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“Nice but the music is a pain” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Disney's Port Orleans Resort - Riverside

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Disney's Port Orleans Resort - Riverside
3.5 of 5 Resort   |   1251 Riverside Drive, Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, FL 32830 (Formerly Dixie Landings)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #79 of 332 Hotels in Orlando
Bristol, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
43 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Nice but the music is a pain”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2014

Rooms are a nice size and clean, having free transport to all the parks was a huge bonus and it was easy to use, restaurants were a disappointment, mass food production and not really any care in it, The boat down to Downtown disney was brilliant and a change from the buses, the music thats played through out the park is a pain but apart from that a nice holiday had,

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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6,182 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Hamilton, Canada
Level Contributor
30 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2014

This was my first and probably last time I will ever go to Disney. I was expecting more magic and less hassle.

We requested a King bed (just me and my spouse), was warned by our travel agent of course there is no guarantees. Upon check-in was told there is none, but to check tomorrow. Having worked in a 4-star hotel before, I found it strange they couldn't say immediately there would be one available, or simply come up and say none are available. Once you unpack even one suitcase, it is a great annoyance to repack it and drag it across a large resort, so we didn't bother hounding the front desk for the king bed.

We were in Building 26. A 10 to 15 minute walk to the lobby past the fishing hut, the pool bar, pool, over two bridges, and past the food court. (Just an idea how far away it was.)

The room was a standard hotel lay-out rooms. Two queens, a fold-out kiddy bed. A tiny flat screen TV above said kiddy bed. A small table. 3 small drawers to put clothes in. 6-7 hangers in the bathroom area that doubles as closet. Serviceable, but not luxury, not even moderately luxury. Beds were uncomfortable and pillows tiny. Sheets clean though. On the 2nd floor, window looks out to the walkway, another building. “Gardenview” means you see a lot of greenery before you hit said other building. It was disappointing, as there is no privacy, because that walkway allows all guests to a view into your room if you have blinds open.

You can have privacy, with no natural light, or you can be exhibitionists.

The tub backs up. There was a burnt out light. The buses were horrible. Half the time they showed up within 20 minutes, the other half, we were waiting 45 minutes to get on a packed bus. Bus drivers are like “No need to run. Another one will come.” Parroting the posters up around. We found, if we did not run and catch that bus, we would end up waiting 30 + minutes for a packed one. Might be a case when they are dead in winter, but not in the busy summer.

For the price of this resort, it fell flat.

After spending all day at one of the water-parks. We went to the concierge to reserve a table (any table, any where in the Disney Proper) and that we would be using our dining plan. She finds a reservation 3 hours away in Downtown Disney. Apparently, they can't reserve a table without the physical credit card being present. They could not use the card that was on file. Or the one set to our magic bands. Erin at the concierge desk in fact was really rude, not accommodating any fashion. Stated to come back with a credit card. If you got this far, you know that would a round trip of 30 minutes if we were lucky. And that the only one that she could find was at this specific time at this specific location and we would be lucky to find anything at all given the short notice (of 2-3 hours...Yup, her words.) -- After the hike back to the hotel room, pulling out the cell phone left there as not to accidentally drown it at the water park, opening up the Disney App, search for a reservation find one in less than 2 hours. Booked it with the card already on file. -- I've never so much been lied to in that fashion by any one working at a concierge desk before. Sure, the guy in Vegas did attempt to upsell me, but he didn't blatantly lie to me.

Only time the concierge desk was helpful, was when they were swamped with people and a manager was out helping by pulling people out of line and helping them. In fact, that was one of the few times it was hassle-free; we wanted tickets to a park added to our magic bands. A literally, painless, hassle-free, polite and professional taken care of within a minute. ONLY TIME THAT HAPPENED.

Also beware: Avoid the on-site food court/cafeteria. Long lines, food is rather disgusting, and completely over-priced.

The pools were always full of screaming kids. Rule of the pools, shower before coming in to said pools, but no outdoor showers were available. There is no “deep” end. If you are 5 feet, you will be able to touch the ground in all areas.

We did not have a magical time at this resort.

