Port Orleans Riverside Q&A Thread 2013, Part One [Thread now FULL and closed]

Discussion in 'Disney Resorts' started by andrewilley, Feb 13, 2013.

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  1. momofboyz3

    momofboyz3 DIS Veteran

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    Are you kidding me???? I'm on here even while I'm @ work! In the middle of the night I will wake up & check the boards! I need therapy!
     
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  3. firstwdw

    firstwdw DIS Veteran

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    We(DH, myself and our 7year old son) had a wonderful first stay at POR April 27-May 4. We loved the resort! We paid for preferred and were in a corner room in building 18. It took a few days for us to learn the fastest route to the bus and the food court. It seemed as though every time we left the room we went a different way! We didn't get to really explore the mansion area until the morning we left due to rain every night! But wow....that's a nice area too!!! We hope to rent a bike next time to explore even more. DS and DH loved the little speed boat rentals!

    OUr room was quiet-never heard any noise. Beds were very comfortable! Loved the decor! Mousekeeping was great-no towel animals though. Which was fine. One day the Disney stuffed animals were sitting looking out the window waiting for us to come back and DS LOVED that!My only complaint was the water pressure in the shower was not good but we'd certainly stay again!

    Buses were hit or miss. The weather was crappy so the boat to Downtown Disney was not always running. One night we were waiting for 20min for the next boat to pick up at DTD-they closed the boats down due to lightening in the area. So we all went to the bus stop with 100s of people and waited for a long time hoping to catch a bus before the storm hit. We did! Stopping at all the bus stops was somewhat annoying and I was happy we hadn't stayed at a place with even more stops. But everyone else was so friendly and often gave up seats for the children which was appreciated. We actually met some really nice families on the buses which made the ride go by faster.

    We stayed at Wilderness Lodge for our first Disney trip and in comparison we liked the following better at POR: food court, main pool, pool slide, playground, arcade, entertainment in the lounge(none at WL). Oh and of course the price tag of POR was better!!! We just missed the Magic Kingdom boat but with the lousy weather we likely wouldn't have been on a boat anyways!

    Thank you to everyone on this board for all of the help and for answering all of my questions! We loved POR and I believe we will be staying there again next time! Just need to convince DH that we HAVE to go back while DS is still at that perfect Disney age!!!! The waiting for the next trip feels like forever when you have just returned home. Post Disney Depression has set in big time! Can't wait for our next trip, whenever that may be, to POR and I bet the place is even prettier with more sun and less rain and clouds! (one last thought.......we didn't find the resort to be too huge at all and the walk to POFQ was easy! We went there for dinner and to check the place out one night!)
     
  4. Chuckers

    Chuckers Missing my day trips to Disneyland :(

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    Wow! Weather.com has upper 80's and low 90's for the next 10 days! With scattered t-storms only on Mother's Day.. I can deal with that!!!

    I'll just buy a poncho and enjoy the lower crowds as everyone stays home :) :cool1:
     
  5. dramaticmissy

    dramaticmissy Mouseketeer

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    I know I have been scouting that out as well! Our ponchos are packed and ready just in case along with the sunscreen!!!
     
  6. oasispaul

    oasispaul Mouseketeer

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    My trip report is going to read a lot like firstwdw's (just longer).

    First & foremost, thank you to everyone who has contributed to this thread - especially Andre & Venom. Your tips, suggestions and feedback helped immensely. And Andre, your portorleans.org site was an invaluable resource.

    Our trip was Fri, April 26 - Sat, May 4. Magical Express & check-in were a breeze. We were placed in Bldg. 24, Room 2460 - about as far away from the main bldg. as you can get (no biggie, as we're brisk walkers and we brought a stroller for our 6 year-old). Our room was very close to the West Bus Depot, however, which proved to be important. Plus, we were given a 2nd floor corner room with a direct view of our quiet pool for no additional charge, so we were more than satisfied with the room location.

    The rooms are very cute. They are themed pefectly with the resort. This was our 1st time staying in a moderate (previously we've stayed either at a deluxe or off-site), so we knew the space was going to be a little tighter. There were just 3 of us, but there still wasn't enough storage space for our clothes/luggage. We put away what we could and lived out of suitcases with the rest. That would probably be my only complaint about the room (the size), otherwise it was great. It was quiet, clean and mousekeeping did a fine job.

    The resort is beautiful and HUGE. I knew to expect a sprawling resort, but I guess I didn't realize how many winding pathways make up the place. But the pathways are part of the charm of the resort. They do an excellent job maintaining the landscape and really setting the theme of both areas of the resort (Alligator Bayou & Magnolia Bend). The resort lends itself to picture-taking as it really is gorgeous.

