Have you ever wanted a mouse as a landlord? Disneyland is the only theme park that was designed and built entirely under Walt Disney’s direct supervision. Disneyland has undergone numerous expansions and major renovations since its inception. Recently, Disney has begun to build planned communities for fans who never want to leave the company’s clutches.
Disney has launched a new business for fans who can’t bear the thought of leaving the pristine, family-friendly world that the company has created through its theme parks and media ventures. “Storyliving by Disney” will operate as part of the company’s theme parks division, developing a series of master-planned communities for residential living that will be designed by Disney’s creative staff and will offer the same pampered tranquilly found in its resorts.
In a promotional video, Disney Parks, Experiences, and Products executive Helen Pak said, “picture an energetic community with the warmth and charm of a small town and the beauty of a resort.” So far, only one location has been announced: a 1,900-unit community called Cotino, which will be built in the city of Rancho Mirage in California’s Coachella Valley.
The concept art for Cotino depicts villas, condos, and housing complexes clustered around a 24-acre “grand oasis,” which Disney claims will feature “clear turquoise waters” powered by the Crystal Lagoons technology used at its resorts. There will be “shopping, dining, and entertainment,” as well as a beachfront hotel and clubhouse with “Disney programming, entertainment, and activities all year.”
Visitors to Cotino will be able to visit by purchasing day passes, and a section of the development will be reserved for residents aged 55 and up. Prices for lodging and financing options have yet to be announced, and Disney has yet to reveal when construction will begin or when residents will be able to move in. According to USA Today, while Disney will brand and market these communities, it will not own, build, or sell the homes. Instead, it will collaborate with third-party developers to complete this work.
Cotino, for example, is being built by DMB Development, a company that has built a number of luxury communities in the United States and elsewhere. Silverleaf in Arizona is described as “a private haven of rare grace and refinement,” while Kukuiula in Hawaii is described as “a place for discerning families who seek to balance luxury with the laid-back lifestyle and awe-inspiring beauty of our island home.”
This isn’t the first time Disney has considered residential developments of this type. Celebration, Florida, a master-planned community near Walt Disney World Resort, opened its doors in 1996. To get the latest updates, keep an eye on Thirsty.
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