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Disney’s Art of Animation Resort Will Open in Phases Starting May 31

Jennifer Fickley-Baker

by , Editorial Content Manager, Walt Disney World Resort

Let the vacation planning begin!

Earlier today, leaders from the Walt Disney World Resort and Walt Disney Imagineering announced the projected opening dates for Walt Disney World’s new Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, which will debut in phases beginning May 31, 2012.

Located near Disney’s Pop Century Resort, the new resort will offer 1,120 family suites (including a bedroom and living room) themed after “The Lion King,” “Cars” and “Finding Nemo” animated films, as well as 864 guest rooms inspired by “The Little Mermaid.” The current opening timetable has the “Finding Nemo” wing opening May 31, the “Cars” wing in late July, and “The Lion King” wing in late September. The final wing, themed after “The Little Mermaid,” will debut in late 2012.

Although the resort is still several months away from opening, it’s already set to break records by planning the largest swimming pool at the Walt Disney World Resort (aside from our water parks). This pool will be located in the “Finding Nemo” wing, and will measure 11,859 square feet. The resort also will feature two other pools and a children’s water play area.

Disney’s Art of Animation Resort will be a “value” category of lodging, with nightly rates similar to Disney’s All-Star Resort and Disney’s Pop Century Resort.

To read more about Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, check out the posts below:


  • Where will the Art of Animation resort be located?

  • Disney doesn’t do anything 1/2 way so I am very excited to experience the opening and if things go right we will be able to stay there November 2012 on our next Disney Family Reunion/Vacation.

  • I´m going to Disney in 2014. Do you know if the Little Mermaid area will have rooms for 4 guests?? I´m going with my niece and her name is Ariel, so it would perfect to be in a little mermais room!!

  • My biggest concern about this resort is will it have its own bus service? One of the worst parts of staying at any of the All Star resorts is sharing a bus with the other resorts. After Pop Century opened, I went with that one. Plus it has a great food court.

    I’d love to have some tye-dyed cheesecake right now.

  • I am so excited about the opening of this resort. I am taking my daughter and her three friends to celebrate their high school graduation in June and we are booked to stay in the Nemo Suites. I keep watching this blog for updates and was excited to log on today and see one. Thanks!

  • This place looks cool. It almost makes me wish we weren’t DVC members…..almost 🙂 I may have to take a night or two just to experience this resort with my family. Awesome job!!!!!

  • i know between both the new park and new hotel i want to wait for a visit!

  • will this include two bedroom suites like other resorts

  • @ Karen…..only the Little Mermaid section will have the single rooms…WDW is using the three existing buildings that were built for “The Legendary Years” for those rooms. The other three sections will be the family suites with inside corridors.

  • WE plan on being there with our grand daughter for her first trip August, 2013

  • Will it be possible to book a regular guest room in December 2012?

  • I’m excited the “construction ruins” we had been looking at from Pop Century are soon to be finished. Do you know if Standard rooms and Family Suites will be located next to each other or at least in the same hallway? Every other year my family goes to WDW together, all 18 (soon to be 20) of us. 2 families have 6 people so the suites would be ideal for them, the rest would be standard, but we all like to be near each other. Our next trip we’re planning for next fall so this would be perfect!

  • I am super excited to hear more about this!!! I cant wait to see it when its all done! Hopefully I will be able to stay in the little mermaid suit for my birthday in 2013!

  • Will there be an “Open Mouse”?

  • Love seeing the artist concepts and so excited for the additional suite options on property.

  • I am really happy to see this completed…however I would have loved to been able to stay at Pop Century – The Legendary Years.

    I always thought that the Pop Century resorts would have been a compliment/companion to the original Carousel of Progress in some fashion….but, as the saying goes “that’s progress for you!”….EPCOT became Celebration, and The Legendary Years became Art Of Animation, and I wouldn’t miss out on either one.

  • I am so excited to see it in person!! Can’t wait!!! I have reservations on opening day May 31rst!!

  • Still holding off my trip until all of New Fantasyland opens, but I’m already heading for AoA, and looks like Mermaid and Lion King should be open by then. 🙂

    Quick question, though: I’m not in a wheelchair, but might need some handicap access–Is there access available in the single Value rooms? And will we get a look at the non-Suite interiors?

    • Please email me directly at and I can try to find out for you. Since the resort isn’t completed yet, it may take some time.

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