Hotels Travel Advice

A Stay At The Cabana Bay Resort, Universal, Orlando

It’s not often that we stay in a hotel that exceeds our expectations. Happily, our stay at The Cabana Bay Resort proved to be one of those occasions.

To give the hotel it’s full title ‘The Cabana Bay Beach Resort’ is one of Universal Orlando’s on-site hotel which is co-owned and managed by Loews Hotels & Resorts.

Check out more of Disney and Universal in our Daily Orlando Quick Vlogs.

The Cabana Bay Style

The hotel is styled in the classic American space-age designs of the late 1950’s early 60’s. A colourful mix of Diners, The Jetsons and Rock ‘N’ Roll Beach Parties. The design made us smile as soon as we entered the large lobby which really reminded us of a newly opened 1950’s airport building as if it had been lifted directly from the film ‘Catch Me If You Can’. If you want to get that Cabana Bay style at home check out this post for inspiration.

The Cabana Bay Lobby

The large lobby of the Cabana Bay Resort

Outside in the car park are a selection of classic American cars, just some of the little retro touches which are repeated throughout the hotel.

Classic Cars Cabana Bay

The classic cars outside the Cabana Bay Resort

The Check-In

Although the Cabana Bay was big the service was excellent. Check-in was quick and easy and the staff were very helpful, arranging a slightly later checkout was not an issue.

The only slightly negative aspect was that our room was quite a long walk from reception, however, help with the bags was avilable if required.

The Rooms
Cabana Bay Bedrooms

The Cabana Bay bedrooms in the Beachside building

Our room was in the ‘Beachside’ building, this building was the latest addition to the Cabana Bay resort and was adjacent to the new Volcano Bay water theme park which was useful.

The retro styling Cabana Bay buildings

The retro styling Cabana Bay buildings, We stayed in the Beachside, the blue tower on the left.

The rooms were a decent size and decorated in retro colours of blues, whites and oranges. They even had vintage style packaging on the shampoo and soaps.

The Bathroom

The Cabana Bay bathroom

The view from our room on the 4th floor looked over one of the large pool areas but there was no noise. In fact, the rooms were very quiet and as the Beachside building was a tower at the far end of the hotel there wasn’t any ‘though traffic’ noise in the corridors.

The View

The view over one of the pools from our room

The Cabana Bay Facilities

Although staying at the Cabana Bay does not give you Universal Express Passes for the theme parks it does give you early admission, one hour before the parks open. Also, it has it’s own residents only entrance to the new Volcano Bay water theme park.

This water park has just opened and the queues were long but with the early admission, we managed to get sunbeds on the beach in the shade and simply walk onto 5 of the big attractions before the main gates opened to the public.

The Beachside Building

Looking at our Beachside Building from inside Volcano Bay

The hotel is not on the boat service to City Walk and the other Universal parks but there is a shuttle bus. We were initially concerned there were going to be long queues in the morning but this was not the case. There were plenty of air conditioned buses and the longest we waited in the morning was 5 minutes, the rest of the time the buses were already there waiting for us.

Galaxy Bowl

The Galaxy bowling lanes

The facilities also included:

  • 2 Swimming Pools
  • A Lazy River
  • Jack LaLanne Physical Fitness Studio
  • A Bowling Alley
  • Lobby and Pool Bars

as well as game rooms and play areas for kids (which we avoided).

As a couple, we are not a big fan of quick service restaurants and unfortunately, there was not a full-service restaurant on-site. The food in the Bayliner Diner was good but it would’ve been nice to have a ‘proper’ restaurant.

This was our only minor criticism of an otherwise outstanding hotel. In their defence, they do offer a dining shuttle which takes you to signature restaurants in their other resort hotels and there are plenty of options in City Walk.

The Bayliner Diner

The Bayliner Diner showing 1950’s TV

Although the hotel is big with over 2000 rooms it didn’t feel crowded, we had plenty of space by the pools and the public areas were spacious.

