Hometown Fun for Teens

Kahlua Chicken Eggrolls with orange chili dipping sauce at Emeril’s Tchoup Chop.
Kahlua Chicken Eggrolls with orange chili dipping sauce at Emeril’s Tchoup Chop.

Orlando teenagers don’t need to take an expensive and far-away trip to celebrate a school-free week of Spring Break. Instead, they can take a staycation and enjoy a place that their fellow teens across the country wish they had in their own backyard. Not everything in Orlando is catered to the very young and the fully matured either, especially at Universal Studios. The resort welcomed its newest hotel, the Cabana Bay Beach Resort last month. While the children in the family are amused with the hula-hoop contests and the various other activities from resort recreation staff, adults can relax in the 8,000-square-foot lazy river, and the teens can strike out at Galaxy Bowl or challenge their gaming skills at the Game-O-Rama arcade.

If you and your teens are looking for a great dining experience, several Universal restaurants have undergone menu upgrades that feature even more luxurious dishes than before. World-famous chef Emeril Lagasse’s Tchoup Chop restaurant’s brand new menu comes at the same time the establishment was updated to include a new robata grill. It is one of only two restaurants in Orlando to utilize this unique, rustic grilling method. New items like Kalua Chicken Egg Rolls with an orange-chili dipping sauce and Grilled Pork Chop served with Chinese broccoli, mango salsa and Korean BBQ sauce are just a sampling of the bold and exciting flavors you can expect at the Tchoup Chop.

Another revamped menu sure to whet appetites of all ages hails from Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville bar and restaurant. This refreshed menu includes more than fifteen new Caribbean-inspired dishes like the Drunken Shrimp Skillet with tequila lime butter, roasted garlic, peppers and mini baguette for dipping, and Beach Tacos in three delicious varieties. You will also find new margaritas and cocktails, though that portion of the menu is adults-only.

Pleasing a teenager is difficult, but a sure-fire way to make them smile is visiting Universal’s CityWalk. This entertainment hotspot has a lot to offer, including the Hard Rock Café, AMC’s Universal Cineplex, Hollywood Drive-in Golf, Rising Star karaoke and much more. While there is enough for the entire family to enjoy, teenagers will be especially catered to at Universal’s CityWalk. If you’re lucky, you might even get a thank you!


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Written by Bill Heneghan

Bill is an author, investor and serial entrepreneur.