Scheduled Maintenance and Refurbishment Work
Please remember that maintenance plans and dates are subject to change at any time, and often Disney does not release details of scheduled work until around three months prior to its commencement. Updates will be posted here as and when further information or dates become available, so it would be worth bookmarking or watchlisting this page.
Only major projects will be listed here. Other smaller routine works can be expected during any visit, especially during the off-peak winter months, as that’s how they keep the place looking so beautiful for you! For completed projects, please see the Refurbishment Projects Archive page.
In the longer-term, and to respond to an often-asked question, the next round of guest room refurbishments is not expected to commence until 2017. While there are of course no firm details this far out, there are rumours that some changes being considered might include addressing the current storage space issues, replacing the vanity area privacy curtains with themed shutters, and possibly switching from carpets to wooden flooring. Oh, and it’s likely that larger (55 inch?) TVs with more interactive features to provide access to WDW resort-based activities such as dining reservations and FastPass+ will be coming to resort rooms too. But there’s plenty of time for any plans to change several times over in the meantime, so keep watching!
Special thanks to regular Port Orleans guest John “RiverRooster” Schmidt who provides invaluable photo updates during his trips. For lots more of his photos, please see his Guest Photo Gallery page.
Port Orleans French Quarter food court refurbishment: NOW COMPLETE
The Sassagoula Floatworks & Food Factory food court re-opened on Saturday 19 November 2016, with the ribbon-cutting ceremony taking place at 8:30am.
There is still some decor detail to be completed, but for full information on the re-opening with lots of photos, please see our News Post and also Steve Denney’s excellent review article in our forums. The full revised menu is listed on the main Sassagoula Floatworks & Food Factory page.
For other reports, please see Disney Parks Blog post, the DISboards review, and the excellent AJ Wolfe’s Disney Food Blog site (which is always worth a visit for the excellent food porn photos anyway).
Sassagoula Floatworks & Food Factory Menus for Re-opening Day
Everything will apparently be served on real flatware with real cutlery rather than the previous paper plates and plastic knives and forks (which also means less waste I assume).
Starting 11 July, the Sassagoula Floatworks & Food Factory food court will be closed for a few months for refurbishment work, due to be completed “sometime in the fall”. In the meantime, the original Bonfamille’s Cafe table service area will be brought back into service to act as a temporary quick service food court, serving many of the resort’s regular hot and cold favourites — including of course the signature beignets.
Guests will also be able to make use of the Riverside Mill food court and Boatwright’s Dining Hall table-service restaurant over at Port Orleans Riverside, and free shuttle transportation will be provided.
The temporary food location, in place during the current refurbishment work of the main food court, is located in the old Bonfamille’s Cafe area as expected, and is thus quite a bit smaller than the normal food court. To provide for the maximum seating capacity they can (which appears to be around 20 tables) you order your food at one of two registers and cast members bring it out from the kitchens directly to your table (rather like the quick service system in use at the Be Our Guest restaurant, but without the magic roses). This means that no Create-Your-Own options are available. See below photos for menus.
There are chilled grab’n’go cabinets too, plus two Coca Cola Freestyle machines and coffee machines for use with your refillable mugs. Tables in Wonderland cards are accepted, as is the Quick Service Dining Plan.
The automated player piano in the lobby has been removed for the time being to allow better access, but otherwise Scat Cat’s Club is operating as normal (including evening entertainment).
The refurbishment work is expected to continue into the Fall, and should be completed before Thanksgiving.
Update: Some photos have been uploaded by NCDisneyMom from the POFQ thread on the DISboards (she apologises for the focus in some of them, it was a bit dark to get good shots). Thanks for the update:
Update: The re-opening date has now been confirmed as Saturday 19 November 2016, with the ribbon-cutting ceremony due to take place at 8:30am.
Port Orleans Riverside Leisure Pool Fencing Project: NOW COMPLETE
In line with all the other resort swimming pools at Walt Disney World, perimeter fencing and access gates will be added around the five quiet pools at Riverside over the next few months, starting with the Alligator Bayou pool closest to the main buildings.
As I understand it from the Recreation team, it is not currently intended for access to be restricted via magic band control, nor will the ‘official’ closing times indicated on the signage be enforced unless they have problems with rowdy groups of swimmers using the pools at unsociable hours. The main focus seems to be on guest safety, in particular to prevent unsupervised access to the pool decks by children from nearby rooms.
Work has already commenced near to the pool in the ‘teens’ area (by buildings 15, 17 and 18) to provide an additional concrete pathway to allow guests to bypass the pool area when walking between certain buildings. This will probably be needed for the other Alligator Bayou pools too to maintain access routes. Once this has been completed, the fencing and gates will be erected. Presumably there will be far less work required for the Magnolia Bend area, where the pools already have perimeter fences and all that should be required will be a few gates.
New pathway being added around the quiet pool next to building 18
Update November 2106: Work is now complete on all the quiet pools, and fencing and access gates have been added to all five of the leisure pools at Port Orleans Riverside.
The theming impact varies, with the least intrusive additions being in the mansion building areas where there was already themed fencing in situ, and the replacement has been designed in a very sympathetic style. The Alligator Bayou fencing however is rather more conspicuous (especially the very inappropriate stark-white metal railings in the ‘teens’ area pool). Functional and safe it might be, but rustic and woodsy it certainly is not!
French Quarter Children’s Aquatic Play Area (Opened 7 March 2016)
The brand new (and long awaited) children’s Aquatic Play Area opened to guests at 9am on Monday 7 March 2016, complete with plenty of whimsical - and suitably drenching - water play features, all with a unique New Orleans twist. Many thanks to Denise from MouseSteps.com and Jeff Lange for this great video of the ribbon-cutting event:
For details of some of the previous major maintenance and refurbishment projects that have taken place over the past few years at the Port Orleans resorts, please the please see the Refurbishment Projects Archive page. These include:
- Riverside Magnolia Terrace Roofing Refurbishment Work (Completed mid-July 2016)
- French Quarter Children’s Aquatic Play Area (Opened 7 March 2016)
- Riverside Ol’ Man Island Pool Maintenance (Completed 5 March 2016)
- Riverside Oak Manor Roofing Refurbishment Work (Completed 18 July 2014)
- French Quarter Doubloon Lagoon Pool Refurbishment Work (Reopened 4 March 2014)
- Refurbished Campfire Locations (July—September 2013)
- French Quarter Registration Lobby Refurbishment (Reopened 18 July 2013)
- Riverside Registration Lobby Refurbishment (Reopened 26 June 2012)
- Guest Room Refurbishments (2010—2012)