by Jackie Perrin
Claiming a prime spot on the shores of “America’s most famous beach,” yet a blissful distance away from the carnival action on Daytona’s main tourist strip, Daytona Beach Resort and Conference Center offers a fun-filled, beach-centered family getaway with many of the upscale comforts of home. Located just south of peaceful Ormond Beach and within a short distance of Daytona Beach’s Main Street Pier, Daytona International Speedway, and Ponce Inlet (home to a bevy of water-sports attractions), the resort features four pools, easy beach access and a fully equipped kitchen in every accommodation.
On the resort beachfront, kids can play volleyball, build sand castles and order up ice cream treats procured from an old-fashioned truck with a walk-up window. Water sports rentals include boogie boards and surfboards, and chair and umbrella rentals can be arranged through the same vendor.
An enormous oceanfront pool deck spans the entire property, featuring three of the resort’s four pools, including a fun-filled kiddie pool with interactive water features. At the onsite spa, kids can get a “Lil Mermaid” manicure or pedicure or indulge in a full spa package, complete with a souvenir temporary glitter tattoo. Parents can get in on the pampering, too — treatments include a “Mommy 2 Be” massage and an indulgent “Bliss for Two” package for couples.
Fresh from a multi-million dollar renovation in 2008, the 322-unit resort offers a range of lodging choices with a fit for every family size and budget. Options range from spacious standard condominium-style rooms with fully equipped kitchens to Executive Club Level accommodations with a top-floor location and top-of-the-line furnishings.
At holiday times, the resort pumps up the family fun factor with kid-friendly events, from poolside barbecues with snow cones and carnival games to Luaus, complete with hula and fire knife dancers. Throughout their stay, families can enjoy a number of value-added perks from convenient covered parking to free printing to free use of computer stations with complimentary Internet access at a centrally located business center.
Our Editor Loves
- Prime peaceful beachfront location
- Four pools, including a large kiddie pool with interactive water features
- Fully equipped kitchen in every unit
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Condominium-style accommodations are situated in two towers, and standard rooms are decorated in white and neutral tones. A beach theme is prevalent throughout with images of sand, shore and seashells present in framed prints, bed covers and bathroom accessories.
Standard rooms contain either two queen beds or a king bed and a sofa bed and are spacious by hotel standards. Standard amenities include an alarm clock and a TV with a port for gaming systems. Bathrooms are stocked with a range of Azha bath products.
All accommodations feature a fully equipped kitchen. This attractive feature is unique to the property and offers families the option of eating in and conserving vacation funds. Kitchens are equipped with a full-size refrigerator, a flat cooktop, a sink, a microwave, a toaster and a coffeemaker, and are fully stocked with pots, utensils and dishware. A dining table with chairs is nearby. There's no dishwasher, but a dish scrubber, dishtowels and complimentary dish soap are provided.
Balconies come in a variety of configurations from standing to sit-out. Sit-outs have a small table and chairs and provide a nice spot for mom and dad to unwind while smaller children nod off to sleep at night.
View-based booking categories include "River View," "Ocean View" and "Oceanfront." River View accommodations offer the most limited water views (of the Intercoastal Waterway). Ocean View accommodations offer a view of the Intercoastal Waterway as well as the beach. Guests staying in Oceanfront accommodations enjoy picturesque views of both the pool deck and the Atlantic Ocean. The latter two views afford families a good chance of spotting wildlife like frolicking dolphins.
With regard to room location, families should weigh the benefits of comfort and convenience. While specific room location cannot be guaranteed, guest preference can be noted at the time of reservation. A small number of first-floor "Oceanfront" category rooms in the South Tower offer direct access to the kiddie pool, the outdoor bar and lively activity on the pool deck. South Tower rooms are accessed via exterior corridors, while interior corridors provide access to North Tower accommodations. Guests staying in North Tower rooms enjoy the benefit of direct access to the parking garage. For great views, quick elevator service and convenient car access, request an upper floor Oceanfront North Tower accommodation.
Suites (117 total) offer families extra space to stretch out, along with some additional amenities.
One-bedroom suites accommodate four to six guests and feature a master bedroom with one king bed or two queen beds. In a separate living and dining area, there's a sleeper sofa, along with a fully equipped kitchen. Choose from an Ocean View or an Oceanfront room. Also available are a limited number of Junior Oceanfront Suites, which accommodate up to four guests with a king bed and a sleeper sofa and feature a sit-out balcony.
