We took the kids to Universal Studios Orlando recently for their (and my husband’s!) first experience! We stayed at the Cabana Bay Beach Resort which is short shuttle ride or walk away from the park and here to share our review.
We were provided with complimentary accommodations and theme park tickets in exchange for coverage of our stay.
Living in the Tampa Bay area allows us easy access and frequent trips to the Orlando area theme parks. (You can catch our other experiences here.) Recently we took a weekend trip to Universal Studios and stayed at the Cabana Bay Beach Resort.
UNIVERSAL’S CABANA BAY BEACH RESORT
Cabana Bay Beach Resort is one of Universal’s on-site prime value hotels with a fun, retro-style vibe. The resort is right next door to Universal’s Volcano Bay water park (we could see it from our room!). There was honestly so much to do at the resort itself that I wish we could have stayed a little longer.
Accommodations & Amenities
We arrived on a Friday night, which I assume is a typical start of vacation for most families, and was greeted by a long line for check-in. My husband wandered around and explored with the kids while I waited in line. (I mention this just so you are aware and can be prepared with your own little ones just in case.) The resort lobby was bright and vibrant while staying 100% in retro theme. The actual check-in experience went rather quickly and we were off to our room shortly after.
There are currently 2,200 guest rooms including the Family Suites which we stayed in. Our suite overlooked the Cabana Courtyard (pool/water slide). We were in the building right next to the Lobby which made it an easy walk to dining and the pool.
The family suites include a small kitchenette, living space with sofa bed, a partitioned off bedroom with two queen beds, closet and bathroom. My husband and I loved being able to put the kids to bed and head back out to the living room area to watch a little TV before going to bed ourselves.
The rooms were clean, stocked with towels and soaps, etc and decorated in the same 1950s retro decor complete with an old school alarm clock.
There are 7 different types of dining options available at Cabana Bay Beach Resort.
-Bayliner Diner (food court style dining with different themed stations)
-Galaxy Bowl Restaurant (table service while you bowl!)
-Atomic Tonic (poolside bar & grill)
-The Hideaway Bar & Grill (located in the Lazy River Courtyard)
-Swizzle Lounge (bar/lounge area located in the lobby.)
-Delizioso Pizza (pizza delivered to your room!)
We ate at Bayliner Diner Friday night after we arrived and each morning for breakfast. You’ll find your typical family friendly meal options and plenty for the pickiest of eaters (like my kids) as well. My kids were most excited about the french toast and chocolate chip pancakes for breakfast!
I attempted to grab coffee at Starbucks a couple times, but the line was always really long. The coffee at Bayliner Diner was pretty good, so I didn’t really mind missing out on my Starbucks run. Saturday night we had dinner at Galaxy Bowl Restaurant. (More about that below.)
There is so much to do right on the resort property! Even if we didn’t have tickets to Universal Studios, my kids would have been just as happy spending the whole time at the hotel. From bowling and arcade games to swimming in the zero-entry pool complete with a water slide, Cabana Bay Beach Resort has something for everyone!
We spent most of our time in the Cabana Courtyard! We had a gorgeous view of the zero-entry pool and iconic dive tower waterslide right from our room so obviously the kids only wanted to be there! The courtyard features a cute little turf area with hula hoops and other games for the kids to play, cabanas for rent (additional fee, but includes a TV, phone to order pizza delivery, refrigerator and seating for up to 6 people), a splash pad area for the little ones, and the Atomic Tonic pool bar for drinks and post-swim munchies!
We totally took advantage of the on-site bowling alley/restaurant Saturday night. Galaxy Bowl is located upstairs in the lobby area and features 10 lanes of bowling fun with table service! We grabbed drinks, dinner and had the kids bowling for the first time ever!
Other recreational activities include the Lazy River Courtyard (additional fee to purchase a tube), a fitness studio and Game-O-Rama filled with old school and some of the latest high-tech games.
– Early Park Admission† to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ and Universal’s Volcano Bay™.
– Free shuttles to the parks
– Resort-wide charging privileges with your room key.
– Complimentary merchandise delivery to your hotel from Universal shops.
– Complimentary Universal CityWalk™ access* to select venues for the length of stay.
– Priority seating at select Universal Orlando™ restaurants.
If you have any questions about the Cabana Bay Beach Resort, leave them in the comments below!
Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort is located at 6550 Adventure Way, Orlando, FL 32819. For reservations, visit their website or call (407) 503-4000.