The perfect summer is a Gaylord Rockies summer getaway- luxury meets relaxation. Poolside cocktails, family fun and gorgeous Rocky Mountain views. What are you waiting for?
Note- this is a summer family travel guide to the Gaylord of the Rockies. If you are looking for our Gaylord Winter Family Travel Guide, click here.
There is absolutely nothing better than a Gaylord Rockies Summer- that’s why we have gone TWICE in one month already this summer- and I hope we will be back at least two more times.
Why do I love Gaylord so much? It’s because the resort offers a touch of luxury and a ton of relaxation. We basically escape the city heat to lounge at the pool, cocktails and snacks in hand, for a good 24-72 hours.
Everyone comes home relaxed, exhausted, happy and tan. I really can’t think of anything better- especially since it’s just 15 minutes from downtown Denver.
In this post I’ll tell you literally everything you need to know about visiting the Gaylord Rockies in the summer!
About Gaylord of the Rockies
The Gaylord of the Rockies is a massive resort and convention center in Aurora, Colorado. The hotel has 1,500 rooms including 114 suites. In addition, the resort area has 485,000 square feet of meeting and outdoor space, a spa and indoor/outdoor water park, eight restaurants and, (my personal favorite)- the Grand Lodge area with an indoor lake and sweeping views of the Rocky Mountains and downtown Denver (Mile High City) skyline.
Gaylord Rockies Resort/Convention Center Location
It’s about 10 minutes drive southwest of the Denver International Airport, and about 30-minute drive from downtown Denver.
Rooms at the Gaylord
With 1,501 rooms at the Gaylord, there is something for everyone. Rooms are located on floors 2-15, and you can choose wither a mountain vista, partial mountain view or airport view.
Standard rooms come with either two queen beds or one king bed and one pullout couch. There are all kinds of suites including bunk beds, murphy beds and multiple-room suites. Find complete information on rooms at the Gaylord Rockies here.
When staying at the Gaylord in Denver you will have to pay a daily resort fee of $23. Luckily, that includes tons of amenities that you wouldn’t get at a regular hotel. Here are a few of the things included:
- Micofridge and coffeemaker in the rooms
- Phenomenal fitness center (including two Peloton bikes)
- Putt-putt golf
- Multiple basketball courts
- Tennis courts
- Disc golf
- Walking/biking trails
- Free use of bikes on property
- Indoor/outdoor water park
- Multiple great restaurants and stores
For a full list of current amenities offered on property, visit this link.
Gaylord Rockies Dining
There are eight restaurants at the Gaylord of the Rockies- not all are currently open due to COVID so please check before you dine!
- Old Hickory Steakhouse – fresh seafood and high-quality steaks
- Monte Jade – Family-style Asian dining
- Vista Montagne– Italian food with an impressive wine list
- Mountain Pass Sports Bar– American food and the absolute largest big screen TVs you’ve ever seen in your life
- Pinyons– Lobby bar. Perfect place to watch the sunset in the Grand Lodge.
- The Cocoa Bean– Coffee house serving Starbucks
- Rockies Marketplace – Grab and go food and beverages including alcoholic drinks
- Arapahoe Springs Bar and Grill – Super informal poolside dining- your meal will arrive in a Bento-type box. I highly recommend the Buffalo chicken sandwich
NOTE: During COVID, the number of restaurants is greatly reduced. For complete and up to date information on all available food for purchase and current menus, visit this link.
Summer Family Activities (On Property)
There are so many awesome summer family activities at the Gaylord- here is a complete list:
- Colorado Explorer Scavenger Hunt– (see front desk). We loved this scavenger hunt and it’s a fun, free way to learn about Colorado!
- VR Scavenger Hunt– Find the animals on the floor and scan them with your phone to find out fun facts and real-life photos of different species
- Arts and Crafts Corner- Thursday-Sunday from 2-6 there are fun and free crafts for the whole family
- Wild Animal Encounters– On the weekends HawkQuest brings live raptors to the property that you can see and learn about
- Lawn Games– Perfect for sunset! (Giant Jenga, Cornhole and more)
- Lawn Movies– Watch a family-friendly movie on the lawn after sunset. (Thursday-Saturday)
- Daily Family Activities– From 7:00-8:30 each night there are fun family activities like Bingo,dance parties, trivia and contests.
