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    Kingdom Tower at Disney's Contemporary Resort

    The Orlando Sentinel is reporting:

    The Walt Disney Co. has won approval to begin selling time shares in a 15-story tower the company is erecting next to its famed Contemporary Resort, a $110 million addition that Disney has named "The Kingdom Tower."
    http://www.orlandosentinel.com/busin...,6462018.story
    Last edited by Drince88; 02-26-2008 at 03:41 AM. Reason: Excessive quoting of copyrighted material. Please limit quotes to a sentence or two.
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    Kingdom Tower - Can We Call It Official Now?


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    Having stayed at various resorts throughout the property, I've always enjoyed my stays at the monorail resorts. And of the monorail resorts, I've enjoyed the convenience of the Contemporary. Walking from a resort to the MK is very quick and relaxing experience.

    Anyway, I'm pretty excited about the opportunity to buy into a property with similar benefits. I've never really looked at the various DVC properties, since none of them were in areas I enjoyed while I was staying at a hotel. But the Kingdom Tower changes all of that.

    I realize that the hotel properties are at different 'levels'. Do the DVC properties also share some sort of classification system? If so, is it safe to assume that the Kingdom Tower will be some sort of premium property?

    ...and if it is a 'premium property', besides the location, will the purchase come with other perks?


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    According to the Orlando Sentinel article, it's going to have a different points chart - I'd assume that the price per point would be similar to the other resorts, since you can use points at other than your home resort.

    All the DVCs are basically the same level - based on the points charts

    Cathy

  6. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Drince88 View Post
    According to the Orlando Sentinel article, it's going to have a different points chart - I'd assume that the price per point would be similar to the other resorts, since you can use points at other than your home resort.
    Thanks, I saw that. It pretty much confirms my understanding that they'll be pricing it at a premium.

    What I was curious about was if they intended to package any amenities with this premium pricing?

    Oh I wish I had signed on to DVC when it was initially offered. I wonder when that 'included admission' deal finally fades away?

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    Quote Originally Posted by b52hbuff View Post
    What I was curious about was if they intended to package any amenities with this premium pricing?
    Nope. I would expect that you would get standard DVC amenities, the same as at any other resort. The only difference will be the location, with the proximity to the park and the main Contemporary Resort.

    Oh I wish I had signed on to DVC when it was initially offered. I wonder when that 'included admission' deal finally fades away?
    The "included admission" ended on December 31, 1999. Just before it ended, in early October 1999, we set up a 23-person trip with a bunch of our friends who could have never otherwise afforded to go to Walt Disney World. They got lodging and admission; all they needed to pick up was transportation, meals and incidentals. It was a fabulous trip.

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    Quote Originally Posted by b52hbuff View Post
    Thanks, I saw that. It pretty much confirms my understanding that they'll be pricing it at a premium.

    What I was curious about was if they intended to package any amenities with this premium pricing?
    While this is only my speculation, and going off what Drince said, there will only be a points premium (via the usual points chart)- not a cost per point premium. In other words, when they start selling that resort, you might still be able to get it as your home resort at the current pricing with a (currently) 160 point first time buyer minimum. The thing is that those 160 points will get used up rather fast compared to OKW or SSR or the others.

    So, in essence, it will most likely be just like any other DVC resort. You have points and you can use them at any of the DVC resorts but the number of points per night required will vary by location, room type, time of year and weekend vs. weekday.
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    During the DVC-sponsored tour of the Dream Suite today we asked when the "official" announcement of the Kingdom Towers property would happen, and the sales rep coyly said "We're pregnant, but we're not telling people just yet."

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    Quote Originally Posted by AVP View Post
    During the DVC-sponsored tour of the Dream Suite today we asked when the "official" announcement of the Kingdom Towers property would happen, and the sales rep coyly said "We're pregnant, but we're not telling people just yet."
    That's more telling than what I got from my official source.
    The Villas at Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa will open in fall
    2009. The project in Ko Olina is scheduled to open in 2011. We don't
    have any other announcements to make at this time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GusMan View Post
    While this is only my speculation, and going off what Drince said, there will only be a points premium (via the usual points chart)- not a cost per point premium. In other words, when they start selling that resort, you might still be able to get it as your home resort at the current pricing with a (currently) 160 point first time buyer minimum. The thing is that those 160 points will get used up rather fast compared to OKW or SSR or the others.

    So, in essence, it will most likely be just like any other DVC resort. You have points and you can use them at any of the DVC resorts but the number of points per night required will vary by location, room type, time of year and weekend vs. weekday.
    I'm wondering if it's best to buy at this resort when it becomes available? Or if it makes more sense to wait and buy up from the early adopters?

    Will the premium location change the buyer dynamic and the resell market? Will this property hold its value better? Will folks be less likely to resell this property?

