Here's the backstory of now lost Pleasure Island at Walt Disney World's Downtown Disney, taken from the amazing Walt Disney Imagineering book. This is one of those backstories with a lot of depth to it, weaving together Pleasure Island, the Magic Kingdom's Jungle Cruise and Typhoon Lagoon. I hope to explore this further in the future.
It Was Our Pleasure
Pleasure Island at Walt Disney World Village was an abandoned industrial waterfront district that was converted into a nightclub complex. The property was originally owned by one Merriweather Pleasure, a seafaring adventurer, who, during the nineteenth century, operated Pleasure's Canvas and Sailmaking, Inc. His business become the heart of Pleasure Island, a place to which daring adventurers from all over the globe came to tell their incredible tales.
But Merriweather was not a landlubber at heart, and hearing these stories made him long once again for adventure on the high seas. One day, he heeded the haunting call of the bounding main, and set sail from Pleasure Island. Upon learning that their father was lost at sea, Pleasure's two lazy sons abandoned the business. The once bustling waterfront district was left to decay beside a mysterious lagoon. Years later, the near-ruins of Pleasure Island were rediscovered by adventurous Imagineers with their own incredible tales to tell.
These Imagineers refurbished the island, turning its run-down warehouses into exciting restaurants and nightclubs that were designed to reflect the original themes of Pleasure's functional buildings. Once again, the district bustles with the activity of world travelers who come together in the spirit of fun and adventure; a tradition established here a century ago.