- Arapahoe Springs Indoor/Outdoor Waterpark– for us this is the crown jewel of the Gaylord and the reason we go so often. See complete info on the waterpark below.
For the most current summer activities schedule click here.
Activities Near the Gaylord Resort
Almost anything there is to do in Denver is pretty close to the Gaylord. I highly suggest visiting the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, the Denver Zoo, or the Denver Art Museum. Or visit Casa Bonita.
If you are looking for great mountain day trips from the Gaylord, we love the following:
- Mount Evans Colorado- Family Travel Tips
- Lake Evergreen Colorado
- Leadville Colorado Day Trip
- Hanging Lake Hike Trail Colorado
Gaylord Rockies Water Park Information
The indoor/outdoor waterpark complex is called Arapahoe Springs. Here’s all the info:
When you enter the water park area, you are greeted with fun fountains and the main indoor pool which has a zero-entry side and two large water slides. There is an indoor hot tub and a lap pool as well.
A huge garage door leads to the outdoor pool, which is open year-round and provides amazing views of the Rocky Mountains. The main pool is surrounded by poolside cabanas and an infinity-edge pool the looks over the lazy river below. The main pool has a small water slide and has two outdoor hot tubs on the deck.
Down a quick flight of stairs is the lazy river, super warm saltwater pool with several sizes of inner tubes for floating around in endless relaxing circles.
We will often book a room at the Gaylord just to sit at the pool for days on end. HOWEVER- during COVID, you must have a pool reservation to use the pool- one pool reservation per night of stay is included. You may book your pool reservations up to 10 days in advance for your stay.
The pools also close from 2-3 pm each day for a full cleaning of the property- all guests must leave the pool area. Complete health and safety guidelines for the pool can be found here.
Gaylord Rockies Poolside Cabanas
The Gaylord does offer poolside cabanas for an additional fee. The cabanas are located next to the outdoor pools and have privacy curtains on all four walls.
In addition to the privacy, the cabanas have two deck chairs, a couch, mini-fridge, rocking chair, footrest, television, and poolside for and beverage service from the Arapahoe Springs Bar and Grill.
The cabanas also include 4 alcoholic beverages (local beer or hard seltzer), 4 bottles of water, and a fresh fruit plate.
One HUGE advantage of the cabana is that you don’t have to leave the pool during the cleaning time- it’s a great time to nap out of the sun. The other advantage is that with the purchase of the cabana, you don’t have to make an additional pool reservation- so you can do the cabana (up to 8 people) and then use your pool reservation for your check-in or check-out day.
Cabana rates for the 2020 summer season are in the chart below:
Note- there is ample seating poolside, and every station has a large umbrella. there is also a large amount of seating under a covered patio in the outdoor pool. So if you are just looking for shade and on a limited budget, the cabana isn’t the only option.
Travel to Gaylord Rockies During COVID
During the time when the COVID virus is active in Colorado, the Gaylord has made all of the necessary accommodations to keep guests safe and healthy throughout their stay. Some of the changes they have made include:
- All guests and employees of the Gaylord must wear a mask on the property and practice social distancing
- Rooms are cleaned with an electrostatic sprayer after each guest vacates the rooms- more information on cleaning procedures here.
- The spa has reduced hours (Fridays and Saturdays only)
- Many restaurants are closed or have reduced hours or menus- latest information here.
- You must book a pool reservation for your stay because of reduced number of guests allowed to use the pool at any given time.
Real talk here- the pool gets a little crazy in the evenings (like 5-8) and on the weekends. If you want to stay away from the people and really be able to socially distance, I suggest heading to the resort midweek and hitting the pools early.
Related post: Coronavirus Travel Tips- Packing Tips For Families
Gaylord Rockies FAQ
Book A Stay At Gaylord Rockies Family Resort
To book your stay, head to the Gaylord Rockies Marriott booking site to choose your room type, dates and see the latest specials.