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Tiki Central Forums » » General Tiki » » Trader Sam's - Orlando
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Trader Sam's - Orlando
AceExplorer
Grand Member (3 years)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2008
Posts: 944
From: Deep in the Jacksonville Florida jungle.
Posted: 2014-05-22 10:56 am   Permalink

It really will be a blessing to us that Sam's will not be on the main tourist drag. Those who really *want* to go to Sam's *will* find a way. I'm looking forward to some of the quieter times there with a friend and having drinks and appys in the same way that we can do now at the Tambu Lounge.
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wizzard419
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Joined: Jul 10, 2013
Posts: 220
Posted: 2014-05-22 11:59 am   Permalink

It might still be on the drag since that Ohana dinner show is another popular thing on the property that draws in people from outside the resort. As long as the path between the monorail and dining hall don't cross the bar it should be a little less crazy.

 
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AceExplorer
Grand Member (3 years)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2008
Posts: 944
From: Deep in the Jacksonville Florida jungle.
Posted: 2014-05-22 12:45 pm   Permalink

Good point, I think you're at least partly right because I think the Poly is still not "main drag" like Disney Springs will be. The Poly is, however, accessible via the Resort monorail line. I will still hope Sam's to be less swamped than it otherwise would be at Disney Springs where there will be throngs once it opens. Maybe someone will open a cool themed bar in the old Adventurers Club space which seems to be well-suited to that sort of use. There is no doubt about it that there will finally be a lot of new eye candy at Walt Disney World over the next few years.
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EPCOTExplorer
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Joined: May 13, 2014
Posts: 153
From: Miami, FL
Posted: 2014-05-22 6:58 pm   Permalink

The resorts are increasingly popular with locals… parking at the Poly itself might be tight, but with the GrandFlo and TTC nearby, I can't see too much of an issue.

 
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wizzard419
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Joined: Jul 10, 2013
Posts: 220
Posted: 2014-05-22 7:23 pm   Permalink

Throw in that they would have to pay to park at everywhere but DtD, and that will keep everyone without an AP away.

The one thing with this is that they most likely want people to come in, you don't sink a fuck-ton into redeveloping an area (in addition to acquiring more liquor licenses) so that it only serves a single hotel. It will probably be promoted on the app, on SoCom, etc.


 
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AceExplorer
Grand Member (3 years)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2008
Posts: 944
From: Deep in the Jacksonville Florida jungle.
Posted: 2014-05-23 04:23 am   Permalink

But they are ramping up investment in their Disney Vacation Club rooms because they are making so much money with their timeshare business. We've already heard they are removing the waterfall in the lobby so that they have more room to handle more guest traffic. Sam's is being built in advance of higher occupancy which is expected to follow the publicity from refreshing the resort and attracting more DVC guests. The Polynesian has been fairly quiet for many years, and it appears that is going to change with all the updates and improvements.



 
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wizzard419
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Posts: 220
Posted: 2014-05-23 10:22 am   Permalink

I doubt that it was purely for traffic (though I thought someone posted the space was going to be converted into something else), considering how much activity takes place at the airport, the lobby has now become the place where you find out what room you go to.

There were probably other reasons, such as looking heavily dated, possible infrastructure issues, etc.


 
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AceExplorer
Grand Member (3 years)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2008
Posts: 944
From: Deep in the Jacksonville Florida jungle.
Posted: 2014-05-23 11:45 am   Permalink

Oh absolutely, it is heavily dated-looking and definitely needs a refresh. I think it's going to end up looking a lot less dark as well, I seem to recall conceptual drawings looking much brighter. I hope they keep all the wood carvings at the corners, entrances to shops and restaurants, etc. It is a neat place to walk through and hang out at.
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wizzard419
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Joined: Jul 10, 2013
Posts: 220
Posted: 2014-05-23 12:35 pm   Permalink

That's one of the things about the Disney hotels, as inviting as they make them, they really don't want you hanging out there for too long. If you're just chillin' in the lobby doing nothing you're not spending anything nor are you burning through energy as fast hastening the time when you will need to refuel.

 
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AceExplorer
Grand Member (3 years)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2008
Posts: 944
From: Deep in the Jacksonville Florida jungle.
Posted: 2014-05-23 1:02 pm   Permalink

Good thought. But I am reminded of the tremendous level of detail they build into their lobbies. Look at Grand Californian, Wilderness Lodge, and Animal Kingdom Lodge as some examples of lobbies where they put such richness and depth into the designs that you can't help but spend some time there relaxing and/or looking around. Often what breaks visitors free from spending too much time in those lobby environments is the fact that they're paying $400 a night to visit - egad! - the theme park or other attraction that's next door. Or, here in Florida, with the collapse of Pleasure Island 5 or 6 years ago, on-property nightlife options are so slim that you just might not mind hanging out in the hotel lobby. Even more so during Christmas when they bring in special musical entertainment to play live Christmas caroles.

