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The Spirited 8th Wonder (WDW's Future & You!)

hpyhnt 1000

Well-Known Member
and inside the Poly lobby right now is like walking through a maze...:(

Isn't that the truth. Had lunch at Kona on our trip and was rather shocked at the mess the place is. Walls and tarps completely blocking the previous overlook of the lobby fountain, thinly concealed scaffolding across the front of the entire Kona seating area. And looking out the windows just reveals more chain link, porta pottys, and mounds of dirt. Didn't even attempt to venture around the rest of the resort; seeing the 2nd level of the lobby was bad enough.

Its terrible looking right now. I couldn't even contemplate staying there, even at a deep discount. You're literally paying for the chance to stay in the middle of a construction site.
 

danpam1024

Well-Known Member
is it possible that they have to have "real" roofing materials due to code, than they can add the thatched type roofing on top? I hate to criticize an unfinished project. And yes, I do think it looks like a bunch of utility sheds right now. It can't possibly be the look they're going for, but recent decisions leave me wondering :confused:. The DVCers can have it- I'll be at the Hard Rock, getting pampered at the pool:cool: ( for 1/2 the price)
 

flyerjab

Well-Known Member
Sorry to reply to your post over here but I'm trying to respect the topic of the other thread ("FP+ only Toy Story Midway Mania").

@WDW1974 's original post on this thread ("The Spirited 8th Wonder (WDW's Future & You!)") notes that Disney's plans are to continue the trend in recent years of converting unused hotel rooms into DVC. Disney is not building DVC so much as converting excess hotel inventory into timeshares.

Early in its history, DVC's goal was to steal business away from offsite timeshares. DVC's first two resorts, Old Key West (OKW) and Boardwalk Villas (BWV), were designed to appeal to those already looking to buy timeshares and who were not spending their lodging dollars at WDW. Both resorts opened with DVC rooms. Both resorts were attempts to capture vacation dollars Disney was losing to offsite rivals.

DVC began to cannibalize its own Deluxe Resort business with the opening of the Villas at Wilderness Lodge (VWL) in 2000. This expansion added timeshare rooms to an existing hotel. The market for those rooms overlapped the market for Deluxe Resort rooms. However, the numbers were small (136 rooms) so its effect was negligible.

The problem slightly worsened with the opening of Beach Club Villas (BCV) in 2002. The Yacht & Beach Club (Y&BC) was (and still is) a popular resort. Expanding DVC there began to pull guests away from other Deluxe Resorts. Again though, the numbers were small (208 rooms).

DVC jumped the shark with the rapid expansion of Saratoga Springs Resort (SSR) in 2004, Animal Kingdom Villas (AKV) in 2007, and Bay Lake Towers (BLT) in 2009. Combined, these 3 resorts more than doubled the number DVC rooms. Rather than remaining exclusive (in 2003, DVC represented only 5% of total WDW room inventory), DVC was turned into timeshares for the masses.

With the rapid expansion of these 3 resorts, DVC kiosks began to pop up everywhere, targeting all sorts of guests, often those already spending big bucks to stay onsite. DVC began to compete directly with WDW's hotels.

It was after the opening of AKV that WDW's hotel occupancy began to decline, a decline that continued as Disney raised hotel rack rates in an effort to justify the 'cost savings' of DVC. (The same way that we've seen the price of food at WDW increase in order to justify the price of the Disney Dining Plan.)

As a result of these higher prices and expanded DVC inventory, WDW no longer is able to fill its hotel rooms. As recently as 2008, WDW's hotel occupancy was at 90%. Today, WDW has over 5000 empty hotel rooms most nights.

WDW is seeing the adverse effect of DVC, both in terms of lower occupancy rates at the Deluxe Resorts as well as in the need to offer 20-30% discounts for the majority of the year. (It wasn't that long ago that WDW never offered discounts.)

Going forward, the damage is done. WDW is losing hotel revenue because of DVC.

