like most.
It features a built-in shower bench that folds down from the wall. The handheld shower nozzle and water controls are located on the adjacent wall, within easy reach of the seat. There is a grab bar on that same wall, but not on the wall behind the bench. While some prefer grab bars on ever was, I find that bars affixed behind a built-in shower seat or bench force you to lean forward and actually reduce the usable seating area of the bench.
The one frustration I did have with this shower was the location of the soap/toiletries tray, as it was a bit far from the shower seat.
The bathroom sink is accessible, with plenty of space to roll a wheelchair underneath without banging your knees on the piping. An adjustable mirror makes shaving easy and, in my case, getting a close-up look of my facial imperfections. :p In the photo above, you’ll also notice that a television is built-in to the larger mirror – a fancy feature that probably is not all that useful, but it’s “cool” anyway.
Like everything else in this bathroom, the toilet area was also well designed. There is plenty of space to roll a wheelchair alongside the toilet, and grab bars are affixed to both of the adjacent walls. The toilet paper roll is within reach, which is oftentimes not the case in other hotels.
Based on my needs in the bathroom, these facilities were top notch – ‘A’ grades all around.
Accessible Swimming Pool
My hotel room had a view of the massive swimming pool down below, and the sight of it made me regret not bringing a swimsuit:
The Hyatt Regency swimming pool was impressive – a little bit of Florida paradise! The pool deck is accessible, with plenty of space to maneuver a wheelchair without buying into lounge chairs or accidentally rolling into the pool. At the pool’s far end, by the hot tub and a waterfall feature, you’ll find an ADA pool lift/hoist.
The pool lift can be used to help wheelchair users safely get in and out of the pool. The lift was set-up in a fairly secluded spot of the pool deck, so you won’t need to fight for access to it.
If I ever return to the Hyatt Regency Orlando, I won’t make the mistake of forgetting to pack my swimsuit again!
Location & Transportation
As mentioned previously, Hyatt Regency Orlando is located across the street from the Convention Center, right on the very “happening” International Drive. The Orlando Eye ferris wheel, Madame Tussauds wax museum and the chilly Ice Bar are all located about a mile’s walk away.
By car or public transportation, you’ll be able to hit up the many other attractions on International Drive, visit the SeaWorld, Universal or Disney amusement parks, or shop at the Orlando Premium Outlets. Each of these are very close to the centrally-located Hyatt Regency Orlando hotel.
LYNX city bus routes 8, 38, 42 and 58 all stop within 1-2 blocks of the hotel. Both the green and red lines of the I-Ride Trolley stop in front of the Hyatt, connecting you to all the exciting attractions on International Drive. You can read more about the city bus at www.golynx.com and about the trolley at www.iridetrolley.com.
If you’re looking for a wheelchair accessible hotel in Orlando that is near the action, you can’t go wrong with the Hyatt Regency on International Drive. While many tourists choose to stay at the amusement park hotels, those will cut you off from the incredible activities and fun to be had on I-Drive.
Take a bus, taxi or shuttle to the amusement parks in the morning, then return to I-Drive in the evening to experience Orlando’s best restaurants and bars, plus attractions like the wheelchair accessible Orlando Eye. Or, just take a dip at the Hyatt’s resort-style swimming pool!