    The main building (lobby, food court, etc.) was attractive, clean and well-maintained, but I would suggest going to the food court at off-times, as it gets jam-packed busy during conventional meal times (especially breakfast).

    The pool was great (water temp was kept very comfortable) and our daughter loved the waterslide. She even participated in a "dance party" the lifeguards & pool crew had one afternoon. The pool bar was a nice respite and the cocktails were tasty. Again, I would recommend going to the pool during off-times, as it seemed to get very crowded between 11 - 3.

    As for the buses, as firstwdw said, they were a bit of a mixed bag. We had to wait 25+ minutes 2 times, but almost every other bus we took arrived in under 10 minutes. (We probably took a total of 10 buses from the resort). Nearly every bus we were on was packed-to-the-gills standing room only. That's where being near the West Depot helped. The West Depot was actually the FIRST stop for most of the buses. They would pick up at the West Depot, then move on to the North Depot, East Depot, South Depot and sometimes the French Quarter before heading to the parks. On the way back from the parks, they would drop off at French Quarter first, then 50% of the time drop off at the South Depot first (South-West-North-East) and the other 50% of the time drop off at the West Depot first (West-North-East-South). So the West Depot seemed to be the optimal Depot to ensure a spot on the way to the parks. If you're a healthy man under the age of 60, expect to stand on the bus - unless you're heading to HS or AK at an off-hour, they WILL be full.

    Weather was also a mixed bag while we were there. The first 4 days were hot & sunny, then it mostly rained for a few days, then the last 2 days were a mix of sun, clouds & rain. One funny story to share - on Mon, 4/29 we took the boat from POR to Downtown Disney for dinner. While we were at dinner, it sprinkled a bit, so after dinner I jogged down to the dock to see if the boat service was still running - it was. So we hopped on the boat for our 20-25 minute ride back to POR. As soon as we left the dock it started raining. The light rain turned into a steady rain, and within 10 minutes is was a torrential downpour. Then the wind starting picking up and the rain started coming in from (seemingly) all sides. THEN the lightning arrived. The boat had to pull into the French Quarter dock and suspend service - so everyone staying at POR was stuck on the dock at the French Quarter, wondering where the main building was (or if anyone was going to save us) as the storm raged on. We were joking that Disney was giving us the authentic New Orleans experience (where are you, FEMA?). It was raining so hard, so quickly, that you could see water going into some of the ground-floor rooms of the resort. Eventually we figured out where the Main building was and sprinted for it. Once we got to the lobby a POFQ cast member called over to POR and they sent a van to pick us up. As we said while we were sopping wet in the POFQ lobby - this is something we'll look back and laugh about after our trip.

    Feel free to shoot away with any questions. Oh, I almost forgot, Magical Express going BACK to the airport was a bit lengthy, as POR was the 1st of SEVERAL stops on the way to MCO (POR then POFQ then Old Key West then Saratoga Springs then MCO). We were on the bus for almost an hour before we actually left WDW property. And every last seat on that bus was filled (Sat, 5/4 4:30 pick up).
     
  7. oasispaul

    oasispaul Mouseketeer

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    Be careful. We got poured on Thu, 5/2 at Epcot. We were scheduled to go to MK the next day and my wife and I agreed that we were sick of getting rained on, so we would only get up for park opening if it looked like no rain. So on Thursday night (around 10 pm) I checked weather.com's hourly forecast for the next 12 hours and they listed 100% chance of rain from 7am - 11am. So we decided to sleep in and miss park opening. I woke up at 8:30am to, you guessed it, complete sunshine. It stayed that way until 3:00 (when the clouds started rolling in) and didn't rain until 5 or 6ish.

    I could have lived with 80% chance of rain, or 85% chance of rain, or 90% chance of rain. Hell, I could even understand 99% chance of rain. But listing 100% chance of every hour between 7am - 11am and being wrong creates credibility issues for me.
     
  8. emlibs1mom

    emlibs1mom Earning My Ears

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    I'm right there with you 24 Days and I'm checking DIS boards several times a day. I even get a little disappointed when there haven't been any new postings.
     
  9. lazer

    lazer DIS Veteran

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    Can't wait to stay here in September (and just added FREE dining this morning)! This thread is making me anxious for our 1st mod stay (always have stayed at POP).
     
