Port Royal Ocean Resort: a total resort experience that’s sure to offer you the stay of a lifetime
By: Jessica Dusek
Photos by: Paul Marshall
Located on premier beachfront property in Port Aransas, Port Royal Ocean Resort draws guests from across Texas and beyond to come, relax and discover the Coastal Bend Bay area. The resort, built in 1985, has historical value, houses memories from years of returning families and offers fresh, new experiences for South Texas newcomers. Offering full-service resort amenities, as well as wedding and meeting planners onsite, Port Royal covers a variety of needs for their guests.
“We have a total resort experience,” describes Concierge Jeanie Goff. “It’s very stylish.” As the hotel is located across the Corpus Christi Bay and on the Gulf of Mexico, only 30 minutes from downtown, attractions such as the USS Lexington Museum and the Texas State Aquarium are some of the popular go-to spots for Port Royal guests.
In 2013, the venue underwent a $4.1 million pool renovation while also updating décor, tile and carpet to keep up with the booming Port Aransas area. “The views are just beautiful,” Goff says.
Port Royal Ocean Resort contains 210 condominium suites, which range from 700 to 1,700 square feet with full kitchens, laundries and one, two and three bedrooms. Some suites have residents fulltime, and many are homes to guests throughout the year, including “winter Texans,” Goff explains enthusiastically.
Goff’s smile shines through her words as she describes life at Port Royal Ocean Resort. “Our busy season begins just before Easter,” she says about the spring break rush. A true “people person,” Goff enjoys getting to know guests and guiding them toward memorable experiences. The resort aims to provide a luxury home-away-from-home feel for guests. “It’s very rewarding, and guests appreciate it,” Goff says. “We enjoy seeing them as much as they enjoy coming to see us.”
Having the opportunity to work in a state of paradise, Goff says she and her team members “love coming to work.” In her role as concierge, Goff maintains the flow of the resort by welcoming guests who enter the main lobby and offering suggestions about the nearby attractions with a personal touch.
“It helps to have someone direct traffic,” she says. “I’m here to direct them to where they would like to go, and I learn what they’d like to do and guide them in the right direction.”
“We have a lovely dining area in our restaurant that has a wonderful view of the gulf and the largest resort pool in Texas,” Goff explains. Their local onsite restaurant, Restaurant 361, is a popular hangout for guests. “The food is outstanding! People can come and dine with us, order food to go and enjoy by the pool or order room service.”
Port Royal also offers other food options such as The Bistro in the lobby, known for their great pizzas and sandwiches, and the swim-up Cabana Bar & Cabana Grill located in the pool area where guests can pick up a cold beverage and great eats and treats. “We have a full bar at the Cabana Bar – you can swim in the water and pick up a cocktail. People always love that”
Accommodating family and adult activities, Port Royal offers a variety of activities for their guests. Available each week, Port Royal offers sandcastle lessons for the kids beachside, as well as yoga classes and dive-in movies – free for guests each week. With the proximity to Port Aransas and access to fishing vessels and open water charters, guests can enjoy their visit with deep sea fishing, as well as other fun activities including parasailing, airplane rides and even skydiving.
Goff adds that guests can also opt for horseback riding on the beach, and that “there is also a very popular golf course about 10 minutes away.” Another more recent attraction for guests is the new gambling cruise ship, the Aransas Queen Casino. Last fall, the cruise line started offer gambling when they cruise from the mainland.
The Coastal Bend continues to expand entertainment opportunities for its vacationers, and Port Royal Ocean Resort stays on top of it all to ensure guests have the stay of a lifetime.
Weddings and events
“We have a wonderful wedding and meeting planning staff,” Goff says. Port Royal hosts many of these events each month, and their onsite meeting planners can help orchestrate the event on the premier beachfront property. While offering large meeting and indoor banquet rooms, the resort organizes meal options for guests, as well as music accommodations.
While also hosting events, Goff stays all day, taking care of the wedding party. “That’s one of the perks of the job,” she says. “We are such a large property; it is very easy to have several events going on at one time.” The resort also accommodates anniversaries, family reunions and conventions and business meetings. “Whatever the occasion is,” Goff says, “we can make it work!”