05 Feb DVC Resort Refurbishment Schedule
We have a DVC resort refurbishment schedule here to help make your vacation dreams come true. Enjoying freshly refurbished pools, rooms and lobbies can be a real delight. It’s fun to explore new designs, finishes and amenities as interiors are upgraded or offerings are added. We also hope this can serve as a resource for current refurbishments to make potential guests aware of amenities that will be down or construction noise that may happen on their stay.
While this is an active post with current and scheduled refurbishments Disney has shared, we also want it to serve as somewhat of an archive. Here you’ll also find notes of particular aspects of resorts that have recently been redone. This can be helpful for those seeking to buy a Disney Vacation Club Membership, or add on points, who are curious about the state of a resort or when the look of a resort might be changing.
The ability to use DVC points at different resorts make each resort one Members can potentially enjoy. While you may know everything that’s going on at your home resort, fifteen resorts is a lot to keep up with. The addition of a new water play area or character themed rooms might make another resort more appealing to try. Let’s catch up and go over what’s going on around different Disney Vacation Club resort properties these days.
How Often Are DVC Resorts Refurbished?
There is a general DVC resort refurbishment schedule you can expect to see as a Member. Disney Vacation Club Resorts all have a regular refurbishment schedule they follow from the time they open.
Every seven years you can anticipate the soft goods to be refreshed. That refers to soft items like fabrics so new curtains are installed and pieces like benches should be reupholstered.
Then, every fourteen years, DVC rooms should get a full refurbishment. This might include new furniture, floors, bathroom tile, basically anything inside. These kinds of refurbishments usually leave rooms looking completely different.
We’ve seen this get a little flexible over the last few years due to construction delays. So about every seven years, Disney Vacation Club Resorts get some kind of refurbishment whether it’s a small one or more major.
Under each resort below, the year it opened is listed so you can get an idea of where it may be in its update life cycle. There’s something else to consider. Some of the resorts opened as a Disney Vacation Club resort, like Disney’s Riviera Resort and Disney’s Old Key West Resort. Other resorts were built, then had a Disney Vacation Club wing or building added many years later. Some took regular rooms and refurbished them into villas.
So it’s possible that the resort existed before the date the Disney Vacation Club section was added and opened. This means there are varying degrees of how long things have been around. It’s possible that a resort is older but the Disney Vacation Club section is brand new. An example of this is the new tower being constructed at the Polynesian which is one of Disney World’s original resorts.
Why the DVC Resort Refurbishment Schedule Matters
During times of refurbishment, there may be loud noise, disrupted paths or amenities out of use. It’s good to know the DVC resort refurbishment schedule for a few reasons. Disney often shares when construction sounds can be expected during the day. It’s most common for work to take place during the day from 8:00 or 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 or 6:00 p.m. or sundown depending on the project. If you have a toddler that needs to nap during the day, you’ll want to know if you can expect endless back up beeps around 2:00 p.m.
You’ll also want to know what might be unavailable due to the DVC resort refurbishment schedule on your stay. If you’re visiting in July, you’ll want to make sure the pool is ready to shine. Fortunately, Disney is really good about scheduling refurbishments during the times of least use or most convenience. For example, you can expect most pools to be refurbished during the cooler months when they are in low demand.
Refurbishments sometimes mean lower occupancy at a resort which can be nice. When a whole building is out of commission, naturally there are less people staying on the property. This is happening these days at the Grand Floridian as each building gets surrounded by a fence for a total exterior and interior building makeover.
Basically, we want to keep you informed so you can plan your best trip possible. If construction at your home resort sounds unappealing, maybe this is the year you try to stay somewhere else for the first time. Or perhaps a scheduled refurbishment will encourage you to visit at a different time of year. Whatever the case, you don’t want to show up and be surprised at work taking place on your vacation. We hope the schedule helps you plan accordingly.
Refurbishments and Getting Disney Back to Normal
Disney has always been known for its surprising cleanliness. It’s said that Walt Disney’s wife Lilian was concerned with the idea of an amusement park because they were often associated with being unclean. Walt had a different idea in mind and it’s always been part of the culture of Disney destinations. Cleanliness, fresh paint, beautiful finishes, fresh landscaping and immaculate upkeep have surprised guests for decades. In a place with so many people, this is a major feat!
