Earlier this summer I stayed for the first time at Universal’s Portofino Bay Hotel. To make this trip extra special, we decided to try out Club Level and I can’t wait to tell you all the things I loved about this experience!
Beauty and Tranquility
Portofino Bay is themed after the fishing village of Portofino, Italy and it is as quaint as its namesake. Everywhere you look at this resort, you see something to admire. There are little terraces and alcoves and courtyards to explore all over the property and they are wonderful places to sit down with a nice book and a cup of coffee! Of all the Universal onsite hotels (and I’ve now stayed at all of them) I think that Portofino Bay is by far the most picturesque.
Great Perks and Amenities
Portofino Bay is more than a pretty face! This resort offers so much included in the price of your stay. You get unlimited express pass, which allows you to skip the standby lines at most rides and attractions (with valid park admission). This perk enables you to spend less time waiting around and more time having fun! Portofino Bay is also within walking distance of Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure, but if you would prefer not to walk there is convenient, complimentary water taxi service which can have you at the parks in minutes. There’s also a great fitness center, excellent dining options, and awesome pools!
Plenty of Space
Portofino Bay has the largest standard rooms of any of the onsite Universal hotels. The Club Level rooms are even larger than the standard rooms and I have to say that I LOVED having that little bit of extra space. Also, the bathrooms at Portofino Bay are very spacious and well laid out. There are double sinks with a large countertop, a good sized walk-in shower, and a separate water closet. Our room also had a nice desk area which came in handy for me when I was working for my clients.
I have been spoiled by Club Level and now I don’t know if I can ever go back! As I mentioned above, Club Level rooms are larger than standard rooms and they also have a great location close to transportation and the pools. Staying Club Level also gets you access to the exclusive Club Lounge, where continental breakfast, afternoon snacks, evening hors d’oeuvres, desserts, and beverages are served. The continental breakfasts we enjoyed were hearty offerings such as breakfast sandwiches and wraps along with pastries, cereal, and oatmeal. Afternoon snacks included potato chips, chips and salsa, and fresh fruits and vegetables. Evening hors d’oeuvres were filling enough to serve as dinner. For example, we enjoyed grilled chicken breast, Spanish style rice, steamed green beans, and zucchini. For dessert, we had cannoli, cookies, tiramisu, and cheesecake. I genuinely believe that our family saved money staying Club Level because we weren’t spending as much money on meals and snacks in the parks. We had breakfast in the Club Lounge, went to the parks, came back for a break and enjoyed some snacks in the lounge, went back to the parks, and then came back to the lounge in the evening for dinner and dessert.
The Bottom Line
I greatly enjoyed my stay at Portofino Bay: so much so that it is now my favorite onsite resort at Universal Orlando. I’ve been lucky enough to stay at all 8 onsite properties and I love them all for different reasons, but I don’t think you can beat the charm, amenities, convenience, and value of Portofino Bay. If you’d like to get a quote for your family to stay at this beautiful property, fill out our quote form on the homepage. And remember: it’s the same price to book your vacation with one of our agents as it is to book it directly through Universal, but when you book with us you get our concierge level vacation planning service completely free of charge!