Friday 30 March 2007

Caribe Royale, International Drive, Orlando

Typical of the sprawling hotels that line Orlando's International Drive, the Caribe Royale is a cluster of dark pink buildings surrounding an outdoor swimming pool, popular with pasty Brits, who wallow around under the faux waterfall. The cavernous foyer, decorated in a pretentious yet economical fashion, sits on top of a couple of daylight-deprived restaurants, serving huge portions of tasty beef, cheese and other heart-stopping food. By mainstream America standards, prices are high and the selection of dishes limited. Designed to withstand marauding children, the guest rooms ($225 a night plus $16 a head for a generous breakfast) are large, utilitarian and soulless. Near to Disney World and the Orange County Convention centre, the Caribe Royale, despite its many deficiencies, pulls in plenty of families and businesspeople. 4/10