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First Look: Waterfront District ‘Hyperion Wharf’ Among Plans for Downtown Disney

posted on November 18th, 2010 by Thomas Smith, Editorial Content Director, Disney Parks

Artist Rendering of the New Waterfront District 'Hyperion Wharf' at Downtown Disney

How about that? New dining, shopping and entertainment experiences are in the works for Downtown Disney and today we’re sharing a first look at what to expect in the future for the 120-acre complex. Look closely and you’ll see that Pleasure Island will evolve into a vibrant waterfront district called “Hyperion Wharf.”

Artist Rendering of the New Waterfront District 'Hyperion Wharf' at Downtown Disney

The district will come to life with a nostalgic yet modern take on an early 20th century port city and amusement pier. By day, stylish boutiques and innovative restaurants will draw you in and by night, thousands of lights will transform the area into an electric wonderland.

Taking its name from Hyperion, the Greek god of light, as well as the street on which Walt Disney built his first major animation studio, the wharf district will also feature a relaxing lakeside park and enhanced pedestrian walkways. And its diverse eateries will expand dining availability at Downtown Disney by more than 25 percent.

Artist Rendering of the New Waterfront District 'Hyperion Wharf' at Downtown Disney

Along with the new wharf district, other projects are underway at Downtown Disney, including:

  • An extensive renovation of Lego Imagination Center, which will increase its overall footprint by nearly 3,500 square-feet and add new Lego exterior models featuring scenes from classic Disney movies.
  • Enhancements at AMC Theatres that will take the movie-going experience at Downtown Disney to the next level with new digital technology, a Concession Stand of the Future and Florida’s first Fork & Screen Theater; and…
  • Numerous new or renovated retail shops and merchandise vignettes, as well as additional atmosphere entertainment, throughout Downtown Disney.

Construction on the district begins immediately and it’s scheduled to be completed in 2013.

Pretty exciting, huh? Let us know what are you most looking forward to.

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Filed: Downtown Disney, Walt Disney World Resort



Debra on November 19th, 2010 at 9:55 am

Last night, when there were about 200 posts up, I counted the “votes” for Adventurers Club. More than 140 people responded asking for the club’s return. That number has grown overnight. I hope you’re listening Disney. Kungaloosh!


dottie on November 19th, 2010 at 10:39 am

Adventurer’s Club?


Tiffany from OH on November 19th, 2010 at 11:17 am

Please bring back the Adventurer’s Club!!! All that PI has become to me is an annoying obstacle course between the other 2 parts of Downtown.


Mitch on November 19th, 2010 at 11:31 am

I agree fully on bringing back the Adventurers Club, it would fit perfectly with the new theme and would be a welcomed change to bring back some Adult entertainment to the resort.


Joey from AL on November 19th, 2010 at 11:43 am

One of the best memories I will ever have at Disney, is when my wife and I went to the Adventures Club. This in my opinion was the BEST the Disney had to offer in P.I. I HATE that that it was closed. I beg you Disney re-open the club in the Wharf or somewhere else!!!!



Calvin on November 19th, 2010 at 12:08 pm

It looks very pretty, and I’m sure it will turn out quite nice…but I mourn the loss of the Adventurer’s Club. It was a GREAT “Disney” experience that you could find nowhere else, and it was a nice spot to go after a long day of enjoying the parks with my kids. I hope Disney finds a spot for AC in this new redesign, but I fear that hope is misplaced.


john on November 19th, 2010 at 12:09 pm

Up or down, north, south, east or west you made the Adventurer’s life the best! Please give it back.


Nathan from FL on November 19th, 2010 at 12:16 pm

For nearly 20 years, Pleasure Island gave adults a place to play. These pretty pictures are no substitute. Please do not ignore us. We have $$ to spend in a re-imagined Mannequins.


JEANY on November 19th, 2010 at 12:45 pm

This will be awesome to see and Downtown Disney will have alot of workers! I love it!


BARBARA from NY on November 19th, 2010 at 12:55 pm

We do not need more outsourced Restaurants. Bring back some real Disney Entertainment. The Adventurer’s Club. I took my 2 nephews there before it closed and they Loved It! The only wish my nephews had was to visit there again and now it is gone!