  10. Princess Vespa

    Princess Vespa Mouseketeer

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    23 more days and I am so excited!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  11. Cinderumbrella

    Cinderumbrella Wench

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    Thanks to oasispaul and firstwdw for the trip reports!! :goodvibes
     
  12. jewelsb

    jewelsb Mouseketeer

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    haha - I can SO relate!! I used to think maybe I was on Facebook too much, now I've completely ditched it for DIS! At work, first thing in the morning, last thing before bed.... I need a 12 step program! :rotfl2: Or if I do go on FB, it's to look at the Disney pages!!!!

    Hurry up June 24th!!!!!!!!!
     
  13. LovingDisny

    LovingDisny I'm not going to lie. I like to lurk.

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    Hi TarrahA, Yes I understand completley. Sounds like you have a little pool time scheduled for later in the trip, so maybe your plan for trying to stay away from the pool on day 1 is the best way to go for you:)
    out of sight, out of mind:cool2: For us, it just keeps my boys happy to get some time in the pool on day 1 - but it is a little frustrating that we can swim anytime at home and they always want to make it a priorty while we are on vacation when there are sooo many other things to do.

    Enjoy your trip!!


    We have an entire day at DTD planned for this trip, I am really excited to take my boys to DisneyQuest as we never made time for it before.
     
  14. momofboyz3

    momofboyz3 DIS Veteran

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    ** ThankYou sooo much for this report!!!! *** we will be staying there May 26- June. Not only will this be our first POR stay but our 1st disney vaca!!!! Myself & 3 athletic boys. I hear that we should request certain bldgs... We have a garden view. My thinking is to just leave it to the cast members to decide on check-in. Do you agree or if you had to do it over would you request a different section??? Thanks so much :)
     
  15. Chuckers

    Chuckers Missing my day trips to Disneyland :(

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    Oh I don't fully believe any weather forecast. And it doesn't matter.. rain or shine, I WILL be in the parks!
     
  16. ohnowewontgo

    ohnowewontgo Disney here We Come

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    Agreed! Most of these are exactly how my trip was. Buses are always so hit or miss, food court was fantastic but could get busy if you slept in....etc.

    75 more days!!!!! :goodvibes
     
  17. nonstopdisneymom

    nonstopdisneymom Mouseketeer

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    Got my Mickey Mail today!! Yay! Only 33 days till we check in!!
     
  18. Venomhatch

    Venomhatch Cast Member, DisDads #708,

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    Thanks for the welcome back.
     
  19. SkywayGuy

    SkywayGuy Earning My Ears

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    It's been a marathon around here leading up to my daughter's college graduation this past Saturday and having a house full of family guests in for the event. Now all that is past and it's time to focus in earnest on getting ready for the drive to Florida! I've been daydreaming for months about this trip but now that the graduation is done, and all the planning for that event is done, I've realized there is tons to do before we hit the road, and we only have One More Weekend to prepare! Yikes!

    So I'm making a packing list. We usually over-pack and I'd like to avoid that. I am going to bring a couple flats of water and soda's for the room, and some extra coffee pods. Can anyone recommend your must pack item?
     
  20. monicajonathan

    monicajonathan Earning My Ears

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    Hello all. I received my mickey mail today!!!! Super exciting. Only 33 more days till we are arrive. Yay!!!
     
  21. oasispaul

    oasispaul Mouseketeer

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    No problem - my pleasure! As for room requests, my thinking is unless you absolutely need something specific, I would see where they place you first (you can always ask to be moved if the room isn't to your liking or is problematic). You never know - they might place you in a room that's even BETTER than what you're requesting.

    Case in point, we were 1 of 3 rooms as we were traveling with my wife's family (her parents - both in their 60s and her brother, his wife and his daughter). My M-I-L requested our rooms to be close together AND to be as close to the main building as possible (since my F-I-L doesn't move around like he used to). When we checked in, all our rooms were next to each other but we were placed in a building (24) that was about as far as you can get from the main building. She tried to get us moved closer (again, considering how far of a walk it would be to the main building for her husband), but they said in order to do that they'd have to split us up (which everyone was okay with except her). She decided she would rather have our rooms next to each other, so we stayed with Bldg 24.

    Turns out, since our building was right next to the West Depot (and that was the first POR bus stop to the parks most of the time), our building was actually located in prime real estate - literally only a 2-minute walk to the depot. And we were given 2nd floor rooms with a direct view of the quiet pool (technically a $30 upgrade). Had we been placed closer to the main building, we would have had a longer walk to our bus stop every day AND we might have been placed near one of the bus stops that picked up later in the route (thus not guaranteeing us a spot on the 1st bus that came by) AND we probably would have had a room with a worse view. So they actually did us a favor by NOT granting our request for a "closer" building.

    Hope that helps.
     
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