Disney is an obsession for some people. They spend thousands of dollars each year to soak themselves in as much Mickey Magic as possible: hiring VIP tour guides, joining Disney Vacation Club timeshare condos, having Disney weddings, and going on Disney cruises.
But if all that Disney simply isn’t enough, there’s another level of mania that awaits you: you can actually LIVE at Disney World.
Introducing Golden Oak at Walt Disney World Resort.
I had the chance to visit Golden Oak back in the fall, where I got an up-close-and-personal look at the 980 acre real-estate development on the edge of Walt Disney World. Golden Oak is a gated community–named after the Disney family’s ranch in California–featuring 400 luxury, custom homes with houses ranging from $1.8 million to about $7 million.
Homes at Golden Oak at Walt Disney World feature “Hidden Mickeys” in the kitchens, living rooms and hallways
You work with a custom builder on your home, but most conform to strict architectural guidelines
All residents pay for access to Summerhouse, the Golden Oak clubhouse, featuring Markham’s restaurant (above)
I wasn’t really aware of the full scope of the Disney Vacation Club timeshares until visiting, but Golden Oak blows that concept out of the water. The homes are all truly spectacular, featuring guesthouses, pools, a minimum of five bedrooms and five and a half bathrooms, and sweeping, cavernous living rooms and kitchens.
All speed-limits throughout Golden Oak are 25 MPH, and streets are designed so that residents can ride their golf carts around. I mean, does this sound like Utopia or what?
On the Golden Oak property, they’re in the middle of finishing construction on the brand-new Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World, which opens in summer 2014. Golden Oak residents will have access to the resort, which will feature a spa, rooftop steakhouse overlooking the EPCOT and Disney fireworks, both family and adult-only pools, and a lazy river.
Rendering of a suite inside the new Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World
We toured this bedroom inside the new Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World (note EPCOT in the background!)
Opening a Four Seasons at Walt Disney World is revolutionary, because now visitors to the Magic Kingdom will have a true luxury hotel option. (There are some amazing hotels at Walt Disney World, of course, but many of the best ones–like The Villas at The Grand Floridian Resort and Spa–are reserved for Disney Vacation Club members.)
Between Golden Oak, the Four Seasons Resort Orlando at Walt Disney World, the epic AAA Five-Diamond award-winning restaurant Victoria and Albert’s and the delicious California Grill at the Contemporary Resort, it’s clear that Disney is seriously upping their game. Happiest place on earth, indeed!
Now if only they had a Club 33…