New Happenings at Universal Orlando

written by | Posted on June 26th, 2014

One of the pool areas at Cabana Bay Beach Resort between the Starlight and Thunderbird towers.

One of the pool areas at Cabana Bay Beach Resort between the Starlight and Thunderbird towers.

There are new happenings at Universal Orlando—from the opening of Diagon Alley opening to a new hotel, new restaurants and fairly new attractions.

Cabana Bay Beach Resort officially opened on June 19, adding 1,800 rooms—900 family suites and 900 standard guestrooms—to Universal Orlando Resort. This moderately priced resort combines a retro feel with modern luxury to give guests the best of both worlds. Amenities are definitely not something this resort is lacking, with two pools—one with a large winding slide, the other next to a lazy river—a bowling alley, a kiddie water area, a fitness center, a lively lobby bar, and onsite restaurants. Cabana Bay Beach Resort takes guests back in time to the 1950s and 60s, as popular hit songs of the era blast through the lobby area, pool, and bowling areas. (The pool and bowling areas have also added modern-day tunes to its playlist as per guests’ requests, according to Russ Dagon, v.p. and executive project director with Universal Creative.) The resort was inspired by the classic family road trip vacation, said Dagon. Adding that this resort is like “a mom and pop hotel on steroids.” With Universal creatives behind this Loews property, no detail was left undone, with even the in-room toiletries packaged in period wrapping, from the Zest soaps and VO5 shampoo and conditioner, to the period cars parked at the front entrance. Modern amenities include in-room microwave, flat-screen TVs, and various USB ports. Lounge chairs around the lazy river and pool area are set on sand, giving guests the feel of a beach getaway. Rates start at $119 for a standard guestroom and $174 for the family suites. Hotel guests also receive Early Park Admission for one hour before the theme parks open. For more information, visit universalorlando.com/Hotels/Cabana-Bay-Beach-Resort.

Hot Dog Hall of Fame is one of three new restaurants opening soon at CityWalk.

Hot Dog Hall of Fame is one of three new restaurants opening soon at CityWalk.

Universal CityWalk just opened Vivo last week, an Italian cuisine restaurant. Soon to follow this year will be Cowfish—a fusion between burgers and sushi selections—and Hot Dog Hall of Fame, serving gourmet hotdogs in a ballpark-themed location, complete with original ballpark seats that were in a stadium.

Thierry Coup, svp of Universal Creative talks about the new Transformers 3-D ride.

Thierry Coup, s.v.p. of Universal Creative talks about the new Transformers 3-D ride.

Other new experiences at Universal Studios Orlando is the Transformers 3-D ride. This action-packed ride leads guests through a 3-D experience dodging   explosions, and attacks by the Decepticons. Springfield, hometown of the TV cartoon characters, “The Simpsons,” comes to life as guests visit locations seen in the series such as Fast Food Boulevard, and Krusty Burger. Guests can treat themselves to a giant donut at Lard Lad or sip on a Flaming Moe, a smoking orange-flavored soda, or beer at Moe’s Tavern.

For more information, visit universaltravelagents.com.