When Disney Parks closed during 2020, they had a hard time bouncing back. A little pressure wash and paint goes a long way. When something doesn’t receive regular maintenance, it shows. Especially in the Florida heat, sun and rain. It took some time but we’ve now seen quite a few major refurbishment projects since the 2020 reopening.
Below we have a roundup of the most recent DVC resort refurbishments we’ve witnessed or that Disney has noted for guests on the official website. We are based near Walt Disney World and will cover the Florida resorts the most in depth while also noting other DVC resort refurbishments.
Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas Refurbishments
Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas opened in 2007. There are two different DVC areas, with different names, located at this resort property. Jambo House is in the resort’s main lobby. Kidani Village is a Disney Vacation Club building with its own pool and amenities. Both Jambo House and Kidani Village villas fall into the one home resort of Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas. Aside from fabulous restaurants like the flavorful buffet Boma and savanna view Sanaa, Animal Kingdom has fantastic amenities. Each area of the resort has its own pool and the Kidani Village has an exciting kids splash and play area called Uwanja Camp. This splashy zone has three areas for play based on age. The Kidani Village pool area was most recently closed and refurbished from January to April 2022.
One year later, Disney has shared that other parts of Kidani Village will be under refurbishment. From Disney: “From February 1, 2023 through September 2023, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge – Kidani Village will be undergoing refurbishment. During this time, you may be able to see and hear construction during the daytime hours.”
Aulani, Disney Vacation Club Villas Refurbishments
Aulani, Disney Vacation Club Villas opened in 2012. Far across the world from Disney World, Aulani is a Hawaiian jewel of nature magic. There is a large and lavishly landscaped outdoor water play complex that guests love at this property. The open air Tubestone Curl tube slide will be closed from February 20th through March 10th, 2023. The enclosed Volcanic Vertical body slide will be closed from January 16th through February 3rd, 2023.
Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort Refurbishments
Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort opened in 2010. Since Bay Lake Tower is connected to and shares amenities with the Contemporary, we’re covering all of those recent refurbishments here as well. The Contemporary got a complete lobby makeover in 2021, incorporating more vintage inspired finishes, colorful Mary Blair visuals and historic photos of Walt Disney and others. The Wave closed and was remodeled into the new Steakhouse 71 restaurant at that time as well.
The main pool at the Contemporary will be closed for refurbishment in the early part of 2023. From Disney: From January 9, 2023 through early April 2023, the feature pool and whirlpool spas will be closed for refurbishment. The water play area and Bay Lake Pool will remain open for your enjoyment. You may see and hear construction noise while this refurbishment is underway, but you should not hear noise from Guest rooms between dusk and 9:00 AM. We apologize for any inconvenience.
Disney’s Beach Club Villas Refurbishments
Disney’s Beach Club Villas opened in 2002. Disney’s Beach Club Resort and Disney’s Yacht Club Resort are connected and share some amenities. The boat launch between the two has a fantastic lighthouse that was refurbished in 2022.
DVC rooms are undergoing a soft goods refurb in 2023. From Disney: From January 7, 2023 through early April 2023, Disney’s Beach Club Villas will undergo refurbishment. During this time, Resort amenities will remain available for your enjoyment. While you may see or hear construction during daytime hours, you should not hear noise from Guest rooms between dusk and 9:00 AM.
Disney’s BoardWalk Villas Refurbishments
Disney’s BoardWalk Villas opened in 1996. A major resort refurbishment that included BoardWalk restaurants and the lobby began in 2022. What used to be the sundries shop in the lobby was turned into Carousel Coffee in December of 2022. Disney’s BoardWalk main lobby is being refurbished in 2023.
Disney’s BoardWalk has had a few changes and more are underway. The BoardWalk Bakery was turned into the BoardWalk Deli in 2022 and introduced a new menu at this time. The EPSN restaurant on Disney’s BoardWalk never reopened after the pandemic. The space has nearly been demolished to make way for a new dining venue. The Cake Bake Shop restaurant and bakery will open on that piece of real estate. This addition will have a full service restaurant and offer brunch and to go items.
Guest rooms will also be part of BoardWalks big refurb. From Disney: Disney’s BoardWalk Inn & Villas is being refurbished, with new offerings, plus updates coming to our Guest rooms, lobby and more. Please note that while most hotel amenities will remain available, you may be able to see and hear construction during daytime hours. Additionally, please allow for additional travel time.
Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge Refurbishments
Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge opened in 2000. A much needed room refurbishment is underway at Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge. We have experienced some major delays in the refurbishment schedules the last few years. Construction in general has been wonky and taking longer than expected in all areas. Disney hasn’t been able to overcome that. In early 2023, we should be seeing the completion of Boulder Ridge room renovations.
From Disney: Boulder Ridge Villas at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge is undergoing refurbishment. While Resort amenities remain available throughout the refurbishment, you may be able to see and hear construction during daytime hours.
Copper Creek Villas and Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge Refurbishments
Copper Creek Villas and Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge opened in 2017. Disney’s Wilderness Lodge has one of the most enchanting lobbies you’ll find. Copper Creek Villas are attached to the main lobby building and accessed using the main elevator near the check in desk. Even though they are not in the same building, Boulder Ridge Villas are very close. I mention this because the Boulder Ridge building has an absolutely splendid lobby as well. The first floor of the Boulder Ridge Villas building has a beautiful interior, cozy nooks to sit in and the Carolwood Pacific Room that Copper Creek Members can enjoy too.
The Villas at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel Refurbishments
The Villas at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel opened in 2010. Dues were raised in the last few years citing the need for upcoming refurbishments, potentially like painting the exterior. There were major room refurbishments at the Grand Californian that started debuting in 2018. The lobby and pool also received some updates at this time.
The Villas at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort Refurbishments
The Villas at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa opened in 2014. This resort originally opened in 1988. Since then the rooms have gone through quite a few changes. As of 2023, the entire resort is in the process of being completely redone in terms of room refurbishments and buildings.
From Disney: Starting March 1, 2022, Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa will undergo refurbishment. Guests will be able to see and hear construction during daytime hours. Most Resort hotel amenities will remain available. Please allow for additional travel time.
From what we’ve seen, the construction on the Grand Floridian is being done one building at a time. Scaffolding has surrounded buildings as they’ve seen major improvements and basic upkeep. Entire roofs seem to have been replaced which was desperately needed, really freshened up the look of the resort. It all started with the complete refurbishment and transformation of the Big Pine Key building behind the main lobby. This building was dedicated to Disney Vacation Club at that time in 2022 and expanded the capacity for Members at this resort as it opened to be actively sold by Disney again.
Grand Floridian Lobby Refurbishment 2023
There was speculation that the lobby at the Grand would be getting a major refurbishment along with the rest of the resort. Late 2022, Disney confirmed that to be true, sharing this on the Disney Parks Blog: The resort has been receiving some grand touches that weave familiar storybook charm into the Victorian elegance of this flagship resort. Guest rooms are currently being updated as we speak with more to come as the beloved Grand Floridian ushers in its third decade of magic. The ongoing renovation will also include an upcoming refurbishment of the lobby, which will maintain the classic theming you know and love with some fresh new enhancements.
The spa at the resort was refurbished and reopened in early 2022. Formerly known as Senses Spa, it is now called the Grand Floridian Spa.
Disney’s Hilton Head Island Resort Refurbishments
Disney’s Hilton Head Island Resort opened in 1996. A soft refurbishments will start sometime in 2023.
Disney’s Old Key West Resort Refurbishments
Disney’s Old Key West Resort opened under the name the Disney Vacation Club Resort in 1991. This was the original Disney Vacation Club home resort. The most recent Disney’s Old Key West Resort lobby refurbishment was in 2021. This was a full on change with very little left from the old look. See the bright photos of the Old Key West Lobby Refurbishment. The last major room refurbishment happened in 2019.
Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows Refurbishments
Disney’s Polynesian Villas & Bungalows opened in 2016. An entire new tower is currently under construction in between the Polynesian and Grand Floridian resorts. This will increase the capacity of DVC rooms at the Polynesian and potentially add varying room styles.
The lobby of Disney’s Polynesian Resort was fully refurbished in the last few years with big changes. This included taking away the classic fountain in the center of the space. If you have any older pictures from the Polynesian lobby, they probably included this iconic visual. The refurbishment modernized the lobby a bit to reflect more simple Hawaiian vibes. There is now a small tiki statue in the middle of the Polynesian that was added in lieu of the fountain. This is the time when the netted, colorful, oversized lights that hang on the second floor of the lobby and in the porte cochere were added as well. The area just behind the lobby was also redone to include a gathering space with faux grass. The porte cochere and ornate lobby roof were also redone. A follow up furniture update and light refurbishment of the lobby is taking place in early 2023.
