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Mad Tea Party at Disney Parks

‘Decades’ Art Debuts for the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration

posted on March 4th, 2015 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


Take a journey back in time to the years 1955–1964. The opening of Disneyland is underway, new never-before-seen attractions have come to life for all to enjoy, magnificent mountains magically appear, a skyway leads to journeys in Tomorrowland, mermaids and sea-serpents grace the seas amidst submarines and monorails take flight high above the world below.

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Beginning this May, and over the course of the entire Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, we will take a look back at milestones like these during each of the last six decades that have made the Disneyland Resort what it is today, with this special ‘Decades’ collection. Designed by artist Jeff Granito, the first piece of art in the series will debut in May. I wanted to find out more about what inspired Jeff to create this very special collection, and here’s what he had to share.

“What made this collection so special for me was the opportunity to create specific pieces of art that represented key moments over the past sixty years in Disneyland Resort history,” said Jeff, “especially from a stylistic approach. In the initial piece, I wanted to capture the excitement and optimism of Disneyland during its first ten years. For many, it’s the first moment of discovery into new worlds and magical lands; where else can you have the atomic age of Tomorrowland, meet the whimsical touches of Fantasyland. For me, it was a dream come true.”

Here’s how it works! New art themed to each decade will debut almost every 60 days on items including apparel, home décor, pins and more. There might even be a few surprises in store. What, you ask? I guess you’ll have to keep watching the Disney Parks Blog to find out more.

Tip: Keep in mind with each release that purchasing limits will apply and merchandise is available while supplies last.

Here’s one final fun fact! There is a diamond-shaped icon in each piece. Can you find this one?

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Filed: Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort

Join ‘Galactic Gathering’ for Star Wars Weekends 2015 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios on May 14

posted on March 3rd, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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Star Wars Weekends 2015 returns to Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort on Friday, May 15. To kick off this event, Disney Theme Park Merchandise is holding a special ticketed event called “Galactic Gathering” on Thursday, May 14 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Similar to the “Rebel Rendezvous” event held last year, this year’s event will give guests the first opportunity to purchase new products created especially for Star Wars Weekends.

Join ‘Galactic Gathering’ for Star Wars Weekends 2015 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios on May 14 Join ‘Galactic Gathering’ for Star Wars Weekends 2015 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios on May 14

Packages for the Galactic Gathering will include the following:

  • ‘Rebel’ or ‘Empire’ retail MagicBand (Guests can choose their side when registering online)*
  • Commemorative trading pin*
  • Darth’s Mall Light Speed Pass which gives expedited entry into Darth’s Mall for all five weekends.*
  • First opportunity to pre-purchase select merchandise including personalized Aurebesh nametags, D-Tech phone cases, Dooney & Bourke handbags, Galactic Gathering Disney Gift card, retail MagicBands, limited edition pins and Vinylmation.
  • First opportunity to purchase the new designs of Star Wars-themed Disney Gift Cards.
  • Han Solo-inspired popcorn bucket with popcorn.

Guests who attend this event will also have the opportunity to meet Disney characters, Disney Design Group Artists and Ashley Eckstein from Her Universe.

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Finally, attendees will be some of the first to purchase the new figures for Star Wars D-Tech Me including a Jedi Knight and a TIE-Fighter pilot.

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Tickets to this event are $250 per guest (theme park admission is not included but required to participate in this event).

Registration will begin on March 4 at 1:00 p.m. Eastern on http://www.DisneyParksMerchandise.com.

I hope to see you there!

*These items will only be available to Galactic Gathering attendees.

The number of packages available is limited and available while supplies last on a first come, first serve basis. Event package and content are not subject to discounts. Appearances are subject to space and time availability and are not guaranteed. Tickets are non-refundable. Event information subject to change without notice.

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Filed: Disney's Hollywood Studios, MagicBands, MyMagic+, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

March 2015 Merchandise Events at the Disneyland Resort

posted on February 25th, 2015 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


If you are planning a trip to the Disneyland Resort this March, here are a few quick tips on some of the merchandise events you don’t want to miss!

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March 7: Add the limited edition hand-painted Ink & Paint cel ‘Jungle High Jinks’ featuring Skipper Goofy to your collection! Ink & Paint artists will be on hand for a special signing from 9–11a.m. at Disneyana, as part of the artist showcase. Note: The cel will be available in a variety of formats including Unframed, Framed, Framed Cel with Postcard and Framed Cel with Postcard and Pin. Learn more here. Not able to make it? Take advantage of a special purchase opportunity now through March 31, 2015. Applicable tax and shipping fees apply. Order now here!

