Q & A with Disney on the closure of Pleasure Island's nightclubs
by, 07-02-2008 at 02:54 AM (4998 Views)
I presented a list of questions regarding the closure of the six remaining nightclubs at Pleasure Island to Walt Disney World spokeswoman Jacquee Polak. Here is the complete list, along with her responses:
MG: Is there a timetable on the redevelopment? Are any of the new tenants signed already? When can we expect announcements?
JP: The changes will take place over the next two years.
Downtown Disney will be getting its own iconic attraction in the form of a giant, tethered balloon that will take guests 300 feet into the air to view the amazing vistas of Walt Disney World Resort. Other new offerings include:
- T-Rex: A Prehistoric Family Adventure, which is a dinosaur-themed family eatery that opens this fall.
- A design-your-own t-shirt store from Hanes that will add to the growing collection of merchandise guests can personalize at Downtown Disney when it opens this fall.
- A high-energy, casual eatery from E-brands Restaurants opening in spring 2009 that will feature authentic Central and South American cuisine.
We are currently considering other unique shopping, dining and other experiences from around the globe and look forward to sharing our progress over the coming months.
MG: There is a large fan base specifically for the Adventurer's Club and, to a lesser extent, the Comedy Warehouse. Are there any plans to resurrect that type of entertainment elsewhere at Walt Disney World?
JP: We are constantly refreshing our offerings to provide one-of-a-kind experiences that only Disney can offer. We have unique entertainment offerings throughout our resort and have nothing new to announce at this time.
MG: Many long-time Pleasure Island fans stopped visiting the area once it was opened up to the general public because it lost its special adults-only feel and they didn't feel comfortable with all of the teens just hanging out there. Was there any consideration to bringing Pleasure Island back to its original paid-entry, adults-only state to try to return it to a higher level of revenue generation?
JP: No. We continually survey our Guests and they tell us they want more dining, shopping and one-of-a-kind Disney experiences. We are seeing less demand for nightclub experiences.
MG: Will the existing buildings be repurposed or will they be torn down and replaced?
JP: That will vary based upon the unique shopping, dining and other experiences we bring to Pleasure Island. We are considering numerous unique concepts from around the globe and look forward to sharing our progress over the coming months.
MG: How is the construction expected to affect traffic through the remaining locations on the Island?
JP: Raglan Road, Fuego by Sosa Cigars, Curl by Sammy Duval, Orlando Harley-Davidson and outdoor food and beverage locations on Pleasure Island will remain open during the transition.
We expect the impact on most guests to be relatively small. During the day, the experience will be mostly unchanged, since most of the clubs do not open until 9 p.m. During the evening, we will continue to have entertainment, merchandise and food and beverage opportunities available.
MG: Will the loss of the dance venues at Pleasure Island result in an increased promotion of Atlantic Dance as a recreational venue, or is that slated for an overhaul as well?
JP: There are no new plans for Atlantic Dance.
MG: If Pleasure Island is converted to a more daytime-friendly environment, that will create an increased pressure on the available parking on the eastern end of Downtown Disney, as many people are unwilling to walk to the Marketplace and Pleasure Island from the parking beyond the West Side. Is there a plan to deal with the issue of the parking space deficit in the Marketplace/Pleasure Island area?
JP: There is adequate parking at Downtown Disney, as well as signs that direct guests to lots where spaces are available. While plans are still being finalized, we are discussing ways to enhance our guests’ experience as they walk from one end of Downtown Disney to the other.
MG: Does all of this mean that DisneyQuest is safe for now, or is that next on the replacement list?
JP: DisneyQuest will remain open.
MG: What effect, if any, will this have on the pricing of the Water Park Fun & More Option for park passes? On Premium Annual Passes?
JP: It will not have an impact on pricing. We will offer premium annual passholders and those guests who have unused Water Parks, Fun and More tickets the additional option to play golf at Disney’s Oak Trail Golf Course
MG: Is there any concern about losing the attention of young singles and couples during the evening? Will you have any other entertainment offerings for that demographic?
JP: There are numerous entertainment options for guests of all ages throughout Walt Disney World Resort.
MG: Was Pleasure Island's location in the middle of Downtown Disney part of its downfall? If it was not located between the West Side and the MarketPlace, would it have had a better shot at survival?
JP: I wouldn’t want to speculate. Our decision is largely based on guest feedback. We are seeing more demand for shopping and dining experiences and less demand for nightclubs.
MG: I'm assuming that those cast members who were working at Pleasure Island will be offered positions elsewhere. Some of those positions were fairly unique (Comedy Warehouse performers, dance club DJs, Adventurer's Club performers). Are there enough sufficiently similar positions to be offered to these cast members, as well?
JP: We are working with all Cast to find roles in the company.
You can join the discussion of the closure on MousePad's discussion forums. You can find that thread here.