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A Pet-Friendly Staycation in Winter Park

At The Alfond Inn, Winter Park, your four-legged friend can join you on a luxurious staycation.

A Pet-Friendly Staycation in Winter Park

Furry Friends, Included.

There are times when you just need to take a break from work, obligations and the “have tos” of everyday life.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could find a place where you could go to relax, enjoy good food and wine, look at amazing works of art, and walk in with your four-legged friend?

At the Alfond Inn in Winter Park, next to Rollins College, that is just what Lola and I did. When we walked into the lobby, we were greeted with water and doggy treats. I declined, but Lola said they were yummy.

Since we had opted for the VIP (Very Important Pup) package, there was a beautiful basket filled with treats, a dog bowl, toys and even a thunder shirt waiting for Lola in our room. Once we settled in, I headed to the pool to catch up on my reading. This is one of the few areas in the hotel that your pup is not allowed. The area is nicely landscaped and tranquil with an adjacent workout area just in case inspiration hits, which it didn’t for me.

Doggy Treats & Donations

Back in the room, I grabbed Lola’s leash and walked her to the bar area for a glass of wine and an opportunity to walk around the hotel to enjoy the amazing artwork showcased on almost every wall. The Alfond Collection of Contemporary Art at Rollins College is a collection with many points of views that varies from digital to canvas to photography. Each piece tells a story while focusing on social history, civic mindedness, international affairs and philanthropy.

Outside of the hotel there is a designated area to walk your dog with complimentary waste bags. And you will find many shops and restaurants within walking distance, too.

Debbie Potter, the hotel’s director of sales and marketing and a dog lover, created this service to enable travelers to vacation with their dogs without having to worry about leaving them at home or having to board them. “We welcome all sized dogs, and when you upgrade to the VIP Package, we give a donation to the Pet Alliance of Central Florida.”


Here are a few tips when traveling with your pet.

  1. Have a copy of their vaccinations.
  2. Ensure your cell phone is printed on the dog’s tag and that their collar is fastened securely.
  3. If possible, request a room on the bottom floor to make it easier to take the dog outside. It’s also less stress for them if they do not have to ride the elevators.
  4. Bring their favorite blanket and toys so they have something they are familiar with.
  5. Schedule housekeeping times and put the “do not disturb” sign on the door.

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