A Guide to the 8 Hotels Near Universal Studios Orlando
By Samantha Davis-Friedman
Once flights are booked and theme park tickets are purchased, the next major decision for clients planning a Universal Orlando vacation is their hotel stay. Luckily, Universal Orlando Resort has eight hotels across four categories — Premier, Preferred, Prime Value and Value — so there's a perfect choice for every traveler.
All on-site hotels offer amenities including complimentary transportation to the parks and Universal CityWalk, early park admission and charging privileges across the resort. Plus, clients who book Premier-level hotels also receive complimentary Universal Express Unlimited Ride Access, which can add up to $350 per person, per day, to the cost of park tickets.
"With the growth of our hotel portfolio, we now have the right hotel for any traveler, any style and any budget," said David Bartek, senior vice president of operations for Loews Hotels at Universal Orlando. “All our hotels were designed to be attractions unto themselves, so choosing which hotel is the best fit is a matter of who clients will be traveling with and what kind of experience they want.”
Loews Portofino Bay Hotel
Loews Portofino Bay Hotel transports clients to an Italian seaside village with an authentic gelateria and waterfront piazza that bustles with water taxis during the day and showcases live alfresco opera performances at night. Portofino Bay also offers an interactive cooking experience where clients can create fresh pasta dishes. And although it's only a few minutes from park gates, the elegant hotel offers a relaxing escape after a busy day.
Hard Rock Hotel
Clients can live like rock stars at Hard Rock Hotel, a California mission-style-designed “mansion” featuring memorabilia, live music and a palm-lined pool with a 260-foot waterslide and kids’ water play area — all less than 1 mile from the theme parks. Clients can also enjoy Americana nostalgia at The Kitchen, a full-service restaurant serving comfort food with a side of rock ’n’ roll attitude.
Families with teens tend to enjoy Hard Rock Hotel, according to Leah Ferguson, a senior travel advisor with Key to the World Travel.
“And if the guitar-shape pool that pipes music underwater doesn't feed their inner rock star, they can choose a Fender guitar to be delivered to the room,” she added.
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