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PHOTOS - Disney reveals new lobby design and Trader Sam's lounge for the Polynesian

The more I think about the situation has we understand it, the less it makes sense.
Why would Disney remove the popular waterfall fountain, AND not replace it, AND various WDI employees have acted weirdly defensive or smug about the decision to do so?
We know that Disney has announced a major renovation of the resort's main lobby AND the pool area. We only have concept art of the former.
What if something grand is in the works for the pool area and the surrounding grounds, something that will echo the original waterfall feature in the lobby, to the extent that it would make it thematically redundant and cheap-looking when completed?

If there's one area where Disney's resorts have always marched forward, not backward in terms of scope and quality, its their swimming pools. I know this is speculation on my part, but what if Disney's overall plan for the Polynesian is to completely redo the main pool area with a large series of volcanic rock waterfalls that stretches all the way to where the also-rebuilt Captain Cook's quick-service restaurant will be? A master plan for the resort that would increase its status, but can't be revealed just yet would explain both the apparent "downgrade" of the lobby and the out of character behavior of WDI's staff.

This makes sense. I really want to believe that this rendering is just a small glimpse of changes and not all encompassing of the changes being made. The entire outdoor area is a mystery. It could be something completely grand and blow away what the waterfall feature was to the Poly. We really need to wait and see how this plays out.
 

Spike-in-Berlin

Well-Known Member
The above video is of WDW President George Kalogridis discussing the 3 hotels on opening day in 1971. The Contemporay was the flagship. The Polynesian was the completed first by a matter of days if not hours from my understanding. Fort Wilderness was the third but anything certainly not a hotel. What was this 3rd hotel that Walt Disney World President speaks of? This is WDW trivia 101. George doesn't know this? Kalogridis is in his position for other reasons and I will stand by that.

The Disney Inn, built as a golf resort,today Shades of Green i believe.
 

Soarin' Over Pgh

Well-Known Member
Finally, some sense. Thank you. You put it into words much better than I could. Friday and Saturday were an absolute mess in the Disney Twitter universe. For once, I kept quiet.

Yes, his tweet(s) were about the REASONS behind the changes, which he is legally bound to keep under wraps because, well, its his job. WDI did not *want* to take the fountain/waterfalls out because of design reasons. That's all he was trying to say.

I wish I knew to whom y'all keep referring and what took place in said tweets to make total sense of this.

Regardless, the "WDI did not want to take the fountain/waterfalls out because of design reasons" has intrigued me. So is there anyone actively fighting the proposal to have the waterfalls removed? Or is this the definite and final decision, regardless of who the hell likes it or not?
 

prberk

Well-Known Member
Gaylord Palms atrium.jpg

You know, the Gaylord Palms could really take advantage of this if they reminded everyone of their huge atrium of tropical greenery. Looks like they appreciate a nice water feature...
Gaylord Palms waterfall.jpg


You wold think that Disney could set the standard a little higher than their neighbors down the street, being that Disney is intending to be the destination resort...
 

prberk

Well-Known Member
I'm not sure I understand how the WF can appear "dated." It's a big square chunk extracted right off of a Hawaiian island.

Even looking around the lobby... I can see how someone would get a 70s vibe, with the dark walls, the colors, etc. But c'mon, this theme fits what I would think of Polynesia. Lava stone, orange-red colors, lush green vegetation, tiki bar... Of course, I suppose that could describe a few suburban basements too. :p

I think she might have been talking about the Brady Bunch feel of some of the design, especially the staircase. But we also have to look at the theme itself. Hawaii 5-0 was popular at the time, and other shows were featuring Hawaii in the '70s more than at any other time since. So, I think that people may also slightly associate authentic Hawaiian theming with the '70s because of TV.

So, there might be some elements, like the staircase and maybe the type of wood staining that can be updated; but the classic Polynesian elements should stay. And I am with everyone else who has said that the sound and overall ambiance brought about by the water feature is amazing and should stay (even if it might need to be accented or touched up a bit).
 

fractal

Premium Member
Great photos, thanks for sharing. BTW, your shirt is fantastic! I must find one for DH

@fractal that's a killer shirt!

