✩ Disney's Polynesian Resort Facts and History

  • Opening Date: October 1, 1971
    Construction Date: February 1971 
    Expanded in 1985 with 2 new longhouses, a second pool, the Tangaroa Terrace (closed permanently 6/22/96) and the King Kamehameha rooms.Acreage: 39 acres
    Architects: Welton Becket & Associates, Santa Monica, California.
    Description: Designed with a tropical, South Pacific theme.
    Rooms: 853 rooms
    • originally opened with 492 rooms
    • The Great Ceremonial House (lobby, shopping & dining) resembles a royal Tahitian assembly lodge.Endangered Species: A Scarlet Macaw chick hatched in the atrium in 1989 and was hand-raised on Discovery Island.
    • Hidden Mickey: Main lobby -- design in the flagstone floor
    • Logo Brick: The Polynesian Resort has its own special logo brick for guests participating in the "Walk Around the World" -- Mickey in an outrigger canoe.
    • Luau Cove: Added in 1973. The original luau took place on the beach.
    • Menehune: "small Polynesian dwarf that lives in the mountains and works as a stone builder"
    • Moana: ocean
    • Motto: Aiita Peatea which means "there will be another day tomorrow, just like today."
    • Rooms: The resort was constructed using unitized modular construction for the original guest longhouses. Rooms were built and fully-equipped at an assembly facility four-miles away, then transported on flatbed trucks to the construction site and lifted into the three-story frames of the longhouses. Each room weighs about 8.5 tons.
    • Tangaroa: God of the Sea
    • Tree: The Polynesian Resort has a unique "Kukui Nut" tree. The only one of its kind in the state of Florida, the tree was brought here from its native Hawaii.
    • Walkway: The walkway to TTC was installed in 1987.
    • Wave machine: In 1985, a wave machine was tested for Surf Rider's Beach near the Polynesian Resort. The machine is currently not in use.