Every so often, I will speak with someone planning an Orlando area vacation but has not visited in 15 years or so. They describe planning to feed their teenagers at a breakfast buffet. I feel bad telling them that the old days of quality inexpensive breakfast buffets around every corner are over. Many of the former breakfast buffet locations suffered mightily during the height of the pandemic. Those that survived charged far more than in previous years.
During my stay at the Holiday Inn and Suites Across from Universal Orlando, I got the chance to enjoy the closest off-site breakfast buffet to Universal Orlando. Also, I recently dined at one of the on-site breakfast buffets. As a result, I will compare them a little.
Though you may not think breakfast when you hear about a TGI Fridays restaurant, but this one, located very close to Universal Orlando, serves breakfast every day. They open for breakfast around 7:30am. If you are staying at the Holiday Inn and Suites Across from Universal Orlando, you can use an indoor walkway to the restaurant. Hotel guests have the option for kids under 13 years old dining free here with paid adults. The breakfast buffet costs $14.99 (including beverages). That may seem pricey. Remember, you are in theme park resort territory.
The set-up for this breakfast buffet looks like most breakfast buffets. The servers were very polite during my experience. If you are looking for theme park level theming for breakfast, this place will let you down. For example, the music volume exceeded normal breakfast time level. Yes, the volume level probably stayed at evening volume level. Nothing about music screamed “Hey, you are going to a theme park today.”
All the standard expected USA style breakfast buffet food offerings appeared on their breakfast bar. There were muffins and bagels in one section. Also, bread for toasting existed also there.
Eggs, potatoes, bacon, sausage, and small pancakes could also be found.
Since it is Florida, fruit appears on the breakfast bar also. Somehow, fruit just tastes better in Florida than most of the USA.
In another section, guests could find grits and syrup for pancakes.
So how did this breakfast taste?
Well, breakfast rates as average dining. If given the choice, I would pay the higher price for a breakfast buffet on site at Universal Orlando. Having said that, only the biscuits and sausage rated below other off-site breakfast buffet in the area. The western style eggs were probably the best tasting items on this buffet.
This buffet will meet your needs, especially if you stay at the Holiday Inn nearest to Universal Orlando with kids 12 and under. If your goal for breakfast revolves around filling everyone stomachs so you can save some money in the park, this buffet will help that. If you desire high quality breakfast options, you will find this buffet lacking. Now, if this buffet offered one standout item, then the price point would be a much higher value. However, this place lacks a standout buffet item.
If your large group decides to enjoy one of the suites at Holiday Inn and Suites Across from Universal Orlando, this buffet location has all you need.
As always, eat like you mean it!
Pirates & Princesses (PNP) is an independent, opinionated fan-powered news blog that covers Disney and Universal Theme Parks, Themed Entertainment and related Pop Culture from a consumer's point of view. Opinions expressed by our contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of PNP, its editors, affiliates, sponsors or advertisers. PNP is an unofficial news source and has no connection to The Walt Disney Company, NBCUniversal or any other company that we may cover.