WDW Refurb Update: Pool Closure at Port Orleans Riverside, Other Resort Pool Refurb Changes

Quite a few changes have just been introduced to the refurbishment schedule for pools at various Walt Disney World Resorts.

  • At Port Orleans Riverside, the Magnolia Bend leisure pool will close on February 8, 2011 and is expected to re-open on April 2.
  • The Cabanas leisure pool refurb has been rescheduled. The new closing date is January 18, 2011 and the re-opening date is February 12.

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Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotel Play Host to Life-Size Santa Chocolate Sculpture

Life-size Chocolate Santa by Executive Pastry Chef Laurent BranlardThis holiday season there will be no Santa sweeter than the one on display at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotel, an Epcot Resort Hotel. A life-size chocolate Santa – complete with armchair, fireplace and Christmas tree – sculpted entirely out of chocolate will be exhibited in the lobby of the Swan throughout December. A total of 1,200 lbs. of chocolate was used for the piece, which is colored to accurately portray Santa’s vibrant red suit, flowing white beard and green Christmas tree!

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American Legion Joins Coalition to Honor Veterans at Disney World Event

The American Legion is teaming up with the Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes to stage the 6th annual Road to Recovery Conference and Tribute at Walt Disney World’s Swan Resort in Orlando, Fla. The Dec. 12-16 event will host more than 400 guests, including many veterans who were severely wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The five-day event promises to make the educational and motivational sessions better than ever for the attendees. They will be treated to a unique, all-expenses-paid program designed to encourage them to look to the future with hope and optimism. Other conference sponsors include General Motors, T-Mobile, Northrup Grumman and Humana Military.

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WDW Refurb Update: Quiet Pool Closures at Polynesian, Coronado Springs; American Adventure Exhibit

We have a late entry of the American Heritage Gallery at Epcot’s American Adventure in the World Showcase. The exhibit is currently closed beginning today and will re-open on November 17.

Moving into the future, but not too distantly, we have scheduled quiet pool closures at both the Polynesian Resort (closing January 10, opening February 19) and Coronado Springs Resort (Cabanas pool closing January 3, opening January 29). In both cases, the respective main feature pool will remain open as will any other quiet pools at the resort.

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WDW Refurbs Update: Kouzzina Plus Extended Closures at Animal Kingdom, Saratoga Springs

We have four newly listed refurbishments at the Walt Disney World Resort to share with you.

First up is Kouzzina by Cat Cora at Disney’s Boardwalk Inn. The restaurant will be closed for a couple of weeks beginning on November 29 and re-opening on December 15.

Beginning December 3, the Paddock leisure pool at Disney’s Saratoga Springs DVC Resort will close for an extended refurbishment and is currently scheduled to re-open on June 30, 2011.

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‘Disney’s Art of Animation’ Resort to Open Summer 2012; WDW Site Offers Update

Walt Disney World has added a page for its Disney’s Art of Animation Resort to the official website. The resort, which replaces the original proposed Pop Century: Legendary Years resort, is slated to open in summer of 2012.

According to the site, it will be a value resort that will consist of mostly family suites, as was rumored for Pop Century: Legendary Years after a pilot program at All Star Music. While The Little Mermaid section will consist of 864 ‘sea-inspired’ rooms, The Lion King, Cars and Finding Nemo sections will offer a total of 1,120 family suites, each consisting of: 1 master bedroom; 2 bathrooms; and 3 separate sleeping areas which includes a ‘Inovabed,’ a pull-out bed that transforms from a dining or work table as opposed to a sofa. The suites will sleep up to six.

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WDW Refurb Update: Pool Slide Closures at Stormalong Bay, Boardwalk Inn in Early 2011

The pool and kid slide at Stormalong Bay at Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club will be closed for refurbishment from January 3, 2011 through February 2, 2011 while the pool side at the Boardwalk Inn and Villas will be closed for refurbishment from February 7, 2011 through March 16, 2011.

During this time, guests may continue to make full use of the remainder of the pool and quiet pools and may opt to use the pool at the alternating resort if the use of a slide is desired. Traditionally speaking, a shuttle is offered between the resorts when the pools undergo refurbishments.

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Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Dish Up First Annual ‘Food & Wine Classic’ Oct. 8 & 9

The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Hotel is offering guests a chance to indulge at the first annual Food & Wine Classic at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Oct. 8 and 9.

Each evening will feature beverage seminars and a culinary festival with live music and tastings from the hotel’s award-winning restaurants and lounges.

Guests have the opportunity to choose from six hands-on beverage classes taught by certified wine sommeliers and beer and cocktail specialists from the hotel’s team. Attendees will learn about their topic of choice – ranging from a wine-blending seminar to a sake hour – through watching, listening, touching and of course, tasting!

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WDW Refurb Update: Mad Tea Party, Gift Shop Join Pooh; ‘Ohana Closure in January

When The Many Adventures Winnie-the-Pooh closes in Fantasyland at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom in October as we previously announced, it will now be joined by Pooh’s Thotful Shop which will also close on October 25, but will re-open on November 8, full a week earlier than the attraction.

In addition, Mad Tea Party in Fantasyland will close on September 26 and is scheduled to re-open on November 11.

Over at the Polynesian, ‘Ohana will be closed from January 17 through January 20, 2011, although it will be open for dinner on the 20th.

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Franck’s Bridal Studio at Walt Disney World Undergoes Technological Transformation

Inside Franck's Bridal Studio at Walt Disney World

Franck’s Bridal Studio at Walt Disney World Resort has undergone a major enhancement, bringing high-tech tools to couples tying the knot at the popular wedding destination.

Franck’s, named after the wedding planner character Martin Short played in the film Father of The Bride, was built 15 years ago alongside Disney’s magical Wedding Pavilion.  The Victorian summerhouse was created as a one-stop shop for couples to meet with a Disney wedding planner to review all the details for the big event.  The immersive studio showcases cakes, linens, floral, table settings and other details for a dream-come-true affair.

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