Top-floor Executive Club accommodations are located on the 14th floor of the North Tower and offer the most deluxe amenities among all accommodations. Upgraded kitchens feature luxurious granite countertops and stainless steel appliances, along with a breakfast bar. Beds are outfitted with premium linens and guests enjoy the use of high-definition flat-screen TVs. Executive Club Ocean View Studios sleep up to four guests, while Executive Club Ocean View Suites accommodate up to six guests.
Cribs and rollaway beds are available. There is a $12 daily resort fee, which includes wireless Internet access, beach towels, two bottles of water daily, parking in a covered garage and use of the resort's fitness and business centers. Wireless access can be sporadic at times with best results found in the early morning hours.
Our group has been coming to the DBR for several years now and have always found the staff to be professional and very accommodating. Everyone there represents the company very well. I’d like to especially recognize Ben, who sees that everyone is taken care of with a smile and “no problem “ attitude.
Daytona Beach Resort was awesome. My wife and I enjoyed our 2 day get away so much, we book another get away the following weekend. The ocean views from our balcony were great! The pool was very clean and quiet since we went in October and the food at the Tiki Bar was surprisingly delicious. The staff was professional and friendly especially Maurice. Give him a call for your next vacation, DBR is highly recommend by my wife and I.
Four pools provide a refreshing break for every member of the family. Three of the four pools lie adjacent to each other on the expansive 32,000-square-foot oceanfront pool deck. At the south end is a large kiddie pool, which features a couple of spraying mushrooms and comfortably shallow depths. Lounge chairs are plentiful nearby.
The middle pool is heated, and a fourth indoor pool (also heated) is nearby and can be accessed from both the lobby and the pool deck. Next to the indoor pool, there's a heated whirlpool. No lifeguards are on duty, and note that smoking is permitted only on the north side of the pool deck. If you're a non-smoker, you might want to stick to other areas. Show your room key at the front desk to pick-up complimentary beach towels. Towels must be returned at the end of each day in order to avoid a service charge. Outdoor pool hours are 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Indoor pool hours are 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.
On the resort beachfront, kids can play volleyball, build sand castles and order up ice cream treats procured from an old-fashioned truck with a walk-up window. Water sports equipment, including boogie boards and surfboards, can be rented by the hour, half-day or full-day. Chair and umbrella rentals can be arranged through the same vendor. Lifeguards are on duty. From the beach, guests must use their room keys to gain access to the pool deck via a gated entry. Outdoor showers are located at the beach entry and on the pool deck. The resort is situated in a zoned beach area that is open to vehicular traffic. In front of the resort, nice wide beaches allow for an ample buffer zone between driving lanes and areas near the water that are set up for sunbathing. At times of high tide, this area is decreased and the beach is most often closed to traffic. Small children should be kept close at all times, but during high tide, they should be watched with extra caution. Whenever you're at the beach, be sure to pay heed to posted signs advising of rip currents and other hazards.
At a fire pit located on the far north end of the pool deck, families can roast marshmallows for make-your-own S'mores.
Area Tours and Excursions
The resort is within an hour's drive of Orlando's theme parks, making it a relaxing base for an action-packed vacation. Within a short distance, families will find a host of entertainment possibilities suitable for kids of all ages. Options include Daytona International Speedway track tours and numerous water sports at Ponce Inlet such as parasailing and stand-up paddle boarding. For a natural experience you won't soon forget, book a family tour with Wynn Hamilton's Nature Adventures of Daytona. On rainy days, head to the indoor arcade at Daytona Lagoon, visit The Charles and Linda Williams Children's Museum at Daytona's Museum of Arts and Sciences, or take a tasty tour of Angell & Phelps Chocolate Factory.
Reflections Restaurant & Bar
Situated in the North Tower on the lobby level overlooking the pool deck, the main restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. A children's menu is available. For kids, breakfast choices include waffles, pancakes and a traditional American breakfast with eggs, hash brown potatoes and a choice of meat. For lunch, familiar favorites such as a grilled cheese sandwich, a cheeseburger, chicken tenders and a hot dog are served with fruit and a choice of potato chips or French fries. For mom and dad, there's a full range of salads, sandwiches, and entrees. Unusual appetizers like "Shark Bite" and "Gator Tail" and sweet endings like "Peanut Butter Blast" and "Midnight Layer Cake" offer a taste of variety on vacation. High chairs and booster seats are available. Guests wishing to dine in-room can call ahead for convenient pick-up service.