    As for the point pricing, my understanding is that you get better pricing/availability at your home resort. So if you are interested in this property, it's best to invest in this property, right?

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    Quote Originally Posted by b52hbuff View Post
    As for the point pricing, my understanding is that you get better pricing/availability at your home resort. So if you are interested in this property, it's best to invest in this property, right?
    Just availability. At your home resort you can book 11 months out - all others, 7 months out. A room of size X on day Y is the same number of points regardless of where you home resort is.
    Cathy

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    Quote Originally Posted by b52hbuff View Post
    Will the premium location change the buyer dynamic and the resell market? Will this property hold its value better? Will folks be less likely to resell this property?
    Not sure about the whole resale thing because DVC does have their right of first refusal clause on all contracts. That in of itself has kept resale values up to a certain extent. It will be a hot property that will cause people to hang on to it longer but the same can be said for some of the other prime properties as well.

    Then again, there are different reasons to sell ones membership, and it is usually not to try and "make" money. (ie...get some good use out of it then sell for as close to your purchase price as possible, causing your use cost to drop quite a bit.) People sell because they cant afford the annual dues, a change in financial status, a death or divorce, and so on. And in most cases, I think people would rather rent points to cover their dues than to give it up. I say that because point costs do continue to go up and in some cases, it is cheaper to keep it than to rebuy it later.

    I think one thing that is still to be seen is what kind of annual dues will be attached to this new resort. I predict that the cost per point will not jump a huge amount but the annual fees do make a difference in deciding on which resort you want to buy.
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  14. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by GusMan View Post
    It will be a hot property that will cause people to hang on to it longer but the same can be said for some of the other prime properties as well.

    I think one thing that is still to be seen is what kind of annual dues will be attached to this new resort. I predict that the cost per point will not jump a huge amount but the annual fees do make a difference in deciding on which resort you want to buy.
    I'm not a huge follower of the WDW resort, nor of DVC. I've been to WDW ~4 times in the last 15 years, so I am a little familiar with the property.

    So what else is considered a 'prime property'? As I mentioned, I have had a preference for the monorail resorts, so this KTaDCR is compelling for the similar transportation options. For example, even though the lodges near the AK are gorgeous, I could never get past having to take the bus everywhere.

    My understanding of the annual dues is that they go to maintain the resort. Presumably, dues would be lower when the resort was opened and the maintenance costs would be low. I'm not arguing with you, but want to understand...

    Your implication is that DVC approaches the dues as a sort of secondary income to the property. So are you thinking that premium DVC properties have premium dues to further extract cash from participants?

    Also, once the annual fees are set, there is some limit to which they can be raised, right?

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    Quote Originally Posted by b52hbuff View Post
    So what else is considered a 'prime property'?
    In my opinion only, the villas at the BW, BC, and WL are all prime places. AKV is surely up there as well and I think will even be more so once the new Kadani Village is opened as the mainstay of its DVC offerings. SSR and OKW are popular, but some have described them more as a upper-moderate type of resort, in comparison to some of the Deluxe resorts.

    My understanding of the annual dues is that they go to maintain the resort. Presumably, dues would be lower when the resort was opened and the maintenance costs would be low.
    In looking at my last dues statement, the dues covers property taxes, operating costs, and capital improvements. When a resort opens, the fees for that resort will most likely be at their lowest and will most likely go up a small percentage per year. Historically speaking, the increase in dues has been less than the average increase in lodging costs at other resorts. The thing is that every resort has its own annual fee associated with them. This is something to take into consideration when buying into DVC as the overall cost of ownership will be lower on some than others. In our case, it is why we chose SSR over AKV. I wanted the lowest cost of ownership.

    Your implication is that DVC approaches the dues as a sort of secondary income to the property. So are you thinking that premium DVC properties have premium dues to further extract cash from participants?
    Personally, I dont think that is the case as it is related to the expenses and taxes associated with operating each resort. As a comparison, I purchased my home but I still have to pay taxes on it and maintain it every year. The same goes for my DVC ownership.

    I have no idea what the new offering at the CR will be but I am only going to assume that it may be more than say OKW or SSR, as they have some of the lowest cost of ownership associated with them.

    Also, once the annual fees are set, there is some limit to which they can be raised, right?
    I dont think so but then again, I dont have my contract handy. However, like I mentioned above, history being a guide, the rate of increases has been traditionally lower than typical increases in regular hotel rates.

    To help compare the total cost of ownership vs renting rooms on an annual basis, I used the spreadsheet that Tony created which can be found here. It may help provide a good comparison.
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    Quote Originally Posted by b52hbuff View Post
    Also, once the annual fees are set, there is some limit to which they can be raised, right?
    Dues can increase no more than 15% a year. (However, there are execptions to that permitted, in the event taxes increase substantially, etc).

