Friday, August 13, 2010

Travel Thursday - Up Today, Disney's Port Orleans Resort - French Quarter

I have this goal...I want to stay at every resort on Walt Disney World property, and I would like to do it in a relatively quick fashion. Generally speaking, we would stay at a different resort each year, but a couple of years ago I found a resort that I love, and since then I have a hard time staying anywhere else.

I don't quite know what it is about Disney's Port Orleans Resort - French Quarter that I am so drawn too. Perhaps it is the size of the resort, it is much smaller than all of the other Disney Resorts with just over 1000 guest rooms (half the size of Disney's other Moderate Category Resorts). This makes it feel quite intimate, and removed from the hustle and bustle of the theme park world. Perhaps it is the property itself, with its cream, and green coloring, wrought iron details, and gorgeous grounds. Maybe its the proximity to Disney's Downtown area; you can take a relaxing boat ride down the Sassagoula River straight to the Marketplace. The overall atmosphere is wonderful too; the resort has a sort of old world romance about it with plenty of tucked away places and grounds to stroll through. I don't know exactly what it is, but there is just something charming about this resort.

I am about to stay at Port Orleans - French Quarter for the third time. The first time was with a girlfriend for a friends wedding, then last year over the 4th of July with just me and my husband on our "babymoon", and our upcoming trip will include our son. No trip for the same reason, no trip with the same traveling party, but I know this resort is perfect for each traveling reason. Here is a short rundown of why I think Disney's Port Orleans - French Quarter is the perfect resort.

1) Size. I know I touched on this above, but it bears mentioning again. Of all the resorts we have visited, the size of this one is a huge bonus. You are never too far from the lobby, bus station, food court, pool, arcade, boat dock, etc. The entire resort is within comfortable walking distance, and believe me, being there at 7 months pregnant and in the dead of summer I would know! Other resorts on Disney Property are insanely huge, and while I enjoy them as well the size can make things difficult. For example, we stayed at Disney's Caribbean Beach Resort over Christmas in 2007, and while our room was supposedly near the food court building, we wound up driving our car over just to fill up our drinks. You can be on the other side of a rather large lake from the main pool, or dining areas, and while there is an internal shuttle, catching it can be next to impossible. At the end of a long day in one of the Parks, you want to be able to get to your room quickly. At Port Orleans - French Quarter you are dropped off right beside the Lobby area, the food court is in there for a quick refill, and when you exit the lobby area you are only a very quick walk to your guest room!

2) Atmosphere. Again, I know I touched on this, but bear with me. This resort feels quiet compared to other Disney Resorts. Not creepy, where are the people quiet, but because there are fewer people it just never feels insane (this does not apply if you try to go to the food court for breakfast anytime after about 7:30AM, you are on your own then!). Even the pool area, which has a very cool slide, isn't particularly loud, and the play areas for children are a little farther from the resort buildings than at other resorts. They play some soft jazz music throughout the resort property, have a live jazz musician in the bar area some evenings (he is fantastic, by the way) and the resort often smells lightly of the magnolia trees planted throughout the property. This resort feels laid back and homey. You feel like you have some space to spread out and relax. The atmosphere is what I am looking for in a hotel stay.

3. Theming. Styled after the historic French Quarter in New Orleans, LA, the resort buildings are surrounded by gorgeous wrought iron gates and balconies, there are numerous small fountains, cobblestone streets, "gas" lampposts, and each building features its own color scheme. With the above mentioned jazz music, the gorgeous landscaping, and the street signs featuring clever names (Jazz Alley and Rue D' Baga) you can't go wrong. The rooms interiors are simple yet elegant, with either two double beds or a single king, dual sinks and a bathroom complete with a tub/shower combo. The colors inside the rooms are soft yellows, deep greens, and hints of purple - your basic muted take on the Mardi Gras colors. The pool area is particularly neat, and features a giant sea serpent complete with King Neptune, and an alligator jazz band. This resort still feels like Disney without being overly so. You will find hints of Disney everywhere, but it doesn't scream at you like the Value properties do. It is just a very pretty, well conceived resort.

Enjoy the pictures!

Beautiful lobby with tons of natural light!

Room with 2 Double Beds

King Room

If you wish to see more pictures, please visit the Disney's Port Orleans - French Quarter photo page at
Not only does allears have great pictures, but they have a video walk-through of the resort so you can see it in  all its natural beauty!

1 comment:

  1. Wow! That is beautiful! I think I'm really going to enjoy these posts about Disney, Lin! I am wanting to plan a trip when Charl turns about 4-5... none of us has ever been! I'll definately be picking your brain about it (and probably trying to book through you too eventually!) Great post!

    Christina :o)