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More Bad News for the Renowned Disney World River Country Resort

This well-known area has been the subject of several plans and rumors.

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When Walt Disney shuts anything at or near its Disney World theme park, it is usually to make room for something else. Because, while space at the company’s Florida resort may not be as valuable as it is at Disneyland in California, it is still expensive, and any property that formerly contained a ride, hotel, restaurant, or attraction is likely to be valued.

That was not the case with the former River Country Water Park. River Country, which was once Disney World’s only water park, was designed to feel like an “old-time swimming hole” into which people leapt from tire swings and other similar structures. The issue with the popular water park is that it was established when Disney World had many fewer visitors.

It was never intended to service the large crowds that modern water parks can accommodate. So, when Disney created Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon, two far more sophisticated water parks, River Country was abandoned (quite literally). Disney emptied the pools and slides and then only performed what was necessary to keep the facility safe.

Disney gradually let the land to regain its previous water park, and despite reports that it will reopen as a more private water park linked to a hotel, nothing happened to the location that became the topic of several social media memes. People publicly talked on various suggestions for the site and shared images of the decaying eyesore.

That changed just before the covid epidemic when Disney officially unveiled a strategy for the property.

Disney had a big plan. (This was not a water park.)

Get your FLOP-STERS now!

In 2018, Disney announced its ambitions for the land and began cleaning up the ruins of River Country. It cleared the area and announced plans to create a new hotel on the location, which is located on Bay Lake, dubbed “Reflections – A Disney Lakeside Lodge.”

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Disney has also released artist representations of the property.

“Reflections: A Disney Lakeside Lodge resort was touted as a deluxe-level facility based around Walt Disney’s love of nature. When finished, this new hotel will have over 900 rooms and Disney Vacation Club villas dispersed across a variety of distinctive housing options “Theme Park Tourist provided information.

Those intentions were thwarted by the epidemic. That was not cause for concern, but now it appears that development has been suspended and Disney may have scrapped (or substantially delayed) the project.

Disney is spending wisely.

Since covid’s release, Disney has made no remark on Reflections: A Disney Lakeside Lodge. The firm has been investing in its park, finishing planned rides like as “Tron: Lightcycle Run” at Magic Kingdom and “Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind” at Epcot, but it has been silent on what it would do when it completes a slate of planned new rides and attractions.

The Reflections hotel site has been cleared, but the project does not appear to be moving further.

This does not mean the project will never happen, but it does mean it is not currently being worked on. Disney presents a hurdle in that developing hotels can take months, if not a year. That implies it must construct based on where demand is expected to be in the future rather than where it is now.

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This is especially difficult in the present economic climate. Disney has not experienced a slowdown in theme park attendance, but one may occur, or increased demand for lower-end, rather than upmarket, resorts could develop.

This project will most certainly be revived at some point, however, for the time being, it is an empty lot where River Country formerly stood.

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