Room Tip: Pizza Room Service good. Avoid the rest of the eating establishments on here.
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  • Stayed August 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lowell, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
48 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2014

My husband and I stayed at Port Orleans Riverside for just 2 nights on a short trip to Disney (this one marked my 20th visit to the World!). The last time I stayed here was actually 10 years ago in August 1994, and it was known as Dixie Landings back then. Not much has changed from my memory of the resort, although we had limited time in 2 nights to see much of it. The rooms have definitely been refurbished with new furniture and linens though. We were in the Alligator Bayou section, which is actually the only section I've ever stayed in, and I believe is a bit closer to the main building. The Magnolia Bend section has all the Princess & the Frog themed rooms now, which are a bit more expensive. Since we don't have kids, we opted for the cheaper king-bed room in Alligator bayou. We booked when Disney was running a room rate discount, so I think we got 20 or 25% off the standard room rate.

As far as the room went, I was happy with it. I have mainly been staying in deluxe resorts the past 5 or so years, since my family owns Disney Vacation Club, which actually makes it cheaper for me than some moderate level resorts since I usually rent points from them. I stayed in moderate rooms when I was a kid and always loved them... now I can see that they are noticeably smaller than the deluxe rooms, but honestly they are not any less clean/comfortable. Moderate resorts have doors all with outdoor access in several buildings spread out over a large area, rather than 1 or 2 main buildings with room access from inside the main building(s). In some ways it's nice - I thought it tended to actually be quieter without the echo of a long hallway outside. I had requested and upper level floor and a corner room as my 2 requests for online check-in. I got both of these, but keep in mind that there aren't elevators (I don't think anyway, I didn't see any), so an upper level floor at a value or moderate resort will likely mean you need to use the stairs to access. The buildings are spread out, but there are parking lots and bus stops accessible to them throughout. We happened to have rented a car this time, so we were able to park pretty close to our building. Remember that all Disney resort guests get free parking, including at the theme parks.

Our room had a mini fridge, which is a nice upgrade to the rooms as I remembered them (we used to buy a foam cooler and fill it with ice machine ice every day!). The room was very clean, and while we didn't use it, I thought it had plenty of space to store clothing (although the hanging "closet" area was a little bit lacking in space and is very close to the sink area, so slight splash risk). There was also a pull-down trundle/day bed in the room. I personally don't love Disney bed linens - I think they are too stiff/papery - but the bed was comfortable and I was happy to see a few different pillow options! I was able to find one that was close to what I use at home since there were a couple choices. The sink area has a double sink, which I always love, and curtain to pull across if someone wanted privacy to change or to block some light into the room while someone is at the sink. The shower and toilet are in a separate (SMALL) room. The shower rod was curved, which was nice, and there was a handy ledge at the back of the shower for sitting/storage. The only problem was that the ledge made it tough to pull the curtain all the way across, so we did have a lot of water on the floor after showers. There's a thermostat for climate control, which is great, but the air comes from a vent that is enclosed and pointed into the corner of the room, rather than into it. I would have liked to be able to aim it more into the room, but there is a ceiling fan which made sleeping more comfortable. It looked like the TV had all the a/v bells and whistles, but we barely used it. There's also a coffee maker with a few coffee/tea packages, hair dryer, ironing board and iron, a (TINY) safe, and shampoo, conditioner, & soap are provided. All guests also get free wifi. Mousekeeping did a nice job and we never heard from them, nor did we need them for anything.

The main building has a sit-down restaurant (Boatwrights) which is very good Southern food, and we thought our waiter was wonderful. There's also a fast food spot with several stations, we only stopped in for breakfast to go one morning, and it was bustling. It's a little bit chaotic during the peak times, it seemed. Perhaps not quite enough space in the lines, but it looked like there was more than enough seating available. The refillable mugs are available here. There seemed to be plenty of variety in the individual areas of the fast food spot. There's a small lounge next to Boatwrights called River Roost Lounge, where a few nights a week there is a great performer playing the piano and singing. The crowd really got into the show, and it was clear that there were a few "regulars" who return there often! Kids (and adults too!) were having a great time singing along.

