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Tupperware World Headquarters – Kissimmee / Orlando FL – I’m CONFIDENT You’ll Enjoy Your Visit! Orlando, FL

Posted on: February 9, 2012

If you’re driving down the Orange Blossom Trail (aka Route 17 / 92) just south of Orlando proper and see this Fountain of Friendship you know you’ve reached the Tupperware Brands World Headquarters. Who’da thunk?

Tupperware Exterior Fountain(You will see this motif recurring in the Tupperware Brands Logo and throughout your visit – kinda reminds me of a dandilion that you blow on for good luck!)

While I was lucky enough to be accompanied by fellow Retro Roadblogger Rick Kilby of Visual Ephemera and his Tupperware insider pal Victor, you don’t actually need to have “connections”  in order to visit what I was calling the Tupperware Museum, but what they refer to as the Confidence Center. Open for visitors weekdays 10-4, you can step inside for FREE and learn some of the history of this mid-century kitchen classic!

Now, for those of you who are not familiar with the story of this iconic brand, Rick Kilby’s  Vintage Ephemera beat is the history of the cool old retro and vintage places in Florida, so you can click here to read his take on the history of Tupperware. (He’s got some great vintage Tupperware photos in there as well!)

And there’s also this introduction to the American Experiences program about Tupperware debuting in just a few days!

Watch Tupperware! Chapter 1 on PBS. See more from American Experience.

“This funny, probing program re-examines assumptions about American culture in the 1950s.” And is totally on my list of programs to check out – Valentines Day or not!

Now, you may be asking – Why Confidence Center, and not Tupperware Museum or Heritage Center? Well, according to a Press Release about the Chain of Confidence:

Educating, empowering and inspiring women has been part of the Tupperware Brands philosophy since the very first Tupperware Party was held in 1948. During a time when women were not readily welcomed into the traditional workforce, Tupperware’s direct-selling technique gave women confidence and financial independence.

Now that you’re up to speed with all things Tupperware, why not join me in the 1960s inspired waiting area just near the reception desk where you check in? I was surprised by how MOD it looked, but this was just a taste of what we’d see once we entered the Confidence Center.

Warren Platner Furniture Set(For those keeping score, this is Warren Platner furniture by Knoll, designed in 1966. I almost had the name on the tip of my tongue when we visited- I knew it began with a P, thought it was Pierre Paulin, and we laughed when I confirmed it wasn’t Paul Lynde!) 

In reading some of the history of the company I realized that we’re so accustomed nowadays to having serveware and kitchen storage that is light, unbreakable and air-tight, but back in the late 1940s this was a revolutionary idea. Back then  folks would use crockery and glass to store their leftovers in.

Tupper’s first foray into this modern concept was the Wonderlier bowl, shown below. Did you know the famous airtight Tupperware seal was inspired by the seal on a paint can, but inverted? As the Johnny Carson voice in my head says, ” I did not know that!”
Vintage Tupperware Wonderlier BowlWhile there are many flashbacks to the Tupperware of yore, the Confidence Center is also a foray into the future (with a certain 1970’s vibe) with its bright colors, shiny white surfaces and oversized touchscreens. It’s like a museum on the moon!
Mod Tupperware DisplayThis is one of my favorite vintage pieces (and Victor’s too) displayed under the domes: A vintage Tupperware tumbler set, complete with metal carrying rack. And look! In the middle, it’s Tuppy The Seal with a ball on his nose! Whimsical AND Functional – I’m swooning.

Tuppy The Seal(And I bet a lot of the Tupperware collectors who have posted their vintage Tupperware collections on Flickr would be equally as smitten with this set!)

Speaking of the modern take on Tupperware in the Confidence Center, there are all sorts of touch screens and gadgets to play with while you’re visiting: Here for example you can sit and learn about the other brands under the Tupperware umbrella.

Innovation Driven By Our ValuesAnd even Retro Roadhusband enjoyed looking at the displays of vintage and contemporary Tupperware – we both recognized toys we had as kids that we didn’t realize came from Tupperware!
Retro Roadhusband at Tupperware HQHere was one of my highlights – getting a Tiny Treasure souvenir! Miniaturized Tupperware products on keychains (and now I want to collect ’em all and trade with my friends!)

tupperware tiny treasures prize photo by Rick KilbyThe proceeds from the Tiny Treasures go to the Tupperware Brand Foundation “Which supports initiatives that enlighten, educate and empower women and girls globally.” Good stuff.

If you want to find out more about the Tupperware Brand representatives in your area, you can just touch their photo on the giant screen and their bio will appear!

Giant Touchscreen
Both Rick and I could not resist checking out the Photolier –  You select a Tupperware backdrop of your choosing, pose for a photo, the email the photo immediately to someone!
Step Into The Photolier
Here’s our pal Rick sending his visage as a missive!
Email Your Photo
What educational visit anywhere would be complete without a visit to the gift shop – or Tupperware Gallery, if you prefer:
Tupperware Gift ShopAm wondering why I didn’t buy a gelatin mold – I think Kelly at The Velveteen Lounge Kitsch-en would dig the mini ones!

