Back in the early 1970s on my first visit to Walt Disney World, I remember strolling wide-eyed into the Contemporary Hotel, a futuristic, 15-story A-frame tower with a monorail gliding through a massive lobby. It was the most exciting hotel I had ever visited.
Fast-forward more than 30 years: On a recent visit, I find I'm still enamored with The Contemporary — but for a different reason. The 1,008 guest rooms are being refurbished (or “reimagined,” as Disney officials like to say). Work started last May and is scheduled for completion this summer.
True to their heritage, the new rooms feature a design that's cutting-edge in both form and function. In the 1970s, there weren't many meetings at Disney World, so the rooms were fashioned more for leisure guests. With the new design, Disney designers address the needs of meeting attendees with sleek workstations made of frosted glass. Standard features include flat-screen televisions, high-speed Internet access, and designer bedding. Tasteful appointments and plush fabrics combine to make the rooms outside-the-box stylish and comfortable.
The balcony views from the Contemporary Resort have always been among the best in Disney World. Straddling a peninsula between Disney's Bay Lake and Seven Seas Lagoon, the resort offers panoramas from practically every guest room. In addition, it has two private concierge levels, the award-winning California Grill Restaurant, 95,000 square feet of meeting space, and a fully staffed health club and fitness center that's complimentary for guests.