This post was written by Nancy, who is a regular contributor. She also runs a blog Savingforadream
Recently, my family of 5 stayed at the Hyatt Regency Lost Pines Resort and Spa for a 3-day weekend. I booked the trip about 13 months prior by converting Chase Ultimate Rewards into Hyatt Gold Passport points on 1:1 basis.
I chose this resort because it has a Camp Hyatt, it advertises an impressive list of recreational activities, and it’s located within driving distance from our house. Just a few weeks earlier, I had stayed with kids at the Hyatt Regency Bloomington near the Mall of America, but it didn’t seem like a good fit for my family. This hotel was quite the opposite—it was perfect and provided us with just the break we needed!
The property is located about 4 ½ hours from my house, east of Austin near Bastrop, Texas on the Colorado River. It’s a little off the beaten path, and it’s more of a destination resort as opposed to one you just use for a good night’s sleep after touring other places all day. Google Maps took us on this road to get there. We thought we might be going the wrong way.
After a few miles, we arrived at the resort. I guess our GPS took us the back way because we entered through the service entrance. We couldn’t believe how many cars were there, considering the isolated location!
I was surprised at how large the resort was. I couldn’t capture it in one photo since it was so sprawling. Here is a photo of the lawn behind the lobby with just some of the buildings:
The hotel has almost 500 rooms in addition to meeting/conference facilities. Originally, I booked a queen-queen standard room. The website does not allow you to book 5 people in one of these rooms, but I had called the front desk 13 months prior (not the Hyatt corporate number) to get approval to stay with 5 people if we used existing bedding.
Then late last year, I was matched to Hyatt Diamond status and given several Diamond Suite Upgrade (DSU) certificates. I changed my reservation from an “all-points” to a “Points + Cash” booking and used one of my DSUs to upgrade to a Junior Suite that sleeps 5 people.
When I checked in, the front desk employee informed me that I received a bigger upgrade to a conference room suite. We were assigned the Fayette Suite, which was located on the first floor near the outdoor Hummingbird Garden. I was certainly surprised at this additional upgrade because the hotel was very full for the holiday weekend.
The suite was the size of three standard rooms. The living room area had a sleeper sofa and a smaller sofa. There was also a large dining table as well as a full-size kitchen.
The suite included the adjacent sleeping area, which was the size of a standard king bed-type room. We had a ton of space! As I’ve mentioned in a previous Hyatt Regency review, Hyatt has the most comfortable beds out of any hotel chain, at least in my opinion. Even the sofa bed was very comfortable!
The only weird/negative thing I will say about the rooms is that the hotel does not automatically give you a rollaway bed for the 5th person. I assumed since we had officially added the 5th guest to our reservation when we changed to a Junior Suite that we would have a rollaway.
That was not the case, and the hotel was out of rollaways. It was no problem though, because my daughter fit perfectly on the second sofa (not a sleeper sofa). When I was checking out, the family next to me who was checking in had the same dilemma. So if you are booking a suite for 5, I recommend calling in advance to secure a rollaway.
Regency Club Lounge
One of my Diamond status benefits is the use of the hotel’s Regency Club Lounge with complimentary food. I wasn’t very optimistic based on the experience from our last hotel, but this lounge was awesome! It was a lot bigger than the one at Hyatt Regency in Bloomington.
During the day from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., the lounge offered desserts and snacks. Typically, there were cookies and another dessert as well as fruit, dried fruit and nuts. There was a big assortment of drinks in the refrigerator.
The breakfast choices were plentiful. There was a large assortment of cereal, oatmeal, pastries and muffins, fruit, hard-boiled eggs, cheese, breads and a hot dish that changed every day. The hot dishes during our stay were scrambled eggs with a side of brisket, egg and bacon breakfast sandwiches and biscuits and gravy. Yum!
The evening service from 5 – 10 p.m. was also quite good. The spread included cheese, vegetables, a selection of bread and sandwich meats as well as hot vegetables and a hot dish that changed every night. The hot appetizers while we were there included chipotle meatballs, chicken ravioli and a meat pasta.
Somehow I missed taking a photo of the dessert station that was out every night. The desserts were to die for! Chocolate chip pecan pie, s’mores brownies, lemon bars, cinnamon chocolate caramel tart…I must say that the pastry chef at this hotel was excellent. I think the breakfast croissants were also house-made, and they were out-of-this-world delicious!
Food at the Resort
The food in the club lounge was so good and plentiful that we ate breakfast, a snack and dinner there every day. I had also brought some Lunchables, chips and sandwich stuff from home to save money, so we didn’t buy a lot of food from the resort.
The pool area had a bar and grill. One day, my husband and son ate lunch there, and it was $36 for just the two of them for chicken strips, a chicken sandwich, two sides and two drinks. Outside of the pool area and near the playground were two food trucks. One sold shaved ice, and the other sold pizza and gyros. One day, we ordered a whole cheese pizza for lunch for ~$20.
The lobby had a Starbucks and I assume some smaller to-go items for breakfast, but we never really checked it out. The hotel also had a bar and grill inside, a larger buffet restaurant, a nicer steak house and a restaurant attached to the golf club. My husband and I ate dinner at the golf club restaurant during a date night, which I will describe in a subsequent post.
Overall, the food at the resort is a little pricey but it matches the prices of other resorts. Since there is nowhere nearby to eat off-site, I was glad that we had the club lounge for most of our meals. Every room has a small refrigerator, so if you want to save money, consider bringing food with you. The great thing about all of the dining options (including the food trucks) is that we could charge our orders to our room and not have to worry about carrying around our wallets.
Stay tuned for Part 2, which will cover the pool and recreational activities as well as strategies for using credit cards to stay here for free!
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