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In Florida there are a lot of companies that rent you people's vacation homes the same as a hotel. The company we used was "Florint Vacations". All of Florint's home rentals have a pool.
If we ever return to Florida I would only rent a house. If you are traveling with more than two people I would also definatly rent a house. The house we had would have comfortably slept two couples and four children(2adults & 2 children per room) and they have even larger homes available. These homes are also in real residental neighboorhoods, not tourist only communities.
Florint office staff also has German, Dutch, and Spanish speakers available.
If you decide to rent a house have the attidtude of staying in one of your relatives homes; meaning that it it will be nice and comfortable, but not perfect. The houses are clean, but there may be some cobwebs or stains here and there, some cheap repairs, and some of the appliances may be a little loud or old. But all of the important things will be clean, beds, bathrooms, kitchens, and everything works fine. The benefits are that you get a lot of room, the ability to have large groups under the same roof, privacy, no worries about loud people(or the opposite, no one complaining if you are up drinking untill 3 a.m.), your own pool, and some allow pets.
It is possible to rent these houses on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.
The few downfalls to staying in home rental are:
You need a car, and car rentals in Orlando are a rip off no matter who you use.
If you are traveling alone or a young couple it may be a bit much. But if you are an older couple, especially ones that don't like to eat out a lot, it would be a definate plus.
If you don't like picking up after youself, or if you are the one that gets stuck doing all the chores at home. Nobody makes the bed or picks up after the children every day, like in a hotel.
If you stay in $300, or more per night hotels, then these homes are probably will not be nice enough for you.
If you read my intro then you probably figured out that I hated disney(even the 6yr old with us quit asking to go after the second day) and was not impressed with Orlando in general. But staying in a private house with a pool still made the trip quite plesant. It was great to be able to cook and eat our breakfast out on the back porch in the sun every morning, or to be able to totally escape from the masses of people whenever we wanted to. It was also great to have total privacy but not be cramped into a single room all day or night.
Unique Quality: These are fully furnished houses. They have kitchens with all of the stuff you need to cook almost any kind of meals. Kitchens have refer, stove, oven, microwave, dishwasher, toast and coffee maker, all utensels, pots, pans etc.
All houses have towels, sheets, cribs, etc.
All the houses also have washers and drying machines, which on a two week trip nicely cut down on the amount of clothes that we needed to bring.
All Florint houses have a small, fully screened in, pool and patio(Some of the other companies we looked at charged extra for a pool). All the rooms had a T.V. and cabinets to store clothes. Some of the rooms had DVD players also.
Our house also had Pool toys, DVD's, books(English & German), board games, portable stereo, and table tennis in the garage. Surprisingly there were also two bicycles for use.
The only complaint that we had, was that you need to buy all of your disposables; toilet paper, soap for the dish/clothes washers, salt/pepper, garbage bags, and other things that we felt should have been included. At least toilet paper and garbage bags. But if you leave it when you leave they will throw it away, regardless, and all of the rental companies do it.
Directions: This is thier office adress where you pick up the keys to the rental house.
We've used Alexander Homes 3 times to hire a villa and each time have been very pleased.
1st one was in quite established residential area backing on to a beautiful pool teaming with wildlife. 2nd was part of a new gated community, most recent is central to the 192 Kissimmee sprawl but hidden away amongst trees and ranch land - an oasis.
You get to see the pics on their website and choose the one you want. We'll certainly go to them again.
Unique Quality: Well maintained and decorated, all mod cons. Good backup service from agents.
My perfect vacation home would be a combination of all those we've stayed in. Loved the gated community with the on site facilities but if we could combine it with the tranquility of backing onto a lovely pool I'd want to buy it!
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