Space Mountain at Magic Kingdom Park

First Look: Shanghai Disneyland Model Unveiled

posted on March 6th, 2013 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Earlier today at The Walt Disney Company Annual Meeting of Shareholders, Disney chairman and CEO Bob Iger unveiled the first image of a model of Shanghai Disneyland Park that we just knew you’d want to see.
Model of Shanghai Disneyland Park

The image shows a portion of the Shanghai Disneyland model and its beautiful 11-acre green space at the center of the park. You also get a closer look at the unique design and scale of Enchanted Storybook Castle, the iconic central attraction of the theme park.

During today’s meeting, Bob said the one-of-a-kind destination will be authentically Disney and distinctly Chinese. “We believe this will be one of the most spectacular Disney experiences yet – and an important part of our future,” he said. “We look forward to opening the gates at the end of 2015 and welcoming the first of the millions of guests who will enjoy Shanghai Disneyland for generations to come.”

On opening day, Shanghai Disney Resort will include Shanghai Disneyland, two themed hotels, a dining and entertainment venue, recreational facilities, a lake and associated parking and transportation hubs.

Tom Staggs, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, said, “We are incredibly excited about the developments and progress of the Disney resort in Shanghai, one of the world’s most vibrant cities. Shanghai Disney Resort will bring a classic Disney Parks experience to mainland China and will immerse Chinese guests in a whole new world of creativity, imagination and adventure that only Disney can deliver.”

Be sure and check back here on the Disney Parks Blog for more updates on Shanghai Disneyland.

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The Wonderful World of Disney Parks and Resorts with Tom Staggs

posted on August 20th, 2011 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


Tom Staggs, Chairman, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, Presents The Wonderful World of Disney Parks and Resorts at D23 Expo

Tom Staggs, Chairman, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, just finished his presentation to Disney fans at D23 Expo in Anaheim, Calif. He took us on a tour through the wonderful world of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, including a behind-the-scenes peek at the Magic Kingdom Fantasyland expansion at Walt Disney World Resort, new renderings of the Enchanted Storybook Castle at Shanghai Disneyland and the 1920s transformation of Buena Vista Street at Disney California Adventure.

Tom Staggs, Chairman, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, Presents The Wonderful World of Disney Parks and Resorts at D23 Expo

We also got a special look at Aulani that included a group of keiki dancers singing and dancing in authentic costumes, an update from Kathy Mangum, Executive Producer, Walt Disney Imagineering, on the progress of the Cars Land construction at Disney California Adventure park and the addition of Fantasy Faire at Disneyland park, which is a re-imagination of the Carnation Plaza Gardens area.

Walt promised guests Disneyland would never be complete and today Tom showed us that Disney Imagineers have followed in Walt’s footsteps as they continue to evolve our parks with new characters, stories, attractions, entertainment and other immersive experiences.

Follow @D23Expo on Twitter for more live updates from all areas of The Walt Disney Company at the expo all weekend.

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Special Thanks to D23 Expo Attendees

posted on August 19th, 2011 by Tom Staggs, Chairman, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts


Thanks to all of you for your responses. Your passion, energy and affection for our parks and resorts is the reason we do what we do so I appreciate your feedback. I know many of you were hoping for announcements regarding new projects from Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, especially at Walt Disney World Resort, so I wanted to take a moment to address those comments.

The projects we’ve already announced represent the largest period of growth ever in Disney Parks’ history. We’re working hard to create new and exciting experiences for our guests around the world and while the timing isn’t always right to announce another big project, we like to use opportunities like the D23 Expo to update fans like you on the great progress we’re making. We have several incredible projects currently in the works and look forward to sharing more information with all of you in the weeks and months ahead, including new details regarding Downtown Disney in Florida.

Greetings from the D23 Expo! Earlier today I shared the Anaheim Convention Center stage with Disneyland President George Kalogridis and some of our senior Imagineers for a behind-the-scenes look at several of the incredible projects currently underway at Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. As many of you know, we are in the middle of the largest expansion period in our history so while we didn’t have time to talk about everything, we were able to update some of our biggest fans with the latest news from Walt Disney World, Shanghai Disney Resort, Aulani and Disneyland Resort.

For the D23 members who were able to attend the show, I want to thank you for the incredibly warm welcome that our team received. If you weren’t able to make it, we hope you enjoy the highlights from the presentation posted here on the Disney Parks blog.

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Sneak Peek: Enchanted Storybook Castle at Shanghai Disneyland

posted on August 19th, 2011 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


In April, we officially broke ground on Shanghai Disney Resort, our sixth resort destination around the world and our third in Asia. That’s when Tom Staggs, Chairman, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, shared a few early renderings of the resort.

