Cabana Bay Beach Resort now open — retro theme family vacation at Universal Orlando

In November we got a sneak peek at Universal’s retro-style Cabana Bay Beach Resort under construction in Orlando, Florida. And now — it’s opened its mid mod mad doors. Lively, colorful and hip decor — from the guest rooms…  to the atomic Galaxy Bowl… to America’s first Jack LaLanne Fitness Studio… to a throwback arcade… and more — positions Cabana Bay as a great destination for fans of the 1950s and 1960s. We even hear there’s VO5 shampoo and Zest soap in the bathrooms 🙂 Here’s a look at the new glamour shots of this new, family friendly resort — sure to put a smile on your face.

retro-mod-bar-and-loungeFrom the press release:

ORLANDO, Fla. (March 31, 2014) – Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort officially welcomes its first guests today.  This brand-new value and moderately-priced property is the fourth on-site hotel at Universal Orlando Resort and evokes the classic, retro-feel of iconic beach resorts from the 1950s and 60’s.cabana-bay-signmidcentury-hotel

mid-century-modern-hotel-lobbyLocated on-site at Universal Orlando Resort, the new hotel is a destination within itself – featuring a stunning design with bold colors, retro-inspired architecture and sweeping vistas that transport guests back to a time of relaxation and endless family fun. Cabana Bay guests can experience incredible amenities throughout the hotel, including:

  • Bowling a strike at the 10-lane Galaxy Bowl
  • Channeling the godfather of fitness at the Jack LaLanne Physical Fitness Studio
  • Racing down the iconic dive tower waterslide and splashing into a 10,000 square foot zero-entry pool in the Cabana Courtyard
  • Enjoying a retro-themed specialty cocktail from Swizzle Lounge or Atomic Tonic
  • Finding something delicious for the entire family at Bayliner Diner, a food court with  something for everyone to enjoy including a salad bar, burgers, sandwiches, pizza, pasta and grab-and- go items
  • And this summer, guests will be able to enjoy even more incredible amenities, including a second 8,000-square-foot zero entry pool, Universal Orlando’s first lazy river at an on-site hotel, The Hideaway Bar & Grill, and additional moderately-priced family suites and value-priced standard guest rooms.   When complete, Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort will feature a total of 1,800 rooms – 900 family suites and 900 standard guest rooms.

Retro-Galaxy-Bowlretro-style-bowling-alleyStarting today, guests can stay in a family suite, which sleeps up to six people and includes a fold-out foam bed, kitchenette, a sliding partition for privacy, two flat-screen TVs and a bathroom with preparation spaces for three people at once.  Cabana Bay guests also get exclusive benefits only available to on-site hotel guests at Universal Orlando, including Early Park Admission to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter one hour before the theme park opens.

mid-century-lobby-cabana-bayRates for the family suites begin at $174 per-night, and can run as low as $134 per-night depending on the length of stay.  Rates for the standard guest rooms – which will be available this summer – begin at $119 per night, and can run as low as $93 per-night depending on the length of stay.

Jack-LaLanne-Physical-Fitness-Studio“We’ve sought to create a special place where families can spend time together and create long-lasting memories outside of the theme parks,” said Russ Dagon, Vice President and Executive Project Director, Universal Creative. “From the moment they step inside, families will be transported back to a different, more relaxing time.”

retro-hotel-room“We are thrilled to finally welcome guests into Cabana Bay Beach Resort,” said Adnan Bizri, Managing Director, Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort. “This is the perfect addition to Universal Orlando’s already stellar line-up of properties, allowing families to continue a wonderful vacation well beyond the theme parks.”

vintage-style-swimming-pool retro-hotel-cabana-bay Retro-Cabana-bay-sign Cabana-Courtyard-Pool Cabana-bay-retro-hotel cabana-bay-poolThere are also several videos showcasing the resort and its amenities — they are pretty darn fun!:


Mega thanks to Universal Parks & Resorts PR department for supplying us with photos and videos of this amazing retro-style resor — nicely done! All images © 2014 Universal Orlando Resort. All rights reserved.