Converting mostly empty hotel rooms to DVC is a way to recapture some of that lost revenue. Lowering hotel inventory through conversion allows Disney to continue to charge high prices for its remaining inventory.

Unfortunately, Disney's plan signals an unwillingness to acknowledge that its hotel prices have reached ridiculous levels.

Rather than admit that WDW's hotels are grossly overpriced for what they are, Disney instead is looking to convert those rooms into timeshares. :(

It's sad to see a company built on growth through innovation and investment instead concentrate on petty-minded optimization.

Over 21 years as CEO, Michael Eisner grew the Parks & Resorts (P&R) business by an average of almost 11% annually. Under Iger, that growth has slowed to under 6%.

Under Iger, the focus has shifted from growth to squeezing pennies out of P&R 'guests'. :(

@ParentsOf4 , I will never pretend to understand business strategy, pricing, etc., as that stuff just is not my proverbial cup of tea. It is also why I find your posts so intriguing as you can break this part of the business down to where I can actually understand it, so thanks for that.

My question all along is this - now that WDW prices for onsite stays have risen to absurd levels, what options does Disney have aside from reducing available inventory of resort rooms and converting them into timeshares? Do resorts ever really look in a mirror and say "wow, we need to do something about the prices of our rooms, this is embarassing!" I mean, even if they cut room pricing by 10%, for a rack rate of $1000/night in some of their deluxe resorts, that would still only enable them to lower the cost to a more "affordable" $900/night!! :bored:

Also, are they arguing that it costs that much to run a deluxe resort on property? You always state that they raise prices at their resorts to promote the affordability of DVC (which, by the way, I am a member:D). But really, haven't they mainly been pushing the envelope on how much fans are willing to pay to stay onsite within eye shot of Wishes or Illuminations? I am as big a fan of WDW as anyone in JT04's barbarian horde of allegience, but even I am amazed at what they charge - and yes, my wife and I are still willing to pay for the deluxes, at club level no less!!:eek:

To me it just seems as they went many steps too far in room pricing. So much so that, aside from doing what they are now apparently going to start doing (i.e., time share conversion), there aren't any other realistic possibilities. I don't even think MM+ can help. I have seen other posters throw out ideas like offer onsite visitors additional FPs and the like, but I really don't think that would even help at this point.

I was just wondering, beyond how you have charted and graphed WDWs history in terms of CAPEX, P&R spend, etc., what other options do you believe that WDW has to deal with the high room prices and the 80% room occupancy rate aside from DVC conversion (and obviously building more rides;))?
 

GoofGoof

Premium Member
Thanks @tirian for confirming the shell games with rooms to boost occupancy numbers, most real hotel companies prefer to have filled rooms. But Disney wants to create the illusion that the hotels are going gangbusters when it reality they are not I seem to recall that @WDW1974 has noted internal occupancy in the 50's for at least one of the deluxe hotels

But with DVC units in the 90s it does tend to skew the average higher. But short term DVC availability bas fallen drastically which makes me wonder whether Disney is playing the out of service game with DVC as well because the DVC docs only guarantee that you will have points placed in your account. NOT that accommodations will be available to reserve at any point in time.

Interestingly enough when DVC is 'sold out' rooms are frequently available for 'trade' with the $ 95 booking fee etc.

I'm just beyond disgusted these days.
I think the fact that you are seeing DVC rooms available through RCI is more a symptom of owners trading out of WDW rather than Disney playing with numbers. As more owners trade their points in through RCI more will be available for non-DVC owners to trade into WDW. It wasn't too long ago that trading into a DVC room via RCI was really hard to do. Availability was always seriously limited.
 

DVCPluto

Well-Known Member
I think the fact that you are seeing DVC rooms available through RCI is more a symptom of owners trading out of WDW rather than Disney playing with numbers. As more owners trade their points in through RCI more will be available for non-DVC owners to trade into WDW. It wasn't too long ago that trading into a DVC room via RCI was really hard to do. Availability was always seriously limited.

I'll preface this by stating I have never done an RCI trade, so I don't really know anything about trading other than the $95 fee.

