One of the best parts about visiting a Disney Park are those moments when something totally unexpected happens, like when the Dapper Dans choose you to serenade on Main Street, U.S.A., or a Disney character stops to give your child a high-five during a parade.
Magical moments like these are about to be taken to the next level at Hong Kong Disneyland, with the return of the park’s Star Guest program.
From March 15-May 20, special magical moments will abound throughout this Disney Park. Guests could find themselves experiencing attractions in Toy Story Land alongside surprise guests, be taken over by pirates on their rafting adventure to Tarzan’s Treehouse in Adventureland, or meet Timon and Rafiki from “The Lion King” or Carl and Russell from “UP,” who are seldom seen at Hong Kong Disneyland.
There’s also a new offering this year for young fans of Disney royalty – it’s the Star Princess Tour, which is open to children ages 3-11. This guided tour through the park includes some very special meet and greets with Disney Princesses, stories, a princess goodie bag, and special viewing of the park’s Flights of Fantasy Parade.
Today, our friends at Hong Kong Disneyland are making history with the official grand opening of Toy Story Land. It’s a new Toy Story-themed area with a bunch of fun main attractions like RC Racer, Slinky Dog Spin and Toy Soldier Parachute Drop. And you can experience the feeling of being shrunk to the size of a toy in Andy’s backyard to play with your favorite Toy Story friends.
Looks great, right? Well, there’s more to come. Toy Story Land is the first of three themed areas planned at Hong Kong Disneyland. The second themed area at Hong Kong Disneyland will be called Grizzly Gulch and it’s scheduled to be completed and opened to the public in 2012. And the Mystic Point themed area is expected to open in 2013.
Check out a few more images of Toy Story Land and some photos from opening day.
Halloween Time at Disney is a Guest favorite and over the last month we’ve shared stories on the Disney Parks Blog on ways the parks have been celebrating worldwide. We held a spooktacular fireworks show, transformed the Haunted Mansion at both Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resorts, and even introduced some yummy seasonal treats.
Take 5: Halloween Time Fun at Disney Parks
- Disney’s Halloween Festival in Paris – Here are some fun photos of how we celebrated Halloween at Disneyland Paris.
- Headless Horseman Leads the Way this Halloween at Hong Kong Disneyland – In Hong Kong Disneyland the Headless Horseman led the way in spooky fun for Disney’s Haunted Halloween celebration.
- Dapper Dans Sing Special Spooky Songs for Halloween Time at Disneyland Park – The not-so-scary but very Dapper Dans sang a special set during Halloween Time at Disneyland park including a creepy classic created by Disney Legends X Atencio and Buddy Baker.
A Spooktacular in the Sky at Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resorts – Check out some images taken from this year’s Happy HalloWishes fireworks spectacular.
- Our Favorite Disney Sweet for National Cookie Month – We shared a recipe for baking and decorating Jack Skellington cookies from the blockbuster animated film, “Nightmare Before Christmas.”
We’re kicking off a special look at Halloween around our parks this year at Hong Kong Disneyland where the Headless Horseman is leading the way. He’s wandering the park during Disney’s Haunted Halloween celebration looking for the fiend who took his head. Oh, and there’s a “Cursed Jungle” filled with lurking creatures and ghoulish souls to experience at the park.
And when night falls, Mickey, Duffy and the gang are also out and about in their new Halloween costumes for the Trick or Treat Spooktacular in Fantasyland. The “Glow in the Park Parade” and “Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy are back by popular demand this year too. Check out some more images of the fun.
Disney’s Haunted Halloween is also featuring some augmented reality tricks this year. With “Disney’s Spooky Scope” app, guests will see ghosts and may even “lose their faces” in the park.
As you can see, there are some unique experiences at Hong Kong Disneyland this year. Let us know if you’ve been or plan on visiting. And stay tuned – our next post in this series will feature images from Disneyland Paris.
Hong Kong Disneyland opened its gates Sept. 12, 2005, making Disney history as the first Disney theme park to open in China.
The park, which was built on reclaimed land in Penny’s Bay, consists of four lands – a Main Street, U.S.A., Fantasyland, Adventureland and Tomorrowland.
The park features classic Disney attractions like “it’s a small world” and Jungle Cruise, as well as popular new guest favorites, such as Festival of the Lion King and Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters. Hong Kong Disneyland also regularly incorporates Chinese customs and holidays into its event schedule, with special celebrations held for Chinese New Year (see above photo), in addition to Halloween and Christmas.
Expansion plans are already underway at the park to add a Toy Story Land, Grizzly Gulch and Mystic Point, which are set to open in late 2011, 2012 and 2013, respectively. Toy Story Land will feature three main attractions themed after characters in the popular film franchise: the RC Racer, Slinky Dog Spin and Toy Soldier Parachute Drop.
The resort’s two hotels, Hong Kong Disneyland Hotel and Disney’s Hollywood Hotel, also celebrate their anniversaries Sept. 12, 2005.
