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OTR – Ep 11 – Stine’s Eye Candy

On this episode Bob and Ken interview John Stine, Director of Marketing and Sales at I-Drive 360 and Unicorp National Developments.  Stine gives plenty of details about The Orlando Eye and I-Drive 360. He also talks about how mass transit will help I-Drive and what the future of the area will look like. The usual conversation topics of megamall, Polercoaster and Mango’s make their way into the interview. Bob talks about local restaurants and Ken confesses his love for Wawa and Shake Shack. Then they close out the conversation talking about the Mega-McDonalds that Ken thinks is coming soon.

Show Info


Ken Storey
Bob from Pixels at the Parks
Kyle Gary
Richie (He’s anti-twitter so no link for him)

Show Notes

  • John Stine- “We want our guests to feel it is very safe, it’s very friendly and that they feel very welcome.”
  • I-Shops and I-Drive 360 will have I-Ride Trolleys
  • I-Drive area transit developments
  • Sand Lake Road – International Drive Pedestrian Bridge
  • Maglev proposal | 2011 FDOT plans
  • Dellagio in Dr Phillips
  • Mangos
  • Skyscraper at Skyplex
  • iSquare Mall + Hotel (Megamall)
  • Disney Springs
  • Echo Tourism = tourist come for Disney, then discover other parts of Orlando
  • Winter Park’s Park Ave
  • John Stine- Orlando’s other attractions give visitors reason to come back and is good at creating in-state visitors.
  • Shake Shack is coming to I-Drive 360 | John Stine makes no official confirmation on it
  • Shake Shack vs McDonalds
  • I-Drive 360’s Buffalo Wild Wings will be 2 stories, outdoor observation deck on top floor. “Not your typical BWW.”
  • Nightclubs with Dining in them at I-Drive 360 will open in this fall- Cowgirls, Sugar FactoryTin Roof
  • John Stine- “I do anticipate…announcing something pretty exciting, a new concept that would be new to the Orlando area, it’s in the works. Hopefully we will announce it very very soon.”
  • Empty lot beside Red Robin- John Stine- “Nothing to update you on at this point, I can tell you though that there are ongoing conversation and that spot will be announced very soon.”
  • Ken then confesses his love for Wawa
  • John Stine- Wawa at I-Shops will be opening “end of this year or beginning of next year.”
  • Orlando Eye private capsule rental tweet
  • Champagne flights, Wine Flights are going to be offered on Orlando Eye
  • The Orlando Eye- Capsules will fit 15 ppl. 20 min ride
  • I-Drive 360 announced $1.5 million water show set to music and color changing lights.
  • Lighting on the fountain and the Orlando Eye will be separate.
  • Fountain shows will be 6-8 min every 30 mins, holiday seasons will feature special shows (Christmas, 4th of July, St Patrick’s Day given as examples) Shows will go from mid-afternoon through the late evening.
  • John Stine- “One of the things we want residents to know, as well as our visitors, is that when you come down to I-Drive 360 one of the great features is and benefits is we’ll be themed up…we’ll be decorated for the holidays, for the season, we’ll have that show to tie into that holiday or that season.”
  • John Stine- “Central Florida has its own unique landscape…While it’s not New York or London it’s unique in its own right.”
  • Skeletons – A Museum of Osteology at I-Drive 360 Website | Facebook
  • Skeletons and Merlin Attractions (Madam Tussad’s, Sea Life and Orlando Eye) will open in Spring 2015 (March-April)
  • John Stine- “If there is a delay in the Orlando Eye Merlin may make the decision to maybe open another attraction earlier.”
  • Then John leaves, Bob and Ken talk about the interview.
  • Transition Song
  • “Shake Shack Bob”- It’s a thing…
  • Ken then calls The Orlando Eye a weenie
  • Bob- “The projects that are out there that get worried when competition comes in; that’s wrong. There’s so many tourists that come to Orlando. Let’s just draw more, give them more options which will again will draw more. It’s just a big circle. The more people we can draw the better for Orlando.
  • Bob confesses he’s never been inside the Orlando area tacky tourist trap gift shops. Ken recommends Bargain World
  • Ken- “Bargain World. That is an attraction in and of itself!”
  • Ken- “You’re paying for that Orlando name and that Orlando name is worth something.”
  • I-Shops gets all fancy with its Walgreens
  • Bob says another Walgreens (with no pharmacy) may become to I-Drive 360
  • Ken questions if the O’Neill’s surf shop at I-Shops will last.
  • Ken Recommends- Not going to Tilted Kilt on I-Drive
  • Bob Recommends- Yard House at I-Drive 360
  • Ken Recommends- Hanamizuki for lunch
  • Pixels at the Parks Food Edition coming soon?
  • Ken briefly mentions his pedicab experience…
  • Charter Bus seating
  • Parking at Trader Joe’s in Winter Park
  • Ken’s 2013 article on the World’s Largest McDonald’s coming to I-Drive
  • Ken- “The next project to watch in that area is the McDonald’s” He then says they may have a Ferris wheel, a retail shop and that this McDonald’s is inspired by the Toys R Us in Times Square.
  • Closing Song



Ken Storey has been blogging about life in Central Florida for the past 12 years. As a 2nd generation Central Floridian he has a passion for and connection with the region. In his spare time he enjoys visiting low budget roadside attractions, Taco Bell, and typically plans road trips with as little interstate time as possible.

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