Thursday, September 30, 2010

PI: Never Forget

The link to this video was posted in the Comments earlier this week by reader Zulemara. In case you didn't see it, check out this Mannequins scene on the Final Night, two years ago this week:

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

New Clubs Coming to Downtown Orlando

A couple of new nightclubs are opening in downtown Orlando in the near future and that's a good thing for those looking for nightlife. A club called Heat is opening in the 55 West complex on Church Street. It's adjacent Antigua and directly in front of the new 7-Eleven. The website describes the place as a "Vegas-style lounge, unparalleled lighting, sound and ambiance and soon to be Orlando's hottest restaurant, nightclub and lounge. Live music 7 nights per week with local and national DJ's." Sounds promising! Meanwhile, Deja Vu Ultra Lounge is opening on Pine Street in the building formerly housing Blue Room, Red Velvet and most recently Voyage'. Their website says they are "fusing the best of Orlando's high energy dance scene with today's modern music." Hoping for the best on that one!  

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

PI Update: New Guidemap

  One of the latest rumors coming out of Pleasure Island is that once the so called Plan B is implemented, there will be a name change to the Island as part of it. As sad as that might be, it does make sense from Disney's perspective. As long as the name remains Pleasure Island, those of us remembering the old PI will compare it to what we had and complain that it's not as good. We may still do that anyway but with a name change it drives home the point that we're not in Kansas, er Pleasure Island anymore. It would be a whole new place. I don't know what the new name is going to be but one theory is that the entire complex will be simply called Downtown Disney and that they do away with having three separate names. That sentiment is supported by the new Downtown Disney Guidemap posted next to Mannequins at the PI #2 Bridge and sent to me by Blog roving reporter William. "Marketplace, Pleasure Island and West Side" get just a small mention and instead store names are grouped by store category rather than by location. No sense mentioning which of the three sections a store or venue is located in when there is just going to be one. Thanks William!


Monday, September 27, 2010

Spotted: John (Comedy Warehouse)

Spotted earlier today at Disney's Hollywood Studios was John from Comedy Warehouse. You can find him at the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular.

R.I.P. - 2 Years

Two years ago tonight, Pleasure Island met it's untimely death. With the clubs closed, the Island became a virtual ghost town at night and it forced Disney to reopen the PI Live DJ Booth. That morphed into the Celebrate Tonight fiasco which was finally axed in favor of the current PI Ultra Lounge concepts. This too is just temporary as Plan B is developed, we hope. The travesty in PI's death is that all the clubs shuttered that fateful night remain shuttered; the only thing new on the Island in two years is a restaurant that was coming anyway. And a once-in-awhile hot dog cart. Rest In Peace, Pleasure Island. You are missed by thousands.  

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Club Reports: Antigua, Bliss, Vintage, Independent Bar, BAR BQ BAR, Eye Spy

Return visit to downtown Orlando Saturday night to expand my horizons. Rather slow start at Antigua but it eventually gets jammed in there as DJ Jay Mac (XL106.7) spins Top 40, Hip Hop and Mash-ups. Men and women drink free until 11pm.

When Bliss Ultra Lounge management got word that DJ Mickey Bono (Beat Thrillerz, RadioDanz) planned to play Hip Hop, armed OPD officers were brought in to make sure it didn't happen! So he played House and Dance instead. Found out that well drinks only cost $1 until 11:30pm so there's no reason to buy the good stuff!

Vintage is one of the more upscale clubs downtown and the new downstairs location of the DJ booth definitely improves the vibe there. DJ Dominic Morrison (Mannequins) plays House and Top 40 on Saturday nights and confirms he will be the New Years Eve DJ outside China in EPCOT, playing all House music. Look for incredible lighting and fireworks!

Independent Bar was jammed last night as the usual Thursday night DJ Smilin' Dan was playing Alternative New Wave/Old Wave. Always fun music with a fun crowd; free admission before 11pm and $5 after.

It's difficult to tell where BAR BQ BAR ends and Eye Spy Bar begins; they're connected in the middle. I guess if you're indoors it's BBQ and if you're outdoors it's Eye Spy. Very crowded, outdoor dance floor and the DJ's were spinning mostly Hip Hop.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

More PI Reunion Pics

A few more pictures from last night's Pleasure Island Reunion at Atlantic Dance Hall. CLICK ON PHOTOS TO ENLARGE

Pleasure Island Reunion

The 2nd Annual Pleasure Island Reunion took place last night at Atlantic Dance Hall in Bay Lake. Large crowd of former PI patrons on hand as DJ Tony Z (Planet Hollywood) played sets of Mannequins, 8TRAX and Motion hits. And he thankfully stayed away from any songs one might have heard at former-clubs Neon Armadillo and Pleasure Island Jazz Company! Great job Tony!

The DJ was backed up by Disney's best lighting tech, Alisa (Mannequins).

