Last weekend I completed my second Dopey Challenge at the Walt Disney World Resort. If you’re not familiar with the Dopey Challenge, it’s a 48.6 mile 4-day race challenge that consists of a 5K, 10K, Half Marathon and Full Marathon completed on successive days. For the half marathon and full marathon portions of the race weekend I called the Waldorf Astoria Orlando Resort home. The Waldorf and attached sister property, the Hilton Bonnet Creek are my “go-to” race resorts for runDisney events. Here’s why…
1. Complementary Race Transportation
There are very few non-Disney owned and operated hotels that are going to offer free race transportation to your runDisney race start line and then back to the resort at the finish of the race. (Transportation departs from the attached Hilton Bonnet Creek)
2. 10% off of your food and beverage purchases at 12 locations on property
With 12 restaurants and lounges spread out between the Waldorf Astoria and attached Hilton Bonnet Creek Resort there is something to satisfy the strongest runger you might have.
The resorts offer up Marathon Weekend exclusive carb load pasta dinners at the Hilton Bonnet Creek’s La Luce as well as Harvest Bistro.
This trip I was sharing a room with a fellow runner with a very restrictive food allergy. The evening before the full marathon she was able to order a room service dinner of baked chicken and a plain baked potato. This is something that she eats before every race. I jokingly refer to it as prison food since it’s so plain but it’s what works for her. The resort doesn’t even offer a baked potato at any of their restaurants but room service was happy to accommodate her request and baked one special for her. Now that’s first class service! The following evening, after she ran the full marathon, she was able to pig out on delicious gluten free bread and pasta at La Luce in the Hilton.
3. Free Race Day Morning Breakfast
The complementary spread the resort put’s out for runners on race day morning is extensive and includes coffee, tea, bottled water, energy bars, muffins, bananas, oatmeal, granola bars and bagels with spreads.
4. A Chance to win a free return weekend stay
Hotel guests who are running during Marathon Weekends can join the “Runner’s Challenge” where they will have a chance to win a return weekend stay at Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek by predicting their expected finish time. Ballots are given out in your runner welcome bag upon checkin. You simply fill out your anticipated finish time and drop it in the ballot box on your way to the free race transportation. For the 2015 Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend one winner was selected from the half marathon and one from the full marathon as well.
5. A Special Marathon Welcome Amentity
Feel like a real VIP when you check into your room!
6. A Special Marathon Rate for Runners
Rack rates start at $149 a night at Hilton and $279 a night at the Waldorf, but during Marathon Weekends a special Runner Rate is offered (based on availability). The quoted rate is exclusive of taxes, resort fee and daily parking and/or valet fee.
7. Text the valet for you car
Seriously! This was a dream after running 48.6 miles. To know that I wouldn’t have to park my car and walk a mile to my hotel room. Just zip up to the front of the resort and let valet handle everything else. At 3 am when I needed my car delivered to leave for my race I simply texted valet and when we walked downstairs there my vehicle was waiting for me.
8. Huge Soaking Tub for an Ice Bath
Waldorf bathrooms, besides being ridiculously spacious, are equipped with both a stand up shower and huge soaking tub. Fill that puppy up with ice and recover like a pro.
9. Complementary Adult Beverage Vouchers
Upon check-in at the Waldorf Astoria Orlando Resort you will receive two complementary adult beverage vouchers. What better way to toast your successful runDisney race finish than a nice glass of wine in Peacock Alley Lounge.
10. Employees are top notch
I’ve said it before and I will say it again. The service at both Bonnet Creek Resorts is impeccable. There’s a reason that the Hilton Bonnet Creek received the Connie Award, Hilton Worldwide’s highest achievement for an individual property, in 2014. The singular award given by the global hospitality company annually honors the best of the best within the Hilton brand. And Hilton Bonnet Creek and the Waldorf Astoria Orlando Resort are definitely the best when it comes to their treatment of runners during Marathon Weekends!
Ready to book here for your next Walt Disney World Racecation? Here’s the skinny on this resort.
Waldorf Astoria Orlando Resort
14200 Bonnet Creek Resort Lane
Orlando, FL 32821
I was a guest of the Waldorf Astoria and was provided with complementary accommodations over the race weekend. I was not required to write this post and no monetary compensation has been received. If you click the link above and book a room I will earn a small commission to keep my servers running. And as always, all opinions are my own.