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Another Polynesian Sunrise

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posted by alias Todd Hurley Photography on Tuesday 2nd of August 2011 11:00:19 AM

Walt Disney World Polynesian Resort “The Polynesian Village was born in 1971. Construction started in February 1971 and was completed August 1971. It was supposed to be a 12- story high-rise hotel in the center of a lagoon where guests rooms were clustered around small streams, a pool fed by waterfalls, a helt club, high-ceiling "South Sea" dining room located atop the hotel and a skindiving lagoon. Many of these ideas changed and others made it to the opening in 1971 but were removed shortly after. The hotel was planned by WED Enterprises, designed by Weldon Becket & Associates, and constructed by U.S. Steel to be leased back to Walt Disney Hotel Company to operate them. After Walt's death they changed the plans and decided to own the hotels instead of leasing them. As we know now the Polynesian never became the high-rise hotel it was designed to be. U.S. Steel Corp. came up with the idea to make the rooms lighter and to construct them offsite. Just about everything was built in the rooms down to the air system, wallpaper, carpet and all plumbing and electrical. All they had to do was slide the rooms into place and plug them in. This was so they could redesign rooms and have them ready to plug in by taking out the other rooms. The design of the Polynesian comes from many Pacific Island designs. The Disney designers spent time in places like Samoa, Tahiti, and Hawaii to come up with the designs. The design for the Great Ceremonial House (GCH) was inspired by the royal assembly lodges in Tahiti. The longhouses were designed after authentic Hawaiian longhouses and is the reason the original houses did not have balconies outside their rooms. One thing that did not last was the wave machine placed off the shore of Beachcomber Isle in the lagoon for guests to play in the waves. The waves were not quite large enough to surf on but they added the sound of the ocean to the beach area over near Luau Cove. After very short time in operation, they shut it down because of beach erosion. It was again tested in 1985 but it was decided to dismantle it and it was removed from the shore of Beachcomber Isle.” - source - Tikiman2001 (Steve Seifert) If you’re a fan of the Polynesian Resort (like me), be sure to check out Steve Seifert’s site at www.Tikiman2001.net/tiki/. It’s the most comprehensive website devoted to the Polynesian out there. Great stuff. For this shot, I decided to go with a more painterly look in post to set it apart from the many other shots I have of the Poly in my stream. Hope you guys like it as much as I do :)



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  • Published 08.09.22
  • Resolution 1023x694
  • Image type jpg
  • File Size 193319 byte.

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