OMG, the biggest surprise of the night was working at the back bar....Bobby C. (Mannequins) It was great seeing him behind a bar again, just like old times. Bobby is a waiter at Kouzzina.

Spotted in the crowd was another former PI bartender, Gordo (Mannequins) and friend! Gordo currently tends the pool bar at Disney's Pop Century Resort.

A group from Ticketing including Save Pleasure Island Blog roving reporter William, center.

No matter which way you turned, there was another PI face recognized. Bartender Taryn (8TRAX) was spotted near the main bar! She currently is a waitress at Flying Fish. Love the long hair!

There were several times when the dance floor was just about completely packed, no small feat in a club the size of ADH. It was a great time and once again displayed the demand for evening entertainment for adults on Disney property! Big thanks to Flowers for organizing the 2010 Reunion. Hopefully in 2011 we can meet right on the island, enjoying something!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Club Report: 80's Night at The Groove



The tourist season may be on hiatus for awhile right now but that did not prevent another crowded night at 80's Night at The Groove last night featuring DJ Doc Wells (8TRAX). Ran into a handful of Pleasure Island people too, all of whom said they were attending tonight's Pleasure Island Reunion! The mood was festive and very 8TRAX-like as Doc mixed-in a number of 70's hits such as the back-to-back Stayin' Alive and Car Wash with the usual 80's hits. Take a Friday off sometime and come on out!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Pleasure Island Reunion Tomorrow Night

Friday night is the night! Atlantic Dance Hall is the place. The 2nd Annual Pleasure Island Reunion is taking place tomorrow night beginning around 10pm. This is an unofficial event so there are no festivities planned.  DJ Tony Z promises to play a variety of dance music from the former PI clubs. There is no admission charge. Parking is free. ADH is located at Disney's Boardwalk Resort. For those that can make it out earlier, come back to beautiful Pleasure Island around 8:30pm for a pre-party outside Mannequins and Raglan Road. Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Big Announcement Thursday at 12:45pm ET

I'm constantly scanning the internet to see what nuggets of information about Pleasure Island can be gleaned. One of the more recent gems I came across was from someone supposedly in the know claiming that "a whole new concept is on the table" for Pleasure Island. Yes, I posted that here on the Blog previously. Plan A is out and a more adult-oriented Plan B is in the works. That's why I encouraged everyone to write to Tom Staggs and try to influence what Plan B would ultimately become. But this person then went on to say that plans for PI would be more family-oriented and consist of more entertainment, shopping and dining options. Wait...that's what Plan A was. And an entirely different name for the Island. Ah...that was Plan A too. Not saying this person is wrong, but are we back to the original ideas?

Anyway, Disney is making a BIG announcement tomorrow (Thursday) at 12:45pm ET. You can watch it live via internet streaming at:
Lots of guesses about what they might announce. We can hope there might be something in there about Pleasure Island! Tune in.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Mannequins Elevator Rumor

For the first year after the clubs closed, the Mannequins elevator was always stationed on the 3rd floor. After the first year, the elevator was moved to the 2nd floor and remained there until last weekend. The popular rumor was that when the elevator made it to the 1st floor, the club would reopen. Unfortunately, this past weekend we don't know where the elevator went. The elevator sign is now turned off! "First floor please."

Monday, September 20, 2010

PI Update: Was There An Event In Mannequins?

Was there an event in Mannequins this past Friday? No one on the island that I spoke to this evening could confirm it. With VIP's in town from California though, it's possible they went in there. I just kind of doubt they had an "event" in there. Interesting thing though: you know how the elevator had been stuck on the second floor this past year? Well, now there is no number at all on the elevator floor signal. It's turned off!

Elsewhere, construction on the #1 Bridge continues. A very strong deck is being constructed and I've speculated that it's to allow demolition equipment to enter the island. It's got a long way to go though and we still have that truss bridge on the other side to deal with. In the background, construction also continues on the McDonald's to Pollo Campero conversion.

Rock'n'Roll Beach Club stands waiting its fate. A little snapshot shows abandonment inside. One rumor has it coming down as soon as next month!

Elsewhere, there are some construction walls at Planet Hollywood but it's just a repainting (of the waiting area concrete) project. At the PI Ultra-Lounge in Celebration Plaza, a duo was playing Caribbean music as they roasted in the still-hot Florida sun.

At Soundstage, an opaque material was recently placed in the doors to keep passersby from looking inside and seeing nothing. But you can still look in the windows next to the doors and see nothing, if you're interested. At Motion, banquet tables and chairs remain in place so demolition in October seems unlikely.

Disney recently took out a construction permit for pier construction on Pleasure Island. There are actually two piers on the island; the one used by the water taxi service and one adjacent Motion nicknamed the Eagles Nest because that is the radio call sign they used when Michael Eisner would dock there! No signs of work at either dock yet but the Eagles Nest sure looks like it needs it. Maybe they plan to remove it so that they can move a demolition barge into that area. Well, that's the latest, from beautiful Pleasure Island!