I recently attended a Pixie Conference at Universal Orlando Resort. The trip was fantastic and I wanted to share some of the experiences I had and things I learned while there. I have provided a trip report below that includes all the things. Feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions or if I can help you plan an epic trip to Universal Orlando.
DAY 1: Pixie Conference – Pre-Stay
I decided to spend an extra day at Universal on the front end of my trip. My sister was with me on this day and the next until the Pixie Conference began. We flew from Houston Hobby to Orlando International Airport on Southwest Airlines. It was the first time I have flown since February 2020 so I was a bit nervous. It was great – no problems at all. We had to wear masks while at the airport and on the flight but it was all good.
We landed and retrieved our bags from Baggage Claim. I had arranged private transfers from the airport to our hotel. Our driver was great! If anyone needs transportation around Orlando – I can give you that information. She dropped us off at Cabana Bay Beach Resort, our hotel for the conference. Cabana Bay Beach Resort is a Prime Value hotel. It has vibrant colors and a retro style fashioned after the 1950s and 60s. There are two massive pools, a lazy river, a bowling alley and more. when Dining at the food court the TVs actually show television shows from the 1950s and 60s as well.
Luckily, our room was ready when we checked in even though it was only 11:00 AM. They even let me check into the room I was supposed to stay in on the group reservation the next day, so that saved me from having to move my things. Alejandro at the front desk was very kind and very accommodating.
All the agents who were participating in the conference were booked into family suites. These are nice, plenty of room to spread out. In fact, these rooms can sleep up to 6 adults. They are furnished with 2 queen beds, a living room area, split family bathroom and a kitchenette. They are very spacious and great for families.
We picked up our park tickets from the Vacation Planning desk and headed to the park via the shuttle bus. The buses drop off at City Walk. We entered CityWalk then headed into Universal Studios park. We rode Men in Black, Transformers, Escape from Gringott’s and Jimmy Fallon’s Race Thru New York ride. We had a lot of fun and all the rides are awesome rides, but it had been a long travel day and we were really tired by the evening so we chilled for the rest of the night.
DAY 2: Pixie Conference Day 1
We took an Uber over to Loews Portofino Bay Hotel for the day. The hotel is designed after an Italian villa and it is beautiful and elegant. it is a Premier hotel meaning that it offers free express pass to all guests during their stay. I toured the resort, took some photos, shopped around their shops and then we spent the day relaxing, reading and journaling. It is so beautiful and welcoming there on the courtyard by the water. In the late afternoon, we went back to Cabana Bay Beach Resort and got ready to meet with all 19 Pixies who had made it in so far.
We had dinner at The Cowfish in CityWalk. We dined on the patio next to their outdoor bar and took up the whole patio area to ourselves. Cowfish serves sushi and burgers. I had the Chicken Cucumber Ranch Sandwich and fries. It was delish! After dinner, we took the shuttle back to Cabana Bay and went to bed to rest up for a busy day full of site inspections and a VIP tour!
DAY 3: Pixie Conference Day 2
We started the day by meeting in the Cabana Bay lobby. We all then walked over to the Aventura Hotel for breakfast at Urban Pantry – their food court area. I had the American Breakfast with scrambled eggs, bacon, biscuit and hash browns. It was good. I did not eat the hashbrowns; I gave them to my boss, but the rest of the food was very good. We then toured Aventura which is also a Prime Value hotel. It has a very modern, sleek, technology-driven design. The best feature in my opinion was the roof top bar with awesome views of the entire Universal area.
Afterwards, we walked over to Sapphire Falls, a preferred hotel that offers the amenities of a Premier hotel except it does not offer free express pass to guests. This was a more upscale resort. Their pool area was the best one we saw all day. Great for a day hanging at the pool.
Next we were off to Loews Royal Pacific Resort – one of Universal’s premier hotels. All of these were within easy walking distance of each other. Royal Pacific has a design that is just as the name implies. This is the resort ai stayed in during my last two visits as it is often the most economically-priced premier hotel when searching for accommodations. It is a beautiful resort with a great pool area and lots of great dining options.
