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5 Reasons We Love Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival

Running from September 27 through November 11, Epcot’s International Food and Wine Festival opens this weekend with even more flavors to discover – it’s our favorite time of year, and here’s 5 reasons why…

1.  The Food

Epcot Food and Wine Festival - Food Choices

Whether it’s shrimp from Australia or griddled Greek cheese with pistachios and honey, there are so many choices from the 29 marketplaces around World Showcase.   With all those booths, and each booth offering 2 to 4 food choices,  there are dozens of food options to choose from all over the world.

2.  The Beverages

Epcot International Food and Wine Festival - The beverages

From wines to beers, mixed drinks, to aperitifs, the Food and Wine Festival brings us beverage options that are not only tasty and refreshing, but also an eclectic sampling of what the world has to offer.  Only during Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival can we sample beverages from around the world all located in one place and many are paired with the food offers at each marketplace.

3.  The Special Events

5 Reasons We Love Epcot's Food and Wine Festival - Events

Epcot’s Food and Wine is not just about the food and beverages at the marketplaces, there are several special events that that you can attend.  Some of the events like “Party for the Senses,””Dessert Dinner Discovery,”and Celebrity Chef Demonstrations, there are several different special events to attend.  Many are free and included with your Epcot park admission, but some do require an extra fee.

4.  The Merchandise

5 Reasons We Love Epcot's Food and Wine Festival - Merchandise

The merchandise available during the Food and Wine Festival is some of the most imaginable and creative that Disney offers all year.  From bottle openers, wine toppers, Mickey Chef Ears, wine glasses, and so many other merchandise options, there something for everyone to take home with them from this amazing event.

5.  The Cast Members

5 Reasons We Love Epcot's Food and Wine Festival - Cast Members

The Walt Disney World Cast Members are always amazing, but there is something special in the air this year, that makes them even more magical.  Each booth has been challenged with keeping themselves energized and you can even hear them all over World Showcase chanting and keeping everyone laughing and having fun.  You can feel the energy all over the festival and it rubs off on you…it’s awesome.

There is still time to get down to Walt Disney World and enjoy all that Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival has to offer!

It’s not too late to book your trip to experience
Epcot’s International Food and Wine Festival!

Contact Kingdom Magic Vacations Today!

The Minions Take Over New Kids Suites at Loews Portofino Bay Hotel

Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando invites you to experience the world of Despicable Me in its newly-renovated kid’s suites. These rooms capture the excitement and playfulness of Gru’s Laboratory. As you enter through the vault door, your training as a future Minion begins with your favorite minion characters repelling from the ceiling and surrounding you on the walls in their non-stop antics. Sleep like Margo, Edith and Agnes in custom-designed missile beds with Minion-inspired bedding, complete with Gru’s scarf. Balancing the playfulness of the room, a pale blue interior creates a soothing backdrop with touches of the laboratory’s red accents to remind you that you are indeed in an unforgettable Minion adventure for your stay at Loews Portofino Bay Hotel.

Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando invites you to experience the world of Despicable Me in its newly-renovated kid’s suites.

The adults’ room features a king-sized bed in the hotel’s newly-renovated Italian luxury design. An added feature that parents will appreciate is a single entry door into the suite: the kids’ side of the suite does not have a door that opens into the hallway. All of the hotel’s 18 kids’ suites will be transformed with the new theme. 

Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando invites you to experience the world of Despicable Me in its newly-renovated kid’s suites.

On-site hotel guests receive exclusive benefits, including Early Park Admission and free Universal Express Unlimited ride access which lets them skip the regular lines on most rides and attractions in Universal Studios and Universal’s Islands of Adventure.

About Portofino Bay Resort

Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando invites you to experience the world of Despicable Me in its newly-renovated kid’s suites.

Escape to the sunny shores of the Italian Riviera at the Loews Portofino Bay Hotel. Inspired by the famed Mediterranean seaside resort, this AAA Four Diamond Award winning hotel features 750 guest rooms, including 45 spacious suites. Each room offers the epitome of European luxury and elegance with authentic Italian furnishings and marble accents. Picture yourself relaxing in the comfort of a romantic Italian villa, surrounded by upgraded features like custom duvet covers with 100% white goose down duvet inserts, and elegant window treatments featuring lace curtains which cast lovely floral patterns around the room. And of course, each guest room is also equipped with all the latest amenities to combine the best of Old World hospitality with modern convenience.

