Walt Disney World Resort Non-Park Discussion Thread

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Re: Walt Disney World Resort Non-Park Discussion Thread

Postby COASTER FREAK 11 » Fri Jan 03, 2014 8:57 am

LOL, it is a silly name.

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Re: WDW Disney's Hollywood Studios Discussion Thread

Postby DJeXeL » Tue Mar 18, 2014 9:35 am

Aquarium @ T-REX cafe cracks.

Guests enjoying dinner at the T-REX Cafe in Walt Disney World in Florida got a wet surprise Monday evening when a massive fish tank sprung a leak and began spewing water. One of the diners captured the cellphone video above.

As WFTV (Channel 9) reports, “The large, cylinder-shaped aquarium appeared to have cracked open down the side, causing water to gush out into the restaurant. In the video, restaurant employees can be seen moving guests away from the area.”

No word yet on what caused the incident, or the fate of the fish inside.
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Re: Walt Disney World Resort Non-Park Discussion Thread

Postby thrillrider » Tue Mar 18, 2014 3:07 pm

Lol....How would you have like to have been sitting at the table where the tank water was flowing?
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Re: Walt Disney World Resort Non-Park Discussion Thread

Postby jedimaster1227 » Wed May 07, 2014 12:29 pm


Disney Springs, the comprehensive redo of Pleasure Island at Downtown Disney, will have some major restaurant names when it opens in 2016 if the current plans come to fruition. Among the restaurants that are in talks to be part of the ambitious project are Morimoto, the Japanese and sushi restaurant of chef Masaharu Morimoto and the Starr restaurant group with locations in Philadelphia and New York; STK, a modern steakhouse with locations in New York, Miami and Las Vegas; The Edison, a Los Angeles restaurant that celebrates the era of invention; and the Boathouse, a new concept from the same people who brought you Rainforest Cafe and T-Rex Cafe. Of these new restaurants, only STK is close to having dry ink on the agreement.

In addition, Planet Hollywood, the movie-themed restaurant with headquarters in Orlando, will undergo major renovations that will convert the massive globe-shaped structure it now occupies into one that resembles a planetary observatory (looking for a different type of stars, perhaps?). The Boathouse will be built in a space on the lagoon next to Fulton's Crab House, the faux paddle-wheeler, and Portobello, the Italian eatery. Both of those restaurants, owned by Levy Restaurants out of Chicago, are expected to remain as is. Paradiso 37 is also expected to remain.

The significance of Morimoto, STK and the Edison is that they are upscale and critically acclaimed restaurants. The addition of them to Central Florida is akin to the restaurants that turned Las Vegas into a culinary destination. The Edison, by the way, looks to be a perfect fit for WDW, based on the restaurant's website.

All of this, of course, is subject to change. Lease agreement and partnership arrangements with Walt Disney World are possible obstacles.


One thing my fiancée has taught me is that having the right accessories can make a good outfit even better (that probably explains why I keep buying her tiki-themed handbags). Soon, she and other guests will find many awesome accessories and more at Cherry Tree Lane, a new boutique coming to the Marketplace Co-Op at Downtown Disney Marketplace. The name of this high-end, fashion boutique was inspired by the street name where the Banks family resides in Disney’s “Mary Poppins.” As it turns out, there will be several nods to this classic live-action film in the location.



“I referenced images of the Banks’ children’s room in the film for the fixture designs,” explained Dana Harchar from the Global Retail Development team. “The handcrafted fixtures will be painted Victorian white along with accent colors of light blue and red. I designed wallpaper for some fixtures that incorporates iconic umbrellas, hats and kites in the design. Guests will also find nesting tables, a unique jewelry fixture, and some wooden closets that will line the exposed brick walls.”



The merchandise assortment will include many colorful accessories including ballet flats, handbags, avant-garde jewelry, timepieces and dramatic scarves. My favorite items have a blue “Cherry Tree Lane” pattern created by Disney Design Group artists. I love they included an umbrella, and the rolling duffle bag is a must!


Cherry Tree Lane will also be home to handbags and accessories by Dooney & Bourke, which is celebrating five years at Disney Parks this year. You may recall getting a first look at the new street scene pattern this past January on the Disney Park Blog. The Disney Parks online store will carry a color variation (red and black) of this pattern shown above at a future date. The color sketch bags will only be released at this location at Walt Disney World Resort; they will be at Disneyland Resort and online at a future date.


