Monday, January 7, 2013

Port Orleans Guest Review by Rachel...

My friends stayed here while we were there the same week with them but we stayed @ Bonnet creek & she was nice enough to write up a review for everyone! These are her pictures & stories :) - Rachel W.

Port Orleans Notes: 

~ nite swimming! The serpent slide & waterfall are obviously closed/turned off at nite, but it's a great time to have the pool to oneself! We intentionally didn't plan to use pool or water parks this trip. The pool was wonderful when no one was there! 

~Key differences noticed, versus last trip to All Stars.. water pressure in shower is great! Wide expanding curtain rod & new shower head feel great when aching for that fresh shower after sweaty day! 
All Stars even had a sign, to the effect of: "we know our water pressure sucks, but are keeping it low on purpose, to conserve water for the Earth" (with Jimmy Cricket Earth logos) aka and save money..

~Love the Jazz music piped throughout property!! but loudest near the pool. The music is off nite/early morning. We were up odd hours and hearing the music/no music contrast... the music such a lovely addition, and was actually missed it when it wasn't on. it helped with peoples' moods, noticed I wasn't the only one humming along. Granted those people were generally nearest to the bar. ;)
I wasn't expecting resort music to be of any importance as a factor, but it was unexpectedly fun and noteworthy aspect to the ambience and hotel stay. Theming! Contrast from All Stars, I only recall hearing screaming kids and other people's convos.. and did not spend much time outside. We'd say we even used the refillable resort mugs more often bc it was more convenient, than at value resorts, and we spent time enjoying strolling through the property (instead of dashing through the chaos food court, to the bus stops, hoping there won't be a long line...and there is usually a more-than-1-bus long line)

~During peak hours, a CP cast member was posted at the hotel bus stop with an ipad knock off, to relay bus info instaneously. Shout out to Mike from Westpoint, MD soon to graduate school at a SUNY. kidding, but true. We only had 2 wait for second bus once. Otherwise we caught first bus everytime, no matter where & when we were going, or coming from. The parks were unseasonably hot & crowded for October, too. 

~The greenery! Shrubs, trees, and plants make huge impact on the theme & not being an open, concrete expansion like All Stars. We saw daily lizards, frogs, caterpillars and rabbits. They always scurry away when you walk up, but is cute and reminds of natural ambience of the South. few insects too was eventually noticed. There was this same frog who lived up above the pillar on our hotel building 2nd floor, we wondered why he was up there, until we came back at night and saw him eating the insects up there, once that lamp was turned on.. He was there every time (we don't usually notice every frog tho!)


~Smoking sections! Would not have noticed otherwise, but Port Orleans had many! and conveniently located nearby pool, food court, rooms in a court yard with a fountain, etc. 
All Stars had 1 that I ever saw, and it was totes out of the way, crowded.

~I enjoyed many, if not every AM awake early, alone without other guests, sitting down by the pool with sore feet propped up, smoking in authorized section, sipping my resort refillable diet coke, and watching & tweeting photos of the sunrise over the pool!!! and preparing for busy days/evenings . 
The music & pool waterfall turned on at 7:11 AM several days (noted time as was curious if same time every day, but one day at 7:23 so guess not :) Nice time to be outside, alone, weather tolerable, watching employees arrive at pool via golf carts 

~Yes, it is someone's job (many, actually) to blow the pine cones off the sidewalks, wipe benches dry with towels, straighten the tables & chairs, etc. I saw them cleaning often, but never noticed any disorder, so they're very effective and noticable. cast members working outnumbered the guests out during certain hours, interesting

~Few times we saw the horse & carriage trot by on the sidewalks.. Is an additional pay option, didn't try it (kept thinking of that scene from Seinfeld, when Kramer gives the Central Park Horses chili, then drives the carriage around with the consequences of the chili blowing back on the passengers... Of course I mean farting horses, to be blunt) HAHAHA This made me laugh Rachel :) 

~Initially bummed Port Orleans merged with Dixie Landings (to me it will forever be called this!) OK, Port Orleans French Quarter & Port Orleans Riverside, do share buses.. Riverside has 3 stops (at least) to sit through.. But French Quarter is the first stop on & off, each way! :) And several locations, like Magic Kingdom, had separate buses for French Quarter & Riverside 
~The boat to Downtown Disney is always fun! We had a riverside view of the boat path along river & golf course is located, visibly, across the water. Only saw 1 lone golfer the entire stay. 
It was so pleasantly calm & quiet back here in building 1. One morning on water taxis, a cast member was training on the empty boats, and kept reversing & going forward.. was funny to watch! One point I heard across the water, a "NO!" from the instructing cast member! Oops! Dunno exactly what was in reference to, but hope they earned their ears after a final driving test :) Nice benches along water, near the room.

~Highly recommend specifically the PO: French Quarter: Water View if considering staying at either PO resort. For especially jazz, and lover of the calm, natural, artistic touches.. It's the way to go! Probably even left out more details, but they do add up to be worth the money, over the value resorts! If you plan to stay long enough, or come & go often, these minor details really added up to be important, in surprisingly positive way.

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