Today in Anaheim, California, at the D23 Expo, the Walt Disney Company announced some MAJOR news about projects and ventures for the company through 2019. Because there is so much amazing news, we'll give it to you bit by bit!
First up - a look at what's coming to the Disney Parks in Orlando!
Walt Disney World Resort in Florida will be seeing some major changes at three of its four theme parks. Since Pandora: The World of Avatar opened at Disney's Animal Kingdom on May 27th, the imagineers are putting their skills to the test at the other three parks!
At Disney's Hollywood Studios, The Great Movie ride will be closing on August 13, 2017 to make room for Mickey and Minnie's Runaway Railway, Disney's first Mickey-themed, ride-through attraction. This ride will boast more Hidden Mickeys than any other attraction!
Also in Disney's Hollywood Studios, Toy Story Land will be opening in the summer of 2018! Star Wars Land, called Galaxy's Edge, will open in 2019, in both the Anaheim and Orlando parks. Guests can take control of the Millenium Falcon, and can also make a visit to the interior of a star destroyer in a hangar bay. It's important you follow instructions carefully, as bounty hunters will hunt you down if you don't!
Also for Star Wars fans, a fully immersive Star Wars-themed luxury hotel will be opening at the Walt Disney World resort. Each room will have a view of space! This technically isn't park news, but we thought we'd mention it here.
“It’s unlike anything that exists today.” Disney says. “From the second you arrive, you will become a part of a Star Wars story! You’ll immediately become a citizen of the galaxy and experience all that entails, including dressing up in the proper attire. Once you leave Earth, you will discover a starship alive with characters, stories, and adventures that unfold all around you. It is 100% immersive, and the story will touch every single minute of your day, and it will culminate in a unique journey for every person who visits.”
Moving over to Epcot, but sticking with the space theme, the popular Mission Space will be getting some new adventures for Mission Space: Green. And adjacent to the Mission Space attraction will be a new table-service restaurant that is space-themed! How cool will it be to eat in space??
A new e-ticket attraction, Guardians of the Galaxy, will be replacing the Universe of Energy Pavilion and Ellen's Energy Adventure, which will be closing on August 13th. This has been rumored for awhile, and we are happy to hear that this attraction has been confirmed!
Also new in Epcot will be a Future World overhaul, and in World Showcase, a new seamless Circlevision film in the China theater. Even more exciting - the famous Ratatouille ride from Disneyland Paris will be coming to an all-new area in Epcot's France pavilion!
A quick ride on the monorail takes us over to the Magic Kingdom from Epcot, and here there will be some new attractions as well! First, a new stage theater is coming to Main Street USA. No word yet on what will be performed there, but it will resemble Willis Theater from Walt's hometown of Marceline, MO.
In other Magic Kingdom news, the TRON Lightcycle Power Run is coming to Tomorrowland! Up until now, one had to journey to Shanghai Disneyland to ride this incredible attraction, but no longer! TRON will not be replacing Tomorrowland Speedway, but instead will be built behind Space Mountain. Look at this concept art - It looks so good there!
What a fun way to get around - on a lightcycle! And speaking of transportation, the last bit of Orlando parks news that we will share today is that there will soon be two new ways to get around the Walt Disney World Resort!
A point-to-point transportation service called "Minnie Van" (similar to Uber or Lyft), and a gondola system called the Disney Skyliner!
What do you think? Are you as excited as we are? Magical things are ahead for the Walt Disney World Resort and as always, we are super jazzed about helping all of our clients plan fabulous vacations to the Happiest Place on Earth! Call your favorite Upon A Star Agent to learn more about the new things happening and when and how you can plan a trip!