Contact Kingdom Magic Vacations to Experience These New Kids Rooms Before the Minions Take Over!

Epcot International Food & Wine Festival Premium Event Reservations Opens August 13

Phone lines open at 7 a.m. Eastern on Aug. 13 to book reservations for premium events for the 18th annual Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, Sept. 27-Nov. 11, at the Walt Disney World Resort.

Epcot International Food & Wine Festival Premium Event Reservations Opens August 13

From the over-the-top Party for the Senses grand tasting experience on select Saturday nights to a new taste of Scottish cuisine, there are lots of opportunities. Price per ticket:

  • New Scotland, Land of Food And Drink (Sept. 28), $95 or $115
  • New Spirits Confidential (Nov. 1), $80 or $95
  • New Parisian Breakfast (Saturdays), $37
  • New Hibachi Experience (Oct. 8, 15, 22, 29, Nov. 5), $120
  • “3D” Disney’s Dessert Discovery (Oct. 4, 11 and 25), $55 or $90
  • Epcot Wine Schools (Sept. 29, Oct. 27, Nov. 3), $135 per person
  • Culinary Adventures in Signature Dining (more than 25 dinners throughout the festival; prices vary)
  • Mixology Series: Taste, Shake and Indulge Like the French (Saturdays), $65
  • Kitchen Memories (Sept. 27, Oct. 4, 11, 18, 25, Nov. 1, 8), from $110-$170
  • Cheese Seminars (Sept. 28, Oct. 5, 12, 19, 26, Nov. 2, 9), $80
  • Party for the Senses (Oct. 5, 12, 19, 26 and Nov. 2), $145, $180 or $285
  • Food & Wine Pairings (Tuesdays, Thursdays), $55
  • Sweet Sundays (Sept. 29, Oct. 6, 13, 20, 27, Nov. 3, 10), $99
  • The Discovery of Chocolate (Oct. 13 and 27), $75

Additional events include Italian and French pairings and lunches, and a Mexican tequila lunch. Your Clientss also can book special festival experiences including daily Culinary Demonstrations ($14), Mixology Seminars ($15) and Wine, Beer or Spirit Seminars ($14). Inside-the-park festival dining experiences, as well as culinary and beverage programs, require Epcot Park admission.

Don’t Miss This Year’s Food and Wine Festival
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Newly Renovations Bring Italian Luxury-Inspiration to Guestrooms at Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando

All 750 rooms and suites at Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando have been completely renovated with a fresh, new Mediterranean-inspired design that enhances the guest experience.  Designers took their inspiration for the new rooms from the upscale, sun-drenched resort of Portofino, Italy and its historic harbor along the Italian Riviera.

All 750 rooms and suites at Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando have been completely renovated with a fresh, new Mediterranean-inspired design that enhances the guest experience.

This massive $14 million renovation project took more than 5,000 gallons of paint, nearly 45,000 total work hours and more than 35,000 yards of carpeting to complete.  A special time-lapse video captured the transformation of one room from start to finish.

“The new rooms celebrate the charm, romance and glamour of Portofino, Italy’s grand vacation villas and hotels,” says Karen Daroff of Daroff Design.  “A refined palette in soft neutral cream colors, paired with sun-baked shades of aqua are complemented by rich, terra cotta-colored marble and custom-designed, white-washed furnishings.”

All 750 rooms and suites at Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando have been completely renovated with a fresh, new Mediterranean-inspired design that enhances the guest experience.

All 750 rooms and suites at Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando have been completely renovated with a fresh, new Mediterranean-inspired design that enhances the guest experience.

Featuring cobblestone piazzas, outdoor cafés and a nightly balcony show, Loews Portofino Bay Hotel is located on-site at Universal Orlando Resort and is connected to Universal Studios Florida, Universal’s Islands of Adventure and Universal CityWalk by a scenic waterway.

All 750 rooms and suites at Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando have been completely renovated with a fresh, new Mediterranean-inspired design that enhances the guest experience.

Hotel guests enjoy three themed swimming pools, seven restaurants and lounges, a world-class spa and an exclusive package of theme park benefits including Early Park Admission to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal’s Islands of Adventure and complimentary Universal Express Unlimited ride access, allowing guests to skip the regular theme park lines all day.

