Around the Universe – Discount and News for August 2020

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It is almost the end of August–where did the time go? Today, Around the Universe covers a bucket full of new Universal news, discounts, ticket changes, and updates!

Passholder Appreciation Days

Courtesy of Universal Orlando.

Universal Passholder Appreciation Days are back! Running until September 30, 2020, passholders receive expanded discounts, exclusive dining options, and special offers. Current benefits include:

  • VIP Entrance at theme parks
  • Premier Passholder parking lane
  • Premier Passholder Universal Express starts at 2:00 p.m.
  • Premier Passholder Free Theme Park Admission for a guest August 17 – December 31, 2020
  • Premier and Preferred Passholders early park admission every day through September 30
  • Power and Season Passholders early park admission weekdays through September 30
  • Save 30% on Universal Express Pass
  • Free magnet and button (available at UOAP Lounge in USF)
  • Much, much, much more!

Find yourself at the parks and a little peckish? Confisco Grille in Islands of Adventure is offering exclusive menu items and, for the first time, 2nd floor dining in the exclusive Navigator’s Club! In Universal Studios Florida, Lombard’s Seafood Grille is offering a prix fixe menu for $45 with choices of appetizer, entree, and dessert.

Universal Passholder Appreciation Days are currently running until September 30, 2020.

Crêpes Ahoy!

In one of the positive additions in 2020, Universal opened a new crêpes stand in Universal Studios Florida. Located in Central Park across from Cafe LaBamba, the new stand sells snack-sized fresh crêpes; light, delicate pancakes rolled with a filling. Universal’s menu includes savory and sweet options including a vegan choice. For Derek Burgan the new stand also houses two Coke Freestyle machines for souvenir cup refills.

The early reviews give the stand thumbs up and a great option in lieu of the traditional pretzels, popcorn, and churro snacks. Hopefully, Universal keeps copying Disney Springs snack stands and we get some poutine soon (or is that at Green Eggs & Ham’s current menu).

Sapphire Falls Resort & Aventura Hotel Closures

Courtesy of Universal Orlando.

Closures are not just happening in the parks as Universal and Loews have announced Sapphire Falls and Aventura Hotel are closing Friday, August 21, for an indefinite amount of time.

We continue to evaluate our offerings and have decided to consolidate our hotel operations as we manage through current conditions.  We will be operating the Hard Rock Hotel, Loews Royal Pacific Resort, Cabana Bay Beach Resort and Universal’s Endless Summer Resort – Surfside Inn and Suites and temporarily suspending operations at Loews Sapphire Falls Resort and Universal’s Aventura Hotel as of August 21.  Guests with reservations at Sapphire Falls or Aventura will be accommodated at our other hotels.

Universal is offering Sapphire Falls guests accommodations at Royal Pacific Resort while Aventura Hotel guests are offered similar rooms at Cabana Bay Beach Resort. At this time Endless Summer Resort – Dockside has not yet opened and we expect guests with reservations there to be moved to Endless Summer – Surfside or Cabana Bay.

Untitled Dinosaur Coaster

Over in Islands of Adventure, work is progressing on the first half of the unannounced Jurassic Park coaster. Rockwork, theming, and show scene installation is progressing, and if you look into the train shed building you can see coaster vehicles have arrived at the site. While the attraction has no name or opening date we expect this attraction to open the first half of 2021.

Halloween Horror Nights?

Halloween Horror Nights 2020 is canceled. Yes, it still hurts to say that. While we will not get to walk through the fog this year, Universal opened their yearly Tribute Store for a small taste of the event. This year’s store features four incredibly themed rooms: Frankenstein’s Monster, Halloween Horror Nights throwback, The Attic, and Beetlejuice. Each of the rooms includes exclusive merchandise such as this incredible Frankenstein’s Monster Mold-o-Rama machine.

The Halloween Horror Nights Tribute Store is now open through the fall. The store is located in Universal Studios Florida next to Revenge of the Mummy.

Discounts and Deals

Was your hotel booking canceled during the COVID-19 shutdown (March 20 – May 31, 2020)? Are you looking to, or have you, rebooked for some time this year? Universal is offering a free $50 hotel dining credit for any 2+ night stay at a Universal if your reservation was canceled this spring. This credit can be combined with other offers including Annual Passholder room discounts. To redeem, call 866-840-9900 with your canceled reservation confirmation number and your new confirmation number.

Here some other discounts and deals available:

Refurbishments and Closures

  • Fievel’s Playground (COVID-19, Reopening TBD)
  • Curious George Goes to Town (COVID-19, Reopening TBD)
  • A Day in the Park with Barney
  • Fear Factor Live (COVID-19, Reopening TBD)
  • Fast & Furious: Supercharged
  • Kang & Kodos’ Twirl ‘n’ Hurl
  • Camp Jurassic (COVID-19, Reopening TBD)
  • If I Ran the Zoo (COVID-19, Reopening TBD)
  • Jurassic Discovery Center (COVID-19, Reopening TBD)
  • Me Ship, The Olive (COVID-19, Reopening TBD)
  • Poseidon’s Fury
  • Storm Force Acceleration

What are your favorite Universal Orlando Annual Passholder benefits? Have you eaten at Central Park Crepes? Are you excited for the Halloween Horror Nights Tribute Store? Leave your thoughts in the comments below! 

Joseph Matt

Avid amusement park and video game fan. Enjoys picking up rare beers at breweries, exploring cities, cooking, and sports.

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