Universal reveals new images & rate details for hotels on former waterpark site

Universal Orlando released new renderings, the promise of low rates and room count details on Monday morning for the two hotels it plans to build on the former Wet 'n Wild property along International Drive. 

The company announced via its theme park blog that both hotels will offer Universal Orlando's lowest price yet among its six other local hotels, with nightly rates starting at less than $100. 

Universal said it will begin accepting reservations in early 2018, with an opening for both hotels projected for Summer 2019. Loews Hotels will manage the properties, as it does for Universal's other Orlando hotels.

Located at 6200 International Dr. at the intersection with Universal Boulevard, 64.6 acres make up the former water park property and its related parking lot area.

Plans previously filed with the city forecasted up to 4,000 guestrooms between the two hotels, but now the total room count will be 2,800, with 1,450 two-bedroom suites designed to accommodate families. 

The two hotels' room counts will be 750 and 2,050, with the larger count likely allocated to the former parking lot east of Universal Boulevard. 

Guest benefits at the hotels will include early park admission to Universal's theme parks and complimentary transportation across the theme park properties.

The two hotels will have a "laid-back coastal feel," with a beach-inspired theme, according to the company. "Towering exterior murals with vibrant and natural colors will set a free-spirited and beachy tone," Universal wrote. 

Amenities should include three pools across the two properties, pool-side bars, food courts, coffee bars, car rental facilities and fitness centers. 

Apopka-based design-build company FINFROCK will serve as GC for both hotels, while Georgia-based Lindsey Pope Brayfield Clifford & Associates (LPBC) and Melbourne-based BRPH will each take one of the hotels as lead architect, GrowthSpotter reported on Aug. 9

Mass grading and utility site work have been underway on the property over the past few months. 

Zoning plans that show the hotel's layout and conceptual design were filed in May.

An architectural site plan previously filed for the eastern side of Universal Boulevard depicts a central arrival and lobby building, with two U-shaped guestroom towers on either side. Two parking garages are on the site, along with a swimming pool, pool deck, pool bar and restrooms. 

On the western side of Universal Boulevard, a central arrival and lobby building on the street corner would have guestroom buildings flanking its left and right, with one parking garage in the northwest corner where Wet 'n Wild's entry used to be, and a pool area and amenities facing the lake. 

Universal will have 6,200 room across six local hotels after the Aventura Hotel (600 rooms) opens in Summer 2018. After the seventh and eighth hotels open on the former Wet 'n Wild site that room count will be up to 9,000.

That still pales in comparison to Walt Disney World's 30,623 rooms across 31 on-site hotels. 

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