Thursday, February 23, 2017

Port Orleans Riverside Review + Room Tour

Our thoughts on Port Orleans - Riverside for our family of four, two girls ages 5 & 6 on this trip, and my husband and myself. We are a Disney loving family that enjoys Disney characters and the character experience, and enjoy being immersed in the Disney atmosphere on our stays at Walt Disney World. Here's what we thought about Port Orleans - Riverside!

We stayed at Port Orleans - Riverside while at Disney Social Media Moms Celebration 2017 for the "Land" portion of the trip and this was an all new resort for us! Previously, our family of four has stayed at Caribbean Beach Resort, we stayed at All Star Movies Resort and Coronado Springs Resort while on this conference trip as well. I'll be doing a full recap of what our thoughts are of the different resorts that we've stayed at compared to each other and what our favorite picks are after all of the Disney vlogs have run on YouTube, however in this post we'll focus solely on Port Orleans - Riverside.

Southern Charm

Port Orleans - Riverside has gorgeous grounds with Southern charm that are full of vegetation nestled amongst water elements. 

Our room was located in the Alligator Bayou section, room 3705. As with the other Moderate Resorts, the beds were a queen size bed and the rooms came equipped with a coffee maker and mini fridge. These are convenient for grabbing a quick snack to eat in the morning before heading to the parks, or while getting ready to head over to grab a fuller breakfast at the food court. One of our favorite parts about our stays at both Port Orleans and Caribbean Beach have been the little pull down Murphy bed situated in the center of the room across from the larger two beds. My girls are 5 & 6 and love taking turns using the "kid sized" bed in the room, as well call it!

The "kid size" beds at Port Orleans - Riverside feature Louis from Princess and the Frog!

The interior of the rooms were decorated in a rustic decor, with wood frame beds, lantern lamps hanging from the walls, and vintage-inspired touches like a crate side table and washing board accent in the bathroom. 

Beautiful Grounds & Ample Amenities

What we most liked about Port Orleans - Riverside was the atmosphere there, amenities available, and easy access to Disney Springs via boat.

The resort had a really laid-back atmosphere that made you want to prop your feet up and stay a while. I loved strolling down the sidewalks and just talking it all in, while listening to the gentle sound of running water and wind coming through the trees. There were hammocks along the paths, as well as scenic sitting areas, so that if you had the time you could stop and just take in the resort.

Natalie loved the fountains at Port Orleans - Riverside!

At the main building, there was shopping available at Fulton's General Store, with a wide variety of Disney souvenirs to take home. I loved all of the kitchenware!

We also had lunch at the sit down restaurants, BoatWright's, one day and thought the food was great! There is also a food court at the resort called Riverside Mill, that I didn't have a chance to check that out myself since I ate many meals with the conference group. My husband and girls did eat there a number of times though, and he said the french toast was great!

I think our favorite part of Port Orleans - Riverside had to be the location and easy transportation to get to Disney Springs. On the day of the Disney Springs Social Media Challenge, our whole family used the boat transportation to get back and forth to Disney Springs a number of times. It was quick, convenient, and we really had a pleasant time taking the boat ride. 

View from the Sassagoula River Cruise Ferry going from Disney Springs to Port Orleans - Riverside.

Cheesin' on the boat ride back to Port Orleans - Riverside!

Final Thoughts: Port Orleans - Riverside

So.... what DID we think of Port Orleans - Riverside? And would be stay there again?

All in all, we really enjoyed the resort. I loved being able to check out most of the moderates after this trip and I feel like I have a good idea of what the resorts in that level have to offer now after staying at both Port Orleans - Riverside and Coronado Springs (on the day after the cruise) on this trip. Overall, the atmosphere at Port Orleans - Riverside was great, and I would consider it for a future trip when we had more leisure time to explore the resort and areas like the pool. We never even had a chance to take a dip while we were on this trip, since our schedule was so full!!

What I do think I would consider changing, and since we are a family of four this would work for us... are staying in one of the Royal Rooms at Port Orleans - Riverside. These are inspired by Princess and the Frog, and my girls love Tiana and all princesses in general! I think that these would be an interesting option for a stay for us in the future. We aren't the most "rustic fishing cabin room" type people, so while I thought the room was neat to try out, I think there are other room types or resorts we would probably be a better fit for in the future based just on the room decor.

What I did think the resort had to offer that would be a good fit for everyone was great dining, a relaxed atmosphere while plenty of opportunities to kick back and just "hang out" for a while (if you weren't on the conference schedule that we were that is, ha!), and beautiful surroundings that gave you easy access to Disney Springs.

The bus system was very similar to what we found at the other moderate level resorts. We visited Port Orleans - Riverside during February, so it was not a peak time. We didn't have any extraordinarily long waits for a bus to arrive and buses back to the resort at the end of the night were not as crowded as what we experienced at Caribbean Beach Resort in November, however November was a much more peak time with all of the party nights going on. 

Will we stay there again? Probably... there are a number of other resorts that are "on my radar" for the future that are very character focused and I'd like to try out that would be new to us, so I think it may be a while before we rotate back around to this particular resort. I do think it would be a great resort if the goal of your vacation is to have a relaxing resort to use as a "hideaway" to escape back to after the hustle and bustle of a day at the parks - or if you wanted a more leisurely paced vacation with time spent at the pool or riding a horse drawn carriage, this resort would appeal to you!

Watch the full room tour with a brief view of the grounds at Port Orleans - Riverside on YouTube!

** I am a 2017 Disney Social Media Moms Celebration attendee and have received complimentary items and hosted experiences as a part of the event. All opinions are my own. 

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