Florida has gained a reputation for less restrictive lockdown policies as Michigan, along with the rest of the Midwest, climbs out of the coronavirus calamity.
You may decide to safely sample the Sunshine State’s social distancing by driving the distance – 1,215 miles (just over18 hours) – alone in your car – to the Orlando area where Balmoral Resort offers the opportunity to book into your own rental home. Even the check-in is touchless and secure since Balmoral simply emails the access codes to the gated community and the number to unlock your four-bedroom, standalone house.
Balmoral Resort even preheats the house’s private pool so after all that time behind the wheel you can take a soothing, solitary splash in the screened-in patio setting the second you step in. (Your kids will be so ready for that!) Grandparents will be happy, too – there is a main floor master suite in every home in addition to the upstairs bedrooms.
Your drive down Interstate-75 will hold your attention with mountain scenery and some amusing spots along the way including the big moon rising from the roof of the Neil Armstrong Air and Space Museum Wapakoneta Ohio followed by signs for Stinking Creek Road; Big Bone Lick State Park; Transylvania University and of course the thrilling stretch through Atlanta where the southbound freeway is seven lanes wide. (The very first Chick-Fil-A restaurant is also off one of those exits, by the way.)
All told the trip takes about $130 in fuel each way and you’ll be shedding a layer of clothing each time you stop for gas. As you advance south it’s rewarding to watch the temperatures rise. Conversely, it’s a treat to learn how low Balmoral Resort’s 245 rental home prices are. The nightly rates are below that of a Major League Baseball batting average, which is fitting since the 113-acre development is very near the Detroit Tigers Lakeland Spring Training headquarters and close to other Grapefruit League ballparks. (Mid-February rates, for instance of a 4-bedroom home are as low as $164 per night.)
Balmoral Resort has also built its own on-site, impressive multi-sport training complex for teams of all ages – from football to soccer and more – to practice, play and stay.
In addition to the ballparks Orlando’s theme parks are also nearby – so one can waltz though Walt Disney World if they wish – but for those feeling better “bubbled” Balmoral Resort has its own private waterslides and grill on the deck beside the big, warm resort pool and Jacuzzi…. The rental homes, which are laid out neighborhood style between palm trees and ponds (with occasional alligators) have full kitchens and a Publix grocery store right around the corner. You can stroll the streets, live and work, and exercise and swim in the sunshine all while staying distanced.
“If you’re in Orlando for more than a few days you likely don’t want to go to the theme parks every single day. You’ll want to recharge and relax and cook breakfast in your own kitchen and jump in your own pool,” said Garrett Kenny, the developer of Balmoral Resort.
Balmoral has opened a new event center staging special occasions, weddings, and private gatherings plus entertainment events, such as “dueling pianos,” whiskey and wine tastings, family friendly magic and hypnosis dinner shows, and a Jimmy Buffett tribute performance open to the public.
Balmoral Resort’s Rental homes, which come in various sizes, are spotless and purpose-built to be rented on resort property so there is none of the uncertainty that comes with an unaffiliated Airbnb-type rental residence. Extended stays are available for those who work or attend school remotely, with the understanding it is a vacation resort. Imagine staying busy on your laptop poolside (the Wi-Fi is strong) under your massive screened-in patio while getting gusts of 80-degree, citrus-tinged fresh air and listening, during a conference call, to the sounds of the chirping birds…safely sequestered in the sunshine.