Pleasure Island [Looking Back]
Ahhh, Pleasure Island. It still technically exists at Downtown Disney, but it's definitely changed over the years.
Pleasure Island officially opened on May 1, 1989. The entertainment district housed stores, restaurants and nightclubs. Its 19-year heyday came to an end in 2008, when Disney announced that it would be closing all of the area's nightclubs, and did so a few months later. In 2010, Disney announced that what was Pleasure Island will become Hyperion Wharf, with new shops and restaurants.
In the beginning, restaurants included the Empress Lily (which opened in 1977, and has since become Fulton's Crab House), Portobello Yacht Club (Now Portobello Restaurant), and Meriweather's Market (later Pleasure Island Jazz Co., then Raglan Road). In recent years, T-Rex Cafe and Paradiso 37 were added as restaurants to the area.
A number of small shops were located on Pleasure Island at the start, but have recently been replaced by Orlando Harley-Davidson, Curl by Sammy Duvall, and Fuego by Sosa Cigars. More should be introduced to the area as it transforms into the new Hyperion Wharf.
But the real draw of Pleasure Island was the nightclubs. Over the years, there was the Rock 'n' Roll Beach Club, the Wildhorse Saloon, Fireworks Factory, Motion, Mannequins Dance Palace, Videopolis East, Cage, 8TRAX, Comedy Warehouse, Neon Armadillo, BET Soundstage Club, and the well-known and much beloved Adventurers Club, which deserves an entry of its own.
What's your take on Pleasure Island? Are you looking forward to the new Hyperion Wharf? Do you miss the closed nightclubs? Share your thoughts below.