Finally, this boutique will carry items from the Disney Collection by Vera Bradley. I’m excited to share a first look at a brand new color, “Bouncing Bouquet,” that will debut once the location officially opens (stay tuned for an exact date). Guests will also find previously released colors such as “Midnight With Mickey” or “Where’s Mickey?” at this boutique. This location will be the only shop at Walt Disney World Resort to carry the “Mickey’s Perfect Petals” color recently released at the Epcot event on May 4.
Last edited by jedimaster1227 on Wed May 07, 2014 1:01 pm.
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Re: Walt Disney World Resort Non-Park Discussion Thread

Postby jedimaster1227 » Wed May 07, 2014 12:56 pm


Earlier today, Walt Disney World Resort President George A. Kalogridis announced some news about one of our most iconic resort hotels – Disney’s Polynesian Resort. As part of a complete re-imagining, Disney’s Polynesian Resort is returning to its original, 1971 opening day name: Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort.

The sweeping renovation, happening now, also includes a new food and beverage experience opening for guests next year, Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto — based on the popular themed lounge at the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim, Calif. There’s going to be lots more updates on this beachside family favorite, so stay tuned.




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Re: Walt Disney World Resort Non-Park Discussion Thread

Postby robbalvey » Sat May 31, 2014 1:34 pm

Yesterday we were invited to check out the new Starbucks location that opened at Downtown Disney in the old Häagen-Dazs/Wetzels Pretzels location near Splitsville. The building has been going through quite a transformation over the past few months and it looks NOTHING like it did before! Here's a look in and around the Starbucks and some of the key points that wanted us to make sure we passed along to all of you!
The exterior of the new Starbucks is just fantastic looking! I know there was a goal to bring "interesting" looking buildings to Downtown Disney as part of the Disney Springs project, and this does not disappoint! I love the “living roof” which is fed by recycled coffee grounds in the store.
Another angle of the front of the store.
The inside of the store is very unique looking and we were told was inspired by local Floridian themes.
These sand-looking sculptures were inspired by Florida's beaches and we think they look great!
The counter area features custom artwork reflecting what they call the "coffee journey."
The inside seating area has lots of different tables, chairs, sofas, and is a great place to relax and take a break of the craziness than can be a vacation at Disney!
Another unique feature is this location is one of the "Starbucks Reserve" shops.
Meet Wendy, she's the store manager and she walked us through what Starbucks Reserve is. There are only two of them in the Central Florida Orlando area!
And what is Starbucks Reserve? This will give you an idea!
Jack and I trying it out! I have to be honest, I'm not a "dark coffee" person, but I can certainly see why this will be attractive to a lot of coffee aficionados! It's awesome to have this option at Downtown Disney!
Then something in the seating area caught our eye...
This interactive chalkboard takes videos of what you are currently doing, allows you to draw on it, have some fun, and...
...on the bottom of the screen there is a link to the Starbucks at Downtown Disney in California! You can wave hello to people on the other Disney coast!!!
Freeze frame your picture, and draw on it! What a great "Selfie" opportunity!
Let's take another look at the outside area. The building was designed to have seating and features all around the building. The front area features this wood seating where the materials came from an Alabama cotton mill that dates back to the 1800s!
The back patio was beautiful! Plenty of seating....
And this really interesting fireplace/living moss wall with the Starbucks logo. Seriously, I've been all around the world, and as a Starbucks fan I've been to a LOT of stores, and this was probably the most impressive Starbucks I've ever seen!
The construction is also "Leed Certified" and this is very important to Starbucks as they have now built 500 stores with this certification. "LEED" is intended to help building owners and operators be environmentally responsible and use resources efficiently.
And while all these cool features make this Starbucks a flagship location for the company, let's not forget what it's all about...
...THE COFFEE!!! And it's awesome! (Yes, like I said, I admit that I am a Starbucks addict!) I fully support the Disney/Starbucks relationship and I feel it's one of the best corporate branding partnerships to happen in just about the history of EVER!!! =)
(Oh, and don't worry! Häagen-Dazs and Wetzels are still at Downtown Disney, just relocated around the corner from DisneyQuest!)
While we are here, let's take a quick look around Downtown Disney. Car Masters Weekend is coming up!
The new World Cup store is here!
These interesting looking "Elevated Train" platforms are starting to get installed as part of the new look for Disney Springs.
Some of the final remaining pieces of Pleasure Island. I have to be honest, I was never a Pleasure Island fan. I simply never "got" it and I didn't feel that it fit in with Disney. And with all the changes that happened over the years for Pleasure Island to try to find it's audience, it's clear it never really "worked." Other than a place for Cast Members to go, it never really seemed to connect with guests, and as much as Cast Members might want a cool place to hang out, that's not what it's all about. I think I did the clubs once or twice (my favorite was the short-lived roller skating rink) Pleasure Island was never a place I frequented, so I fully welcome all these new changes.
The construction of Disney Springs is pretty massive right now...
There are walls and barriers up everywhere!
Kind of reminded me what DCA looked like for the years it was in re-development.
Poor Mannequins! It was a near dance club with your rotating floors, etc, but I have a feeling whatever this building will become will be something I'll probably frequent more often than a dance club!
Some of the signage for Disney Springs is quietly starting to appear. Like the base of this lamp post, for example...
I think what I'm most looking forward to about Disney Springs is that it will be the first time the entire property will have one consistent theme throughout everything.
Before it was just Marketplace, PI, and West Side all kind of shoved together and nothing ever felt really cohesive. I'm hoping the new Disney Springs will really change all that.
Here is a look at the other Starbucks location over at World of Disney in the marketplace.
The way this new building fits in to the existing World of Disney, it feels like it was there all along! Really nicely done!
The Co-Op store will be the next shop to open. (Scroll up to a previous post for more details on this)
Some of the logos and Disney brands that will be featured in this store.
And a few more. Should have a lot of cool variety! I hope it opens soon!
And one final look at the new Starbucks since that's what this report is all about. I will most certainly be frequenting this location on every visit to DTD!
Last edited by robbalvey on Sat May 31, 2014 1:38 pm.