Great pics :) I took a bunch last year but since most have me and/or my Mom, I don't want to post them.

The torch lighting ceremony was great, I hope they bring that back.


Thanks! I got it a Downtown Disney, but they also had it in the Poly gift shop. My wife rolls her eyes when I put it on but not only do I love it, it is super comfortable and very well made.
 

MerlinTheGoat

Well-Known Member
View attachment 52763
You know, the Gaylord Palms could really take advantage of this if they reminded everyone of their huge atrium of tropical greenery. Looks like they appreciate a nice water feature...
View attachment 52764

You wold think that Disney could set the standard a little higher than their neighbors down the street, being that Disney is intending to be the destination resort...
The Gaylord hotels are lovely IMO. I used to live in Nashville where they have one of theirs called the Opryland Hotel, it's quite gorgeous as well. That seems to be the case with all of their hotels. They have really huge atriums that are enclosed with a glass ceiling, often with tons of plants and water features. And usually also with a charming little shopping district to walk around in. All INSIDE the hotel. Here's a couple of pics from the Opryland Hotel Gaylord (google image search it, it's a really gorgeous hotel and they also decorate really well at Christmas)-

op_deltaboat_300.jpg


gaylord-opryland-hotel.jpg
 

eastvillage

Active Member
However, it is important for folks to remember that some of the very strong theming that exists at Poly and at some parts of WL is actually off putting to the target audiences. They want a taste of the theme, not to be smacked upside the head with it.

LOL. Is this the same target audience that prefers gigantic Disney character icons scattered all around their resort?
 

Captain Neo

Well-Known Member
View attachment 52763
You know, the Gaylord Palms could really take advantage of this if they reminded everyone of their huge atrium of tropical greenery. Looks like they appreciate a nice water feature...
View attachment 52764

You wold think that Disney could set the standard a little higher than their neighbors down the street, being that Disney is intending to be the destination resort...

Disney is no longer interested in being the best and being cutting edge and above everyone else. Now they are only interested in milking the honey boo boo/walmart crowd in the cheapest ways possible
 

fractal

Premium Member
View attachment 52763
You know, the Gaylord Palms could really take advantage of this if they reminded everyone of their huge atrium of tropical greenery. Looks like they appreciate a nice water feature...
View attachment 52764

You wold think that Disney could set the standard a little higher than their neighbors down the street, being that Disney is intending to be the destination resort...

The Gaylord hotels are lovely IMO. I used to live in Nashville where they have one of theirs called the Opryland Hotel, it's quite gorgeous as well. That seems to be the case with all of their hotels. They have really huge atriums that are enclosed with a glass ceiling, often with tons of plants and water features. And usually also with a charming little shopping district to walk around in. All INSIDE the hotel. Here's a couple of pics from the Opryland Hotel Gaylord (google image search it, it's a really gorgeous hotel and they also decorate really well at Christmas)-

op_deltaboat_300.jpg


gaylord-opryland-hotel.jpg


Amazing! Obviously the GCH is not big enough for something of this scale, but certainly Disney could have done more than a birdbath.
 

MerlinTheGoat

Well-Known Member
Hats off to Gaylord hotels. I wanna go to see one now.
They're rather gorgeous. I've never been to the Palms, but i've been to the Opryland Hotel on numerous occasions and it's quite a sight. And as I said, they also really give it some attention at Christmas time.
3123174218_fa1b7a1637.jpg
20091121+Nashville+Xmas+Lights(21).JPG


They actually used to have a theme park next door called simply Opryland. It was bulldozed many years ago now however for a shopping mall sadly.
 

Bairstow

Well-Known Member
They actually used to have a theme park next door called simply Opryland. It was bulldozed many years ago now however for a shopping mall sadly.

Said shopping mall is occasionally under water, too.
And they have a Landry's Aquarium restaurant.

I visited Opryland a couple times as a little kid. I remember being scared of the flooded mine. I'm still kicking myself for not going back once Hangman opened.
 

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