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Welcome to Radiator Springs, a Happy Place

The west coast got its Cars Land, an immersive environment that transports the guest into the world of Cars, but the east coast is getting some cars lovin’ too. The second phase of Disney’s Art of Animation just opened and guests are now able to explore the three wings and book a room in the Cars themed hotel rooms. You’ll find Lightning McQueen, Mater, Flo and other characters from the popular Pixar film “Cars” in a larger than life Radiator Springs set design.

In the new Cars wing, featuring 480 family suites, a freshly paved road leads guests on the greatest road trip ever, a cruise down memory lane to small town America — Radiator Springs. Parked at the entryway Sheriff and the infamous Doc Hudson welcome folks into town, along with other car “faces” parked along the road. There’s backdrops of Luigi’s Casa Della Tires, Tow Mater Towing and the Wheel Well Motel, creating an authentic setting lifted from the super-charged adventure.

All roads lead to the 60′s style Cozy Cone Motel where distinctive orange cone-shaped cabanas invite guests to kick back and then take a dip in the Cozy Cone Pool. High-octane theming is full-throttle inside the family suites, with orange cones imprinted in the carpeting and adorning the light fixtures plus animation-inspired artwork. Guests will feel as though they walked into a scene from the blockbuster film as a pull-out bed extends from the living room sofa (whimsically appearing as the back seat of an old hot rod), the tool chest is actually the dresser and the bathroom design is inspired by a car wash.

Below the jump is a gallery of images from the new Cars themed buildings and a teaser image from The Lion King wings that will open soon.

On a recent visit to The Happiest Place on Earth, my dear friend Kristin and I decided to visit the newly opened Art of Animation Resort to check things out as well as try their some of their unique breakfast offerings. Kristin and I, along with my husband, will be staying at DAAR in January over Marathon Weekend, so we definitely wanted to explore a bit and see what it would have in store for us as guests!

Upon pulling into the parking area, you are already able to get a sense that this resort is not quite as kitschy as any of the other value resorts. Most of the decoration/color is left to two dimensions instead of three, giving the building a very sleek, clean look while still being bright and colorful. The basic layout of the main building is the same as POP! Century: the main areas are located in the same places; the front desk, gift store, food court, arcade, etc. It might feel empty in comparison to many props and shadow boxes that adorn POP! Century, except there is so much color around you that it never feels undecorated; it just feels clean. Shapely lines and curves are everywhere, making you feel as though you’ve stepped right on to the animator’s desk. The front desk sparkles with color while the backlit storyboard sketches that decorate the Ink & Paint Shop entrance positively glow.