Reef Pool Bar
Serving up sandwiches and snacks along with a selection of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, this poolside bar is open daily. The bar may close at times due to weather or other factors. Covered seating is available.
Grab a cup of coffee, buy a sandwich, or pick up some popsicles or ice cream novelties at this convenience store, located adjacent to Reflections Restaurant & Bar. A small selection of grocery items, from boxed macaroni and cheese to yogurt and whole fruit, is available. Grooming items, sunglasses, flip-flops, activity sets and pool and beach toys are also in stock. The shop opens at 7 a.m. daily.
At holiday times and seasonally, the resort offers special meals from poolside barbecues to Hawaiian luaus. Check with the front desk for a calendar of events and dining reservations information.
Area Family Dining
Within walking distance, Denny's (open 24-hours) and Ruby Tuesday feature familiar kid-friendly fare. In Ormond Beach, Peach Valley Cafe offers home-style cooking at breakfast and lunch; try the apple fritters for breakfast. Within short driving distance in the opposite direction you'll find Aunt Catfish's on the River in Port Orange. Angell & Phelps Cafe and Chocolate Factory, Dancing Avocado Kitchen, and Tia Cori's Tacos -- all located in downtown Daytona Beach -- provide a casual local taste variety for families.
Planning & Tips
All About the Extras
At holiday times, a number of kid-friendly celebrations are planned. From poolside barbecues complete with a DJ, games, snow cones and cotton candy to a family luau with fire-eaters and hula dancers, the resort really knows how to maximize the fun factor for families on vacation. At the first-floor business center, guests can check their e-mail and print boarding passes without incurring a charge.
Terra Acqua Day Spa
At Terra Acqua Day Spa, pamper your little princess (age 10 and under) with a "Lil Mermaid" manicure or pedicure, or spring for the full kids spa experience, which includes a manicure or pedicure along with a mini facial and a special temporary glitter tattoo. For expecting mothers, there's a "Mommy 2 Be" massage, while mom and dad can enjoy a couple's massage or indulge in a "Bliss for Two" package featuring hydrating Shea wraps, Swedish massages and signature pedicures. Spa hours are 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday. Weekends tend to book up fast so be sure to make advance reservations by calling 386-671-7661.
Located next to the indoor pool, the resort fitness center is open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily.
At the first-floor, 24-hour business center guests enjoy complimentary use of computer terminals with Internet access as well as free printing. A small guest "library" of books is available. (And feel free to leave one for others to enjoy.)
A $12 daily resort fee includes wireless Internet access, use of the fitness and business centers, beach towels, two bottles of water daily and parking, including covered garage parking.
Groceries and Vacation Supplies
At Publix and Walgreen's across the street, you can shop for food and vacation supplies. While you're there, consider picking up value-priced boogie boards and sand toys, which will save you some money if you're planning multiple days on the waterfront.
Baby and Toddler Equipment
Sandy Andy's Rentals offers delivery of a range of baby and toddler equipment, from car seats and strollers to rocking chairs and beach gear.
The Art of Smart Timing
When it comes to a trip to the beach, anytime is a good time to visit -- with some caveats. Summers bring plenty of company, along with a host of opportunities for beachfront and water-based recreation. Holidays mean larger crowds along with special entertainment. If your kids aren't in school yet, early fall, known for pleasant temperatures and fewer crowds, is an ideal time to visit. Major area events, including events at Daytona International Speedway and Bike Weeks, can contribute to higher occupancy. The hotel is a popular convention and wedding destination and occupancy may swell when events are onsite.
Getting There and Getting Around
Orlando International Airport (MCO), located 54 miles from Daytona Beach, is the major area airport. Daytona Beach International Airport (DAB) is 8.5 miles away. The resort is within walking distance of a number of stores and restaurants. The Votran CityLine Trolley has recently expanded its route and operates from January to Labor Day. If you plan to visit Orlando's theme parks with kids%2C it's best to have a car.
For Mom and Dad
Book a relaxing couples treatment at Terra Acqua Day Spa. Alternatively, enjoy a tandem parasailing adventure with Daytona Beach Parasail at Ponce Inlet Watersports. Convenient hotel pick-up and drop-off service is available.