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Re: Walt Disney World Resort Non-Park Discussion Thread

Postby chargersmichael » Sat May 31, 2014 3:37 pm

I've visited Blizzard Beach about 2 weeks ago and noticed some land clearing around the area. Does anyone know what this is for?

Also, I went to Typhoon Lagoon today and noticed that there is as well land clearing but it is more outside of the park near the road. It goes almost to where Crush N Gusher is though. I'm assuming this construction by Typhoon is for Disney Springs but what for? Are they moving the road?

Along I4, there is also some land clearing near the various exits and into nearby resorts. Some of them seem to pretty large in clearing space. I am assuming for hotels? They will look to be pretty big hotels then...
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Re: Walt Disney World Resort Non-Park Discussion Thread

Postby SharkTums » Sat May 31, 2014 3:41 pm

I've always heard Blizzard Beach could get another slide or attraction, that would be great!

As for any of the construction near Typhoon Lagoon, the buildings alongside I-4, and DTD area, I would assume it is all for Disney Springs. In addition to the projects happening at DTD, they are also widening the road, adding a new exit over time, and more.

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Re: Walt Disney World Resort Non-Park Discussion Thread

Postby DenDen » Sat May 31, 2014 4:03 pm

Now THAT'S a fancy Starbucks! I LIKEE!
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Re: Walt Disney World Resort Non-Park Discussion Thread

Postby jedimaster1227 » Sun Jun 15, 2014 9:23 am


Walt Disney World’s plans for turning Downtown Disney into Disney Springs are grand, and more details of the transformation are taking shape.

I went on a tour June 12 with the Urban Land Institute that went behind the scenes of Disney Springs. The tour included speaking with Jeff Abraham, Disney Springs’ creative director with Disney Imagineering.

On the tour, although I was not allowed to photograph new renderings, more details on the project emerged.

For example, Disney Springs will have re-purposed elevated platforms, and new renderings included a tall glass tower leading to the platform that has umbrella tables for guests.

In addition, Abraham said the area will boast new international restaurant and retail options that do not have any presence anywhere else in the U.S., but he would not share any other details.

Abraham also detailed the story behind the Disney Springs development. That story revolves around a small Florida city’s multi-era transformation from a small town dependent on a river to years after railroad transportation is no longer the primary means of travel, and the city finds new ways to reuse the old railway tracks and stations.

Abraham described the renovation as filled with old warehouses, brick buildings and re-purposed boat houses as the city evolved with the times.

Currently, a multi-level parking garage is being built on site. Disney Springs is set to be complete in 2016.

Check back later for more details.
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