So taking what you said, does that mean that an RCI trade is for an actual room? My impression was that if you traded RCI points, for DVC, you used them as any other owner would. Wouldn't availability be the same for everyone?

Back to the thread topic - I agree that they are definitely playing with the numbers when it comes to reallocating rooms to DVC. Makes sense for bottom line numbers, but does it really change reality?
 

scout68

Well-Known Member
...
Its terrible looking right now. I couldn't even contemplate staying there, even at a deep discount. You're literally paying for the chance to stay in the middle of a construction site.

You have seemed to overlook the fact that it's a Magical construction site drenched in Heavily Themed chain link fencing and Port a potties full of Wishes and Dreams. :depressed: :eek:
 

Lee

Adventurer
Speaking of the Poly....
New pool bar building.
Poly Pool Bar 3.jpg
 

disneydudette

Well-Known Member
Lee!! Shut-the-front-door!

Do you have any... ANY... other renderings for the East Pool reconstruction?! I'm assuming this is what Steve recently hinted at for the reconstruction of the Tangaroa Terrace... seems to big for the Nanea Volcano main pool area. Steve's holding out on me... says he has [seen] the renderings for both pools, but can't share... and I may be developing a slight eye twitch while waiting!
 

ParentsOf4

Well-Known Member
I was just wondering, beyond how you have charted and graphed WDWs history in terms of CAPEX, P&R spend, etc., what other options do you believe that WDW has to deal with the high room prices and the 80% room occupancy rate aside from DVC conversion (and obviously building more rides;))?
Bundle all aspects of a WDW vacation and then offer genuine savings on that bundle.

Come up with a new pricing strategy that encourages longer onsite stays and also encourages spending all vacation dollars at WDW. One that offers savings for longer stays at Disney's most expensive hotels.

Using a fictional example:

Stay at a Walt Disney World resort and receive up to a 40% discount on all ticket, food, and merchandise purchases for your length of stay.*

* Some restrictions may apply.
Someone close to the numbers needs to come up with the right combination. For example, a 10% discount for a Value Resort 5-night stay up to a 40% discount for a Deluxe Resort 7-night stay.

The idea is to minimize how much guests spend prior to arrival (i.e. only the room needs to be prepaid) but encourage spending after arrival. Let them buy tickets, Disney Dining Plan, etc. at check-in, using their discount to do so. (Of course, they are free to purchase these using their discounts before arrival, if they want to.)

Paying for tickets and the Disney Dining Plan before arrival just makes WDW seem so much more expensive.

People view the initial purchase price as a barrier. By lowering that barrier, they are more likely to participate. Once they are onsite, the discounts encourage additional onsite spending while discouraging spending elsewhere.

The key is to offer real discounts.

If Disney raises hamburger prices to $15 and then offers a 33% discount, it’s still a $10 burger. Instead, list that burger for $10 and offer guests a chance to purchase that burger for $6 if they stay 7 nights at a Deluxe Resort. Disney is making a killing at the hotel and there's still profit at $6 for a Quick Service burger.

Even if guests decide to spend a day offsite, Disney still collects their high-margin hotel money. In fact, those guests miss out by spending money elsewhere:

“I can have dinner at WDW and get a 40% discount or I can pay full price at Universal. What do I do?”​

Even if they spend the day at Universal, they are more likely to eat breakfast or dinner at WDW. That 40% discount makes WDW prices seem so much reasonable.

And a 40% discount on merchandise makes them want to stock up before they go home!

Use pricing and discounts to encourage spending at WDW, while simultaneously discouraging spending elsewhere.

It’s money in the bank. :D
 
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Lee

Adventurer
Lee!! Shut-the-front-door!

