Guide to Loews Sapphire Falls Resort in Universal Orlando

 Loews Sapphire Falls Resort.

Loews Sapphire Falls Resort.

What Is Loews Sapphire Falls Resort?

Loews Sapphire Falls Resort is the newest on-site hotel at Universal Orlando Resort. It opened on July 14, 2016, which means you can still be among the first guests to book a stay at this hotel. 

The theme of this property is Caribbean inspired. Landscaping is exceptionally lush, and the decor has an island charm that exudes leisure and relaxation.

The resort pool, the largest at any on-site Universal Orlando hotel, is the centerpiece of the Sapphire Falls property. Here, you'll find enough cascading waterfalls, palm trees, flowers, and rock gardens to make you forget where you came from and why you want to go back.

You can see pictures of Loews Sapphire Falls Resort at the bottom of this page in the image gallery. You may also want to explore our Loews Sapphire Falls Resort Pictorial, which contains pictures that were taken during the hotel's opening week, or our Loews Sapphire Falls Resort Review, which provides a breakdown of the things we liked and didn't like about this hotel.

 The Lagoon area at Loews Sapphire Falls Resort.

The Lagoon area at Loews Sapphire Falls Resort.

Things Covered in This Sapphire Falls Resort Guide

This UO Fan Guide to Loews Sapphire Falls Resort explores everything that the hotel has to offer and guides you through basic information that will help you book a room at the lowest price possible. Specific things that we will cover include:

  • Hotel Location
  • Room Types 
  • Room Rates
  • Room Promotions and Discounts
  • Pet Policy
  • Room Amenities
  • Resort-Wide Amenities
  • Theme Park Benefits
  • Pool and Waterfalls
  • Poolside Activities
  • Dining and Drinks
  • Recreation (including the game room and fitness center)
  • Shopping
  • Meeting and Function Space
  • Parking and Associated Fees
  • Transportation to Sapphire Falls
  • Getting to Universal Theme Parks
  • Transportation to Nearby Attractions
  • How to Book a Room at Sapphire Falls
  • Loews Sapphire Falls Resort vs. Other On-Site Hotels
  • Tips for Sapphire Falls Guests
 Loews Sapphire Falls Resort porte cochere. 

Loews Sapphire Falls Resort porte cochere. 

Loews Sapphire Falls Resort Location

Loews Sapphire Falls Resort consists of multiple towers that are connected to one another. Guest rooms have views of the lagoon, pool, garden paths, and lush landscaping. The hotel is located between Cabana Bay Beach Resort and Loews Royal Pacific Resort on the Universal Orlando property. 

Some other basic information about Sapphire Falls Resort:

Sapphire Falls Rooms

Rooms at Sapphire Falls Resort were designed to make guests feel like they have taken a "trip to paradise." Like the rest of the hotel, the rooms are Caribbean inspired. The tasteful color palette consists of whites, creams, and blues. Brighter accent colors, like orange and yellow, can be found in paintings, pillows, and some of the furnishings.  

 Sapphire Falls Resort standard room. Image credit: Universal Orlando Resort.

Sapphire Falls Resort standard room. Image credit: Universal Orlando Resort.

Sapphire Falls Room Types    

Sapphire Falls has standard guest rooms and several different kinds of suites. Let's take a closer look at each room type.

 Sapphire Falls Resort standard room bathroom. Image credit: Universal Orlando Resort.

Sapphire Falls Resort standard room bathroom. Image credit: Universal Orlando Resort.

