Dolly Parton unveils HeartSong Lodge and Resort progress at Dollywood

Dollywood’s dreamer-in-chief is keeping her stiletto-clad foot on the gas pedal.

While construction of Dollywood’s second resort continues, Dolly Parton and her team already are working on the third, fourth and fifth resorts that will play a critical role in the company’s $500 million, multi-decade vision to become the top U.S. destination for family vacations.  

Much like HeartSong Lodge & Resort will illustrate Parton’s love for the Great Smoky Mountains, each of those properties will be themed around a part of the icon’s life. 

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“We do still own a lot of land,” Parton told the USA TODAY Network. “We do always have room for expansion. There is always some new dream that pops up, some new dream that’s going on. (Things like,) we have to have a bigger waterpark, we have to have an indoor waterpark, we have to have this or that. So you’re always thinking like that. I just hope it always continues to go and grow through the years, long after I’m gone.” 

Dolly Parton and Dollywood president Eugene Naughton speaks in front of a rendering of the lobby for Dollywood's HeartSong Lodge and Resort during an event at the resort's construction site in Pigeon Forge on Friday, June 24, 2022.

Along with resorts, Parton and company will continue to dream up new experiences and activities for guests. She said she’d like a campground and a large music venue for big concerts. 

Visitors are responding to the never-ending expansion of the brand. Dollywood was named the top U.S. theme park in 2022 by Tripadvisor users. Despite the economic stressors many Americans are facing, reservations at DreamMore Resort & Spa are higher than they were in 2019, the resort’s record year, said Dollywood Parks & Resorts President Eugene Naughton.

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