For this year’s Thanksgiving, my family decided to take our longest road trip yet. Our itinerary was from Dallas to Memphis and Nashville in Tennessee and onward to Bentonville in Arkansas before heading back home to Dallas. It was definitely an amazing trip – educational, fun and an unforgettable one. Lots to talk about from this trip but allow me to first share with you our stay at the famous Gaylord Opryland Resort.
I have learned that it is one of the largest hotels in the world and the largest non-casino hotel in the United States. However, it wasn’t just HUGE but also a really beautiful resort. We stayed for 4 nights to give time for my kids and my mom (their first time in Nashville) to explore this huge resort and surrounding areas; we thought it would need a few days of exploring and how right we were.
This hotel is not just a place to stay, it is itself a destination and an experience unto itself.
There were many things that WOWed us which made our stay so special and unforgettable; here are a few of them:
LUSH INDOOR GARDEN AND CASCADING WATERFALLS
This hotel has 9 acres of indoor gardens with such an amazing variety of plants, flowers, and trees…. Palms trees, lilies, orchids and a looooot more. I wondered so many times if this was a hotel or a greenhouse? My guess is as good as yours 🙂
The glass ceilings provide ample of light for the plants and trees to thrive all through the years. Not only do the ceilings provide natural light during the day but regardless of how cold it is outside the temperature inside is always temperate. So refreshing!!! And as the sun sets, the blend of shadows cast by the plants along with strings of lights gives an air of serenity and romance to the place. But you really need to wait until night time… WOW!!! the place magically turns into a wonderland!!! A Christmas wonderland if you’re there around the holidays.
The Gaylord was EXTRA gorgeous because of the holiday decor.With more than 2 million twinkling lights and festive new décor… night time is just extraordinary! WOW!!!
The Delta Atrium is the largest atrium out of the three at the resort – there is a cute “main-street” along with shops and restaurants at this area. Beware of the toy store if you have kids with you 😉 . In this atrium you can take a scenic riverboat ride all the while admiring some of the various plants that were cultivated by the hotel’s horticulture staff.
It glows at night.
Garden Conservatory Atrium is my favorite of them all. Here you will see beautiful tropical plants like palm, coconut and banana trees… It felt like I was back home in the Philippines 🙂 There are lots of lilies and orchids to admire… Totally, breathtaking!!! True to Nashville’s music culture, this atrium was decked with various displays of music notes and instruments.
ICE! Exhibition featuring Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer
The ICE! is Gaylord’s holiday attraction which has a different theme each year. We have been a couple of times to it at the Gaylord Texan and it’s always been fun. This time, the kids really had tons of fun with the slides and watching some scenes from “Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer” story. The story is brought to life in magnificent sculptures hand-carved from more than two MILLION pounds of ice.
Tip: Gaylord normally run a holiday package promotion – best available room rates includes tickets to the ICE! Exhibit.
Best of all are the ACTIVITIES that they offer to everyone, especially during the holiday. Here are some below.
While we were on the scavenger hunt, our girl bumped into her best friend from school, Lydia. During the entire trip before, she kept on telling us that her bff was going to Tennessee and would meet up with her. And, when I asked where in Tennessee, she said that she doesn’t know… but she’s still going to meet her anyways. And yes… she did meet her… in the biggest hotel in the world. HA!!! WOW…the power of Law of Attractions Indeed…
The whole property was fully decked with holiday decor. SO beautiful:)
So if you decide to stay at this hotel, getting a room with a balcony might be a great idea. We enjoyed sitting on the balcony – staring at the lights and of course, just people watching:) Shout out to the front desk (the person who helped us during check-in was a Filipina – bonus point). She gave us a perfect location room – upper level and near the waterfalls:)
Tip: Asked upper-level rooms for a better view of the atrium garden.
LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION
Yes, the resort is also in a perfect location… 15 minutes from the airport and 20 minutes from downtown…plus, the Grand Ole Opry House is just a few minutes walk away.
The famous Grand Ole Opry
As I said, it was my kids and my mom’s first time in Nashville too so we drove to downtown twice during the day and on one night, my husband and I took Uber downtown to experience the famous Broadway Street night scene.
The rooftop bar at George Jones Museum with spectacular views of the AT&T Building aka “Batman Building” as well as the Cumberland River, you may even spot a river boat
Tip: The Opry Mills is a block from the hotel if you are up for some good shopping galore. Plus, the Aquarium Restaurant is located inside the mall. I do recommend to try this place; they have a good menu selection – food is good as well. Take your whole family for an underwater adventure – a unique experience that you should try at least one’s in your life:)
I hope you get to stay or visit the beautiful Gaylord Opryland some day and enjoy your stay as we did:)
Thanks for dropping by:)