Heat Things Up at Viva la Musica at SeaWorld Orlando!

Are you ready to heat things up? Then join us at SeaWorld Orlando for Viva la Musica, Central Florida’s hottest Latin food and concert festival, every Saturday from April 13 through May 4.

Come celebrate the food, fun, sights and sounds of Latin culture at this annual festival, featuring live concerts by internationally renowned Latin musical artists – all included with park admission.

Viva la Musica, Central Florida’s hottest Latin food and concert festival, every Saturday from April 13 through May 4.

The Viva la Música festival area opens at 12 p.m. each Saturday, with concerts starting at 3 p.m. at Bayside Stadium:

  • Saturday, April 13 – Daddy Yankee (reggaeton)
  • Saturday, April 20 – Willie Colón (salsa)
  • Saturday, April 27 – Grupománia (merengue)
  • Saturday, May 4 – El Gran Combo (salsa)

With more than 20 years experience – and a lifetime enjoying countless Caribbean and Latin dishes – Executive Chef Héctor Colon is cooking up traditional Latin favorites like arroz con gandules y pasteles, arroz con pollo, habichuelas rojas y maduros, mofongo con carne frita, alcapurrias and bacalaítos.

Viva la Musica, Central Florida’s hottest Latin food and concert festival, every Saturday from April 13 through May 4.

For Florida residents, the best way to experience Viva la Música is with a 2013 SeaWorld Fun Card, where you pay for a day and come back all year through Dec. 31, 2013. You’ll have unlimited admission to Viva la Música and all of our other exciting events, plus experience Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin, when it opens May 24.

Mark your calendars for Viva la Musica, the hottest festival in Central Florida, starting April 13!

First Look at the Logo for Star Wars Weekends 2013 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

One of Mickey Mouse’s favorite things about Star Wars Weekends is that he gets to dress in his Jedi best and join the galactic fun. Each year, Mickey seems to take on a different role in the official “Star Wars” Weekends logo. This year, his imagination takes him to the Forest Moon of Endor, where he is seen zipping away from scout troopers with Chip and Dale. Mickey’s wild speeder bike ride on this year’s artwork has historical significance, as 2013 marks the 30th anniversary of “Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi” — the film that featured the Battle of Endor.

Star Wars Weekends takes place at Disney’s Hollywood Studios every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from May 17-June 9, 2013.

In addition to unveiling the logo for this year’s event, we’re excited to announce a pair of celebrity appearances for Star Wars Weekends 2013 at Walt Disney World Resort, with two legends from the saga doubling the fun in two consecutive weekends.

Action star Ray Park, who portrayed the Sith warrior Darth Maul on the silver screen, will be one of the celebrity guests in Weekends I and II. Actor Warwick Davis, known to Star Wars fans as everyone’s favorite Ewok, Wicket W. Warrick, will be one of the guests during Weekends II and III.

Star Wars Weekends takes place at Disney’s Hollywood Studios every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from May 17-June 9, 2013. Most event activities are included in regular park admission.

Star Wars: © 2013 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM.

‘Star Wars’ Weekends Returns to the Disney’s Hollywood Studios Galaxy in May and June

Star Wars Weekends, the Force-filled, fun-fest that takes place annually at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, returns to the Walt Disney World Resort galaxy every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from May 17-June 9, 2013.

FEEL THE FORCE: The power of the Force and the magic of Disney combine in Star Wars Weekends. Walt Disney World guests of all ages are attracted to the annual sci-fi fan-fest – to be held every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from May 17-June 9, 2013. Meet-and-greets, Star Wars parades, autograph sessions, Jedi Training Academy and more are included as part of regular Disney’s Hollywood Studios admission. Walt Disney World Resort is in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

A celebration of all-things-Star Wars, the special event is included in regular park admission to Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

Among the features: a special Star Wars-themed parade, appearances by Star Wars celebrities, special additions to Jedi Training Academy, a Star Wars-themed talk show, behind-the-scenes presentations, limited-edition merchandise, a nightly celebration and more.  The centerpiece of the celebration is Star Tours: The Adventures Continue, the immersive 3-D attraction that speeds guests through worlds featured in the Star Wars saga.

