Gaylord Palms Resort & Convention Center is a hotel and convention center, opened in Kissimmee, Florida, on February 2, 2002. It also acts as the de facto convention center for Osceola County, Florida, until plans for their own dedicated convention center are realized. With of total meeting space, the Gaylord Palms has the second most meeting space of any hotel in the state of Florida. It also has a total of 1,406 guest rooms.
Gaylord Palms is owned and operated by Gaylord Hotels, a division of Gaylord Entertainment Company, and is a sister hotel to the Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center and Gaylord Texan Resort & Convention Center. It is located at the corner of International Drive South and Osceola Parkway, about 1/2 mile east of Interstate 4, 1/2 mile west of the Central Florida GreeneWay, north of US 192 and only a few miles away from Walt Disney World Resort.
Gaylord Palms was originally to be named Opryland Hotel Florida. However, when Gaylord Entertainment decided to re-brand their Opryland Hotels division to Gaylord Hotels on October 26, 2001, the name Gaylord Palms was given to the Florida hotel.
To local residents, Gaylord Palms is best known for its Christmas programming with large-scale events like Best of Florida Christmas and ICE!, an attraction hand-carved from two million pounds of ice.
Gaylord Hotels has a tentative plan to expand the Gaylord Palms. This expansion may include an additional atrium containing up to 500 more rooms. There will be an added entertainment center, (which may contain a night club/disco), along with two new restaurants as well. This project will include and additional 400,000 to 600,000 sq.ft. of meeting/convention space, in effect doubling the current convention space. The Gaylord Palms will become Osceola County's Official Convention Space. This planned expansion will also add at least one parking garage to the property which desperately needs additional parking space.
Osceola County, Florida, at one point had aspirations to build its own convention center. One of the available plans was to give $103 million to Gaylord Hotels to expand the Gaylord Palms' convention center to 1.1 million ft². Under the agreement, the convention center would be renamed the Osceola County Convention Center at Gaylord Palms, and profits would be shared by the county and the hotel.