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Across its four theme parks and 25 resort hotels, Walt Disney World Resort is dedicated to the guest experience: creating memories to last a lifetime. Beyond Fantasyland, Test Track, Splitsville and Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, there are plenty of other new opportunities for making those memories!
“Celebrate the Magic” New Castle Projection Show at Magic Kingdom Park
Walt Disney World Resort guests are being treated to a new nighttime projection spectacular transforming Cinderella Castle in Magic Kingdom Park. ”Celebrate the Magic” combines music, spectacular imagery and special effects paying tribute to the artistry and imagination of Disney stories, from beloved classics to contemporary favorites. In one dazzling moment, Tinker Bell appears to fly around Cinderella Castle, weaving among the turrets. “Celebrate the Magic” takes amazed Magic Kingdom guests down the rabbit hole with Alice, soaring above the Big Top with Dumbo and visiting an African savannah with Simba. According to show director Katy Harris, “‘Celebrate the Magic’ draws its inspiration from the love we share for Disney’s memorable characters, their stories and the imagination that brought them to life.” On now is a Yuletide segment celebrating the holiday season. More seasonal updates are planned in 2013 including favorite Disney couples during Valentine season, “The Little Mermaid” during the summer months and Disney villains in time for next Halloween. “Celebrate the Magic” is exclusive to Magic Kingdom Park.
Kilimanjaro Safaris Adds Plains Zebras at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
Kilimanjaro Safaris, the popular attraction at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, now boasts an all-new finale: a herd of plains zebras. A reconstructed savannah space featuring a new watering hole is home to the zebras, which are native to eastern and southern Africa. The new zebra space opened to guests in October to be a new final chapter as guests in open-air vehicles crisscross the savannahs and other animal habitat areas of the park.
Swashbuckling Fun at Disney’s Hollywood Studios: The Legend of Captain Jack Sparrow immersive experience
Pirates of the Caribbean: The Legend of Captain Jack Sparrow is a new experience on view at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, giving Walt Disney World Resort guests a chance to become immersed in the action and adventure of the four “Pirates of the Caribbean” films.
Aspiring pirates will journey deep into an eerie lost grotto, where a mysterious pirate skull puts them to the test to see if they have what it takes to set sail with Captain Jack’s crew. Along the way, they must face all the perils of a pirate’s life as their favorite moments from the films come to life. State-of-the-art technology brings the pirate’s life to guests, including an epic ship-to-ship battle. The attraction is included with theme park admission and is located in Soundstage 4 near Pixar Place.
Secret Agents at Epcot Foil Dr. Doofenshmirtz’s Evil Plans
Walt Disney World guests get to be secret agents in a new interactive game at Epcot. Disney Phineas & Ferb: Agent P’s World Showcase Adventure is based on the wily secret-agent alter-ego of Perry the Platypus – faithful pet to the title characters from Disney Channel’s animated series “Phineas & Ferb.” Although just a simple pet to Phineas and Ferb, Perry turns into Agent P in each episode to help stop the misguided plans of his nemesis, Dr. Doofenshmirtz.
Epcot guests who accept the mission get to help Agent P thwart some of Dr. Doofenshmirtz’s most daring plots. Agents use a “high-tech secret agent device” to receive clues for each case. Solving the clues takes agents to different places throughout seven World Showcase countries at Epcot – Mexico Pavilion, France Pavilion, Germany Pavilion, Norway Pavilion, Japan Pavilion, China Pavilion and the United Kingdom Pavilion. Agents scour each country for clues, evil “Inators,” and – with a little bit of luck – help Agent P defeat Dr. Doofenshmirtz. Agents can arm themselves with a F.O.N.E. (Field Operative Notifications Equipment) at one of four Agent P kiosks around World Showcase.
Senses – A Disney Spa at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort Opening December 17
A soothing escape to a world of pampering and relaxation is just steps away from Disney theme park fun at the newly re-imagined Senses – A Disney Spa at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort.
The newly remodeled spa, now owned and operated by Disney, is set to open Dec. 17. It blends Grand Floridian Victorian elegance with modern touches – plus a dash of Disney whimsy.
All the senses are engaged in an ultimate relaxation experience – flavorful and soothing elixirs, color variations in lighting and Disney orchestral music harmonize with the treatment selected. Spa-goers walk through the new Victorian-style entryway and indulge in the spa’s relax, renew, or imagine themes aimed at creating a custom experience. The centerpiece of the spa’s lobby is an original mural reflecting old Florida landscape and nature. Glass mosaic tiles in the Jacuzzi rooms further enhance the elegance and sophistication of the spa.