  1. MidCentModFan says:

    I’ve toured the property and must say that the theme and decor are spot on. Some important things to remember if one chooses to stay at the “value” property and visit Universal Orlando:
    1) Guests staying on-site at Cabana Bay will not receive unlimited Express Pass access (additional expensive daily fee can be purchased for these privileges)
    2) Guests at Cabana Bay will not have the option of using Universal’s water taxis to get to and from the parks. Instead, guests will have the option of (1) using shuttle buses or (2) walking by way of a new bridge connecting Cabana Bay to the Garden Walkway near Royal Pacific Resort. (20 to 35 minutes walk)
    3) Guests will not receive the benefit of priority seating at the full-service restaurants inside Universal’s theme parks or at CityWalk.
    4) At Cabana Bay it costs $10 per night to park (paid at time of check-in)

    1. Michael says:

      Good points. As much as I love the fun theme at Cabana Bay, nothing beats the luxury and convenience of staying at Portofino Bay. Those Express Passes alone are worth the high room rates IMHO.

  2. Cynthia says:

    Super duper in every way! The whole look, the amenities, and no doubt the atmosphere, are positive, upbeat, fun, energetic, optimistic, youthful and simply fantastic! And I think we need as much of those qualities, and the emotions and activities they inspire, as we can get these days. Bravo, Universal. I live in South Florida and am not interested in the parks, but will be looking into a stay at Cabana Bay in the near future! I feel 50 years younger, just looking at the pictures.

  3. tammyCA says:

    Neato-Keeno! Look at all that retro color and design…colorful gumball bowling balls, starbursts, graphics…my childhood comes back to life. They did a terrific job of recreating the joyful design of the past.
    Oh, and Jack Lalanne…I remember exercising along with him and another exercise lady who had a show that looked like it was in a living room.
    Yes, Pam and Kate please pay a visit there.

    1. Mary Elizabeth says:

      “The Debbie Drake Show”! See this Youtube:


      She is in a carpeted KNOTTY PINE den, with old TV, bucket chairs, stone wall, day bed, and a plant that looks like Audrey in “Little Shop of Horrors.” There is barely enough room for her to exercise in there, but the audience would identify with her, since they were in their own knotty pine dens exercising with the TV. I think I only saw it when I was home sick from school, and at that point, who wanted to do an extra gym class? Those were the exact exercises we did in gym, including the pigeon-toed duck walk.

      1. tammyCA says:

        Yep, that’s her..I searched for her on yt last year and was happy to find the clips. Now most of those exercises aren’t exactly correct for our bodies, but they sure gave her an attractive figure, so who knows.

  4. Mary Elizabeth says:

    It was “The Debbie Drake Show,” and she was in what looked like a knotty pine den:


    Look at all the details in the room. There is barely enough room for her to exercise, but that would make the audience identify with her. I remember I only saw this show while I was home sick from school, and I thought it was just like the exercises in gym class. And who wanted to do gym class when you were home sick?

  5. Steve says:

    It’s wondrous how style and technology combine. There are a group of people digitizing images from NASA satellite moon missions from the very early to mid sixties–before a landing was attempted. Data from the satellites were captured with 70mm film, then relayed to NASA and stored on tape-drive computers. Only recently have those tapes been recovered and the data digitized, resulting in brilliant photographs never before realized. Why? The technology to do it had yet to be discovered. And now the realization of “Astro” mod has come into its own, thanks to the development of new building materials. This place is way cool, daddy-o! I’d like to visit sometime!

        1. Joe Felice says:

          How cool is that? Good for you! So now we have our own “resident” celebrity and MCM art expert! Are you at liberty to post pics of some of the paintings?

          1. pam kueber says:

            As I recall, Jenn Ski was The First blogger to ever link to Retro Renovation, back when it was a wee babe with like 50 clicks a day. I was So Excited. xoxo

            1. Jenn Ski says:

              lol, yeah I think I found you through Craigslist when you were selling off your remaining kitchen cabinets, probably back in 2007. Wow, lol

  6. Jocelyn says:

    Hey Kate, just a quick usage note: I don’t think “per night” in “$174 per-night” should take a hyphen. It would if it were being used as an adjectival phrase, like “a $174 per-night room.” Check out this guide. Hope this is helpful!

    1. Ed says:

      I’m happy if whichever author I’m reading chooses the right form of your/you’re or their/there/they’re. But I do appreciate the tip. Can’t expect “kids today” to get it right, if no one has the ambition to set a proper example.

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