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Nightlife In Orlando: Try Universal's Citywalk

Feb 2, 2008
An Orlando vacation can be a full-on experience with fun during the day and also at night. Just as Disney World has its Pleasure Island entertainment complex, Universal Studios features a CityWalk area that has nightclubs with entertainment in musical grooves including Jimmy Buffett, Motown, Bob Marley, rock 'n' roll, dance music, dueling pianos and Latin rhythms. Let's take a look at what is on offer at Universal's City Walk.

Before we begin it should be noted that City Walk is not just a tit for tat response to Disney World's Pleasure Island. The City Walk area in Orlando is modeled after Universal Hollywood which first introduced the concept of an entertainment/dining complex.

Here are some of the entertainment attractions on City Walk:

The Groove: This is a dance club that is popular with locals and tourists alike. It looks like a turn-of-the-century theater that was converted into a nightclub. It features popular dance music and is especially attractive to the under 30 set.

Bob Marley: A Tribute to Freedom - A recreation of Bob Marley's Jamaica Home which was turned into a museum after Marley's death in 1981. This combination night club- museum and restaurant offers live Reggae music on the patio and has a nice, casual atmosphere.

Pat O'Brien's: This club is based on the original Pat O'Brien's in New Orleans. The exterior replicates the original, and on the patio in the back, you'll find the signature fire and water fountain. There are two inside bars, including one with dueling pianos. Be careful when sampling their strong Hurricane drink which includes four ounces of rum.

CityJazz: During the week this venue is a comedy club and on Friday and Saturday night it is a jazz club. It sports a montage of jazz stars filling one wall and has glass cases with jazz memorabilia.

Latin Quarter: Here is another venue that is popular with both tourists and locals, especially Orlando's Hispanic community. During the day it is a restaurant and at night is a chic nightclub.

Jimmy Buffets Margaritaville - Another fun spot to hang out and party, Margaritaville offers everything from live bands nightly, to hula hoop contests. Of course, the drink du jour here is the Margarita.

Red Coconut Club - Live entertainment and a South Beach vibe combine to make this one of the liveliest clubs in Orlando. If you decide to pay the Red Coconut a visit, we suggest you dress a step or two above standard resort wear because you'll feel a bit out of place in shorts and sandals.

There is no admission charge for CityWalk, although individual clubs may have cover charges. Visitors can buy a Key to the Clubs, providing admission to all venues, for $7.95 plus tax. The Universal parking garages charge $7 for cars and $8 for RVs and campers before 6 p.m. Parking is free after 6 p.m.

General operating hours are 11 a.m. to 2 a.m., although each venue has its own hours.

CityWalk can be seen only on foot. Visitors must park in Universal's garages and walk about five to 10 minutes to get there. Moving sidewalks are available.

So, put on your dancing shoes and enjoy some nights out at Universal's CityWalk in Orlando, Florida.
About the Author
Mark Whichard is a frequent writer on Orlando vacations. He is an expert in the field of Orlando Disney vacation rentals with experience dating to 1998. Visit his website: http://www.disneyhomerentals.com
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