Armchair Imagineering, Opinions and Commentary, Reviews, The Disney Cynic

Armchair Imagineering: Disney’s Amazon Resort

Welcome back to Not Club 33, the new home of Cynical Disney!

Today we pitch an idea for a new resort. Admittedly, this resort idea isn’t “brand” new, and may be piggybacking on existing resorts and attractions, but it also will finally present a part of the globe that sends thousands of visitors to the parks every year, yet is substantially underrepresented on property. And, of course, since we as visitors to the parks have no frame of reference, some of the cultural norms from below the equator seem even more foreign. Today, I’m going to propose a resort that is based on the longest river in the world, the largest rain forest in the world, and the setting of one of the worst film franchises based on snakes that I’ve ever seen. Today we pitch…The Amazon Resort.

Premise: The Polynesian, Caribbean Beach and Animal Kingdom all have elements of what a resort of this theme could be, but some sort of combination of all of these elements while also having a Brazilian restaurant where they walk around with giant slabs of meat that they cut onto your plate seems like it could be a hit.

Location: This is entirely predicated upon a Brazilian pavilion being added to World Showcase. The smart money (in my arrogant opinion) is on a location in between the Japan and Morocco pavilions, or in between the Morocco and France pavilions. If I had to guess, I think it would be built between the Japan and Morocco pavilions. This is really just conjecture and critical thinking, but just based on satellite imagery from Google Earth, that would make the most logical sense. There’s more space in between France and Morocco, but I believe that they are using part of that space for the cooking rodent ride (and not Chef Mickey’s). Part of this pitch is a third entrance to Epcot through this pavilion for guests staying at the resort, so these two would need to be connected somehow.

Resort Details: One part Deluxe Resort, one part World Showcase pavilion, one part terrarium/aquarium, one part arboretum, and one part third entrance to Epcot, this resort would combine the best parts of all to create one experience that would be the envy of nearly all Disney vacation goers.

First of all, I would somewhat model the layout of the resort based on the Polynesian Resort, which is absolutely blasphemy in my household, but I like to shake it up here and there. I’m only using this because I don’t want to completely BLEEP up sight lines. The buildings at the Polynesian are about as tall as Mini-Me in Austin Powers compared to the likes of the Contemporary or Grand Floridian. I’m looking for a low profile of a building. That being said, I’m also looking for this resort to be connected to a fictional Brazil pavilion, so much of the infrastructure for the resort (lobby, restaurants, gift shop, etc.) will be located toward the back of the pavilion, with a connecting series of walkways to the rooms.

Because I’m calling this the Amazon Resort, I’m damn sure basing this off of the Amazon Rainforest. The interior and exterior will be lined with lush, thick tropical foliage, and walking around will feel like you’re in the rain forest but mysteriously on a sidewalk.  The foliage will not only create the illusion of the setting, but it’ll also hide all the back stage BLEEP from the other World Showcase pavilions this resort may encroach upon.

Inside the lobby of the resort will be a terrarium (like an aquarium but for spiders, birds and other BLEEP-ed up things found in the rainforest), giving guests a view of the wildlife of the rain forest, but also making sure that nothing gets out and kills someone in the middle of the night. IF it’s possible, I’d also like to include a freshwater aquarium (think the size of something at a Bass Pro Shop), but instead of big-mouth bass, I’d like to show off Piranha and other Amazonian fish. I say “IF” because my impression of the Piranha is based on horror movies and I don’t know if they can be kept in an environment that doesn’t scare the bejesus out of children. I’d also love to throw in a couple of Anaconda, but since they can eat a cow, I suppose that it’s probably not the best idea.

The lobby and the actual country itself would in essence be a “protect the rainforest” propaganda wing. I kind of think the rainforest is actually out to kill us all and I support logging the BLEEP out of that place, but that’s not exactly a popular opinion, so I’ll defer to the populous on this one to get it done. Exhibits would be on display and a native Brazilian would be there to explain the various flora and fauna to the uneducated masses.

There would be a Brazilian steakhouse on site that is shared with the World Showcase pavilion. Most, if not all, major cities (which I define as having a professional sports team, with Green Bay as the exception that proves the rule) have a version of a Brazilian Steakhouse, but if you haven’t been to one before, it’s an experience to behold. Unless you’re a vegan or a PETA member. Then it will suck. But if you don’t mind tapping into your carnivore side, then you’ll enjoy yourself. Basically servers walk around with giant slabs of meat and at your request slice them onto your plate. It’s kind of perfect if you’re on one of those Atkins type diets. Or, you know, if you like beef.

The rooms, of course, would be of the Deluxe variety. You can’t be connected to a park and have all of this effort in decor if you’re not a Deluxe resort. If DVC wants to get in on it, cool. If not, suites would be available. Disney could decorate the rooms with ferns and other plant life to continue the illusion of a rainforest canopy, and add Brazilian flair when applicable. Truth be told, I know nothing about Brazil other than Carnival, the gigantic Jesus statue and the movie Anaconda. I’m not Joe Rohde, I’m not travelling south of the equator to do research for a blog. If Disney hires me, I promise to not just have an impression of the Amazon from a Jon Voight movie and Jennifer Lopez movie.

What is your favorite resort on property? Is there a theme or country you’d like better represented on property (be it an attraction or a resort)? Let us know in the comments section. Until next time!

-The Disney Cynic

“I’m all beers!”

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