Do you have any... ANY... other renderings for the East Pool reconstruction?! I'm assuming this is what Steve recently hinted at for the reconstruction of the Tangaroa Terrace... seems to big for the Nanea Volcano main pool area. Steve's holding out on me... says he has [seen] the renderings for both pools, but can't share... and I may be developing a slight eye twitch while waiting!
I don't have any real renderings of the area. Just some plans showing the new building and area layout.
Such as...
Poly Pool Area 2.jpg
 

WDW1974

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Glad to see someone resurrected this topic. I just haven't had time to chime in of yet ...

But did want to toss one tidbt into the mix regarding Disney taking rooms out of service (which they have been increasingly doing) yet also making getting discounts damn near impossible.

I had a friend check rates a few weeks back for a possible visit later this fall. CM rates at both the 40 and 50% off levels. For a period of a week there literally was not one room at any resort in any price category available. That's not the reality of room availability, however. Disney is simply deciding to leave rooms/buildings/wings empty versus 'giving them' to CMs and their families and friends at prices close to what they should really be.

I'm going to be up at WDW in January to see some MAGICal folks ... and I'm wondering if I should start looking for a CM rate now or simply stay over at one of UNI's resorts at a TM rate rather than play these supply and BS demand games.

Like I've often said, if you torture numbers enough, then they'll say anything ... right @ParentsOf4?
 

tirian

Well-Known Member
That's not my quote. ;)
Bundle all aspects of a WDW vacation and then offer genuine savings on that bundle.

Come up with a new pricing strategy that encourages longer onsite stays and also encourages spending all vacation dollars at WDW. One that offers savings for longer stays at Disney's most expensive hotels.

Using a fictional example:

Stay at a Walt Disney World resort and receive up to a 40% discount on all ticket, food, and merchandise purchases for your length of stay.*

* Some restrictions may apply.
Someone close to the numbers needs to come up with the right combination. For example, a 10% discount for a Value Resort 4-night stay up to a 40% discount for a Deluxe Resort 7-night stay.

The idea is to minimize how much guests spend prior to arrival (i.e. only the room needs to be prepaid) but encourage spending after arrival. Let them buy tickets, Disney Dining Plan, etc. after they check-in, using their discount to do so. (Of course, they are free to purchase these using their discounts before arrival, if they want to.)

Paying for tickets and the Disney Dining Plan before arrival just makes WDW seem so much more expensive.

People view the initial purchase price as a barrier. By lowering that barrier, they are more likely to participate. Once they are onsite, the discounts encourage additional onsite spending while discouraging spending elsewhere.

The key is to offer real discounts.

If Disney raises hamburger prices to $15 and then offers a 33% discount, it’s still a $10 burger. Instead, list that burger for $10 and offer those Deluxe Resorts guests a chance to purchase that burger for $6 if they stay 7 nights. Disney is making a killing at the hotel and there's still profit at $6 for a Quick Service burger.

Even if guests decide to spend a day offsite, Disney still collects their high-margin hotel money. In fact, those guests miss out by spending money elsewhere:

“I can have dinner at WDW and get a 40% discount or I can pay full price at Universal. What do I do?”​

Even if they spend the day at Universal, they are more likely to eat breakfast or dinner at WDW. That 40% discount makes WDW prices seem so much reasonable.

And a 40% discount on merchandise makes them want to stock up before they go home!

Use pricing and discounts to encourage spending at WDW, while simultaneously discouraging spending elsewhere.

It’s money in the bank. :D
 

disneydudette

Well-Known Member
I don't have any real renderings of the area. Just some plans showing the new building and area layout.
Such as...
View attachment 69643

Nice! Though clearly I was WAY OFF throwing the 'Tangaroa Terrace' around... after seeing both plans, while it's hard to tell... it doesn't look as if that bar/grill elevation was for the East Pool area... Classic Fan-girl.

The plan seems to show a redesign of the existing 'pool' to Zero Entry with pop jets similar to what was done with the GF's courtyard pool as well as a new spa... and the addition of what looks to be a bath house and bar/grill area?

Interesting...

If the Main Pool site plan happens to find it's way on this page... I think that would be ok too. In another week we'll be up to 125 pages... no one will catch it on 111 ;)
 

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