At its heart, Tuscany is home to the red sangiovese grape. You might not have heard of it, because like many of Italy’s indigenous vines, this one doesn’t love to travel. But you’ve probably heard of Chianti, which has grown up from its bottle-as-candle holder days into a high-quality offering at prices that range from steal to splurge. As with many Italian wines, the Chianti name refers to the growing district rather than the grape. “Classico” refers to the historic heart of the Chianti zone, and “riserva” means the wine has had extra aging. If you have heard wine geeks refer to so-called “Super Tuscan” wines, these are wines made to push the boundaries of Tuscan tradition by mixing French grapes and, very often, French barrels with the local varieties. The results are magnifico, so if you feel like splurging, check them out.
In Orlando, accommodations offer much more than a place to sleep after an exciting day at the theme parks. Destinations unto themselves, Orlando’s hotels and resorts boast an array of entertaining amenities including championship golf courses, world-class spas, boutique shopping and plenty of dining options, not to mention lazy rivers and zero-entry beach pools, splash parks and waterslides for the kids, and even children’s recreation programs.
With more than 450 hotels and 115,000 guest rooms, Orlando offers a multitude of lodging options, from budget and moderately priced hotels to all-suite properties, bed and breakfast inns, and numerous AAA-rated hotels and resorts. Larger families and groups will find a home-away-from-home in one of the area’s numerous vacation home rentals, while those who choose the “great outdoors” can take their pick of campgrounds.
Yet Orlando is constantly opening new hotels to serve future demand. The Hilton Orlando, adjacent to the Orange County Convention Center, is opening in September 2009. Then there is the Bonnet Creek complex. Consisting of the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek and the Waldorf Astoria Orlando, which are adjacent to each other and surrounded by the Walt Disney World® Resort, the properties will open during October.