Universal Orlando is well-known for their two world-class theme parks that are home to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade and its “London” counterpart the spectacular Diagon Alley. However, Universal also has four first-rate on-site hotels that pamper your family with luxurious amenities and impressive perks to visit the parks. Loews Royal Pacific Resort hearkens back to a romantic age of exploration when turboprop engine planes brought travelers to Polynesian Isles. Continue reading for more details, photos, and review of my stay at Loews Royal Pacific Resort at Universal Orlando.
Location and Lobby
Walking across the bamboo covered bridge into Loews Royal Pacific Resort transports you both in space and time – you’ve exited the 21st Century and enter the late 1930’s era grand style of luxury travel to remote Pacific Islands.
The friendly lobby staff welcome you to your South Seas Vacation.
The lobby surrounds a spectacular outdoor water feature fountain with orchid covered palm trees stretching for the sky.
For a hotel with a view of the coasters and attractions of both Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure theme parks, you may be surprised at its luxurious and upscale guestrooms. [Morning view from window below.]
The orchid theme continued in the king-sized bed guestroom. At over 300 sq feet, the room offered plenty of space, and I melted into the pillow-topped king size bed (with silky 300 thread count sheets) for a restful night sleep.
A clever addition was outlets on the front of the night stand for easy access to charging plugs without stretching behind the furniture.
A small dorm-sized refrigerator and Keurig coffee machine were housed in the dresser beneath the flat screen TV.
The room also contained a work desk with comfortable chair, more plugs (great for the computer), complimentary WiFi, and a small couch that converted to a bed.
The bathroom featured a separate bath and vanity area, plush towels, and rainforest shower head in addition to a hand held shower.
Inside the room some noise could be heard from the Islands of Adventure theme park, but as soon as the park closed at 9:00pm, all was silent – perfect for sleeping.
There are multiple onsite restaurants at Loews Royal Pacific ranging from the high-end Emeril’s Tchoup Chop (from celebrity chef Emeril Lagasse), to the mid-range Islands Dining Room, to pub food in Jake’s American Bar. You can also find a sushi bar in the Orchid Lounge (across from the lobby that also offers breakfast in the morning), a weekly Wantilan Luau dinner show, and a poolside bar and grill.
I only tried one restaurant during my overnight stay, and opted for Jake’s American Bar as I love a big, thick, juicy hamburger and beer.
The food and service were fantastic, and they also have a monthly beer festival that pairs a five-course dinner with microbrews. I happened to visit Jake’s on one of their beer dinner evenings, and it looked like a fantastic event. As a beer fan, I would definitely like to go back and give it a try.
Amenities, Pool, and Recreation
Loews Royal Pacific resort has a stunning lagoon style zero entry feature pool that makes for a fabulous place to while away an afternoon on a chaise lounge in the sun.
The gated children’s wading pool is complete with a sandcastle building area.
And you will also find a sandy beach complete with volleyball court.
Exploring secluded area of the lagoon will uncover hot springs reminiscent of spas.
Families can easily entertain themselves all day at the resort pool, and they even show “dive-in” movies projected on a screen at night. There is also a full workout center at the resort. Of course, the main resort activity are the adjacent Universal Orlando theme parks just a quick walk or leisurely water taxi ride away.
I timed the water taxi ride at less than five minutes from when the craft pulled away from the boat dock until it tied up at Universal CityWalk. A great, and scenic, way to get from the resort to the parks. Or, even better, getting those tired feet back from a day spent at the theme parks back to the comfort of their guestroom at Loews Royal Pacific Resort.
In addition to the water taxis to and from the parks, families staying at Loews Royal Pacific Resort receive FREE Universal Express unlimited ride passes allowing them to skip the regular lines in the park. This benefit alone costs $89/person/day for non-resort guests. You also receive early park admission to experience The Wizarding World of Harry Potter one hour before regularly scheduled park opening, a fantastic way to get in and see the most popular attractions in the parks before the crowds descend.
Loews Royal Pacific would be a fantastic resort to anchor a family vacation in any part of the country, but, coupled with the Universal Orlando theme park benefits, Loews Royal Pacific becomes a tropical paradise theme park vacation second to none.
DISCLOSURE: Adventures by Daddy was hosted by the Loews Royal Pacific, and received a special media rate during our stay. However, all opinions expressed are those of the author. For more family travel news, reviews, and trip reports, be sure to follow Adventures by Daddy on Twitter and “like” our Facebook page, too.