This article is reprinted by permission from NerdWallet. In Orlando, Florida, there’s no shortage of bars that’ll make you a mocktail. Many are almost certainly designed for the under-21 crowd, including “The Simpsons”-inspired Flaming Moe. The bubbling, citrusy, nonalcoholic concoction is served at Universal Studios Florida.
But in the city known for being family-friendly, there’s an entirely different set of bars specifically not for kids, such as The Bandbox, a 1920s Art Deco-inspired speakeasy. Customers must be 21 or older, and while there’s no official dress code, there’s a more elegant vibe at this intimate lounge. The Bandbox owner, Kevin Zepf, emphasizes that his bar doesn’t serve traditional mocktails, which tend to be ultra-sweet and contain ingredients like juices, syrups and sodas. In contrast to classics like Shirley Temples, virgin Piña Coladas or even the Flaming Moe, The Bandbox serves nonalcoholic craft cocktails using alternative or distilled spirits. When The Bandbox opened in 2022, it became Orlando’s first spirit-free cocktail-tasting lounge and bottle shop. While it’s Orlando’s first, it’s just one of a growing list of bars, hotels and cruise lines worldwide that serve high-end, alcohol-free cocktails. The same month that The Bandbox opened, the ette-brand hotel in Orlando opened nearby. The ette hotel doesn’t serve any alcohol (though guests can pack their own). Unlike the myriad kid-friendly hotels nearby serving up Mickey waffles, the 126-room luxury property distinguishes itself with quiet grounds and a serene spa — a sharp contrast to Walt Disney World
just a mile away. It’s not just Orlando that’s booming with nona …