WTM 2016: 'Affordable' on-site Universal Studios hotel targets UK market

WTM 2016: 'Affordable' on-site Universal Studios hotel targets UK market

Universal Studios has announced a new “affordable” hotel in Orlando aimed at the UK market.

The 16-storey Aventura Hotel is scheduled to open in summer 2018 with 600 rooms, nearly ten percent of its 6,200 spaces at its Orlando resort.

The hotel has a curved, glass design with an on-site pool, 13 kids’ suites, a hot tub, car rental, fitness centre and Universal Studios store as well as a restaurant with five different cuisines, three bars and an on-site Starbucks.

Russ Dagon, executive project director at the park, said customer demand had been for a cheaper place to stay at the park.

He said: “Our existing properties are ideal for shorter stays. But if people want to stay a little longer, then they are looking for more value.”

Universal says it plans to offer UK agents – its number one international sellers – a fam trip to Orlando when the new hotel opens. Details of which will be announced closer to the time.

Guests, he said, would get the closest thing on sale to the perks of working at the park if they stay at the new hotel.

Dagon added: “Staying on-site is really convenient. Guests can get in one hour early. You can get a lot done in that time. There are less queues and you can enjoy the park on your own terms, like I can as an employee.”

He added that Universal has added more than 20 attractions since 2010 and has five more in the pipeline scheduled to open before the Aventura with more announcements expected.

Included in that list is the Volcano Bay water park, for which tickets go on sale on November 15.

It also plans to open a Fast and the Furious attraction and a Race through New York with [talk show host] Jimmy Fallon as well as expanding its Cubana Bay beach resort.

The UK is Universal’s number one long-haul marketplace, beating Latin America to top spot, so UK agents are the primary focus and sales teams will be out on the road with all the latest information from the park.

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