So while you may be tempted to go spend the day with a Mouse or on a Movie Set, if you’re a fan of vintage kitchenware and American history, you must check out the Tupperware Confidence Center. I’m CONFIDENT you’ll enjoy your visit. (and it doesn’t take all day to visit, so you still can go other places…like Gatorland, just down the road!)

UPDATE: Just thought I’d share that I got a Classique d’ Camembert award from the Allee Willis Museum of Kitsch for my post over there on this fine place – great minds know quality!

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  • I think you need to post this on Charles Phoneix’s page- last year he was asking what he should do when he came to Orlando, and people were trying to send him to Tupperware, even though they didn’t have a museum at the time…

    by the way your photos (and copy) ROCK!

    • Right back at you, sir! We need to work together again!

    • Done and done! I’m sure he’d love it! And Allee Willis too!

  • Color me apple green with jealousy. Fantabulous!

    That Warren Platner furniture is divine; although I would be willing to bet that Paul Lynde would have designed great stuff too 🙂

    • I am a huge Paul Lynde fan (“you know where you stand with a pet” is a phrase from Bye Bye Birdie that always gets Retro Roadhusband and me giggling) but yes, I’m sure he would’ve come up with something divoon!

  • LOVE THIS! Great report, makes me desperately want to visit! Speaking of min Tupperware, I remember when I was in grade school, a lot of girls who had mom’s in the Tupperare biz would have these mini covered bowls on a keychain. They would keep their ice cream money in them!

    • I had no idea mini tupperware was a tradition – I would LOVE a mini covered bowl, but I am however quite pleased with my “Shape-O-Ball”. And no need to worry about your comment, doll, it totally adds to my knowledge of this plastic classic!

  • Diana Banana

    I saw the show Tupperware! back in 2005 – it’s fabulous!
    I love the mini Tupperware keychains as well…are you going to tell us how many varieties there are?

    • Diane- I’m interested in the Tupperware show, as some people have seen it, but the PBS banner says it premieres on Valentine’s day – should be interesting regardless!

      As far as the keychains, this is what I can tell you – there was that whole display full of “Tiny Treasures” and 3 of the items were featured in the machine below. They each cost a dollar, and the money goes to the foundation. I was excited to get a “Shape-O-Ball” which I totally remember from the 1970s in real life. Retro Roadhusband got one in the shape of a hot pepper, and as a Thank You to Rick K we got him the final one of the trio offered, a pink cupcake shaped one (he said his wife would enjoy it very much) – each one came in a handy tupperware storage container so we have that too.

      My pal Anna mentioned that she had a pal back in HS whose mom sold Tupperware, and she had a keychain with a bowl with a lid on it. Totally cool sounding to me!

      Thanks for stopping by Retro Roadmap!

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  • Michael

    Great article! I have such fond memories of my mother attending tupperware parties in the 1970s and coming home with colourful new things for us to use every day. I’ll be sure to put this on my list of places to visit next time I’m in Orlando!

    • Michael – that’s so cool that Tupperware features prominently in your happy childhood memories! I have a few other Retro Roadmap worthy places around Tupperware HQ that I’ll be blogging about shortly, so stop by again for some more cool places to check out!

  • what a wonderful tour! i will check it out as soon as possible 🙂

    • It was definitely a cool visit! Not big but very informative.

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  • Jen

    WOW! That looks like so much fun! I must go to there. Thanks for the tip! My in-laws live on the Gulf Shores. This looks like it is WELL worth the drive! (And Gatorland.)

    • I’m a big fan of the vintage retro fun in Florida – if you do go to visit the in-laws check in with my Florida connection Rick Kilby – he’ll let you know everything to visit!

  • sharon

    Glad to see that it is still there. I was hoping the museum wasn’t torn down for a new hotel. When we lived near Kissimmee in the mid-seventies, the drive to Orlando past Tupperware seemed to go through the middle of no where, close to dirt roads. A small traveling carnival or circus would park for the winter near there, by a bend in one of the dirt roads.

  • TODD

    I lived in Kissimmee in the early 1990’s and discovered the museum then. When my parents visited me we went to the museum every time. Back then they had all kinds of living situations set up that used Tupperware including fake food on the grill set up at the mock outdoor camping site – complete with a full camper. They also showed how Tupperware could be used as art and some pieces were in the thousands of dollars. I’m back in Orlando 20 years later and STILL want to visit the museum again. Nobody was there which made it a total joy to visit – considering all the tourists that go through the area. Long live THIS museum!

    • So glad the Tupperware museum has another fan! Thanks for the support Todd, and for swinging by Retro Roadmap!

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  • Sharon Ashford

    Do you still get to walk through the gardens? As a Manager many years ago, when they had Jubilees in Orlando, many trees, flowers & decorations in the gardens had our names on plaques. It’s been years, but I would love to find my name on those plaques again.

    • Sharon – I am not sure! We did not see the gardens when we were down there, but wow- that was a few years ago. Hate how time flies! Here’s the phone # if you want to call them to find out! 407-826-8755 / hope that helps! xo Mod B

  • 3LeslieYanez

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