I do get your point, it's a good one. I am looking forward to a nice and splashy immersive Polynesian-themed environment for the Polynesian in the near future.
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wizzard419
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Posts: 220
Posted: 2014-05-23 1:17 pm   Permalink

Yes, and those lobbies were all built before 2005 (CA resorts don't really count for this though). Back when check in processes were longer, they had to print up your media, etc. Now that they have the Disney's Magical Express service, plus magic bands, your room keys are sent to you months in advance, everything is laid out so far ahead that your entire interaction with the front desk is only a few mins. so they can tell you where your room is, answer questions, and link a credit card to your band so they can save on swipe fees.

They most likely won't be cutting corners on lobby design for future hotels, as it is their first impression, but they also know the activity level in them will remain low.

I remember going, before they had such a system, and it took forever to get checked in even though we were the only people checking in (one perk of flying out of OC to Orlando, you miss all crowds but you only have one flight option). Afterwards, the longest part of the process was simply waiting for the shuttle to pick us up from the airport.


 
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AceExplorer
Grand Member (3 years)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2008
Posts: 944
From: Deep in the Jacksonville Florida jungle.
Posted: 2014-05-23 1:37 pm   Permalink

But they put shops, restaurants, and bars into those lobbies as well as offering grand photo opportunities. While you're right about the check in processes improving over the years, I think you're not giving the rest of the lobby aesthetics and functions enough credit.

For example, at the Poly this weekend, I heard one guest gushing about how much they loved sitting down and enjoying fresh Kona coffee in the restaurants and lobby. At the Grand Floridian they build huge gingerbread structures at Christmas where people hang out and browse for quite a while.

The Disney lobbies are good examples of mixed-use common areas which, if it wasn't for the competition from the theme parks and the swimming pools and the water parks, we would see much more use of the lobbies during the day. Breakfast and dinner times are known to be very busy there and will be even more so if DVC expansion grows the average daily guest census.

I'm not sure how on-target I am with what they're actually going to do, but it wouldn't surprise me to see walls and ceilings pushed out for expansions needed to support higher guest counts. Bigger restaurants, shops and bars would be needed. It's gonna be a lot of fun to watch what happens!


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wizzard419
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Joined: Jul 10, 2013
Posts: 220
Posted: 2014-05-23 2:05 pm   Permalink

When they were built, they most likely had way more usage, but now they actively encourage you to get out of your rooms ASAP and stay out as late as possible through things like EMH, DTD, etc. Even if the park isn't open to anyone yet, people still go and get breakfast in the parks at the character dining locations or the starbucks. You will still have outliers who will use the lobby rather than consider it an odd-shaped hallway with a lot of chairs in it, but they will always be on the fringes. They are probably the same type of people that have people-watching locations (a sign you have gone too many times when you no longer care about the primary service the parks offer ).

 
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EPCOTExplorer
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 13, 2014
Posts: 153
From: Miami, FL
Posted: 2014-05-24 08:02 am   Permalink

The "reasons" for the waterfalls getting the axe revolve around that it costs a lot to maintain and that the water source comes from outside, leading to bacteria and humidity.

Valid reasons, but for a company as big and as ingenious was Disney, there's really no excuse for saying that's the reason for killing off some WDW history.

The fountain was the last piece of the lobby that would have been considered dated, IMO. If anything, the rest of the place could go, and that would remain.


 
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AceExplorer
Grand Member (3 years)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2008
Posts: 944
From: Deep in the Jacksonville Florida jungle.
Posted: 2014-05-24 6:14 pm   Permalink


Folks, I suggest we take the Polynesian Resort-specific stuff over to the thread devoted to that subject started by Keniki in "Locating Tiki" back in 2003. The conversation about the current changes is already in progress, and the URL is provided below. This thread is intended to be more for discussion of "Trader Sam's - Orlando" and less for general discussion of the upcoming resort remodel. I know the topics are related, but I think we've gotten ourselves off-topic for this "Trader Sam's" thread.

Disney's Polynesian Resort, Walt Disney World:
http://www.tikiroom.com/tikicentral/bb/viewtopic.php?topic=5863&forum=2&

Thanks, and cheers!



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