Posts Tagged ‘Port Orleans French Quarter’

Review: Thanksgiving Weekend at Walt Disney World

by on December 5, 2016


Happy Thanksgiving!

If you’re familiar with the TouringPlans Crowd Calendar, you know that major holidays at Walt Disney World can be intense when it comes to lines and crowds. But this year, I abandoned all logic and spent Thanksgiving with my family at Walt Disney World. I survived, but would I do it again? Read on for my Review: Thanksgiving Weekend at Walt Disney World.

November 23rd

My concern over the holiday crowds and never ending lines wasn’t limited to the confines of Walt Disney World. Actually, I was more concerned over what awaited me at my local airport since my family and I were flying into Orlando the day before Thanksgiving. One of the busiest travel days of the year!

Fortunately, our Frontier Airlines flight was scheduled to depart at 7:00 A.M.; and while the queues for security had already been extended, we made it through with plenty of time to spare and with no delays.

I was shocked when we found that there were no lines for Disney’s Magical Express at Orlando International Airport. Maybe because it was still early in the day? Or maybe Disney was more than prepared for the holiday rush? Regardless, we walked right on our bus bound for Disney’s Port Orleans French Quarter Resort. We had never stayed at the French Quarter as Port Orleans Riverside is the Moderate Resort we gravitate to; but, thankfully we loved the French Quarter! It was smaller and more intimate, yet never once felt crowded or chaotic.

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Seth Kubersky’s Best Week Ever August 27, 2015: Sunday Stroll at Port Orleans

by on August 27, 2015

Best Week Ever Port Orleans

Join the Best Week Ever parade and stroll through WDW’s Port Orleans resort (photos by Seth Kubersky).

Hold on to your beads, Best Week Ever readers, because we’re heading to the Big Easy! Long before the Art of Animation resort brought California Adventure’s Cars Land to Orlando in motel form, Walt Disney World’s Port Orleans hotels have stood as the East Coast analogue to Disneyland’s New Orleans Square, minus the animatronic pirates and ghosts.


It had been so long since I’d stayed at Port Orleans, that the last time I visited the section now known as Riverside was still named Dixie Landings. The resort has had quite a colorful history, including being partially shuttered for a time during the post-9/11 recession; check out this page at for a bit of background.


Since Port Orleans French Quarter and Riverside are our top picks among moderate resorts at Walt Disney World, I figured I was way past due for a return visit to WDW’s NOLA. And what better time to let the good times roll than bright and early on a Sunday morning?


Ok, 9 a.m. isn’t exactly “bright and early” for many people, but as a congenital night owl it’s the best I could do.


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SATURDAY SIX: Six Reasons We Love Disney’s Port Orleans French Quarter

by on January 17, 2015

This week’s SATURDAY SIX takes a look at Six Reasons We Love Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter. Regular readers of the Saturday Six know how much we enjoy staying onsite at the Universal Orlando Resort and Walt Disney World, and while Disney is challenged to compete with some the amenities that Universal can offer its guests, where it does shine is the overall amount and unique hotels on property. Universal has a total of four onsite hotels (soon to be five with the opening of Sapphire Falls in 2016) while Disney has five value resorts alone, not to mention all the moderate, deluxe, and DVC resorts on property. Today we are going to look at our absolute favorite moderate: Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter.


Port Orleans French Quarter.


Disney’s Port Orleans is broken up into two sections: French Quarter, and Riverside, the latter of which is the much larger of the two resorts. While Riverside certainly has its fans (in fact we’d probably consider it our extremely close second favorite moderate,) we prefer Port Orleans (POFQ) and here are six reason why, starting with…

# 6 – Sassagoula Float Works and Food Factory

French Quarter doesn’t have a table service restaurant (although Riverside’s Boatwright’s Dining Hall is a short walk away,) but it does have a fantastic counter service with the Sassagoula Float Works. Set up like a mall food court, there are several different stations offering Louisiana-inspired dishes such as Po’Boys, Jambalaya, Gumbo, and Beignets. For lunch you can not go wrong with one of the various Po’Boys (our favorites were the pork and beef versions) along with a side of bean salad or house-made chips. As we wrote about in our review of the Fantasy Fare food truck, Disney makes surprisingly good chips. For dinner you gotta go with the Jambalaya or Pot Roast, and any time of the day is good for an order of beignets. Made fresh-to-order and covered in powdered sugar, these beignets are one of the best treats at WDW.


Pork Po’Boy with bean salad from Sassagoula Float Works and Food Factory.

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Hidden Details of the Disney World Resorts

by on September 4, 2014

There are many reasons why the Disney Parks stand apart from other theme parks around the world, but one of the biggest has to be Disney’s incredible attention to detail. You can see the extra mile in the form of details just about everywhere on Disney property, from attractions to parade costumes to resorts to transportation to even the bathrooms! Personally, I love the details. They are not only appealing to the eye and fun to find, but almost always meaningful to the history of an attraction or to the story the Imagineers are trying to tell. For today’s post, let’s take a look at the hidden details of the Disney World Resorts!

Deluxe Resorts

Grand Floridian Wedding Pavilion - A Glass Slipper Vacation

Grand Floridian Wedding Chapel

The Grand Floridian Resort and Spa: Disney’s flagship resort is also home to Disney’s Wedding Pavilion, a fairy tale location with a view of Cinderella Castle! Even if you’re not getting married, you can still walk over to the pavilion area where the chapel and Franck’s Bridal Studio are located. Be sure to look up to notice a special detail: a heart-shaped weather vane of Mickey posing as Cupid!