March 7: Join us for a special artist showcase as we celebrate the release of some of the newest pieces by artists Steve Adams, Dave Avanzino, Jeremy Fulton, Daniel Killen, Paul Lopez, Bridget McCarty, Miss Mindy and Larry Nikolai. Meet the artists from 9–11 a.m. at Disneyana on Main Street, U.S.A., at Disneyland park. Learn more here.

March 12: Something ‘charm’ing awaits you from the Disney Parks Collection│PANDORA. What, you ask? Keep watching, fellow author Steven Miller will have all the details.

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March 14: Take part in a special artist showcase as we release new pieces by artists Michelle Bickford, Ben Burch, Jeff Granito and Jeremiah Ketner from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. at WonderGround Gallery in the Downtown Disney District. Learn more here.

March 14–15: If you have been waiting for just the right time to order one of artist Dave Avanzino’s Custom Letter Plaques, you’re in luck! Dave will be appearing from 11 a.m. – 7 p.m., each day, at Disneyana inside Disneyland park. Learn more here.

March 14–15: Join us as we welcome Ben Burch from 2-5 p.m., each day, at WonderGround Gallery in the Downtown Disney District. Learn more here.

March 27–29: Precious Moments doll designer and artist Linda Rick will be on hand from noon to 10 p.m., each day, at World of Disney Store in the Downtown Disney District, as we celebrate the release of her Spring collection, among other fan favorites! Learn more here.

March 27 – April 5: We have ‘egg’-citing news. But you’ll have to wait and see. Keep watching the Disney Parks Blog.

March 28: Are you a fan of Ridley Pearson? Be among the first to pick up two of his newest releases from the Kingdom Keepers series The Return: Disney Lands and The Syndrome. Meet Ridley from 10 a.m. – noon at Disneyana on Main Street, U.S.A., at Disneyland park or from 2–4 p.m. at World of Disney Store in the Downtown Disney District. Learn more here.

March 28–29: Meet ACME Archives artist Steve Barton, who will be on hand for a special appearance and signing of his latest pieces from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m., each day, at Off the Page in Disney California Adventure park. Learn more here.

Which events have made your list of things to do?

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Downtown Disney District, Hotels & Resorts

Luck is on Your Disney Side this March at Disney Parks

posted on February 24th, 2015 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


This March, think green and luck is sure to be on your Disney Side! Here are a few ways you can celebrate St. Patrick’s Day at Disney Parks.

Look for a specialty gourmet apple inspired by St. Patrick’s Day: dipped in caramel, enrobed in sweet milk chocolate, decorated with green sanding sugar and yellow jelly beans topped with a marshmallow hat.

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Your luck continues with the re-introduction of March’s Triple Chocolate gourmet apple. This chocolatey confection has been dipped in creamy caramel, enrobed in sweet milk chocolate, rolled in a mixture of semi-sweet chocolate chips and white chocolate chips and drizzled with milk chocolate, dark chocolate and white chocolate. Fun Fact: This apple has been the #1 favorite among you, our Disney Parks fans for the past two years. Will its luck continue or will you choose another? Only time will tell. Mark your calendar for March 1, as these divinely delectable treats will go fast. Find them at Candy Palace on Main Street, U.S.A., in Disneyland park; Trolley Treats on Buena Vista Street in Disney California Adventure park; and Marceline’s Confectionery in the Downtown Disney District.

Perhaps our ‘lucky’ Mickey Mouse plush will help you find that pot of gold you’ve been looking for and the luck of the Irish will be on your side. This year’s brand-new St. Patrick’s Day pin features none other than Jessica Rabbit — a good luck charm.

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Don’t miss out — The plush and pin are available now at select locations at the Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts!

Which Disney Parks merchandise will be lucky enough to go home with you?

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disney Dining, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Downtown Disney District

Top ‘Cinderella’-Inspired Items from Disney Parks

posted on February 15th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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With the 65th Anniversary of Walt Disney’s “Cinderella,” I’m reminded of my younger sister who loved Cinderella. I remember her listening to a 33 ½ long playing record that had scenes from the animated film printed on both sides of the album. Today, her childhood bedroom in Ohio still has reminders of Cinderella with small figurines and framed prints. She found many of those items during visits to Walt Disney World Resort in the 1980s and 1990s. I thought today was a good day to share some of my favorite Cinderella-themed items currently found Disney Parks.