The Fifties Neon Styling

The 1950’s retro styling

Would We Stay At The Cabana Bay Resort Again

That would be a definite ‘Yes’! The hotel exceeded our expectations, the styling was really good fun, the pool areas were great and the service was excellent. We actually enjoyed our stay at the Cabana Bay more than our previous stays at the Premier Universal hotels, The Royal Pacific and The Hard Rock Hotel.

We hope to return very soon.

Have you stayed in a reasonably priced hotel that exceeded your expectations?


The Cabana Bay Beach Resort, Universal, Orlando

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  • Angela
    June 30, 2017 at 4:42 pm

    One day we’ll get to Universal. This hotel look amazing, very colourful.

    • Mr and Mrs W
      June 30, 2017 at 7:03 pm

      It was a really good, the theming and service were wonderful.

  • Leah | Five for the Road
    June 30, 2017 at 7:03 pm

    We love Cabana Bay!! We are staying again in August!!

    • Mr and Mrs W
      June 30, 2017 at 7:05 pm

      We loved it too, we will definitely go back. Hope you have an excellent time.

  • Tanvi
    July 1, 2017 at 8:28 am

    OMG! This place looks surreal.. Beautiful pictures and I loved the lobby very much!

    • Mr and Mrs W
      July 1, 2017 at 12:29 pm

      It was a fun place to stay.

  • Danik
    July 1, 2017 at 8:59 am

    This looks like a fun place to dtay Would consider staying here if I ever get to Theme Park state.

    • Mr and Mrs W
      July 1, 2017 at 12:30 pm

      It was really useful for the Universal parks too, you got admission an hour early, before the crowds.

  • Mei from Travel with Mei and Kerstin
    July 1, 2017 at 11:34 am

    We didn’t stop in Orlando during our last road trip through Florida, but we’ll definitely visit it next time. And this review comes in handy… now we’ll know where to stay next time. I really like the turquoise rooms, which give a true “vacations” atmosphere. 🙂 Thanks for sharing this!

    • Mr and Mrs W
      July 1, 2017 at 12:31 pm

      There was a fun, fifties beach atmosphere. We would stay there again.

  • Barb
    July 2, 2017 at 10:34 am

    What an awesome, colorful hotel! It looks like so much fun to stay there!

    • Mr and Mrs W
      July 4, 2017 at 12:56 pm

      It was nice to stay in a hotel that wasn’t just beige.

  • Gokul Raj
    July 2, 2017 at 1:14 pm

    That is one really colorful place to stay. Love those vintage cars as well.

    • Mr and Mrs W
      July 4, 2017 at 12:57 pm

      Yes, the cars were a nice touch.

  • Sandy N Vyjay
    July 3, 2017 at 1:26 am

    The Cabana Bay resort looks so quirky and fascinating. The old classic automobiles are something that i would freak on. the interiors of the place are so vibrant and colourful. So apt for the location. I am sure it would be a bright experience spending time in this lovely resort.

    • Mr and Mrs W
      July 4, 2017 at 12:58 pm

      It was a great resort, more fun than the more expensive Universal hotels nearby. The classic ‘Jetsons’ styling was amazing.

  • Megan Jerrard
    July 4, 2017 at 2:56 am

    I LOVE the 1950’s / 60’s theme – really does remind me of Catch me if you can, which is one of my all time favorite movies. Super cool that it includes an hour early park admission also – thanks for the heads up on this hotel!

    • Mr and Mrs W
      July 4, 2017 at 12:59 pm

      They did the theme so well, they had classic shows and films playing in the diner as well.

  • Janna
    July 5, 2017 at 4:27 am

    What a cool place to stay! I’ve always been on a hunt for fun and hip places to stay and this hotel is just that. The decor is so refreshing and modern. Would definitely check this out!

    • Mr and Mrs W
      July 7, 2017 at 2:52 pm

      It’s a big hotel but the service and styling were really excellent.

  • Cai Dominguez
    July 5, 2017 at 5:01 pm

    Wow! This hotel is very instagramable. I love how colorful it is. It looks so fun to stay here! I would keep this in mind 🙂

    • Mr and Mrs W
      July 7, 2017 at 2:53 pm

      It was very colourful, just a shame we didn’t get bright blue skies to really show the colours.