  • Standard Room: Each standard room in Sapphire Falls is 321 square feet in size. Some rooms have a single king bed (maximum occupancy is 4 people); others have two queen beds (maximum occupancy is 5 people). Both types of standard rooms have one bathroom with separate bath and vanity areas (i.e. there is a shower and toilet in one compartment and sink and vanity in another compartment).
  • King Suite: The king suites at Sapphire Falls have a more spacious bedroom than the standard rooms as well as a separate sitting area. King suites are 595 square feet and have a maximum occupancy of 4 people.
  • Kidsā€™ Suite: The Sapphire Falls kids' suite is a two bedroom room with a king bed in one room and two twin beds in a second room. The rooms are connected with a single door. The room with the king bed enters into the hotel hallway, but the room with the twin beds does not, making this suite perfect for families with small children. The second bedroom is also decorated in a fun way that will appeal to kids. These suites are 529 square feet and have a maximum occupancy of 5 people.
  • Sapphire Suite: The sapphire suite is designed for guests who want to feel like they have their own private island bungalow. These suites are more luxuriously appointed than the others and feature 851 square feet of space. Each suite has a large bedroom with a king bed as well as two baths and separate dining and living areas (complete with a wet bar). Maximum occupancy in the sapphire suite is 5 people.
  • Hospitality Suite: Sapphire Falls has more than two dozen hospitality suites designed for entertaining. At 1,353 square feet, these suites are the largest on site. Each features a spacious bedroom and bathroom in addition to a separate living room, dining area, and kitchenette. Maximum occupancy is 3 people.
  • Presidential Suite: The fanciest room that you can get at Sapphire Falls is the presidential suite. There are only two of these suites available at the hotel. Each features a large bedroom in addition to a dining room, living room, exercise room, and two bathrooms - one with a soaking tub. Presidential suites are 1,294 square feet and have a maximum occupancy of 3 people. 

Pet-Friendly Rooms

Sapphire Falls Resort is a pet-friendly hotel that participates in the Loews Loves Pets Program. This program is open to guests who are staying in standard rooms with queen beds. There is a charge of $50 per night (this fee is subject to change), with a maximum charge of $150 throughout your stay. The hotel provides a special walking area for pets. 

Sapphire Falls Room Rates

Room rates at Sapphire Falls vary depending on when you travel. Universal Orlando has seasonal rates. This means that certain seasons cost more than others. For example, it is much more expensive to stay at Sapphire Falls during the holiday season (Christmas, New Year's, spring break, etc.) than it is to stay during a value season (slower periods like January and September).

Room rates might also be higher based on availability and the type of room you get. For example, suites are often larger than standard rooms and may have extra amenities like a separate living area, so they tend to cost more than standard rooms. 

Room rates can also vary depending on the type of view you get. Standard rooms have three different views: standard, pool, and lagoon. Standard view rooms are the cheapest; lagoon view rooms cost a little more; and pool view rooms are the most expensive. 

It is also important to note that room rates at on-site hotels, including Sapphire Falls Resort, are based on double occupancy (two people per room). If you have two adults, plus two children, the children can stay for free. But if multiple adults (more than two) are staying in a single room, you will need to pay an extra fee per person per day. Fees vary by hotel and season, but typically start at $25 per person per day. So, for example, if you have four adults in one room, you will need to pay $25 extra per day for the third adult and $25 extra per day for the fourth adult.

 On-site hotel guests get early entry to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

On-site hotel guests get early entry to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

Theme Park Benefits for Staying at Sapphire Falls

Sapphire Falls is an on-site hotel, which means that you get special park-related benefits just for staying on the Universal Orlando property. These benefits include:

  • Early Park Admission to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. This special benefit allows all Sapphire Falls guests to enter the theme park one hour before it opens to other guests. Early entry will be given for either Universal Studios Florida or Islands of Adventure, depending on the time of year that you visit. Keep in mind that this early admissions is for The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, which means rides in other areas of the park will probably not be running until the park opens.
  • Resort-wide charging privileges. You can use your Sapphire Falls room key to pay for food and merchandise throughout the hotel, theme parks, and CityWalk. Your purchases will be charged to your room and can be paid for upon check-out.
  • Free merchandise delivery. Everything you purchase in the theme parks can be delivered to your Sapphire Falls room so that you don't have to carry your merchandise all day.
  • Complimentary water taxi and shuttlebus transportation. This transportation takes you from Sapphire Falls to CityWalk, which is conveniently located next to both theme parks. It also takes you from CityWalk to Sapphire Falls. Water taxis and buses start running before the parks open and run continuously throughout the day until shortly after CityWalk closes.
  • Complimentary shuttlebus transportation to nearby attractions like SeaWorld, Aquatica, and Wet 'n Wild. The buses pick you up in CityWalk and drop you off in the same spot after you have visited your desired destination.
  • A special wake-up call. You can get one of your favorite Universal characters to call your hotel to wake you up each morning. 
  • Golf Universal Orlando. Guests at Sapphire Falls Resort get preferred tee times and complimentary transportation to Grand Cypress Golf Club. 
 Loews Sapphire Falls Resort lobby.

Loews Sapphire Falls Resort lobby.

Room Amenities at Sapphire Falls

There are a few basic amenities that come standard in every Sapphire Falls room. Some of the fancier suites have even more amenities. Some of the things that you can find in every room include:

  • Flat panel television with HD channels 
  • Mini refrigerator
  • Cuisinart single cup coffee maker 
  • Electrical and USB outlets
  • Retractable clothesline 
  • Davines shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, and lotion
  • Comfort Zone body soap and facial soap
  • Julien Farrell Hairdryer
  • Lighted makeup mirror
  • Iron and ironing board
  • In-room safe (large enough for a laptop or camera)
  • High-speed wireless internet access 
  • Telephone with voicemail 
  • iHome radio clock

Sapphire Falls Resort-Wide Amenities

Sapphire Falls Resort has a few resort-wide amenities that guests may find useful during their stay, including:

  • Universal Orlando Attraction Ticket Center (a ticket desk and kiosk where you can purchase or print tickets to Universal Orlando theme parks and other area attractions)
  • Laundromat
  • Business center
  • Car rental desk
  • 24-hour bell service and luggage service
 Loews Sapphire Falls Resort pool.

Loews Sapphire Falls Resort pool.

Sapphire Falls Pool 

The pool is located on the second level of Sapphire Falls. This is also where you can find other recreational facilities (like the game room and fitness center).

When you look at the Sapphire Falls Resort pool, you are supposed to feel as though you have been transported to a natural island body of water. The pool is surrounded by cascading waterfalls, including the grand Sapphire Falls that give the resort its name. 

This is a double zero entry pool, which means that you can enter into shallow water from two different sandy white beaches (the sand doesn't actually touch the pool). The sand areas total 3,500 square feet, and the pool is 16,000 square feet. It is the largest pool at any Universal Orlando hotel.

The pool is surrounded by lots of lounge chairs. You can also rent a private poolside cabana that includes extra amenities. Other special features include a 226 square foot hot tub, a 100 foot long flume water slide, and a unique cave tunnel. 

Poolside Activities at Sapphire Falls

Alongside the Sapphire Falls Resort pool, you will find a very large fire pit - the biggest at any of the on-site hotels - along with plenty of fireside seating. A fire will be lit in the pit each night (unless there is severe weather). There is also a kid-friendly play area with 24 pop-up water jets. At dusk, guests can watch a poolside movie while they're swimming or lounging by the pool. Other poolside activities include bingo, ping-pong, and occasional hula-hoop contests. 

 Strong Water Tavern at  Sapphire Falls Resort.

Strong Water Tavern at Sapphire Falls Resort.