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To celebrate this anniversary, the Disney pin team released a limited edition pin that has an edition size of 2,000. Look for it in select pin locations at Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts.

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Costume dresses and accessories are some of the most popular Cinderella items at Disney Parks. Little ones ages 3-12 can also be magically transformed into Cinderella at the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique locations at Disneyland park, Magic Kingdom Park, and Downtown Disney Marketplace. I bet my sister wishes she had these options when she was a child!

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Speaking of Downtown Disney Marketplace, I stopped by Arribas Brothers to view an amazing Cinderella Castle Sculpture. The limited sculpture is detailed in hand-enameled metal and is set with 28,255 Swarovski crystals. The retail for this item is $37,500 and it can be found online.

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Finally, I have a sneak preview of a graphic MagicBand that is coming this spring. This Cinderella-themed retail MagicBand is similar to the Belle and Ariel MagicBands we released in January. While I don’t have a confirmed release date for this open edition item, the MagicBand development team thought it was the perfect thing for this Cinderella story.

Here is a gallery of other things I found including custom phone cases at D-Tech on Demand in the Marketplace Co-Op at Downtown Disney Marketplace, dolls, mugs and the Cinderella Castle playset.

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Filed: Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Downtown Disney, Magic Kingdom, MagicBands, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

First Look at New Items for Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend 2015 at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on February 10th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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I’m looking forward to the Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend 2015 at Walt Disney World Resort that will be held February 19-22. My fiancée will be participating in the Glass Slipper Challenge, so I’m excited to cheer for her and other runners throughout the weekend. She recently asked me about the merchandise that will be offered during the event, so I visited the merchandise events team to get a sneak preview.

A Variety of Apparel Items with the Princess Half Marathon Logo Will Debut During the Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend 2015 A Variety of Apparel Items with the Princess Half Marathon Logo Will Debut During the Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend 2015

Like previous year’s events, we will offer a variety of apparel items with the Princess Half Marathon logo including T-shirts, jackets, tank tops and headwear. There will also be drinkware, pins and a necklace. I like the colorful new ear hat with an attached veil. There will also be an ear hat with Olaf for the Kids’ Races.

You may recall that we released a blue, runDisney-themed retail MagicBand during the Walt Disney World Marathon weekend in January. I’m happy to share that item will return along with a new pink MagicBand. Both of these items are limited release and will have a retail of $24.95 each. They can be “linked later” which makes them perfect gifts for someone training for a future runDisney race at Walt Disney World Resort.

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For those participating in the Glass Slipper Challenge, you will also find apparel and home goods. I think the taglines on the backs of both running jackets are great!

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We will also release a variety of Sweaty Bands and Bondi Bands containing event logos.

The D-Tech on Demand boutique in the Marketplace Co-Op at Downtown Disney Marketplace will also offer unique artwork for guests. You can create and customize a case for the following mobile phones: iPhone 4/4S, iPhone 5/5S/5C, iPhone 6/6+, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Samsung Galaxy S4 and Samsung Galaxy S5.

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Finally, we’ll have a few new Disney Princess-themed Dooney & Bourke handbags designed by Disney Design Group. Select bags will contain a specially designed Princess Half Marathon 2015 hangtag.

These items and more will be released at the runDisney Health & Fitness Expo at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. The Expo will be open during the following times:

  • Thursday, February 19 – 10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
  • Friday, February 20 – 9:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, February 21 – 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

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Filed: Downtown Disney, MagicBands, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

First Look at New Products Coming to 2015 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival at Epcot

posted on February 10th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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We are about a month away from the start of the 2015 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival at Epcot. Since winter weather blankets most of North America, I figured a look ahead to spring was a perfect idea. I recently dug up details about new items guests will see starting March 4 when this annual festival returns to Walt Disney World Resort.

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The merchandise events team has created a variety of items especially for this event including apparel, drinkware, accessories and more. This year, the Sorcerer Mickey topiary takes center stage as the main logo on several items including a coffee mug, magnet, and tote bag (the mug features a hidden broom topiary image inside). I love the new topiary-inspired headband with a Sorcerer’s hat and a gardening hat with mouse ears.