Also showcased at the event: the largest collection of official Star Wars characters gathered at any theme park in the world, roaming the areas and posing for meet-and-greet opportunities in front of themed scenery.

FEEL THE FORCE: The power of the Force and the magic of Disney combine in Star Wars Weekends. Walt Disney World guests of all ages are attracted to the annual sci-fi fan-fest – to be held every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from May 17-June 9, 2013. Meet-and-greets, Star Wars parades, autograph sessions, Jedi Training Academy and more are included as part of regular Disney’s Hollywood Studios admission. Walt Disney World Resort is in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

What’s your favorite part of Star Wars Weekend?

SeaWorld Orlando’s Bands, Brew & BBQ Festival Starts This Weekend

A great weekend to take in SeaWorld Orlando's first weekend of Bands, Brew & BBQ . Happening on Saturdays and Sundays, February 9 – March 17A great weekend to take in SeaWorld Orlando’s first weekend of Bands, Brew & BBQ . Happening on Saturdays and Sundays, February 9 – March 17, this year’s event will be bigger and better than ever with two additional weekends of sizzling BBQ and incredible concerts.

As with all of our special events, Bands, Brew & BBQ concerts are included with SeaWorld Orlando park admission. The event area opens at 11:30 a.m. and the concerts start at 4 p.m. so come out early to enjoy the food before the concerts!

And remember, the best way for Florida residents to experience this festival and all of our other consumer events is with a Fun Card . And for tourists, check out the best deals at SeaWorld Getaways .

 bands-brew-bbq

The 2013 Bands, Brew & BBQ concert lineup includes:

  • Saturday, February 9              Chris Young with Jerrod Niemann
  • Sunday, February 10              Merle Haggard
  • Saturday, February 16            The Beach Boys
  • Sunday, February 17              Styx
  • Saturday, February 23            Big & Rich
  • Sunday, February 24              Third Eye Blind
  • Saturday, March 2                  Daryl Hall and John Oates
  • Sunday, March 3                    Darius Rucker
  • Saturday, March 9                  Michael McDonald
  • Sunday, March 10                  Josh Turner
  • Saturday, March 16                Rodney Atkins with Uncle Kracker
  • Sunday, March 17                  Sheryl Crow

Enjoy a cornucopia of all things BBQ featuring SeaWorld’s signature mouth-watering BBQ, along with local favorites such as Tony Roma’s, Cecil’s Texas Style Bar B Q and Sonny’s Real Pit Bar-B-Q,who will be on hand serving BBQ foods tendered to perfection.

For those who want to feel like a rock star, the VIP package  and Craft Brew Sampler  are available. You’ll enjoy the best seats in the house, mouth-watering food and a unique experience that you’ll never forget as you get up-close and personal with some of today’s hottest classic rock and country music performers.

In addition to the main acts, there’s a side stage showcasing local bands. For those who want to show off their line dancing and boot scootin’ skills, a DJ will be spinning music to satisfy movers and shakers of all ages and levels.

And through March 3, in between all the barbeque eatin’ and side steppin’, event-goers can take in the sights of the proudly displayed 2013 Harley-Davidson® motorcycles. Don’t forget, for all Harley lovers who ride their Harley to Bands, Brew & BBQ, parking is free!

Heading to the 30th Anniversary of Epcot on October 1? Here’s the Schedule of Events

We know that many of you are as excited as we are to celebrate Epcot’s 30th anniversary here at Walt Disney World Resort on October 1.

In honor of the milestone, the park has lined up a few special offerings for guests who wish to mark this special occasion.

30th Anniversary of Epcot

Throughout the day on October 1, guests can attend Epcot history presentations in World Showplace courtesy of D23: The Official Disney Fan Club. These presentations are included in park admission and are limited in seating.

1-2 p.m. – Designing the Future – Past and Present: A panel of Disney Imagineers remembers 30 years of building tomorrow!
4:30–6 p.m. – Epcot: How it Changed the World with Marty Sklar
6:30–8 p.m. – Epcot: How it Changed the World with Marty Sklar
Guests can also attend an anniversary moment at the America Gardens Theatre at 3 p.m., which will feature appearances by Disney leaders and include performances by Mariachi Cobre and Voices of Liberty. (Seating for this presentation is also limited.)

That evening, the October 1 presentation of “IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth” will feature a special 30th anniversary tag.

