Hilton Head storm damage and continuation of signature events are among the highlights of the 2016 Disney Vacation Club Condominium Association Meeting. But DVC also shared many details regarding the forthcoming Copper Creek Villas & Cabins including cabin occupancy and a clear indicator of the villa sizes planned.
On Thursday, December 8, Disney Vacation Club hosted its annual condo assocation meeting in the convention center of Disney's Coronado Springs Resort. The event is part legal requirement, allowing for the election of board members and acceptance of projected resort dues for 2017. However, the meeting has also morphed into a member-friendly event where DVC execs can review the prior 12 months and provide an early look at what the new year will bring.
Hundreds of members attend annual meeting
DVC Senior Vice President & General Manager Ken Potrock confirmed that the popular Signature Events, featuring exclusive member access to Disney theme parks and water parks would continue into 2017. When most of the events debuted in 2016, they were tied to the 25th anniversary of Disney's timeshare program with no promise to continue beyond the current calendar year.
Ken Potrock addresses attendees
At the meeting, Potrock introduced the new tagline "Membership Magic Ever After", signifying an ongoing commitment to bringing such unique experiences to members. February and March dates have already been announced for the free members-only party at the Magic Kingdom. DVC claimed that "most" of the 2016 special events would return while other new and exciting opportunities would also be introduced.
Shannon Sakaske, Vice President, Member Experiences & Club Management shared some fun facts regarding the recent member perks and events:
- Over 180,000 members and their guests visited the Epcot DVC member lounge
- 120,000 complimentary photos were printed at the nine resort kiosks
- 4000 members attended the exclusive holiday dinners
- More than 70,000 attended the exclusive theme park events
- At the Disney California Adventure event, 7000 attendees consumed 4990 churros, 7061 ice cream novelties and more than 1349 gallons of beverages
DVC is working very hard to give more advance notice of these events to aid in member planning. Potrock also settled a long-standing Internet debate by confirming that costs associated with these Signature Events did not come from member dues.
During a review of annual dues for the 2017 year, DVC staffers confirmed that the major culprits in the rising costs continue to be similar to prior years: increased labor costs (wages and benefits), increased property taxes and adjustments to the capital improvements budgets which are used to fund long term projects.
In 2016, seven of the thirteen Disney Vacation Club properties underwent some form of in-room refurbishment. The only major project slated for a 2017 start is a wholesale refurb of Disney's Old Key West Resort. Unfortunately, no images were shown at the member meeting. DVC recently solicited feedback from members staying in test rooms at the resort, and will be using that feedback to finalize the new room design. The project is scheduled to begin in spring 2017 and could take up to 2 years to complete.
In October 2016, Disney's Hilton Head Island Resort was hit by Hurricane Matthew, resulting in a 3-week closure to conduct repairs. Several images of storm damage were shown (see below.)
Images of Hilton Head storm damage
Overall, the resort was subject to a $750,000 insurance deductible. Rather than passing this cost on to members in a single year, Disney Vacation Development has loaned the money to the Hilton Head Condo Association at a modest interest rate of 1.33% annually over a period of five years. The net impact of the hurricane damage is eleven cents per point for each of the next five years. This loan applies only to owners of Disney's Hilton Head Island Resort.
Finally, DVC used the condo meeting to introduce new details regarding the forthcoming Copper Creed Villas & Cabins at Disney's Wilderness Lodge.
In his opening remarks Ken Potrock confirmed that the resort would launch in 2017, although no more details were provided.
All resort enhancements including the new villas, the Boulder Ridge Cove Pool and the Geyser Point Bar & Grill are being paid for by Disney--no charges to member dues for these projects. Other planned additions include a BBQ pavilion, Community Hall and sports courts.
New concept art of Geyser Point Bar & Grill
A computer-rendered flyover of the completed resort was shown at the meeting. Sadly photography and video recording were prohibited. Few noteworthy details could be gleaned from the images, however Disney did state that the waterside cabins being added to the DVC program will sleep up to 8 guests, suggesting a design similar to the bungalows at Disney's Polynesian Villas & Bungalows. Additionally, execs confirmed that Copper Creek would include accommodations for up to 12 guests, clearly indicating the presence of 3-bedroom Grand Villas in the new property.
Throughout the meeting, Disney also provided a look at recent and planned changes to the Disney Springs shopping district, many of the theme park modifications occurring throughout Walt Disney World including Pandora at Disney's Animal Kingdom and expansions at its internationals parks.
Pandora concept art
Upon conclusion of the 67 minute meeting, a casual reception was hosted in a neighboring ball room. Beverages and cookies were provided, while DVC exectives and resort managers made themselves available to members for one-on-one interaction.
Although no date has yet been provided, expect the next condominium meeting to occur sometime in December of 2017.
I'm still wondering if Copper Creek will have concierge club villas. Wilderness Lodge's club level rooms are on the seventh floor and the Old Faithful Lounge is in the south wing. It might be fairly easy to classify the DVC villas on the seventh floor as concierge level.
When you are at the Wilderness Lodge's main pool looking back toward the Lodge, the south wing is on the left.
When you are in Wilderness Lodge's lobby, the front desk is on the south side and Whispering Canyon Restaurant is on the north side.
AKL was a no brainer. The resort was massive and out in the boon docks with no "special" or unique transportation options into a park for guests staying there. DVC was needed due to empty floors.
But then the North Wing at CR, Poly Long Houses converted, now WL and still more rumors about CR South Wing and even Mods like CBR and CS.
Aside from Art of Paintamation, Disney has been reducing cash inventory for a long time now. Is Outside the Bubble really eating their cake?