Many travelers go to Orlando to visit Disney World and include a day at Universal Orlando. What many people don’t know is that Universal Orlando has its’ own set of amazing hotels and theme parks.

You might find that the adventurous spirit at Universal Orlando appeals to your family better than other theme parks if you’re traveling with teenagers or young adults. With 3 theme parks to choose from- Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure, and Volcano Bay (the newest in the Universal portfolio- a water park like you’ve never seen- opening in 2017)- you could easily fill up a week of thrills at Universal Orlando.

When you make the decision to stay at Universal Orlando, you have five amazing on site hotels and resorts to choose from. Here is an overview of those five properties:


  1. Loews Portofino Bay Hotel– The Portofino Bay Hotel is one of the two Premier hotels onsite. When you arrive at Portofino Bay, you’ll feel whisked away to the Italian Riviera. The hotel has a very luxurious feel to it with spacious rooms (up to 491 square feet in some), well-appointed meeting space, three uniquely themed pools, and several restaurants from which to choose. Even the restaurants have an Italian feel! You can board the water taxi from the dock for a short ride over to all the action at Universal Orlando and CityWalk (Universal’s Entertainment Capitol). When you choose one of Universal’s Premier hotels, you receive free Universal Express Unlimited ride access to skip the regular lines in both Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure. As with all of Universal’s hotels, you’ll receive early park admission on days you have valid theme park admission. Portofino Bay is also one of three Universal hotels to offer their guests priority seating at select restaurants throughout Universal’s theme parks and Universal CityWalk. Finally, Portofino Bay offers a full service day spa and fitness center- The Mandara Spa.                          universalhardrock
  2. Hard Rock Hotel– You’ll feel as though you’ve personally been invited to stay at a mansion of a rock star when you select the second of Universal’s Premier properties. You can party like a superstar in the 12,000 square foot pool complete with underwater sound system. You can even request a guitar and amplifier to be delivered to your room “to practice for your next concert”. The Hard Rock Hotel guests also receive the free Universal Express Unlimited, early park admission, the complimentary transportation to the theme parks and CityWalk as well as the priority seating at select restaurants throughout Universal’s theme parks and CityWalk.  lowesroyalpacific
  3. Loews Royal Pacific Resort– When you choose Loews Royal Pacific Resort, you’ll believe you’ve landed in a tropical paradise featuring excellent island cuisine and a lagoon style pool with its own white sand beach. As one of Universal’s Preferred hotels, you’ll still receive the free Universal Express Unlimited, the early park admission, complimentary transportation to Universal’s theme parks and CityWalk, as well as the restaurant priority seating. You might hear tales of a guy named Jake who landed his plane here and decided to stay and open this place. If you meet him, please let me know!
  4. Loews Sapphire Falls Resort– If you like the island vibe, but prefer an atmosphere a bit more laid back, Loews Sapphire Falls Resort may be the place for you. At this Preferred resort, you will see waterfalls, a resort style pool, and a scenic restaurant with breathtaking water views. Guests at Sapphire Falls receive early park admission and complimentary transportation to the theme parks and CityWalk.
  5. Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort– As Universal’s only Prime Value hotel, you can save a few dollars without sacrificing quality and fun. Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort is a brightly decorated, high energy retro themed hotel with a 50’s and 60’s theme. You’ll love the two huge pools, the lazy river, the on-site bowling alley, complimentary fitness center, and the huge food court. They offer a family suite complete with a mini kitchen that sleeps 6. You’ll also receive the early park admission and the complimentary transportation to the theme parks and CityWalk.


In review, Universal Orlando is a true destination of its’ own. It’s not simply an add on to Disney. They have three thrilling theme parks and five distinctive on property resort hotels to choose from. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is a huge draw for many, but there is so much more at Universal Orlando!

I am Jeri May and I’d love to help you select and book the Universal Orlando hotel that’s right for your next stay. For more information, email me at Jeri@TravelwiththeMagic.com, find me on Facebook, Pinterest, or Twitter.