Florida Hotels, Theme Parks Brace for Hurricane Dorian

by Jessica Montevago
Florida Hotels, Theme Parks Brace for Hurricane Dorian

Florida's hotels and resorts in Hurricane Dorian's path have implemented storm preparation protocols. Photo: Daniel Dror/Shutterstock.com

Hurricane Dorian will continue to slam Grand Bahama Island in the Northwestern Bahamas with life-threatening storm surge and catastrophic winds through this evening, according to the National Hurricane Center.

The storm made landfall yesterday over Marsh Harbour on Great Abaco where it has severely damaged parts of the island’s chain, according to The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation. The Bahamian capital of Nassau, as well as neighboring Paradise Island, remain open but are experiencing periods of rain. Islands in the Southeastern and Central Bahamas remain unaffected, including The Exumas, Cat Island, San Salvador, Long Island, Acklins/Crooked Island, Mayaguana and Inagua.

According to the National Hurricane Center, life-threatening storm surge and dangerous hurricane-force winds are expected along portions of the Florida east coast as Hurricane Dorian approaches the state.

Here’s how Florida’s hotels, resorts, and theme parks are handling the storm.

Marriott International and Hilton issued statements saying they will continue to monitor Hurricane Dorian, and hotels in the predicted path have implemented storm preparation protocols.

“If it is necessary to evacuate and close hotels due to local authorities’ mandates or conditions, our teams are prepared to do so, and have been doing so at some locations,” Marriott said. Hotels in the impacted area are reviewing their cancellation fees; details vary by hotel.

Hilton said guests whose travel plans are impacted may have modification and cancellation penalties waived.

The Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association, comprised of 10,000 restaurants and hotels, said it was urging members to waive cancellation fees, as well as extend hospitality to pets by relaxing any pet restrictions they may have.

Most Broward County hotels are operating as normal. For a list of hotels in the area visit sunny.org/hotels. The Discover Palm Beach staff has also put together a list of hotels that are open in the county. 

Rosen Hotels & Resorts, a group of hotels owned by high-profile hotelier Harris Rosen, will offer discounts this weekend for Florida residents who need a place to stay during Hurricane Dorian. The following Rosen hotels will offer a distress rate: Rosen Inn International, Rosen Inn (closest to Universal), Rosen Inn at Pointe Orlando, Midpointe Hotel, Clarion Inn Lake Buena Vista, Rosen Plaza, and Rosen Centre.

Hotels in The Abacos and Grand Bahama Island in the Bahamas have strongly advised guests to leave and have assisted in evacuation procedures in anticipation of Hurricane Dorian's arrival. Resorts in Nassau and Paradise Island remain open.

The 250-room adults-only, all-inclusive Warwick Paradise Island-Bahamas said it is fully operational and incurred no damage, as Paradise Island experienced rain and wind with the island located south of the hurricane track.

Theme parks
In Orlando, Walt Disney World Resort has adjusted its Tuesday theme park hours. Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Typhoon Lagoon and Disney Springs will close at 3 p.m., while Disney’s Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom will close an hour earlier at 2 p.m. ESPN Wide World of Sports and Blizzard Beach Water Park are closed.

Disney Resorts hotels remain open. Guests at Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground, Copper Creek Cabins at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, Treehouse Villas at Saratoga Springs, and Bungalows at Polynesian Village Resort will be relocated to other resorts on property.

Universal Orlando Universal Studios Florida, Islands of Adventure and CityWalk will operate as normal on Tuesday, Sept. 3, with the two theme parks open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and CityWalk open until 2 a.m. Universal’s Volcano Bay Water Theme Park will be closed.

SeaWorld Orlando and Legoland Florida said they will close Tuesday.

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