This is a partnered post. My family was invited to stay at the Universal Orlando Resort to experience many different things. All opinions are my own.
Universal Orlando Resort come to see Diagon Alley, Stay At The Hotels!
Universal Orlando Resort just announced more information on Wizarding World of Harry Potter’s Diagon Alley. This summer not only will you be able to ride the Hogwart’s Express between Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure but you’ll also to experience a new ride, new restaurants and more. Escape from Gringott’s will be a new multi sensory, multi dimensional ride you are sure to enjoy and is said to bring theme park rides to a new level in entertainment. When you get hungry be sure to stop into Leaky Cauldron for some Fish and Chips. If your sweet tooth is calling and you hit your limit on Butter Beer you can fill up on some ice cream at Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream Parlour. They are also opening an even larger wand shop, Scribbulus a shop where you can buy fancy writing implements like ink wells and feather quills. My personal favorite, the “dark arts” will have a shop all its own called Borgin and Burkes located in Knockturn Alley, the dark place. Universal Orlando really knows how to do themed lands better than any other theme park!
But once you are here where should you stay? This depends on your budget. Universal Orlando Resorts is opening up a new budget conscious hotel called Cabana Bay Beach Resort. There will be standard room and family suites. You can book reservations as of March 31, 2014 with full opening July 1st and prices will be just over $100 for standard rooms and suites around $175 and up depending on season.
I’m already loving the looks of this hotel. The creator said he was going for a retro HoJo experience but obviously with more upscale amenities because this is a Universal Orlando Resort/Loews Hotel budget or not. It will be traditional motel style where your room will be on the outside of the building and the building will be focused around the swimming pool. There will be a food court and many forms of entertainment such as 10 lane bowling alley, game room, and a lazy river and two pools! It’s going to be so much fun and offer an onsite hotel option for people who couldn’t afford it previously.
I also had the chance to visit Loews Royal Pacific Resort which is an elegant but still family friendly hotel onsite that offers all the perks. Think South Pacific with tons of orchids and bamboo and many stone statues. I could have explored this beautiful hotel all day it was breathtaking.
The room I stayed in was a standard double queen and it was a bit larger than typical theme park size. It had a very tropical feel with light colored bed covers and contrasting dark wood headboards. The bathroom has a separate sink area so two people can get ready at a time which is always appreciated. The sparkling gem however was the bathroom divider in a deep wood cover that has an intricate design and helps give a bit more privacy without complete cutting out all the light in that area of the room.
There are numerous restaurants in the Royal Pacific to enjoy but we chose to eat breakfast at the Islands Dining Room. They have a breakfast buffet that was more than filling. It served many breakfast favorites such as eggs, bacon, breads, pastries, fresh fruit and so much more. It’s the best choice in the hotel for a long day at the parks.
My absolute favorite dining option in the Loew’s Royal Pacific was Bula Bar. This is the bar restaurant by the pool. Not only do they have an awesome happy hour, but their food is to die for. We went outside with Tracie and Jen’s families during happy hour and also while the movie in the pool was playing. The kids behaved while they watched Despicable Me and the adults were able to eat. Tracie and I shared a huge plate of nachos and that is all we had. They were that big and so darn good. Tim had a hamburger and the kids had chicken fingers, all were delicious. And as mentioned before, the servings were huge. Eat her or your stay just wasn’t complete. I meant that.
I will mention that Emeril has a restaurant here at the hotel and it is “spelled” Tchoup Chop. This is Asian/Polynesian cuisine and it’s fancy and you eat here when it is a special occasion. Or you can go for lunch which is a bit less formal. Either way call first to check on reservation availability by calling (407) 503-CHOP. What I wanted to mention though is that it is pronounced Chop Chop. Yep. Just wanted to put that out there.
I didn’t get to use the pool so I don’t have much of an opinion but I bet it is awesome because it has a ship inside it. Yes you heard me right, there is a boat in the pool. I put up a picture so check it out. It’s called the Royal Bali Sea interactive water play area. I wish we had time to play but the weather wasn’t perfect and we were just a bit rushed. There is also sand and a beach and so many lounge chairs you can’t even count. Just do me a favor and enjoy the pool for me.
This hotel is just beautiful and you need to come and check it out for yourself. I only visited for a few days and was on the go the majority of the time. There are a lot of reasons I recommend staying on site in a Universal Orlando Resort. You can get to the parks quite quickly either by walking or taking the boat. You get special park hours so you can check out things like Wizarding World of Harry Potter for example. However my favorite on site hotel benefit Unlimited Express Pass you get for FREE. So for example, if Spiderman has a 2 hour wait, you’ll be walking by all the sad sacks waiting in line while you pick up those 3D glasses and board your vehicle!
You can make your reservations at http://www.loewshotels.com/en/Royal-Pacific-Resort/.
*This is a partnered post. All opinions are my own.