What's New in Florida Travel This Summer

What's New in Florida Travel This Summer

Beyond the beaches, the golf courses and theme parks are a variety of hotels and attractions with built-in appeal to specific client interests. Here is a sampling of some of the newest such offerings.

For pop music enthusiasts, the Hard Rock Hotel Daytona Beach held its official grand opening May 1 following a two-month soft opening. The 200-room beachfront property offers brand-exclusive amenities, including The Sound of Your Stay music program, which includes complimentary use of Fender guitars and Crosley record players for in-room jam sessions, as well as a full-service Rock Spa and Salon, a Rock Shop and a Body Rock Fitness Center. The hotel also has the signature Sessions restaurant and bar, and a beachfront pool with a party deck and outdoor pool bar and grill. 

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Your art-loving clients should know that Sarasota — with its dense assortment of theaters, galleries, and visual and performing arts spaces — is widely known as Florida’s “Cultural Coast.” Enter Art Ovation, Autograph Collection by Marriott, which has multiple onsite arts spaces of its own, as well as regular artisan classes, and intimate access to visiting performers and artists. It can also serve as a base for exploring Sarasota’s other art-related attractions, such as The Ringling’s new Kotler-Coville Glass Pavilion, housing studio glass art from around the world. 

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For clients looking to keep it simple on their Florida vacation, the new Carlisle Inn in the heart of Sarasota’s Pinecraft Amish settlement combines modern comforts with Amish tradition. The latter includes handcrafted beds, jigsaw puzzles and checkers, but there’s also a swimming pool and a nearby beach, and many of the Carlisle’s rooms are equipped with a kitchenette.

Foodie and sustainability-conscious travelers alike may be intrigued to know that the Orlando World Center Marriott has launched the world’s first HyCube hydroponic vegetable production system, in partnership with Eco Convergence Group Inc. Transforming the way produce is sourced for hotels and restaurants, the HyCube occupies an illuminated modern structure right next to the hotel’s main kitchen and incorporates mineral-rich nutrient solutions in place of soil to cultivate produce for the Marriott’s nine dining outlets. As a result, Executive Chef Eric Martinez and his culinary team will have a constant bounty of fresh, healthy produce, grown onsite from organic, non-GMO seeds. 

Millennials seeking a trendy hotel to swim at while vacationing in North Miami Beach should check out the heated pool at the Newport Beachside Hotel & Resort. The beachfront pool has full views of the Atlantic Ocean and is surrounded by a 20,000-square-foot pool deck. While there are no activities scheduled within the pool, the hotel has a beach volleyball court and such daily poolside activities as tug of war, balloon tossing and giant Jenga. Also, there is a fishing pier on property with pole and bait rentals, and the hotel has jet skis available for guests. The Newport’s Aveda Seven Seas Spa & Salon administers an assortment of facial and body treatments. 

Steer the serious automotive enthusiasts among your clientele to Universal Orlando Resort’s new attraction, Fast & Furious – Supercharged. Here they can feel what it’s like to step into their favorite “Fast & Furious” movie in an authentic re-creation of the F&F crew’s warehouse headquarters — filled with actual props, iconic scenes, authentic details, more than a dozen supercharged vehicles from the films and much more. In August, the resort will open the Aventura Hotel, its sixth guest property.

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