OK, I have to be honest. We have never stayed at a deluxe resort; our budget just doesn't stretch that far. But we have stayed at all the All Star Value resorts, the Pop Century, and Caribbean Beach, and while all those resorts have something to offer, POFQ is hands down our favorite. We have stayed here 7 times over the years, and are looking forward to our next trip.
First, the atmosphere. This is the smallest of the WDW resorts, and thus the most intimate. It is a 5-10 minute walk anywhere on property (maybe 15 if you stroll and simply admire the gardens), so no marathon hikes like you may have at Caribbean Beach. The streets are cobblestone, with lots of ironwork and lush little garden areas to remind you of New Orleans, and have some lovely puns using French twists. Just walking to the pool is very peaceful, especially after a hectic day at the parks.
On a practical note, because the resort is relatively small, it is an easy job to unload your vehicle if you are driving. Plus, there are elevators (none at CB) and luggage carts are available at the main entrance. This also makes it easier when you must, sadly, leave.
The pool is fun and beautifully themed, with King Trident riding on top of a sea serpent that winds its way over and under the deck, and creates an easy slide with its enormous pink tongue. My 78-year old parents even slid down! There is a nice hot tub as well, separate from the pool so not usually packed with little children the way they often are at other resorts. Plenty of chairs and tables around the pool area make it easy to find a spot, and of course there is a poolside bar if you want a little libation.
There tend to be fewer children and groups staying here (as opposed to the Value resorts), so it tends to be a little quieter. However, there are poolside games for little ones, a playground, plus lots of family activities, like movies on an inflatable screen in the main courtyard.
The food court is also beautiful with a Mardis Gras theme: huge masks, beads and assorted trinkets hang from the ceiling. The food is yummy, and you must try the shrimp po'boy and of course, the beignets - those lovely little pillows of sugary goodness they cook to order. Mmmmm.
If you enjoy visiting Downtown Disney, take the boat from the dock. You have a peaceful 15-minute journey down the Sassagoula River, winding past the Treetop Villas, a golf course, and the Saratoga Springs Resort. You'll end at the Marketplace, all relaxed and no fighting for a parking space. If you just feel like a change of scenery, you can hop on a boat going the other way, any chug upstream to the sister resort, Riverside. You'll pass through the Alligator Bayou section into the Magnolia Plantation sections, and end at the main dock area. You can share the pool at Riverside, rent a surry or carriage ride (we did this once - very romantic), or rent a pole and do some fishing if you like - catch and release, of course!
The rooms at POFQ have all been recently redone and are beautiful. The beds are actually queen sized (not full), and you'll have a mini fridge for convenience. The staff is friendly, and the couple of times we had a problem (fridge not working, running toilet), the response was immediate and the problem quickly solved. When my mother had a medical emergency during one of our trips, the staff went out of their way to help the entire family deal with it (not that I reccommend this as a vacation experience, but it's nice to know that they are equipped to deal with emergencies - and it all turned out OK). Rooms are generally quiet, and we have rarely heard noise from other rooms or even from the walkways.
Buses run about the same as at all the resorts, and are one of the great perks of staying on property. There is only one bus stop, so once you are on board, you are quickly on your way. The buses used to also stop at Riverside (all 4 stops!), but on our last 2 trips it was just the French Quarter.
We have recommended POFQ to several friends and family members, and all have been very happy they stayed at this resort. You will be, too.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Revel in the romance and pageantry of New Orleans's historic French Quarter at this Resort hotel, where cobblestone streets, gas lamps, wrought-iron balconies and fragrant magnolia blossoms evoke the Antebellum era and colorful Mardi Gras characters and jazz keep things lively. Then stroll along the Sassagoula River to Disney's Port Orleans Resort - Riverside, home to Cajun and Creole specialties. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Disney Port Orleans Resort
- Port Orleans French Quarter
- Port Orleans Orlando
- Disney Port Orleans French Quarter
- Disney Port Orleans Hotel
- Disneys Port Orleans Resort French Quarter
- Port Orleans Disney
- Disneys Port Orleans Hotel