There is a refurbishment happening on the main pool at the Polynesian but the pool will remain open as just the slide is being worked on. From Disney: From January 3, 2023 through early February 2023, the water slide at the Lava Pool will be closed for refurbishment. During this time, only the slide will be unavailable; we invite you to continue your enjoyment of both the Lava Pool and Oasis Pool. Guests may see or hear renovation work between the hours of 7:00 AM and 6:00 PM.
Disney’s Riviera Resort Refurbishments
Disney’s Riviera Resort opened in early 2020. At just a few years old, we would not expect any resort to need major fixes resulting in a refurbishment. We can expect this resort to follow the regular resort refurbishment schedule unless any issues arise at the property.
Something to note is the Disney Skyliner refurbishment schedule. We talk about this in depth below. The Disney Skyliner is a major highlight of any stay at Disney’s Riviera Resort. If it’s a transportation method you will use, try to book when it’s operating.
Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort Refurbishments
Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort opened in 2004. Rooms had a full refurbishment in 2021 along with other elements of the resort. The was also a Saratoga Springs lobby refurbishment in 2021. This makeover included new, life sized portraits of famous Disney horses. It’s kind of fun to guess all of their names and what movies they’re from when you check in. Some are tricky to guess but the cast members here like to have fun and give hints.
There are many pools at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort and Spa which makes refurbishments less of an inconvenience. From Disney: From early January 2023 through late March 2023, High Rock Spring Pool, On the Rocks Pool Bar and the leisure pool at Treehouse Villas will be closed for refurbishment. During this time, we invite you to explore the Grandstand Pool, Paddock Pool and Congress Park Pool, all of which will remain open for your enjoyment. A shuttle will be available daily from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM to transport Guests to the Grandstand Pool. We apologize for any inconvenience. Thank you for understanding.
Guests can still use The Grandstand Pool, The Paddock Pool, and Congress Park Pool during this time.
Disney’s Vero Beach Resort Refurbishments
Disney’s Vero Beach Resort opened in 1995. This resort had a lobby refurbishment in 2022. A soft room refurbishment is due and potentially happening in 2023.
Even the beach needs upkeep. From Disney: The beach at Disney’s Vero Beach Resort will be temporarily closed from February 13 to February 23, 2023 while our sand dunes undergo stabilization work. During this time, Guests can enjoy complimentary transportation to and from a nearby beach—offered continuously from 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM.
In 2024 there will be some major pool refurbishments at Disney’s Vero Beach Resort. Starting January 8th through late March of 2024, the Vero Beach Feature Pool, Pirate’s Plunge Water Slide, Tiger Lily Wet Play Area, whirlpool spa and Port Holes Miniature Golf will be closed.
Disney World Refurbishment Schedule
The DVC resort refurbishment schedule is one thing but what about the parks? It’s helpful to know, for planning purposes, what attractions will be available or unavailable at certain times throughout the year. You might even want to plan your trips around your favorites being down.
To see refurbishments in the theme parks at the time of your visit, see Disney World calendars, look at the bottom of each park and click on the Closed for Refurbishment section. This is an excellent way to keep up with additional Walt Disney World news updates, closures and openings.
For more Walt Disney World news and updates that might impact your trip, you’re in the right place. Each month here on the DVC Resale Experts blog we cover Walt Disney World news and updates. When is that new attraction opening? Has my favorite show come back yet? What are the dates of that upcoming festival? It’s all in our monthly Disney news round up!
Disney Skyliner Refurbishment
It’s also good to note, the Disney Skyliner closes for maintenance each year. In 2023, the transportation gondola had a scheduled close from January 22nd through the 29th. This certainly changes stays at Disney’s Riviera Resort, Disney’s BoardWalk Villas and Disney’s Beach Club Villas. This is a trend as the Skyliner was also down for a week starting on the fourth Sunday in January the year prior. We’ll follow this and continue to cover it here on our DVC resort refurbishment schedule. If using the Disney Skyliner is a priority for your trip, maybe consider avoiding the last half of January or watch for the annual announced closure date before booking.
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