Last weekend we ventured out of Tampa Bay and into the Orlando area. No theme parks in mind on this particular visit, just relaxing and enjoying time together and with friends.
The best part of our trip was our temporary vacation home at Windsor Hills Resort. Windsor Hills is a perfectly kept community of vacation homes for families visiting the Orlando area. They boast themselves as "the closest vacation home resort to Walt Disney World." The property seemed to be very secure, and totally picture perfect. The lawns were perfectly manicured, the neighborhood was perfectly quietly, and it looked like the ultimate suburbia dream land. Nearby you could find every chain restaurant you could imagine and lots of souvenir shops. If you are vacationing with your family to the Disney area, this is the way to do it. Our vacation home had 6 bedrooms, a game room, and a private pool.
Shula Burger is a fast-casual burger chain. You order at the counter and your meal is delivered to your table. The staff was incredibly accommodating, starting with Carlos who greeted us at the door and explained the experience to us. He mentioned that he had tried everything on the menu (lucky guy!) and would be happy to make recommendations if we needed them. I stuck with my favorite type of burger, the Mushroom Swiss burger. There were 9 signature burgers to choose from or you could customize your own creation. I counted at least 8 cooks in the kitchen during our Saturday afternoon visit. It was nice to know that they had adequate staff to handle the lunch rush.
|The Shula Burger and Sweet Potato Tots|
|Mushroom Swiss Burger with Sea Salt Fries|
In case you can't tell, I give Shula Burger an A+!
On Saturday evening we ventured out to Citywalk at Universal. I love going to the Universal parks, especially during Grinchmas. Our visit to Citywalk featured a trip to Rising Star. Rising Star is the ultimate karaoke venue for those who dream about being on stage. You sing karaoke along with a live band and backup singers. All of the singers were really good. This is not your typical "tone deaf" karaoke bar (although maybe some not so good singers came on after we left?). Rising Star has an ample list of karaoke classics and several current songs to choose from. The downside was that the band takes 30 minute breaks in between sets of about 30 minutes. I'm not sure why they go from 100% entertainment to 0% entertainment for such long periods. However, this is the perfect spot for anyone who dreams of being on stage and wants a taste of stardom - even if just for 1 song.
|Rising Star - backup singers, live band, and an awesome performer|