Another New Year's Eve dinner request


#1

We’ll be at Portofino Bay (first time at Universal) through Jan. 2 and I’d love any suggestions for a nice, adults-only dinner/evening recommendation for Dec. 31. We won’t have a car, so it would be preferable to be somewhere close to Portofino Bay (or simply get a res. for Bice’s?). Thanks so much for any help with this!


#2

My family (all adults) stayed at Portofino Bay this past June. We all loved the resort. You can take the boat to CityWalk from PB and Hard Rock Hotel is a 5-10 minute walk from Portofino. Also, Royal Pacific Resort is very close to CityWalk (5 minute walk) so you have good access to any restaurant at CW and all the Universal resorts.

I think Bice would be an excellent choice based on what I have read about it. I haven’t eaten there myself.

Additional places that are adult oriented:

Emeril’s Tchoup Chop at Royal Pacific Resort Pan-Asian
The Palm at Hard Rock Hotel steakhouse (Touring Plans noted that it tends to be noisy)
Emeril’s Orlando in City Walk Cajun cuisine

I haven’t eaten at any of these either, but they have good reviews, particularly Tchoup Chop. Hopefully, someone who has eaten at them will chime in.

We enjoyed VIVO Italian Kitchen at CityWalk. Excellent food and service. However, I’d expect it to be loud on New Year’s Eve and there will probably be families.


#3

Thank you so much! I will look into these, and it sounds like I really need to learn about their boat service.


#4

Unoiversal’s website says that there is a dining shuttle that will take guests with dinner reservations directly from resort to resort. We didn’t use it though.

In general, Universal Resort is very easy to get around using regular internal transportation. Technically, you can walk from Portofino (one end of Universal property) all the way to Cabana Bay at the other end. Not that I recommend it. We walked from CityWalk to Cabana Bay one afternoon (this was June and it was hot). The path is shaded and scenic between CityWalk and Royal Pacific, but after Sapphire Falls we ended up on a regular sidewalk (there may have been construction that impacted the regular path) and it was neither shaded nor scenic. On the return trip, we took the Cabana Bay bus to CityWalk which took about 5 minutes and had air conditioning (CB has bus transport to CW central hub for theme park transport).

The boat service is great! A lagoon sits between CityWalk and the theme parks and extends in both direction. Portofino along with Hard Rock, Royal Pacific and Sapphire Falls are adjacent to the water and each has its own boat transportation between the hotel and CityWalk. There is no boat from hotel to hotel. You would switch at the CW dock to the other launch (anyone can take the boat; you don’t need to be staying at the resort). The boat ride takes about 15 minutes in one direction and run every 10 minutes or so. We never waited long even at the end of the day when the parks closed. The walk between Portofino and the theme parks is along a lovely garden path and takes about the same amount of time as the boat ride. My mother and I just missed the boat one morning and, instead of waiting for the next one, walked briskly to the parks. We arrived right after the rest of the family who had made the boat and before the next boat arrived. Hard Rock Hotel is between the parks and Portofino; it’s about a 10 minute walk between the hotels. Hard Rock is about a 5 minute walk from the studios park. Royal Pacific is on the other side of the theme parks and City Walk. It is about a 5 minute walk from IOA.

Have a great trip!


#5

This is just the sort of detail I need to know, so thank you very much. This is all very helpful! I’m really excited about ending our “Grand Tour” of all things Orlando with our Universal stay.