The Walt Disney Company has announced plans to push the boundaries of hotel accommodation to a galaxy far, far away as it unveils plans to create a fully immersive resort in Orlando.
The Chairman of Walt Disney Parks & Resorts, Bob Chapek says the new hotel concept will be a “revolutionary vacation experience.” He outlined plans to disrupt the traditional hospitality marketing concept with a Star Wars-themed luxury, immersive accommodation option which the company says is unlike any hotel that currently exists.
The Chairman said, the hotel will function as a “dedicated multi-day adventure. He outlined starship transportation as one example of how the hotel’s amenities will differ from the norm, also saying characters, costumes, storylines, windows that show a view into space, and status as “an active citizen of the galaxy” will all be found at the resort.
He described the Star Wars hotel as, “…100 percent immersive and the story will touch every single minute of your stay with us. It culminates in a unique journey for every person who visits.”
Disney floated the idea of their immersive hotel back in April, with some guests at its Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando surveyed during their stay. Among other questions, they were asked if they would be interested in having a “continuous, story-driven entertainment experience” throughout a two night hotel stay.
The concept is touted as being Disney’s most experimental ever. As part of its customer research earlier this year, features such as robot droids as butlers, story participation and themed activities were all touched upon.
Some industry experts believe Disney will turn to its own cruise ships for inspiration for some parts of the hotel – particularly its animated portholes. Other theories suggest that robots and droids will be used to check in guests rather than traditional front-of-house staff with characters from the Star Wars franchise present in multiple formats throughout the hotel.
While Disney hasn’t yet confirmed when it will break ground on the project or release anything other than intriguing artistic renderings of a space-themed lobby with guests mingling with characters and robots, the confirmation of the venture does mark an exciting new milestone for the hotel industry.
The level of immersion plays up a recent trend towards automation in accommodation but takes the concept of guest interaction further into a total experience. It’s clear that Disney will build on its extensive guest data and experience of film and theme parks in the creation of the resort and its unique guest experience.