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The Disney pin team created several limited edition pins featuring the topiaries that will be found throughout the theme park including the new Anna and Elsa topiaries inspired by Disney’s “Frozen”.

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Olaf from Disney’s “Frozen” will join Mickey and Minnie Mouse as new garden decorations (the thought of Olaf next to the rain gauge makes me laugh!).

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Finally, we will release a new Dooney & Bourke collection designed by Disney Design Group artist Paola Gutierrez. This black-and-white pattern shows silhouettes of Disney characters riding vintage bicycles (you may recall seeing the artwork in this story from early January. Select bags released during the Festival will include a specially designed hangtag. There are no immediate plans to carry these bags at Disneyland Resort or on our Disney Parks online store; they will only be found at Epcot during this initial release.

These items will be released at the Festival Center, a themed shopping and demonstration area located between Mission: SPACE and Universe of Energy pavilions at Epcot. This year, the Festival Center will be open Friday-Sunday during the Festival Weekends. Items will also be found in other merchandise locations in Future World and World Showcase.

Stay tuned as I’ll provide a first look inside the Festival Center around the start of the event in March. I’ll also have details about a new retail MagicBand created for this event that you won’t want to let go.

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Filed: Epcot, Special Events, Walt Disney World Resort

PANDORA Jewelry and Other Gift Ideas from Disney Parks for Valentine’s Day 2015

posted on February 3rd, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


With Valentine’s Day only a few days away, I wanted to offer a few gift ideas from Disney Parks.

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PANDORA Jewelry - Last fall, we introduced charms inspired by some of Disney’s most beloved characters as part of the Disney Parks Collection | PANDORA. As part of its first assortment, we introduced 25 charms, with an additional 16 styles, including a Disney Parks bracelet, found only at Disney Parks. The best places to find these jewelry items are at Uptown Jewelers in Magic Kingdom Park at Walt Disney World Resort and at La Mascarade d’Orleans in New Orleans Square at Disneyland park. Stay tuned in the coming weeks, as I’ll give you a first look at some new charms arriving for spring.

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Apparel - Mickey and Minnie Mouse celebrate the season of love with four new shirts created especially for Disney Parks. I found these items at TrenD located in Downtown Disney Marketplace in Florida.

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D-Tech on Demand - Guests can create custom phone cases with new Mickey and Minnie Mouse artwork at D-Tech on Demand in the Marketplace Co-Op. We offer cases for the following phones: iPhone 4/4S, iPhone 5/5S/5C, iPhone 6/6+, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Samsung Galaxy S4 and Samsung Galaxy S5.

MagicBand-its – Add some love to your MagicBand with Mickey Mouse heart-shaped MagicBand-its. These small accessories can attach to the side of any MagicBand.

Vinylmation – The Vinylmation Eachez for Valentine’s Day this year has an edition size of 2,500. The Mickey Mouse figure is the more common figure while Minnie Mouse is rarer to find.

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Be My Villaintine – The pin team is releasing the “Be My Villaintine” mystery set on February 12. This 13-pin collection has 10 known pins and three mystery chaser pins. Each box contains one randomly selected pin. Guests may also find a limited edition pin featuring Anna and Kristoff from Disney’s “Frozen.”

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Duffy the Disney Bear and Disney Tsum Tsum – Duffy the Disney Bear is dressed in his Valentine’s Day best this year in a new 9-inch plush. I liked the idea of giving your significant other a Disney Tsum Tsum of the Little Green Men (you have been “chosen” to be my Valentine.) Finally, I love this ceramic Orange Bird figure which can now be found in Adventureland at Magic Kingdom Park at Walt Disney World.

There are some additional gift ideas that can be found on our Disney Parks online store.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

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Filed: Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Downtown Disney, Magic Kingdom, MagicBands, MyMagic+, Walt Disney World Resort

Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration Merchandise Art Revealed

posted on January 30th, 2015 by Michelle Harker, Manager, Merchandise Marketing & Communications, Disneyland Resort


The countdown to the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration is under way! I have the scoop on all of the merchandise hitting stores in May 2015 at the Disneyland Resort. Here’s your first look at the dazzling new art that will appear on three celebration collections and more than 500 merchandise items, including apparel, accessories, headwear, home décor, souvenirs, toys, pins, D-Tech, collectibles and more.