    The average rate of increase has been about 3.5%, while the High/Low has been 10%/-1.1%.
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    Quote Originally Posted by GusMan View Post
    In my opinion only, the villas at the BW, BC, and WL are all prime places. AKV is surely up there as well and I think will even be more so once the new Kadani Village is opened as the mainstay of its DVC offerings. SSR and OKW are popular, but some have described them more as a upper-moderate type of resort, in comparison to some of the Deluxe resorts.
    Thanks for all of the information.

    In the resort 'arena', you are paying for location, room size and build quality/theming. As I said, I have been a big Monorail Resort fan. But I appreciate the differences between the GF, CR and Poly when it comes to room size and build quality/theming.

    With respect to the DVC, which of the resorts have better build quality or room size?

    I understand that there are different sized rooms that take more and more points. But within a specific room class, does one DVC property have larger rooms?

    And one other general question about DVC properties. Do they run their own bus services, or are they close enough to resort properties that you piggy back on resort bus services?

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    Sizes vary based on the property, and even inside the property. (For example, AK has one bedrooms that vary in size from 629 to 807 square feet). But in my experience, there isn't a real major different in ammenities and functionality of the rooms based on size.

    The older the resort, the older the ammenities in general. For example, at OKW, all of the TVs are CRTs and the rooms have VCRs. In AKL, all of the TVs are LCD and there are DVD players in the rooms. I am sure that they will replace the TVs at OKW as their life span justifies rotating out. But overall, there isn't a huge difference in ammenities - it is much more about the location of the resort.

    There is full bus service at all of the DVC properties - just like there is for the traditional WDW resorts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony View Post
    I am sure that they will replace the TVs at OKW as their life span justifies rotating out.
    I'd have to double-check, but I'm pretty sure that the change is either underway or already done.

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    Kingdom Tower Resort?

    I just saw the park update for the week of April 1, and I saw a picture that showed the new DVC resort next to the Contemporary. The caption said it was called the Kingdom Tower DVC Resort. When will it be completed? And will it still be part of the Contemporary or will it be a whole new resort? Sorry if this seems a bit off of current news, but I've had several family emergencies and have not been able to keep up with DIsney in the past few months, but im getting back on track. So please just update me.

    Stephen Valente

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    hoping to go back soon...

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    It will probably open some time next year (or even 2010). It will have direct connections to the 4th floor in the Contemporary. Not much is being said, and it is not known if it will have its own front desk or just use the Contemporary's.

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    Things to Consider

    Actually, there is a significant differences in room sizes in the various DVC units. We bought into Boardwalk and that is where we stayed for quite a while, so we didn't see a difference, but then we tried a couple of the others - first Beach Club and then Sarasota Springs, and those units were noticeably smaller. I went out to the official DVC WEB site and got these numbers (in square feet) for the various sites:

    DVC/Studio/1br

    BW/412/814
    AK/316-366/629-807
    BC/365/726
    OKW/390/942
    SS/355/714
    WL/356/727

    Another thing to consider is what kind of ambiance you want where you stay. If you really like to be in the heart of the action - sort of like the "city" setting for Disney World - go for Boardwalk or Beach Club on the Boardwalk or Saratoga Springs next to Downtown Disney. If you like to look at the animals, I'd recommend Animal Kingdom Lodge. For a very rustic woodsy setting it would have to be Wilderness Lodge. And for an all-around pleasant experience, Old Key West. My guess would be that the Kingdom Tower would be a more cosmopolitan setting. If you'd enjoy walking to the action it would be Beach Club or Boardwalk (Epcot and Studios), Saratoga Springs (Downtown), Animal Kingdom Lodge (Animal Kingdom), or Kingdom Tower (Magic Kingdom).

    So you see, there are lots of reasons for choosing one site over another. It all depends on your needs and personal preferences (and/or the depth of your wallet).


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    The Orlando Sentinel is reporting that Disney is now calling the new tower the "Bay Lake Tower at Disney's Contemporary Resort", at least in new filings with the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation.

    DVC Member - My DVC Home Resorts: Bay Lake Tower, Boardwalk Villas, and Villas at the Grand Floridian



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    Ah, the musical name game.


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    Quote Originally Posted by DVC Mike View Post
    The Orlando Sentinel is reporting that Disney is now calling the new tower the "Bay Lake Tower at Disney's Contemporary Resort"...
    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Goldhaber View Post
    Ah, the musical name game.
    ... which of course only substantiates the addage that nothing with Disney is final until the first guest checks in. (Or rides... or dines... or <fill in the blank>.)
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  26. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by GusMan View Post
    ... which of course only substantiates the addage that nothing with Disney is final until the first guest checks in. (Or rides... or dines... or <fill in the blank>.)
    Or sometimes they wait until a number of guests have experienced it...

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