Some 15 treatment rooms offer pampering services such as water therapy, sugar exfoliation body treatment, rejuvenating citrus facial, a restorative hand and foot ritual with Chinese Jasmine oils, plus a Princess Pedicure or Magical Manicure for youngsters ages 4-12. Lounges, whirlpools and treatment rooms all provide rejuvenation through the healing nature of Florida citrus and botanicals.
The new menu of services also includes a signature 80-minute Grand Floridian treatment featuring a special aromatherapy massage.
Guests can book a spa appointment at the new Senses – A Disney Spa at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort by calling 407-WDW-SPAS (407-939-7727) or learn more by visiting www.disneyworld.com/spas
All of the spas, salons and fitness centers will be owned and operated by Disney beginning Jan.16, 2013. On that same day the spa at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort will temporarily close for renovation and reopen in the summer as Senses – A Disney Spa at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort.
Villains Beware! ‘Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom’ Role-Playing Adventure Welcomes Apprentice Sorcerers
“Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom” challenges guests to discover and defeat the Disney villains who are wreaking havoc behind the scenes at the Walt Disney World Resort.
In this role-playing game, guests become apprentice sorcerers and embark on a challenge to stop these animated villains from stealing one of the four shattered pieces of Merlin’s powerful crystal ball. Armed with magic powers in the form of special cards, guests follow magic symbols that lead them to different villain hideouts in Adventureland, Fantasyland, Frontierland, Liberty Square, and Main Street, U.S.A. Once there, apprentices use magic keys to access the villain’s lair, and “spell” cards to halt the evildoers in their tracks.
Seventy different spell cards are part of this trading card game, and guests will receive five complimentary cards every day they play. Each of the cards features a different Disney character that offers a spell unique to his or her personality. Individually created by Disney artists and trading card game experts, these beautiful cards are a new Disney collectible and trading opportunity.
According to Jonathan Ackley, Project Producer & Creative Director, Walt Disney Imagineering, one of the most exciting aspects of Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom is how guests interact with Disney characters at an entirely new level.
“Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom gives our guests a whole new way to become the hero of the Disney story, taking Disney innovation to a new level,” he said. “It’s a great game of discovery and excitement that plays off our wonderful theme park and incredible family of Disney animated characters.”
“Sorcerers” can be played in 15- to 20-minute segments throughout guests’ visits to the Magic Kingdom, or continuously for up to three to four hours. Guests may sign up to play at the Fire Station, located in the Town Square area of the park. Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom is included in the price of theme park admission.
More Starbucks Coffee Locations Coming to Disney Parks
Starbucks will be opening locations at Disney theme parks at the Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort. The first two Walt Disney World locations will open in 2013. At Magic Kingdom, Main Street Bakery will close for refurbishment in January 2013. When it reopens in early summer, Main Street Bakery will keep its name and theming and continue to serve Disney favorites like cookies, brownies and seasonal cupcakes, in addition to Starbucks signature beverages and other menu items. At Epcot, Fountain View will temporarily close in March 2013. When Fountain View reopens in midsummer, it will serve Starbucks products. Each Starbucks location inside a Disney Park will reflect the theme of its surroundings. At Magic Kingdom Park for example, Cast Members will wear a costume consistent with the early 20th century look and feel of Main Street, U.S.A. At Future World in Epcot, the new Starbucks location and Cast Member costumes will be designed to match the park’s futuristic theme.
What’s New, What’s Next Dining at Disney
- Look for the Mickey Check on the kids’ menu at Be Our Guest Restaurant,the first location to offer “Kids’ Complete Meals” featuring the Mickey Check, part of Disney Magic of Healthy Living, and on all quick-service menus at both Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort. The Mickey Check will be on all table-service menus by Jan. 5, 2013. The Mickey Check helps identify nutritious food choices.
- California Grill at Disney’s Contemporary Resort gets a major makeover and will be closed from Jan. 6, 2013 until summer 2013. Chef Brian Piasecki also is tweaking the menu, but the focus remains on fresh, seasonal creations.
- Upstairs at the France pavilion, Bistro de Paris reopens in December with a new name and a completely refurbished dining room and new menu. Stillhaute French but a bit more casual, with a nod to famed chef Paul Bocuse in the décor and the name – Monsieur Paul. In the meantime, Boulangerie Patisserie bakery is a brand-new building at the back of the pavilion, opening in January 2013.
- Citricos at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa now offers a private dining experience in The Chef’s Domain for up to 10 guests. Available Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, cost is $155 per person plus tax (includes gratuity) for six courses. For reservations: 407/WDW-DINE.
- The next generation of food courts is open at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, where Landscape of Flavors features five mini shops serving breakfast, lunch and dinner — and diners can customize choices. Tandoor ovens add an Indian-African flair, and fresh fruit smoothies are a hit. Guests also can find burgers, soups, pizzas and other favorites.