We didn't have a chance to use the pool, but it was pretty busy when we walked by as late as 10 PM. There's a water slide, hot tub, kiddie area, and a bar. There's also a small playground close to the pool. The resort has lots of paths that I remember were great for a run or renting a bike. Since the resort is connected with Port Orleans French Quarter, there are tons of places to explore. I also saw horse and buggy rides available outside the main building around dinnertime. I didn't see, but I was told they also do outdoor movies and toast marshmallows for the kids.

In terms of location to the parks, there is a boat that will take you to Downtown Disney, otherwise you're looking at taking a bus to the rest of the parks if you are relying on Disney transportation. I'm not sure how well spaced the bus stops are, or what the wait times are like since I didn't use it this time. The resort isn't particularly close to any of the theme parks, although it's closest to the Magic Kingdom.

Overall, we enjoyed our stay very much. While I did find myself missing the perks of a deluxe resort (especially proximity to the parks!), I thought this was a great little chance to see a resort I hadn't been to in a very long time. I would argue it's one of the better moderate level options. It has great theming and was very clean and quiet. We'd stay again!

Room Tip: Request a first floor room if you'd rather not deal with stairs. Property is very spread out, s...
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  • Stayed August 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Laurel, Maryland
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2014

We have been to WDW over a a dozen times, We just left PO-Riverside. This was the 4th time we stayed there. My familypreferes this resort due to central location to all of the parks. It is also very easy to get around the resort. It is quiet, peaceful and well layed out.

  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
35 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2014

We have stayed at a Disneyworld property each of the prior four vacations we have taken there. Each time was in the month of August. We love the Disney experience and have always had a wonderful vacation there. But this time we had to drive or take a taxi as the wait on the bus was horrible. So many people waiting on so few buses that you never got on the first bus that showed up. Half the time the buses were over half full from New Orleans stop that very few people from Riverside could get on. One night when leaving the park our park had enough for two buses and every other bus location was a emptied out and we had another 15 minute wait before our first bus showed. When I spoke to front desk they just said it was their busy time. Funny how I spent more time waiting on bus than I did waiting on the busiest rides at the parks. The rooms were adequate and the few service ok but I will never stay at this property again due to bus system alone.

Room Tip: We stayed with a river view and that was nice. We were close to the dining hall and that was nice as...
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  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cape Cod, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2014

Once called Dixie landing back in the early 90's , this resort has held up very well and barely shows any wear and tear both in and out of the rooms. Tranquil at night and not to loud or busy with children like the less expensive resorts. Staff are always there for whatever you need. The dining hall and it's restaurant could use a revamping seeing that the menu hasn't really changed in 20 years. The grounds are absolutely beautiful.

Room Tip: Ask for a corner Princess Suite. They are the newer recently remodeled suites.
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  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rainham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2014 via mobile

We have stayed in this hotel 4 times and have to say it is absolutely fantastic. The grounds are immaculate and the staff are all extremely helpful and friendly.

Have multiple pools is brilliant and we spent many a relaxing afternoon in one of the quiter pools after a heavy morning in disney.

The food hall is fab and has so many choices and the drinks station is brilliant, every morning my hubby and daughter would go and get out cups filled with tea/hot chocolate whilst the rest of us got ready and again in the evening after a busy day would do the same. Excellent

Can't wait to go back

Stayed November 2013, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Disney's Port Orleans Resort - Riverside

Address: 1251 Riverside Drive, Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, FL 32830 (Formerly Dixie Landings)
Location: United States > Florida > Central Florida > Orlando
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#17 Top resorts Hotel in Orlando
#50 Romantic Hotel in Orlando
#73 Family Hotel in Orlando
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Disney's Port Orleans Resort - Riverside 3.5*
Number of rooms: 2048
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Discover a place where simple pleasures flourish and Southern hospitality abounds. From the stately white-column mansions of Magnolia Bend to the quaint backwoods cottages of Alligator Bayou, delight in this picturesque Resort hotel that evokes the romance and tranquility of the rural Louisiana Bayou. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Port Orleans Riverside Resort
Orlando Port Orleans Resort
Port Orleans Disney Resort
Riverside Disney
Disney Port Orleans Riverside Resort
Port Orleans Hotel Disney
Port Orleans Resort Riverside
Port Orleans Resort Disney
Disney Port Orleans Hotel
Disneys Port Orleans Resort Riverside

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