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Contemporary DVC Announced: Kingdom Tower

 
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daguru
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 5:01 am    Post subject: Contemporary DVC Announced: Kingdom Tower Reply with quote

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Walt Disney Co. to sell time shares in 15-story tower next to Contemporary Resort
High-rise will ultimately contain 281 units, but there's no rush to sell.
Jason Garcia | Sentinel Staff Writer
February 26, 2008

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."

Disney has for months refused to divulge its plans for the hard-to-miss, half-built tower that is rising just outside the gates of the Magic Kingdom -- despite rampant speculation among Disney fans that it is destined for time shares.

A spokeswoman for the company's time-share division, Disney Vacation Club, would not discuss the project in detail again Monday.

"We don't have anything to announce today," spokeswoman Diane Hancock said.

But in new filings with the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation, Disney formally states that the Disney Vacation Club will "add a ninth component site to be known as Kingdom Tower at Disney's Contemporary Resort."

Disney says in the documents that it will sell the time shares in phases, beginning with an initial 75 units. The Kingdom Tower, which will connect to the existing Contemporary via a fifth-floor pedestrian bridge, will ultimately contain 281 units, according to the filings.

A spokesman for the Department of Business and Professional Regulation, which awarded a time-share license to the Kingdom Tower project earlier this month, said Disney has now been cleared to start selling units at any time.

"They can begin," department spokesman Sam Farkas said.

Disney appears in no rush. The company says in the documents it doesn't expect to finish the Kingdom Tower until the fall of 2009.

Analysts say the company can afford to be patient. The Kingdom Tower, they say, is likely to prove a huge seller, given that it will be the closest time shares Disney has built to the Magic Kingdom -- the busiest theme park in the world -- and the first built directly alongside Disney's monorail.

"I'd have to imagine that's going to be an extremely popular product," said Jeremy Glaser, a lodging-industry analyst with Morningstar.

Some analysts think Disney is withholding a formal Contemporary announcement because it does not want to undermine time-share sales at Disney's Animal Kingdom Villas or Disney's Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa, both of which are still selling units. The company's four other time-share resorts at Walt Disney World -- as well as one each in Vero Beach and Hilton Head, S.C. -- are sold out.

Glaser, however, said Disney's silence "could just be some trademark Disney secrecy."

Disney's filings with the state also offer more detail about the Kingdom Tower's amenities.

A new swimming pool, for instance, will be large enough for 180 people; go as deep as 4 feet, 11 inches; and feature two hot tubs and a 104-foot-long water slide. There will be two tennis courts, two shuffleboard courts and two boccie ball courts. A barbecue pavilion will have about 490 square feet of covered area and a pair of picnic tables.

Glaser predicted that Disney will choose to market the Contemporary time shares "as more of an upscale product." An early point-chart submitted by Disney to the state -- Disney Vacation Club owners buy points from the company, which they then redeem for rooms, though they must buy through a "home resort" -- shows guests will have to spend more points to rent one- and two-bedroom units at the Kingdom Tower than any of Disney's other existing time shares.

In a further step toward cementing the new tower's status as a time-share resort, Disney has created a new condominium association that would manage the resort once units are sold off to individual owners. State records show that the "Kingdom Tower at Disney's Contemporary Resort Condominium Association" was formally incorporated Jan. 9.

The Kingdom Tower continues a wave of construction for Disney's fast-growing Vacation Club. The company is in the midst of building its first time shares at Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif., and has announced plans to build an 800-room resort in Hawaii in which at least half of the units will be time shares.

Disney also recently obtained approval to rebuild its little-known Treehouse Villas, a 60-unit community in a heavily forested area of Disney World.

The move has prompted speculation that those units, too, could be converted to time shares.

The widespread building boom comes even as the U.S. economy teeters on the brink of a possible recession.

But Tammie Kaufman, a professor at the University of Central Florida who teaches courses on time shares, said time shares could remain popular even during an economic slump because consumers will want to stretch their vacation money further.

"People are looking for a bargain," Kaufman said.

Source: Orlando Sentinel; http://www.orlandosentinel.com/business/custom/tourism/orl-contemporary2608feb26,0,6462018.story

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daveypoo
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 5:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is all great news!

Thanks for posting Bruce.
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WDWFan
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 5:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

15 stories is pretty tall... Anyone know if this would be visible from with in the park?
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daguru
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 10:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Same height as the Contemp A-Tower is.... so you probably will be able to see it as much as you can see the Contemporary...
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foxer76
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 26, 2008 9:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yay.. Can of Beans
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scfireman
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 24, 2008 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My wife is very excited about this new dvc
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daguru
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PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2008 11:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

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Disney's "Bay Lake Tower" instead of "Kingdom Tower" at the Contemporary?

the company is building next to its Contemporary Resort.

"Bay Lake Tower" has replaced "Kingdom Tower" as the name of the project, at least in filings with the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation.

What's more, earlier this month Disney filed paperwork to create a "Bay Lake Tower at Disney's Contemporary Resort Condominium Association," presumably to manage the resort once it is sold off to individual owners. Disney had created a "Kingdom Tower at Disney's Contemporary Resort Condominium Association" in January.

Disney still has not publicly announced its plans for the partially-built Contemporary addition, which now stands 14 stories and will be linked to the resort's main A-frame building by a pedestrian bridge. A spokeswoman said the company had nothing to announce today, either. But Disney has indicated in documents submitted to the state that it intends to use the tower for Disney Vacation Club, the company's Celebration-based time-share arm.

The "Kingdom Tower" name was criticized by some Disney fans when it first surfaced in those documents. Some posters on Internet forums said it evoked religious overtones, noting that "Kingdom Hall" is a term for a place where Jehovah's Witnesses worship.

"I think a lot of people were drawing comparisons to Kingdom Hall," said Tim Krasniewski, publisher of DVCNews.com, a website devoted to Disney Vacation Club.

Krasniewski said he was personally fond of "Kingdom Tower," which most assumed referred to the Magic Kingdom theme park that sits next door to the Contemporary. But he said he likes "Bay Lake Tower" -- which refers to one of the lakes that the Contemporary and its addition overlook -- even better.

"I think it's a wonderful name," he said. "I think everybody's familiar with Bay Lake, with the fact that Bay Lake is right there. It has a Disney feel to it."

Source: Orlando Sentinel; http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/business_tourism_aviation/2008/05/disneys-bay-lak.html


The article has some photos of recent construction, including the new walkway that will connect the new tower to the rest of the resort...
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 12:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was reading a post over at WDWMagic that someone observered a commercial being filmed over at the Magic Kingdom. One of the lines discussed how the filming was for a sneak peak at the new DVC resort right beside the Magic Kingdom.

This is the closest Disney has gotten to officially announcing that the "Bay Lake Tower" is for DVC... which they still have not "officially" announced yet. Which is weird, because everyone knows that is what it is for, why not announce it and start selling it before it opens.... *shrug*
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