When I think about a diamond, words like timeless, brilliant and eternal come to mind, which is exactly what our artists envisioned, too. Recently, I had the opportunity to chat with Disney Design Group Creative Manager Cody Reynolds about the 60th anniversary, their inspirations and what our Disney fans can expect to find.

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The ‘Character’ collection focuses on the characters, attractions and the rich history of the resort. “The palette is retro in style but has a slightly modern twist,” said Cody. “We thought about diamonds as a precious heirloom that can be passed down through generations or can be a promise of a bright new future. We wanted the art to speak to the special moments and memories that our fans have shared over the years, but we also wanted to celebrate the bright, amazing future still ahead and the generations of guests that will continue to share in the experience.” Artist Tip: The art is a timeline with each panel representing a fifteen year span. It begins in black and white (a nod to when Disneyland was first introduced), and slowly transitions becoming more and more colorful with the inclusion of notable characters and icons that denote the timeframe and their debut.

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The ‘Castle’ collection is quite dynamic and I think you’ll find the sparkling blue and silver hues almost hypnotizing. “We wanted to capture the heart of Disneyland and the love that so many people have for it,” said Cody. “Sleeping Beauty Castle to us is that heart. A centerpiece you can find day or night, glistening with magical diamond dust.” Accompanying this iconic symbol are none other than Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse, who are as beloved and precious as any diamond you can find.

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The ‘Diamond’ collection can be described in one word: stunning. The black, gray and silver tones are simple, classic and elegant. “We wanted to create a line based on the shape and qualities of an actual diamond, multi-faceted, unique and endlessly reflective,” says Cody, “it’s what Disneyland represents to so many of us. It gave our artists the opportunity to create rare and special pieces and provide something magical to our guests that we hope will last forever.”

As you can see, there are so many things to share with you and even more stories to tell. In the coming months you’ll get your first look at some of the amazing merchandise lined up for you, including cool must-have items that I can guarantee you won’t want to live without. Also keep an eye out for glimpses of rare, limited edition, high-end items that will make your jaws drop.

Join the countdown to this momentous occasion in Disney history with a special series of pins featuring memorable Walt Disney moments and quotes.

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These pins will release each month, beginning January 31 through July 2015. Curious to see what’s inside these diamond shaped pins or when they will be released? Learn more here.

Are you excited to see more of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration merchandise headed your way?

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Filed: Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort

Hollywood Tower Hotel Authentic Merchandise Drops Into Disney Parks on February 13, 2015

posted on January 26th, 2015 by Steven Miller, Merchandise Communications Manager


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Last summer, I gave you a first look at a new merchandise collection called “Hollywood Tower Hotel Authentic” that was inspired by the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror attraction at Disney Parks. Today, I’m excited to announce that this line will drop into Disney Parks starting Friday, February 13 (what a perfect day!). These new products will be found inside Tower Hotel Gifts in both Disney California Adventure park at Disneyland Resort and Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort. I recently visited the merchandise presentation offices at Disney’s Hollywood Studios where I found a display of several new items.

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The merchandise presentation team set up a display to show what Tower Hotel Gifts may look like when the product is set. They told me they will be making adjustments to props, fixtures and lighting in the shops to complement the new merchandise.

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Disney Design Group artists were inspired by the Haunted Mansion Authentic program released last year when designing this artwork. You will notice similar design elements such as the use of vintage advertisements. The Hollywood Tower Hotel logo was also included on several items that could have been sold in the hotel gift shop before that one stormy night long ago.

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I love the tote bag that looks like vintage luggage and the bellhop cap is perfect! I was glad to see the bell was updated with new artwork (you can see the difference in this story from July 2013).

Guests will also find new apparel items for adults and kids. My son will be beyond thrilled that there will be a kid’s T-shirt with a character from his favorite episode.

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In addition to apparel and other souvenirs, the Disney pin team will release some new open edition pins as part of this collection.

Finally, I invite you to meet some of the Disney Design Group artists behind this collection on Friday, February 13. This event will be held at Tower Hotel Gifts inside Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Disney Artists Tyler Dumas, Brian Blackmore, Richard Terpstra and Quynh Kimball are scheduled to attend.

The Twilight Zone® is a registered trademark of CBS, Inc. and used with permission pursuant to a license with CBS, Inc.

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disney's Hollywood Studios, Disneyland Resort, Walt Disney World Resort