Stop outsourcing your food and entertainment. We want the Disney Cast experience!


Sara from Nottingham on November 19th, 2010 at 1:33 pm

It just needs the Adventurers to make it perfect!We came all the way from England looking forward to our night in there and it had vanished – we were gutted. Please, bring back Kongaloosh!


David on November 19th, 2010 at 2:26 pm

Add my vote for the return of the Adventurer’s Club. If not at Hyperion Wharf then somewhere else. I’d even be OK with it if there was no alcohol served.


Missy on November 19th, 2010 at 2:33 pm

Please, please, PLEASE bring back the Adventurers Club!!! I miss it so much! We go every year and we still go by “the remains” each year, hoping that we will see you are bringing it back.


Vicki from CA on November 19th, 2010 at 2:54 pm

Hopefully whoever writes this blog actually takes the time to read some of the comments, but I seriously doubt that he will. IF the PTB’s at Disney planning ever took the time to read the comments posted here, they would realize The Adventurer’s Club still has a HUGE fan base. Bringing it back is a subject that crops up every single time Disney announces ‘New Plans’ for the now defunct Pleasure island area of DTD.

I miss the Adventurers Club. I miss the fun, the laughs, the characters, the LIBRARY. If you feel the need to make everything at WDW ‘family friendly’, you are doing a grave disservice to the adults with no children who love the parks but feel the need for some ‘adults only’ fun. Bring back the Adventurers Club…make it open to all ages until 9 or 10 pm. Then let the over 18 crowd have some fun, PLEASE?!?!?!?!


Kendra on November 19th, 2010 at 3:13 pm

When the Adventurer’s Club closed my husband and I lost our hang out place. I really hope it is coming back.


Lisa from NJ on November 19th, 2010 at 3:26 pm

It looks wonderful….. to a point -I miss having adult spots in DTD – it was part of the appeal of Saratoga Springs… Please bring back the Adventurer’s Club or something similar –


Clay from VA on November 19th, 2010 at 3:36 pm

You know what would make this perfect? The Adventurers Club.


Richard from LA on November 19th, 2010 at 4:16 pm

Thanks to the sharp-eyed Disney fan who tweeter about spotting the Adventurers Club in the corner of some of the new Hyperion Wharf concept art, to the left of the balloon and Paradisio. Kungaloosh!


Shane from ON on November 19th, 2010 at 4:17 pm

I still miss the Adventurers Club. Kungaloosh friends. Today the bear eats us… (But I’m still dressed for the hunt 😉 )


Andrew from OH on November 19th, 2010 at 4:20 pm

Must have been a little too vocal on my first comment attempt. Plain and simple. Nice idea. Could be a great idea if the Adventurer’s Club is included.


Susan from FL on November 19th, 2010 at 6:21 pm

Clubs please. Make them as you wish as long as there is a place to dance and socialize till 2 AM. We all miss this so very much!


Richard from LA on November 19th, 2010 at 7:30 pm

I must have been a little too vocal as well, so I’ll try to express this here again this way: As a Disney shareholder I hope Disney takes notice of the six pages of comments here and responds to the wants of the Disney fans who have replied here. Kungaloosh!


Rikki on November 19th, 2010 at 8:14 pm

Looks wonderful…but I agree with the others…is there any chance you guys will bring back the Adventurer’s Club. The Club is truly what you all are interested in right now which is interactive entertainment. (I mean, isn’t that why you’re designing queue lines with interactive qualities to them now?) This is the epitome of entertainment that is different every time you go. It truly was a shame when you decided to close the club down. My trips back to Disney World have simply not been the same since.


Amy on November 19th, 2010 at 8:19 pm

KUNGALOOSH!!! Bring back the Adventurer’s Club!!!!!!


donna on November 19th, 2010 at 8:57 pm

I have to add my voice to the chorus of bring back the Adventurers Club. I’ve had no use for anything west of the World of Disney since you closed the club. It was great to have something to do on nights when the parks closed early. Shopping and dining doesn’t do it, we have way better restaurants and shops in Chicago, no need to leave town for that. But, the Adventurers Club was truly one of a kind. A reason to spend more money after a day in the parks.