After that, we bussed over to Universal’s newest resort – Endless Summer Hotel – Dockside Inn. This is a Value hotel that offers standard rooms and 2 bedroom family suites. These provide a lot of space for the price point and a fun, cool theme. We then bussed over to CityWalk and entered Universal Studios for our VIP tour.
We started our VIP Tour at LaBama for their buffet lunch. LaBama is their restaurant reserved only for VIP tours. Lunch is included in the cost of all VIP Tours. They have samplings from many of Universal’s top restaurants. After lunch, we headed to the rides.
With a VIP tour you are led through the back areas of the ride, right to the front of the line. We rode rides at both Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure. These included: Kong, Jurassic River Ride, Hogwart’s Express and Hagrid’s Motorbike Adventure, just to name a few.
Some Pixies road Hulk and the Velocicoaster but I didn’t. Hagrid’s went down when we were ready to ride so we rode the Hogwart’s Express over Diagon Alley but it was back up when we got there so we rode back just to ride it. Lots of walking and lots of seeing areas you never see on your own. After riding Hagrid’s, I went back to the resort to sit with my feet up for a while as I have a Disney‘s rash and then ubered over to Loews Portofino Bay for dinner at Mama Della’s.
We had a private room at Mama Della’s and food was served family style. More food than we could possibly eat. 2There were two opera singers and a guitar player who came in to serenade us. They sang Happy Birthday, Danny Boy (that was my request as it was my daddy’s favorite) and That’s Amore. They were fantastic! After dinner, it was an Uber back to Cabana Bay. It was an exhaustingly long day but very much worth it. Tomorrow – we will hear from our Royal Caribbean sales manager!
DAY 4: Pixie Conference Day 3
We all met for breakfast a little later today. We had breakfast selections from the Bayliner Diner, the food court area at Cabana Bay. They had an omelet station and all the traditional hot food along with grab and go items. We then headed to the Fun and Sun conference room located between the bowling alley and the arcade where we spent the day. First, our bosses had treated us to professional head shots taken by a photographer and then some group photos including one on the spiral staircase. We had a good deal of Pixie discussion, learning and sharing time. For lunch we went back down to the Bayliner Diner. I had the Beyond Burger and fries. It was good!
After lunch, it was back to the conference room for a marketing presentation. Then our Royal Caribbean BDM did a presentation on Royal CaribbeanShe provided a lot of good informaiton on creating group sailings. We only need 8 staterooms to make a group! And Royal Caribbean will have a new ship sailing in 2023. After our class time, we headed back to our rooms to change into something a little warmer for dinner. Temperatures had dropped and it was rainy and misty.
We took the shuttle to CityWalk. We did a little shopping at the Universal Studios store before meeting up for dinner at Big Fire Grill. I had to get souvenirs for my girls after all!
I had a fantastic salad and the Pork Belly Mac n Cheese side dish. It was really good! After dinner, we took the bus from CityWalk back to Cabana Bay. There were a lot of buses lined up ready to head back. Back to the room for much needed sleep. The next day would be our last conference day.
DAY 5: Pixie Conference Day 4
This would be our last day all together. I went to the front desk for check out. We spent the morning talking about our goals for the year and discussing sales ideas with each other. Lunch was back in the Bayliner Diner. Breakfast is served until 11:49 and then at noon it changes over for lunch.
After lunch, there was cheesecake from Cheesecake Factory sent by an agent’s fantastic husband for her birthday. There was a lot more Pixie discussion and agents started to leave to catch flights. Ultimately, we all said goodbye and we headed back to the airport. My flight was delayed 4 times so I got home at around 1:15 AM but I was glad to be home.
Overall, it was a fantastic conference. I really enjoyed Universal Studios and they were very accommodating. I was impressed by the efficiency of the shuttle service. The conference was very informative and very inclusive and I really enjoyed seeing old friends and meeting sweet new Pixies.
I hope you enjoyed this recap of my conference and the time I spent at Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure. I have included some photos from the trip below.
Are you ready to book your trip to Universal Orlando? If so, it would be my pleasure to help you book an awesome trip! Contact me at Brenda@pixievacations.com.