Jim gets the story behind the look and feel at the Walt Disney World hotels

Michael Eisner, former chairman and CEO of the Walt Disney Company, coined the term "Entertainment Architecture" to define the concept that he wanted the architecture outside the boundaries of the Disney theme parks, but still part of the Disney real estate, to embody the same fantasy and sense of story as the structures in the park. An amateur architecture and design buff, Eisner understood that a company like Disney ought to have a distinctive physical presence in any building associated with the company. Such architecture he felt would bring attention and even future partnerships from others including filmmakers like George Lucas and Steven Spielberg.

In the 1990s, Eisner began enthusiastically commissioning these type of buildings from Robert Venturi & Denise Scott Brown, Aldo Rossi, Arata Isozaki, Charles Moore, and other champions of postmodern design especially Michael Graves. Eisner knew architect Robert A.M. Stern, whom he'd met years earlier when Stern worked on a renovation of Eisner's parents' Manhattan apartment, and Stern connected Eisner with postmodern architect Michael Graves, fresh off the triumph of Portland Building, and a perfect match for Eisner's idea of buildings that would grab attention.

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