I from FL on November 19th, 2010 at 9:49 pm

Hyperion Wharf at the moment looks pretty, but not much more. I, along with so many others commenting here, was saddened by the loss of the Adventurers Club and would be thrilled to see it return. I’m glad to see that, two years later, I’m clearly not alone. Judging by the comments here (and the unique Disney qualities of the Adventurers Club), it seems that with some marketing and merchandise, it would be a real money-maker and a perfect addition to Hyperion Wharf.


Paul on November 19th, 2010 at 10:22 pm

If you brought back the Adventurer’s Club I’d come back to Orlando. I went to Orlando in ’99,’00,’02,’04,’05,’06,’07,’08 and then I stopped along with the ridiculous amount of money I used to blow at Disney. I can get a nicely lit wharf in a couple dozen places, but I could never replicate the Adventurer’s Club. Sorry Imagineers, but I’m not coming back until you make it fun again. I hope some day I can take my son to an Adventurers club and exclaim:

We climb the highest mountains,
just to get a better view.
We plumb the deepest oceans,
because we’re daring through and through.
We cross the scorching desert,
martinis in our hand.
We ski the polar ice caps,
in tuxedos looking grand.
We are reckless, brave, and loyal,
and valiant to the end.
If you come in here a stranger,
you will exit as a friend.


Arlene from FL on November 20th, 2010 at 12:16 am

The new area really looks good, but isn’t there ANY way to rehab the front so that the building fits in and PLEEEAAASSSEEE keep the Adventurer’s Club! It waS FAMILY ENTERTAINMENT AT IT’S VERY BEST!


Crystal on November 20th, 2010 at 5:01 am

I think we would all rather have the Adventurers Club back than pretty much anything else. I haven’t been to Downtown Disney since it closed, and I live 5 minutes away.


Katie from FL on November 20th, 2010 at 7:20 am

I registered JUST so I could post this: PLEASE BRING BACK THE ADVENTURER’S CLUB. Closing it was the worst mistake you’ve ever made, Disney. I’ve been to Downtown Disney a couple of times since PI closed and there’s just.. nothing there. I was hoping something in your new plan would look interesting/exciting, but it doesn’t. It’s just more of what I can get any number of other places. I’m disappointed.


Katie from FL on November 20th, 2010 at 7:25 am

I’d also like to say that, after having Disney strip us of so many beloved places *cough* Adventurer’s Club *cough* in the once Pleasure Island, I really, really hoped they would give us something even MORE magical to take its place – as they promised. This is a huge letdown. Huge. And not just because the Adv Club is nowhere in the plan. It’s a disappointment because there’s nothing unique in it. Anywhere. There was a day, and it wasn’t all that long ago, that Disney held itself to a higher creative standard.


Kim from VA on November 20th, 2010 at 7:36 am

Sounds to me like the Adventurers Club would fit into this new vision quite nicely!


Virginia on November 20th, 2010 at 8:25 am

I have to agree with a number of fan posts here. The Adventurers Club need to come back!!!! My husband an I spent ALOT of time there on every trip! It would also fit the concept. Kongaloosh to all Club members!!


Ryan from FL on November 20th, 2010 at 10:34 am

I didn’t get to experience the Adventurer’s Club until 2007 and I’m soooooo thankful that I got to before it closed. Please bring back this jewel! Obviously for those who have been, they know how great of a place it was.


Joseph on November 20th, 2010 at 10:47 am

Looks interesting- too bad they haven’t included a new Adventurer’s Club.


dottie on November 20th, 2010 at 12:37 pm

Please, Please, Please! Bring back The Adventurer’s Club! We can go to a mall any time at home. The Adventurer’s Club is the kind of unique and captivating attraction that Walt would have loved.


Ben from KS on November 20th, 2010 at 1:44 pm

Please bring back the Adventurer’s Club as part of this new area. It was fun for the whole family and was always a highlight of our trips. That kind of interactive entertainment experience would certainly draw us to Hyperion Wharf.


