It’s true that the Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center created its SoundWaves water attraction as a perk for its overnight guests.
But there is no reason to let out-of-towners have all the fun.
There are two “guaranteed” ways locals can enjoy this unique water and music experience. And we can even get a good deal on admission to this $90 million 4-acre indoor/outdoor park resort that was added to the Gaylord Opryland complex in 2018.
There is a SoundWaves Experience Package, which includes a room at the hotel and up to five SoundWaves wristbands per room. The prices vary by date and, of course, the number of people in the room.
For this 2021 season, package rates start at $219 for a family of four, with the Davidson County up to 40% discount (code L9Z).
Tennessee residents get a discount of up to 25% (code M16), putting the starting price for those rooms at $322.
Prices don’t include tax or resort fees or parking, and there are some blackout dates.
A big advantage of the room package is that you get two days’ worth of SoundWaves activities since you could enjoy the attraction on the day you check in and through checkout time the next day.
The other option for locals is to rent one of the three SoundWaves party rooms that are available for six to 30 guests. Locals can get up a group and enjoy a full day of SoundWaves fun. Reservations start at $43 per person Monday through Thursday, or $53 per person on Friday or Sunday and $58 on Saturday and holidays.
The price includes a wristband that provides all-day access to everything in SoundWaves and two hours in the party room, where the hotel provides pizza and soft drinks for the group. There are also some self-parking passes included. Tax and gratuity are not included.
SoundWaves includes a wave pool with a giant LED movie screen, a 45-foot slide, a kids pool, rock climbing, indoor surfing, a lazy river, 11 water slides (including two thriller slides), an indoor toddler play area and two adult-only pools.
The full indoor/outdoor SoundWaves is currently open weekends but will be open daily May 28 through Aug. 15, and then back to weekends through Labor Day. Hours vary.
Some COVID-19 precautions remain in place, including a requirement of face coverings indoors, and hotel officials say the 4-acre outdoor SoundWaves is naturally socially distanced.
Don’t miss the “human dryer,” where guests can walk in and get instantly dry before entering the air-conditioned hotel.
There are 11 water slides (five indoor and six outdoor), including thriller slides Beat Drop, where the floor drops out from under you, plunging you into the water, and the Bass Drop, which is described as a “body ride” that includes a 6-story free fall.
There is a 37-foot-wide LED screen at the wave pool showing music videos.
No outside food and drink are allowed.
Children 14 and under must be accompanied by an adult.
Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center is celebrating 44 years in business, and now has almost 3,000 rooms and 9 acres of indoor gardens in addition to SoundWaves. It remains the largest non-casino hotel in the continental United States.
Mary Hance, who has four decades of journalism experience in the Nashville area, writes a weekly Ms. Cheap column. She also appears on Thursdays on “Talk of the Town” on NewsChannel 5. Reach her at email@example.com and follow her on Facebook as Facebook.com/mscheap.