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Portofino Bay

Mad Dog

Premium Member
Jan 30, 2013
20,889
Pittsburgh area
That move truly baffled me. I know you and I have discussed this at length before, but for those that weren’t privy, it simply comes down to: They’re too big in too many domestic/business hotbeds to drop a loyalty program.

My family and I travel a lot.
I’m highest status for both Hyatt (Globalist) and Hilton (Diamond) as well as a high tier for Marriott (Platinum).
We flew 64,000 miles this year for leisure alone; 16 trips, 8 of which were international.

I specifically seek out brands that I have status for. Every hotel and airline brand realizes this. Some do very well with it (Hyatt) and some are poor (Airlines), but they make the effort. A perfect comparison to Loews is Omni I’m terms of size and locations. Omni is part of Discovery, which partners with a couple dozen other smaller chains. Outrigger, Meritage, etc. Small Luxury Hotels is another that was smaller and partnered with Hyatt instead of dropping its program outright. The list goes on. But again, they’re too large to not focus on it. I used to stay at Loews but dropped them simply due to losing YouFirst. I only stay with them in Orlando now.

I’m currently at the Park Hyatt in Mendoza and got upgraded to the 1700 square foot presidential suite. 8 bottles of wine, more chocolate than I could stomach and a stocked fridge.
Clearly, that’s not what’s expected. But a $5 bottle of sparkling wine, access to a breakfast buffet on-site, or even just a couple of macarons make all the difference in feeling appreciated as a returning customer or not. And because Thompson was acquired by Hyatt, I’ll never return to Loews outside of Orlando again.
Yes, it made no business sense to discontinue the You First program. When they sent out the notice they promised a 'replacement' of some sort within 6 months. Complete crickets and radio silence since then. ...and...I don't know if it's a change of management at RP & Portofino (I can't speak for Hard Rock since I don't go there), or a change in management philosophy, but both resorts have slipped in repeat customer service. Thinking it's more on the individual hotels management since the customer service at CBBR (Lowes managed though not branded) continues to be quite good...........and Theme Park Insider just now named the winner of their 2019 Award for Best Moderate or Budget Theme Park Hotel. Cabana Bay won again.
 

blusky

Newcomer
Dec 9, 2019
8
I live in the Orlando area, but choose to stay at Cabana Bay this last summer, so I could get a good look at Volcano Bay. While making a desicion on my AP. Weather is to unpreditable and passed on it. For special occasion I like to stay close by. Sounds like its not even worth checking out the other resorts on property??
 

Disneyhead

Legendary Member
Jul 24, 2008
11,531
Orlando, FL
I live in the Orlando area, but choose to stay at Cabana Bay this last summer, so I could get a good look at Volcano Bay. While making a desicion on my AP. Weather is to unpreditable and passed on it. For special occasion I like to stay close by. Sounds like its not even worth checking out the other resorts on property??
With your AP you can get a pretty good rate on The Deluxes. The unlimited express passes are a true luxury. Other than that, the rates at Endless Summer makes it a very attractive option. It's no CBBR, but for the price, it's hard to beat.
 

Aardvark787

Newcomer
May 27, 2019
40
Is there any word of when Portifino will open as it is currently the only Universal hotel which is not open ( except for Dockside but they have never officially opened)
 

Mad Dog

Premium Member
Jan 30, 2013
20,889
Pittsburgh area
Is there any word of when Portifino will open as it is currently the only Universal hotel which is not open ( except for Dockside but they have never officially opened)
It's blacked out through end of June, but they are taking reservations starting July 1st.......They have been renovating the rooms at Portofino for the past six months or more.
 
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Brian G.

Editor-in-Chief
Staff member
Administrator
V.I.P.
Jan 21, 2008
22,610
Orlando, FL
Loews Portofino Bay Hotel will resume operations on December 1st and Universal’s Endless Summer Resort – Dockside Inn & Suites will officially open on December 15th.

 

Mad Dog

Premium Member
Jan 30, 2013
20,889
Pittsburgh area
Loews Portofino Bay Hotel will resume operations on December 1st and Universal’s Endless Summer Resort – Dockside Inn & Suites will officially open on December 15th.

Any info on whether they continued, and finished, planned room renovations at Portofino?
 

Mad Dog

Premium Member
Jan 30, 2013
20,889
Pittsburgh area
Here’s a look.

It looks good when you see the 'totality' of the room on a large computer screen. The previous renovation had already 'lightened' the colors of the rooms, from the original look, quite a bit. This is just a tad lighter than that now.
My favorite color scheme was the original darker look, but this is fine. Actually I prefer it by a little over what was there last year. Good clean look....and my fav color is the relaxing blue. Works for me. As long as the beds are still
super comfortable, and with the luxurious super sized bathrooms, best rooms around. Now if they can just get their service back to the high level it was before the past couple of years, it will be my go to resort again (once CV retreats)
 
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Mad Dog

Premium Member
Jan 30, 2013
20,889
Pittsburgh area
Does anyone what the passholder discount is like for the deluxe resorts?
Depends. It's not always the same....and sometimes it's not even available. Generally if you stay 6 or 7 nights 'Stay More Save More' rates, it's as much, or more, than the AP discount. AP discount though is great for short stays, if it's available.
 

Magic Feather

Contributing Member
Apr 19, 2019
747
I've never been the biggest fan of the looks of the inside of Portofino's room, and this only cements that. While Uni's hotels have generally been favored to me, Disney has been killing ti with room renovations lately, especially compared to Universal. What I don't understand is that Universal's new rooms work so well (Endless Summer, Cabana, Aventura for what it is), but I can't think of a single deluxe renovation at UOR that I've viewed favorably in recent years (RPR's Lobby Market addition excepted).
 

Obi Ubamba

Veteran Member
Mar 25, 2010
1,400
Florida
Is the whole hotel open, including the three pools/club room/Mandara Spa/etc? And I'm assuming the main COVID restrictions include mask wearing and social distancing in the lobby?