Let Orlando’s iconic theme parks give your meeting attendees the thrill of a lifetime, including the Harmonious nighttime spectacular at EPCOT® (pictured; ©Disney), part of Walt Disney World® Resort.
Unforgettable venues are one of the many reasons why Orlando is consistently ranked as Cvent’s No. 1 U.S. meeting destination, and none are more memorable than our world-famous theme parks. Before your organization’s next business trip, see how special events at Universal Orlando Resort, Walt Disney World® Resort and SeaWorld® Orlando can inject a true sense of wonder to the proceedings — and keep your attendees coming back for more.
Please note: Depending on the timing of your visit, some experiences may be temporarily modified. Learn more about healthy business travel in Orlando, and check with your preferred businesses for their current status.
Business Events at Universal Orlando Resort
When Massachusetts-based Event Strategy Planners (ESP) was entrusted with the June 2021 Princess House incentive trip, they knew it had to be unforgettable. Princess House, the 55-year-old direct selling company, and makers of quality cookware, cutlery and high-end table settings, awards this coveted trip to their top sales consultants. For its first post-pandemic incentive trip, they chose Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando, one of several meeting-friendly properties at Universal Orlando Resort.
ESP Meeting Planner Pam Landry says the group was ecstatic to travel after being COVID bound for 18 months, and anticipated an evening as the VIP stars of their own customized adventures at Universal Studios Florida. An area of the park was set up just for Princess House’s nighttime function, which included a delicious buffet and a chance to experience rides without having to wait in line.
“One night we had an area of the park all to ourselves, giving us exclusive access to rides such as Despicable Me Minion Mayhem … TRANSFORMERS™: The Ride-3D, Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon, and Revenge of the Mummy,” said Landry. “They served great food with a small bites buffet and a salsa bar, mini beef Wellingtons, and shrimp andouille kabobs. We also had a cookie bar with warm cinnamon churros and ice cream novelties at 8 p.m.
“Attendees enjoyed the food and drinks and loved, loved, loved having the park to themselves. It was a wonderful, exclusive night for them.”
Other hotspots for private events at Universal Orlando Resort include The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ — Hogsmeade™ and The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ — Diagon Alley™. Your group can even opt for both using the Hogwarts™ Express train between the two lands, which are located in Universal’s Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios Florida, respectively.
Universal’s Volcano Bay water theme park is also available for groups ready to take a dip in this tropical paradise. With a universe of event options across the resort, Universal Orlando partners with each individual group to find the perfect fit, starting at 20 guests up to full park buyouts for thousands of attendees.
Business Events at Walt Disney World® Resort
EPCOT® hosts Harmonious, a nighttime spectacular launched in tandem with The World’s Most Magical Celebration — the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World Resort. Guests are treated to a cultural symphony with music from Johannesburg’s Ndlovu Youth Choir singing songs from The Lion King and French pop singer Damien Sargue performing “Out There” from The Hunchback of Notre Dame, among other music from around the globe. Adding a dessert party along with the fireworks display is nothing short of the icing on the cake.
Megan Walsh, CMP, DES, is the director, executive & conference services, at Mechanical Contractors Association of America (MCAA) based in Rockville, Maryland. They hosted 230 guests at EPCOT for a dessert party during their MCAA Safety Directors’ Conference in January 2022.
“It was the perfect event for us,” Walsh said. “We have people come from all over the country and it was a great show tying in the 50th anniversary of Disney. We had great food and drink and we had the best seats in the house. The fireworks show was a huge wow factor for our group.”
“There are multiple locations to host a dessert party around World Showcase Lagoon, which can accommodate groups of all sizes,” says Brenda Goodwin, public relations manager, Disney Destinations.
Other venue options for a private function at Walt Disney World Resort include Disney’s Hollywood Studios® at Sunset Boulevard and Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular, for example, or Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park, where private parties at The Lion King-inspired Harambe Market and Pandora — The World of Avatar are truly magical.
Business Events at Discovery Cove® & SeaWorld® Orlando
Chicago-based Hinda Incentives held a customer event at Discovery Cove® for about 200. Since most of the attendees hailed from the chilly north, “It was a real treat to have a luau in the middle of winter,” said Alicia Schafer, director of marketing and meeting planner for Hinda.
Upon entering Discovery Cove, each attendee was presented with traditional leis and introduced to some of the wildlife that resides at the all-inclusive day resort including a sloth and exotic birds. The group feasted on shrimp, beef skewers and other barbecue fare on the Laguna Grill patio while the sounds of steel drums and a ukulele band added ambiance with hula dancers and a fire thrower demonstrating their feats on the private beach.
Discovery Cove is part of the SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment family. Other SeaWorld venues for a private event in Orlando include Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin® and Wild Arctic® at their main theme park, and an Aquatica® Orlando Beach Party, which offers a water park buy-out for up to 5,000.