First opening under the name, Riu Orlando Hotel in 1988, they claimed to have been a 3-star hotel with the luxuries of a 4-star luxury resort. It was situated close to many of the attractions and parks in the area, such as Ripley’s Believe It or Not, Seaworld Orlando, Walt Disney World and Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampede.
Over the years though, the building required remodeling as guests complained of mold in the showers, outdated decor and bad service.
In late-2007, Marcus Hotels and Resorts announced it was taking over management of the property which was undergoing a $22 million renovation, with plans to reopen in mid-2008 under the new name, Venturella Resort and Spa. The newly renovated 115-room hotel was to feature a Mediterranean/Tuscan theme, two restaurants, a lounge and a spa, as well as more than 7,000 square feet of meeting space. The property was to also feature new landscaping, including a lake with a beach.
Work on the hotel was halted mid-renovation.