Animal Kingdom Lodge: Throughout Animal Kingdom Lodge’s Kidani Village you will find African quotes and proverbs on the walls and rock work; however, one of them is different from the rest in that it’s a quote from Walt Disney. You can find it around the Samawati Springs pool area!

The Contemporary: For years, guests have been reporting a small, metal Mickey perched on the edge of a rooftop at the Contemporary Resort. When riding the Express Monorail, keep your eyes open when you approach the entrance to the resort.

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Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory Review

by on September 2, 2014

Ed. – Today the blog is taking you to Port Orleans Riverside and French Quarter. These resorts are connected by a very pleasant walk along the Sassagoula River and are favorites on the Unofficial Guide reader survey.

On my most recent trip to Walt Disney World, I stayed at Port Orleans French Quarter, which is my personal favorite moderate resort hotel. An important factor in choosing any Walt Disney World Resort is the food. Especially when traveling with a larger group, variety is essential when it comes to dining options. Luckily, Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory, the main dining option at French Quarter, offers a variety of choices with a strong influence on Cajun and New Orleans cuisine.

Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory is a breakfast, lunch and dinner quick service food court decked out in a bright and colorful Mardi Gras theme. If you’re into subtlety, you might just die of excessiveness while eating here. Some may say that many of the decorations of Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory are “creepy” or “terrifying” but I personally think they straddle the, “almost scary but hilarious because of it” line quite nicely. Also, in case you were wondering, both the Disney Dining Plan and Tables in Wonderland are accepted at Sassagoula. That’s all well and fine but the real question remains. Is the food any good? I’m happy to report that after staying at French Quarter for a week and having multiple meals there, the answer is a resounding “Yes!”

Fun ambiance or terrifying nightmare fuel? You decide!

Fun ambiance or terrifying nightmare fuel? You decide!

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Run the World: Port Orleans Riverside and French Quarter

by on November 25, 2013

I had the recent pleasure of enjoying a short ‘racecation’ during the 2013 Wine & Dine Half Marathon Weekend at Port Orleans French Quarter, one of Walt Disney World’s moderate resorts. It was a fantastic stay – I enjoyed everything, from the beignets at the bakery to the easy bus transportation, but what stood out to me as a definite winner were the running paths!


I had only stayed at Port Orleans once before – and this was long before my running days, so although I had my handy map (and was given a physical copy at check-in). I was just a little hesitant, as I have a tendency to get lost. My fears were cast aside rather quickly, however, as I set out on a pre-run walk around property to capture images of landmarks and waypoints to guide my run the following morning.

Let’s get running!

The best part about this run is that you don’t need to find an exact location to begin your run or jog – you can set off from wherever you are. In my case, I was staying in Building 3 of the French Quarter, and so meandered east to the river-side “Carriage Path” to begin.


“Streets” are marked.

On the French Quarter side of the resort, the walkways between buildings and attractions (such as the pool and laundry facilities) are clearly marked in gridded corridors, as if you are actually in a small city, making it very easy to navigate. This set-up allows for easy “add-ons” to your mileage in even, small lines and boxes…and another bonus? The area is almost completely shaded by lovely trees and complemented by quiet fountains and sitting areas. I found it to be very peaceful – both in my afternoon walk and my late morning run.

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Port Orleans French Quarter — Would I Stay There Again??

by on May 10, 2009

On my most recent trip to Walt Disney World I stayed at Port Orleans French Quarter for part of my trip.  This was my first time at this hotel.  I had heard good things.  In the “Unofficial Guide” you can get a detailed description of all of the amenities, room layout and dimensions.

A few things I like about the French Quarter:  the rooms were nice, clean, and the “themeing” is darling.  I also loved the refrigerator in the room.    The grounds are very pretty.  The housekeeping staff was great. The food court accepts the  “Tables in Wonderland”  card.  There is a curtain that divides the beds from the sinks. That’s nice and the Values don’t offer that. I visit the real “French Quarter” in New Orleans several times a year and I have to say I much prefer Disney’s “French Quarter”  — much cleaner.

A few things I didn’t love: the food court is small and doesn’t have a ton of choices.  At the time of my visit, it was understaffed.  Waiting in line for mediocre, over priced food gets a little old — even at Disney World.  The bathroom isn’t much bigger than that in a Value resort.  The location of the French Quarter didn’t seem any more convenient than the Value resorts.  Other than the food court, the main detractor for me is the price.

So here is my dilemma, it cost $70 more per night to stay here as opposed to Pop Century or another Value Resort.   Does Port Orleans offer enough amenities for me to justify spending the extra money?  I know this answer is different for everyone. For me, the answer is no.  The rooms at a Value resort don’t seem that much smaller, the food court at Pop Century is huge and offers a ton of variety, the Disney toiletries are the same at Moderates and Values, the “themeing” at all of the Value resorts is clever and very Disney, and the rooms are clean as well.

If staying at a Value means I can stretch my budget and stay another night or enjoy a nice meal, then I think I’ll stay Value.  Let me confess right here, if I have a window of time to go to Disney World and there is not availability at a Value,  you can bet I am staying at French Quarter.   Every family has different priorities and Port Orleans may be just the place for yours.