Universal files detailed design plans for second hotel on former Wet 'n Wild site

Universal Orlando has shared new design details on the second of two hotels planned on the former Wet 'n Wild water park property along International Drive, showing more of the resort's site orientation and landscaping along the thoroughfares. 

The company filed new design documents with an Administrative Master Plan in mid-March for its Phase 2 hotel ("Project 801"), planned for a 36-acre site on the eastern side of Universal Boulevard at its intersection with I-Drive. 

The 2,050-room hotel, which Universal said on April 5 will be named "Dockside Inn and Suites," is anticipated to open by summer 2020.

Detailed design documents for Universal's first hotel on the west side of the intersection were filed with the city in late January, and reported here Feb. 8. That 750-room hotel, dubbed Surfside Inn and Suites, is under construction now and projected to open first in summer 2019. 

The two hotels together will be marketed as Universal's Endless Summer Resort. 

New descriptions provided to city staff for the second hotel list amenities as including two pool-side bars, a food court, recreational facilities, and two room types across 12 interconnected guestroom buildings of 13 stories. A new aerial rendering shows the placement of two parking garages and surface parking on site. 

Universal designs show broad 12-foot-wide sidewalks planned along the entire I-Drive and Universal Boulevard frontage for both hotels, with a six-foot-wide landscape buffer before the road. The sidewalks would be heavily landscaped with large tropical plants and trees.  

Large paved plazas on the corners of each property facing the intersection would offer seating areas, enhanced landscaping and scultural elements to compliment the hotel backdrops. 

The wide sidewalks and lush landscaping would continue along Universal Boulevard between the two hotels until Carrier Drive. At the mid-way point a new traffic signal is proposed where the hotel entrances are. 

Spiral painting accents at the three intersections along Universal Boulevard, formerly proposed in January, have been removed from these latest designs. 

Tall exterior murals of seaside and surfing scenes, shown in detail on the first hotel's MP, are continued with the second hotel. 

Contributors to Project 801's design and construction include Sloan Engineering Group, Kansas City-based SKS Studio, Melbourne-based BRPH (master architect), FINFROCK (building structure general contractor and tower architect), and Hoar Construction (GC for interior, common areas and property). 

The hotel will offer a "surf culture-inspired look that will be a mix between coastal beach life and modern-day resort comfort," Universal explained in the project description. Accents with bold design, pastel shades of blue and peach, and resort architecture will "transport the guest into the relaxed surf culture state of mind." 

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