Earlier this week, I got to share updates on both Tinker Bell and Disney castles with you – which inspired me to write this post on what’s currently happening with the castle at Hong Kong Disneyland this summer. (It also gave me an excuse to run this amazing photo!).
The park is celebrating its fifth anniversary this year, and in honor of this milestone, they have introduced a character that had never before appeared at the park. Although our domestic parks have featured her for years, this special celebration marked the introduction of Tinker Bell to Hong Kong Disneyland.
The park has welcomed Peter Pan’s top pixie in grand style, temporarily transforming their Sleeping Beauty Castle into Tinker Bell Castle, with the addition of gold elements that represent a sprinkling of pixie dust that glitters during the day and sparkles at night.
So, what do you think of the castle?
See what else has been happening at our resorts around the world:
Ever wonder what goes on at the Disney Parks and Resorts around the world? With properties in Paris, Tokyo and Hong Kong, there are plenty of fun facts and milestones to share from our international counterparts. Thinking of taking a trip to one of these locations? Stop by and see us!
Take 5: Disney Parks and Resorts Abroad
- Hong Kong Disneyland 5th Year Anniversary – Last September Hong Kong Disneyland celebrated its 5th year Anniversary. More than 2,000 families from the Hong Kong community joined over 2,000 cast members to celebrate the milestone.
- Take a Tilt-Shift Trip to Disneyland Paris – Check out this tilt-shift video, “A Magical Day at Disneyland Paris,” and see just about everything Walt Disney Studios Park and Disneyland Park has to offer.
- A View From…Tokyo Disneyland – Love Christmas time at Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resorts? Check out some cool photos from Tokyo Disneyland’s holiday celebrations.
- This Day In Disney History: Disneyland Paris Debuts – On April 12, we shared with readers that on that day in Disney history in 1992, Disneyland Paris opened to feature 29 attractions in a layout much like Disneyland park in California.
- Disney Vacation Club opens Doors with Presence in Tokyo Disneyland – We updated readers about Tokyo Disneyland’s grand opening of its first Disney Vacation Club Model Showroom at the Ikspiari shopping and dining complex.
We’re continuing our celebration of the New Year at Disney Parks with Hong Kong Disneyland. Our second park just rang in the New Year and Disneyland Paris is next.
Hi everyone…what an exciting day over the weekend as we celebrated the 5th year Anniversary milestone of Hong Kong Disneyland. More than 2,000 families from the Hong Kong community joined over 2,000 cast members to celebrate. It was so wonderful to see all the smiling faces and to celebrate hand in hand.
Bill Ernest, President and Managing Director, Asia for Walt Disney Parks and Resorts presented a gift from the Walt Disney Company of one million Hong Kong dollars as a scholarship grant to the Vocational Training Council of Hong Kong. The grant will create one hundred scholarships for students who are in the fields of tourism and hospitality, entertainment and design. It’s great to think about the positive impact to the many students, their future dreams and consider they could be fellow cast members in future years. Hong Kong Disneyland Resort Managing Director Andrew Kam, thanked the many invited guests and then together everyone congratulated in celebration of the milestone as they captured the picture for future memories (seen above).
Following the big moment we all made our way to Tomorrowland where the families enjoyed breakfast and a private party in Tomorrowland. I never tire of seeing the smiling faces of our guests as they delight in our attractions and get hugs from our characters. Watching the children from the community with their eagerness to get to Space Mountain and their smiles on Orbitron makes me proud to be part of this fantastic Company and to bring the magic to Hong Kong. Walt started an amazing legacy and it’s fantastic to be part of seeing that legacy live on in Hong Kong. It was an important milestone for the Park but we’ve only just begun as the celebration continues into 2011 with lots of fun in store for our guests.
Here are a few more images from the celebration:
Guests from around the world sometimes ask us about Disney’s involvement in local communities. Whether it’s through contributing to our local economies, applying environmentally friendly ways to do business or supporting organizations that help our communities, our focus on being a good corporate citizen is part of the legacy of Walt Disney that guides our actions today.
We’ve just released our 2009 Community Reports that provide an overview of our commitment as a responsible employer, active community leader and sound environmental steward. In many ways the reports are the tip of an iceberg, a partial view of the many ways the Company and our generous Cast Members contribute to our communities, whether in China, Southern California, Central Florida, France, The Bahamas or Hawaii.
Among the highlights from this year’s reports –
- More than 43,000 tons of material was diverted from landfills through recycling and donations at Disneyland Resort -– enough to nearly fill Space Mountain!
- Walt Disney World Cast Members come from all over the world, representing more than 80 nationalities and speaking 53 different languages
- Disneyland Paris generates 56,000 direct and indirect jobs in France
- More than 100,000 children, youth and families from underprivileged and local community groups have benefited from Hong Kong Disneyland programs
- Disney Cruise Line granted more than 500 wish trips to children faced with life-threatening medical conditions
Our Cast Members and our Company make dreams come true daily -– in our parks and resorts and on board our ships –- and in the many communities where we live and work. To read more about our community efforts, visit the Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Corporate Responsibility webpage.
We welcome your feedback.