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August 5, 2014

First Look: Four Seasons Resort Orlando Opens at Walt Disney World Resort




It's finally, finally here: The new Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World Resort is open for business, close to the Magic Kingdom Park, Epcot, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park and Disney’s Hollywood Studios—as well as all of Orlando’s shopping and attractions.

The ribbon cutting to officially mark the opening of the resort took place on August 1. Joining Regional Vice President and General Manager Thomas Steinhauer were Chris Hunsberger, President Hotel Operations, Americas, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts; Tom Wolber, Senior Vice President Walt Disney World Resort Operations; and special guest Mickey Mouse. (It wouldn't be Disney without him.)

The Resort at Sunset

Located within the residential community of Golden Oak at Walt Disney World Resort, guests at Four Seasons Resort Orlando can access all the local attractions via complimentary Four Seasons motor coaches or private luxury sedans. The onsite Disney Planning Center (located on the lobby level) is the starting point for guests, and can help arrange special perks. 

The resort is accepting reservations online or by calling 1-800-267-3046. Good to know: Guests can choose from several packages, including the introductory 2014 offer, Stay Longer – Third Night Free.

Accommodations

Bedroom

Guests can choose from 443 rooms, including 68 suites, with configuration options tailored for couples and individuals, and families and friends traveling together. Perhaps best of all, large groups can book a nine-bedroom option in the top floor Royal Suite. The Presidential Suite has four bedrooms, and those who want complete privacy and plenty of room to spread out can book the entire 16th floor.

The Resort’s rooms are reportedly the largest in Orlando, and each has a furnished terrace with views across 26.5 acres of gardens, lake and golf course. Good to know: Many rooms have unobstructed views of the nightly fireworks at Magic Kingdom Park. 

Explorer Island

Explorer Island

Those who would rather stay close to their rooms will have plenty to explore right on property. The Resort’s own Explorer Island has a 7,590-square-foot family pool, beach volleyball, outdoor movie nights on the Starstruck screen and smokehouse barbecue at PB+G, the pool bar and grill. There’s also a lazy river winding around a “ruined” mansion, a Splash Zone with dozens of choreographed water jets, a climbing wall and watersides—and, for the more tech-savvy, a video gaming center. When Mom and Dad want to go off on their own, they can drop the kids off at the fully supervised Kids for All Seasons program, a complimentary camp for younger guests (ages 4 to 12).

The resort also has three on-site Har-Tru tennis courts (in partnership with Peter Burwash International), an adults-only pool surrounded by private cabanas (reserved for guests 21 and older) and a 24-hour fitness center.

More to come: Next month, Four Seasons will unveil the completely refurbished Tom Fazio-designed golf course, Tranquilo Golf Club.  A Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary, the course’s par-71 18 holes will be located among southern live oaks and Spanish moss.

Meetings & Events

Event planners will have 37,750 square feet of space for their functions—much of it naturally lit—including the 14,000 square foot Grand Ballroom with two outdoor terraces. There is also the Palm Ballroom, and smaller spaces and outdoor lawns that can accommodate up to 1,000 guests.  

Facility and program details are available online in and downloadable brochures.  And for a limited time only, the Great Group Values offer includes savings on golf, spa and more with a minimum of 10 rooms booked per night.

Gourmets & Gourmands

In addition to PB+G on Explorer Island and Plancha at the golf clubhouse, Four Seasons Resort Orlando has three additional on-site dining and drinking venues. Ravello is both a modern Italian restaurant and a bar on the hotel’s main floor and garden level. Executive Chef Fabrizio Schenardi has taken full advantage of Ravello’s pizza oven (and Florida’s local produce and fresh seafood) to craft seasonally changing menus. Good to know: The restaurant will have two dining rooms for bespoke events, and there’s also a show kitchen for private cooking demonstrations and special events.

There's also Lickety-Split, the Resort’s gourmet coffee shop that serves sweet and savory bombolinis and daily flavors of housemade gelato.  

More to come: Capa, a contemporary Spanish steakhouse, is set to open in September. The 17th floor restaurant and outdoor dining terrace will have top views of the nightly Magic Kingdom Park fireworks. Even better, the resort's culinary team will participate in the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival this fall, and the Four Seasons Taste Truck will roll through in late October on an east coast tour.

Spa Time

Fresh from his stint at the acclaimed Spa at Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills, Derek Hofmann will oversee the Spa at Four Seasons Resort Orlando. We hear Hofmann is bringing his signature Fire & Ice facial and other anti-aging treatments to the Spa menu. The spa will have 18 treatment rooms including the ultra-private couples’ bungalows; the Experience Showers (which combine water, scent and light effects); the Aroma Design Bar, which lets guests create custom fragrances for treatments or to take home; and a hair, nail and beauty salon led by Master Stylist Alejandra Bell.

Weddings & Honeymoons

For couples tying the knot, the resort has two Lakeside pavilions that can accommodate parties of up to 20, with arched windows opening onto a waterside terrace with an intimate outdoor fireplace. Couples planning a destination wedding should contact a Four Seasons Wedding Specialist, and the Resort will offer several packages as starting points for creating a fully customized event.

Four Seasons in the Sunshine State

Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World Resort joins sister hotels Four Seasons Hotel Miami and Four Seasons Resort Palm Beach as the third property in the brand’s Florida collection.  A fourth project, Four Seasons Hotel at The Surf Club, is now in development in the Atlantic Ocean community of Surfside.


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