Sapphire Falls Dining and Drinks

Sapphire Falls has several on-site restaurants and lounges where you can get food and drinks. Options include:

  • Amatista Cookhouse:  This Sapphire Falls restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The cuisine is Caribbean themed. Everything is prepared in an open exhibit kitchen, so if you sit in the right place, you may be able to watch your meal being prepared. Amatista Cookhouse has indoor and outdoor seating in addition to private seating options. See menus and learn more about this restaurant in our Amatista Cookhouse Dining Guide and Review.
  • Drhum Club Kantine: Located near the fire pit and lushly landscaped pool, Drhum Club Kantine is an island inspired retreat that serves up fresh seafood and tropical drinks. 
  • New Dutch Trading Co.: This Sapphire Falls dining option is the most casual spot in the hotel. New Dutch Trading Co. sells grab-and-go meals, breads, jams, and other provisions. Learn more about this dining option in our New Dutch Trading Co. Dining Guide and Review
  • Strong Water Tavern: The lobby lounge at Sapphire Falls features a ceviche bar, vintage rums, daily rum tastings, and a rum specialist to help you choose just the right drink. Strong Water Tavern also serves both lunch and dinner. Guests can sit inside or on an outdoor patio overlooking the lagoon. Learn more about food and drink offerings in our Strong Water Tavern Dining Guide and Review.
 Kalina Fitness Center at Loews Sapphire Falls Resort.

Kalina Fitness Center at Loews Sapphire Falls Resort.

Recreation at Sapphire Falls

Outside of the pool, dining, and bars, Sapphire Falls offers two basic opportunities for recreation: a 1,200 square foot game room called Calypso and the Kalina Health and Fitness Center. It will cost you money to play in the game room, but the fitness center is complimentary. Workout equipment includes treadmills, upright and recumbent bicycles, elliptical machines, and weight machines. You'll also find restrooms, locker rooms, showers, and a dry sauna. 

Shopping at Sapphire Falls

Sapphire Falls has a Universal Studios Store where guests can purchase theme park merchandise, including Wizarding World, Marvel, and Seuss themed merchandise. The store will also carry Universal themed souvenirs, items featuring the hotel logo, and basic articles like magazines, newspapers, sunscreen, and other guest necessities. 

Sapphire Falls Meeting and Function Spaces

Sapphire Falls Resort caters to large groups who want to hold meetings, events, and other special functions at the hotel. There is more than 115,000 square feet of total meeting and function space, including 27,000 square feet of pre-function space. Special rooms include:

  • Grand Caribbean Ballroom (40,713 square feet)
  • Kingston Hall (31,208 square feet)
  • Cayman Court (11,482 square feet)
  • Barbados Boardroom (970 square feet)
  • 15 breakout rooms (13,868 square feet)
  • 3 meeting planner offices (910 square feet) 

Sapphire Falls Parking and Associated Fees

Sapphire Falls Resort offers self-parking and valet parking for day and overnight guests. Self-parking is $22 plus tax per day, per vehicle for overnight guests and $45 plus tax per day, per vehicle for day guests. Valet parking is $29 plus tax per day, per vehicle for overnight guestsand $45 plus tax per day, per vehicle for day guests.

Transportation to Sapphire Falls

These driving directions will help you get from Orlando International Airport to Sapphire Falls. If you do not have a car, you can use a shuttle service to get from the airport to the hotel. The Universal shuttle service is known as SuperStar Shuttle. A round trip ticket on this shuttle should be booked ahead of time by calling the Universal Travel Operation Department at 1-866-604-7557. Kids under three can ride for free; everyone else will need to pay a fee to ride the SuperStar Shuttle. Other fee-based shuttle services include Mears Transportation and SuperShuttle.

 The free water taxi that takes guests from on-site hotels to CityWalk, and back again.

The free water taxi that takes guests from on-site hotels to CityWalk, and back again.

Getting to Universal Theme Parks

There are three ways for the average guest to get from Sapphire Falls to Universal Studios Florida or Islands of Adventure. Let's explore each method:

  • Walk. The Sapphire Falls Resort is located within walking distance of the theme parks (about 3/4 of a mile depending on where your room is). You can walk on the provided garden path (which is labeled with signs and nicely landscaped) to a side entrance in CityWalk near Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville. From there, it is very easy to walk to either theme park.
  • Ride the Free Water Taxi. There is a free water taxi that takes guests from the lagoon at Sapphire Falls Resort to the lagoon in City Walk, which is just a short walk away from both theme parks. This water taxi runs continuously throughout the day until about 2:30 a.m. (shortly after CityWalk closes). You can also catch a ride from CityWalk back to Sapphire Falls Resort at any time.
  • Ride the Free Shuttlebus. There is a free shuttlebus that takes guests from Sapphire Falls Resort to the bus drop-off at the entrance to City Walk (near the Universal parking structure). This drop off area is not as close to the theme parks as the water taxi lagoon or the entrance near Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville, but it is still just a short walk away from both theme parks (about 10-15 minutes depending on how fast you walk). Like the water taxi, the shuttlebus also runs continuously throughout the day until about 2:30 a.m. (shortly after CityWalk closes). You can also catch a ride from CityWalk back to Sapphire Falls Resort at any time.

Transportation to Other Attractions

Guests who are staying at Sapphire Falls Resort can also get free shuttlebus transportation from CityWalk to nearby attractions like Aquatica, Wet 'n Wild, and SeaWorld. Unlike the regular hotel shuttle, this bus does not run continuously throughout the day. You must make reservations ahead of time to take advantage of this free transportation option. You can speak to someone at the Sapphire Falls Resort concierge desk to learn more about shuttlebus schedules and make reservations. 

How to Book a Room at Sapphire Falls

There are multiple ways to book a room through Sapphire Falls Resort. A few that we recommend include:

 Cabana Bay Beach Resort is the least expensive on-site hotel at Universal Orlando Resort. 

Cabana Bay Beach Resort is the least expensive on-site hotel at Universal Orlando Resort. 

Loews Sapphire Falls Resort vs. Other On-Site Hotels

Loews Sapphire Falls Resort is known as a Preferred Hotel, which basically means that it is a mid-priced resort compared to the other on-site hotels. The standard rooms at Cabana Bay Beach Resort (which is considered a prime value resort) are a little bit cheaper than the standard rooms at Sapphire Falls. The standard rooms at Loews Portofino Bay Resort and Hard Rock Hotel (both of which are considered Premier Hotels) and the standard rooms at Loews Royal Pacific Resort (which is considered a Preferred Hotel) are more expensive than the standard rooms at Sapphire Falls. 

Cabana Bay Beach Resort is cheaper than Sapphire Falls because it does not have a lagoon and free water taxi transportation. The other hotels, Loews Portofino Bay Resort, Hard Rock Hotel, and Loews Royal Pacific Resort are more expensive because they all offer free Express Passes for hotel guests. Express Passes, which are valued at $89 per day per person, let you skip the regular line and reduce wait times for theme park rides. An Express Pass must be purchased separately and for an extra fee when you stay at Cabana Bay Beach Resort or Loews Sapphire Falls Resort (if you want to skip the regular lines). Note: the cost for an Express Pass varies throughout the year, depending on how busy the parks are; see Express Pass prices.  

Other Quick Facts and Tips

There are a few other things that you might want to know before you get to Sapphire Falls Resort:

  • There are 1,000 guest rooms at Sapphire Falls Resort.
  • All of the rooms at Sapphire Falls Resort are non-smoking, but there are designated smoking areas on the property (in outdoor areas).  
  • There is a 12.5% tax on all rooms at Sapphire Falls Resort. 
  • You can use your Sapphire Falls room key to check out the pools at other on-site hotels.
  • You can use the free hotel dining shuttle to check out the restaurants at other on-site hotels. This 10-person shuttle runs from 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm. Pick-up is near the Sapphire Falls lobby.
  • You must show your Sapphire Falls room key in addition to your park admission ticket to gain early entry to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

Sapphire Falls Image Gallery

See pictures of Loews Sapphire Falls Resort in this image gallery.

Sapphire Resort Falls Video

This video from Universal Orlando Resort shows you six things you should know about Loews Sapphire Falls Resort.

Video courtesy of Universal Orlando Resort. SUBSCRIBE http://bit.ly/1oqJLp4