Kevin on November 20th, 2010 at 1:46 pm

I hope you add a jamba juice!!


Kevin on November 20th, 2010 at 1:49 pm

I say bring the adventures club to adventureland at the magic kingdom.Like a club 33 that Disneyland has but in adventureland in the old veranda area


Nicole on November 20th, 2010 at 2:39 pm

Personally, I don’t need more stores and restaurants (although it’s nice that Disney’s getting the rent paid, I guess).

Bring back the Adventurer’s Club!


Jessica on November 20th, 2010 at 3:10 pm

Adventurers Club was one of the most Disneyesque experiences I’ve ever experienced.
Immersive, creative, animatronics, escapism, an experience dependent on the dedication of the cast members. Why oh why won’t it come back?

It is one of the few places that adults were able to get that same feeling of a child who is able to immerse themselves in their own make believe world.

I miss it so much.


Jaime from CA on November 20th, 2010 at 3:16 pm

bring back Adventurer’s club…


Salvatrice from NY on November 20th, 2010 at 5:10 pm

Without the Adventurer’s Club it will just be the same old retail/food distribution I can get anywhere. When you bring back the Adventurer’s Club you will finally bring my family back to the island or “wharf” area.


William on November 20th, 2010 at 5:11 pm

Please return The Adventurer’s Club with this make over. It’s an absolute Disney masterpiece that people are demanding to experience again!


William on November 20th, 2010 at 5:15 pm

This place looks really cool but nobody will be interested in it if its just more restaurants. People want to see something uniquely Disney and if new concepts can’t be created, at least return The Adventurer’s Club!


Angela from MI on November 20th, 2010 at 6:04 pm

I had visited WDW in 2006 and 2007 but never went to PI because I didn’t really know what it was about. I first learned about the Adventurer’s Club when I read it was closing. After hearing so much about the Club I had to go and check it out for myself.

We visited the Adventurer’s Club during our trip in August 2008. I spent a wonderful evening with my two teenage sons laughing the night away – something that does not happen often. And because we had such a good time I left there feeling sad knowing we could never come back.

I LOVE WDW and I LOVE spending time in the parks. But when the parks close, I don’t want to go back to my room (and I don’t want to go shopping). I want to be out with other people. And it would be GREAT to be able to spend the evening with other Adventurer’s.

PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE bring back the Adventurer’s Club!



daniel from FL on November 20th, 2010 at 7:13 pm

Many different attractions at Disney have come and gone. One of the most famous is Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. It happens. Nobody thinks Disney World should stay unchanged.
I don’t know that anyone ever organized a 2-day Disney World convention for well over 100 people to celebrate Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. But I do know that for 2 years now, several thousand dollars were spent by people that simply wanted to remember a place where they could gather with friends, sing songs, and tell stories, and feel like they were part of something that had never been attempted anywhere else on earth.


Steven from CA on November 20th, 2010 at 7:38 pm

the artwork of the remodeled area is beautiful. However, what I see lacking is the uniquelly “Disney” experience that set Pleasure Island appart from other outdoor malls, and therefore made me want to spend time – and money – there. That would be the clubs, especially Adventurer’s Club. Please include the Adventurer’s Club as a part of this ambitious project, and raise the grade from a C to an A+.


Skip from FL on November 20th, 2010 at 9:30 pm

Wow! I haven’t seen this many comments since one of the Moms Panel blogs which had 157.

#268-Richard from LA
Which picture are you refering to, and which quadrant of the picture is this balloon and Paradisio? (Not that I would ever attend “adult” entertainment). See Disney executives, you’re not totally alone with your decision to remove the clubs. I’ll ‘cast’ my vote for more upscale dining any day; more new stores on the other hand………


Melanie on November 20th, 2010 at 9:43 pm

While the new plans look exciting, ya’ll are missing a crucial piece of the puzzle. The ADVENTURERS CLUB should live on! It was Always packed in there, so it seemed profitable. The “problem children” that went to all the dance clubs did NOT venture into the AC. We have fond memories of the place….it was where we took our friends AFTER our Disney Wedding in 2007, etc.

Magical Days for all of us!