 

Meet John Lasseter, Celebrity Chef Cat Cora at Epcot International Food & Wine Fest Dinners

Pixar fans will love the opportunity to meet John Lasseter – yes, he’s an animation genius, but he also makes delicious California wines (with beautiful labels, too). You can meet John and his wife Nancy for lunch at 12:30 p.m. October 19 at Citricos, where Chef Philip Ponticelli will pair Lasseter wines with seasonal cuisine. Cost is $130.

Cat Cora fans will be happy to hear that two wine dinners have been added to the line-up for this year’s Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, with Chef Cat on hand to greet diners at 8 p.m. October 2 and October 4. Cost is $170 for a five-course dinner with wine pairings in the restaurant’s cozy CoraNation Room.

Celebrity Chef Cat Cora

And three very famous dads are teaming up for what promises to be one of the coolest Food & Wine Fest dinners this year – Michael Voltaggio has been added to the line-up, joining his brother Bryan and Andrew Zimmern on stage for the family-friendly Magic of Healthy Living Dinner at 6:30 p.m. October 19 at Epcot World Showplace. Brothers Bryan and Michael shot to the front of the celebrity chef pack in 2009 on Bravo’s “Top Chef,” and Andrew is best known for his show “Bizarre Foods” on the Travel Channel, so diners are guaranteed entertainment with their memorable four-course dinner. Cost is $110 and includes tip and non-alcoholic beverages. (Park admission required).

Segway Your Way to Fun at the Walt Disney World Resort

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Walt Disney World guests can experience a Segway Human Transporter (HT) for themselves, firsthand, as part of three different programs.

Around the World at Epcot is a two-hour guided tour that allows guests to operate the two-wheeled, one-person transportation device throughout World Showcase before it opens to other park guests. Cost is $99.00 per person. Tours are daily at 7:45, 8:30, 9 and 9:30 a.m.

The Simply Segway experience is a one-hour beginner’s class that gives guests a product overview, training and indoor riding time at Epcot’s Innoventions area. Cost is $35.00 per person. Simply Segway is offered daily (except Tuesdays) at 11:30 a.m.

Wilderness Back Trail Adventures is a two-hour tour that lets guests explore the natural beauty of the Florida landscape in and around Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground.  Cost is $90 per person.

For all Segway programs, class size is limited to 10 guests. For tours at Epcot, park admission is required. Riders must be at least 16 years old to participate. Guests can call 866-972-6244 for more information or reservations. The Segway HT is the world’s first self-balancing human transporter that uses advanced technology, gyroscopes and tilt sensors to emulate human balance.

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Universal Orlando Announces 2011 Summer Concert Series Lineup

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Universal Summer Concert Series 2011

This summer, Universal Orlando Resort’s 2011 Summer Concert Series will feature the most dynamic lineup in the event’s history. Six hit artists – including Drake, Boys Like Girls and Trey Songz – will take center stage every Saturday night from June 11 to July 16.

With a combined total of 30 platinum albums, this year’s concert lineup features artists who have each led the U.S. music charts. The list of performers includes: Drake – one of only two musical artists to have his first two Top 10 songs occur in the same week; Grammy award-winning hip-hop artist Nelly; legendary female rock band Go-Go’s – who have their own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame; and multi-platinum rockers Third Eye Blind. The full lineup, including performance dates, can be viewed below.

In its third year, the Summer Concert Series has become one of Orlando’s most popular summertime events. By day, guests can enjoy world-class thrills found only at Universal Studios, such as The Simpsons Ride – featuring America’s favorite animated family – and Revenge of the Mummy – the world’s first psychological thrill ride based on the popular “Mummy” films. By night, guests can dance along to a live concert at the Music Plaza Stage in the glow of colorful LED lights from Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit – Universal Orlando’s most radically-innovative roller coaster ever created.

 

SUMMER CONCERT SERIES 2011 LINEUP
Date Headliner
June 11 Go-Go’s
June 18 Nelly
June 25 Third Eye Blind
July 2 Trey Songz
July 9 Boys Like Girls
July 16 Drake

 

The Summer Concert Series is included with regular park admission to Universal Studios. Guests can upgrade a one-park ticket to include Universal’s Islands of Adventure – featuring The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, the most spectacularly themed environment ever created.

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