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Reviews (9,796)
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5,911
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Reviewed 24 June 2012

Universal really has you. You need to stay at one of their resorts to get in early to their parks and I recommend you do get in early---they are very crowded! We stayed at the mid-priced Hard Rock because I thought it would appeal to my teen age daughter and wanna be Rock Star Husband, but the experience was lacking. I'm not sure what I was expecting, but to the tune of $339 per night and 2 rooms for our family of 5, I thought that there should have been more substance to my hotel experience. Everything at Universal is expensive and they give you nothing! At least at the Disney Resorts I was given 2 bottles of water, here I was offered the $7 bottle of Figi water, which, I had to have, as I drink lots of water, my husband nearly fainted! Pool area is nice and the kids enjoyed it. Late lunch in "The Kitchen" cafe downstairs was enjoyable and the staff was extremely nice and played up my 11 yr old's birthday, bringing her a piece of cake and singing etc... The staff at the Hotel, not so much. Check-in isn't until 4pm. My husband wasn't feeling well and I explained to the front desk girl that if one of our rooms became available, I would appreciate being notified, so that he could rest (it was 1:30). When we returned from lunch, he was asleep on a pile of luggage, no one had called and 5 staff members were chatting behing the desk and laughing. I asked about the status of my room. At this time it was 3pm. Low and behold! They had both had just been done..right! Apparently they are supposed to notify you when your room is ready! So much for the sick guy passed out in the lobby! Just didn't make me feel all "warm and fuzzy". Rooms are clean and beds are comfortable, but there aren't plugs accessable for your cell phones or computer, also no freen WI-FI, but then again, nothing was free at Universal. Even within the park, from drinks and food to T-shirts everything was pricey.
Biggest tip!!! Buy tickets online, print them and be on the first water shuttle from one of the 3 Universal Hotels if you are going to the Islands of Adventure where you will fing the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. This will get you in the park 1 hour earlier (because you are a Universal Resort Guest) and the pre-printed or pre-purchased ticket gets you to the turnstiles. This saves alot of time and waiting. Another tip that worked well for us was going early in the AM and then leaving and returning at 5:30-6pm and staying untill the park closed- 9pm, again less crowds. Have a great trip!

Room Tip: Staying at the resort gives you the benefit of getting in 1 hour early to the parks and you need it to beat the crowds especially if visiting Harry Potter! Hard Rock garden view rooms have a very nice view!
  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank Coreen A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 June 2012

We stayed on the club level, where the people working were absolutely fantastic. They couldn't have been nicer, more welcoming, or more helpful. But in truth, everyone working there was great.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank Aardephant
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 June 2012

We are a family of 5 and we love the hard rock hotel . The best pool entertainment ever! We always make a point to spend the day at the pool for that reason. Closest , easy and beautiful walk to Universal studios. The club level is a plus you get free breakfast, snacks and happy hour. This works when you have 3 hungry boys!

  • Stayed: June 2012
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1  Thank MadisonvilleFamily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 June 2012

We went on a spontaneous trip to do Universal and Harry Potter. Hard Rock was reccommended by 2 different friends. Great place for both my 13 yr old and 9 yr old. The pool had water slide which 9 yr old went down at least 50 times. And afternoon entertainment and music at pool was perfect for a teen. The bar was the bonus for adults! Loved the quick walk to the parks and Express Pass was as others say "totally worth it"! I would definitely come back to the Hard Rock again.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
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1  Thank momtravelswkids
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 June 2012

The benefit is well worth a stay on Universal property. A few things worth mentioning: laundry - cost $3.00 to wash takes 25 min. and $3.00 to dry 1 hour time limit(more than enough time). 5 washers and 5 dryers on the 2nd and 4th floors. Club Level 7 was an experience ! If you are around to take advantage of all the benefits the extra $100 per night is well worth it. Breakfast 7-10 am includes variety of muffins, bagels, cereals, hot oatmeal, hard boiled eggs. Snacks from noon - 3 pm includes bagged chips and snack bars, cokes. Appetizers 5 - 7 includes beer and wine !!! as much as you can drink in 2 hours. (corona, bud lite, variety of wines not sure brand) each night is a different theme with the apps. nightly snack 8:30 - 9:30 pm cookies (very good and chewy) and another treat different every night.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
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6  Thank missy8467
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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