Today we’ve got more to share. At the D23 Expo, Tom and Bob Weis, Executive Vice President, Creative, Walt Disney Imagineering, updated us on the progress being made on the resort and gave us a sneak peek at the new Enchanted Storybook Castle.

An ornate archway provides a grand entry into Enchanted Storybook Castle, the inspirational icon of Shanghai Disneyland.  Its soaring spires make this the largest Disney castle ever built.

In the heart of Enchanted Storybook Castle is a magnificent winding staircase that leads guests on a “Once Upon a Time Adventure,” featuring the Disney Princesses.

The Enchanted Storybook Castle is going to be the largest and most immersive castle at any Disney park around the world and it will be the first of our castles not dedicated to a specific princess because it represents all of them. Inside, guests will be able to explore the multi-level castle, which will feature a princess meet and greet, the first ever Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique princess makeover experience inside a castle and Once Upon a Time Adventure, a large-scale, walkthrough experience. Also for the first time, the castle will be part of a boat ride attraction that will be one of the anchor experiences of Fantasyland.

A Rendering from the new dark ride that will be part of Shanghai Disneyland’s Enchanted Storybook Castle.

Check out this tour of the Enchanted Storybook Castle.

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Shanghai Disney Resort Groundbreaking Ceremony Marks Historic Day

posted on April 8th, 2011 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


UPDATE – New video added below of the Shanghai Disney Resort groundbreaking ceremony.

Last night, we made history at The Walt Disney Company when we officially broke ground on the Shanghai Disney Resort and we couldn’t be more excited. Did you see the new castle art? Today, we’re continuing the celebration with a first look at the groundbreaking ceremony that was authentically Disney and distinctly Chinese – just as the park promises to be.

Shanghai Disneyland Resort Groundbreaking Ceremony

The ceremony featured Mickey Mouse dressed in a traditional Chinese costume, a 50-voice Shanghai children’s choir, a female soloist singing in Mandarin and traditional Chinese drum music.

Shanghai Disney Resort Groundbreaking Ceremony Shanghai Disney Resort Groundbreaking Ceremony Shanghai Disney Resort Groundbreaking Ceremony Shanghai Disney Resort Groundbreaking Ceremony
Shanghai Disney Resort Groundbreaking Ceremony Shanghai Disney Resort Groundbreaking Ceremony Shanghai Disney Resort Groundbreaking Ceremony Shanghai Disney Resort Groundbreaking Ceremony

After the entertainment, President and CEO of The Walt Disney Company Bob Iger and Chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Tom Staggs were joined by Shanghai Party Secretary Yu Zhengsheng and Shanghai Mayor Han Zheng to officially break ground on the project.

The resort will include a Magic Kingdom-style park called Shanghai Disneyland, two themed hotels, a large dining and entertainment venue, recreational facilities and more. There will be all-new attractions and experiences tailored specifically for the people of China at the park. And yes, expect to see several themed lands with iconic Disney attractions.

The new Shanghai Disney Resort is slated to open in approximately five years. Check back here on the Disney Parks Blog for more updates in upcoming months.

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Breaking Ground on Shanghai Disney Resort

posted on April 7th, 2011 by Tom Staggs, Chairman, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts


Art Rendering of Shanghai Disney Resort

I’m writing to you from Shanghai where Bob Iger and I are just about to take the stage for a very special ceremony. In just a few minutes we will officially break ground on the Shanghai Disney Resort.

This is truly a defining moment in our company’s history. We will now begin construction on this exciting new site and cause our creative concepts to leap from the drawing boards and become a wonderful new resort where friends and families can visit and play and create memories that they’ll never forget.

Art Rendering of Shanghai Disney Resort

With Shanghai Disney Resort, we have the chance to introduce the Disney Parks experience to an entirely new group of guests. Scheduled to open in about five years, our new resort in Shanghai will include things that you know and love about a Disney theme park such as Disney characters, attractions and storytelling… but it will also feature all-new experiences and stories that were inspired by and created for the people of China. The best way to describe this new resort is authentically Disney, yet distinctly Chinese.

Art Rendering of Shanghai Disney Resort

Shanghai Disneyland will be the name of the theme park itself, but the property will also have two themed hotels, a venue for retail, dining and entertainment, a wonderful sparkling lagoon and some outdoor recreation areas.

We look forward to sharing more details with you right here on the Disney Parks Blog. Until then, I would like to thank everyone from both Disney and the Shanghai Shendi Group who have worked so tirelessly to make the dream of building a Disney resort in Shanghai a reality.

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Disney – Shanghai Theme Park Project Update

posted on November 3rd, 2009 by Thomas Smith, Social Media Director, Disney Parks


We have exciting news tonight. The Walt Disney Company has released information concerning the Shanghai theme park project and we wanted to share it with you first on The Disney Parks Blog. Here’s the news release:

THE WALT DISNEY COMPANY REACHES ANOTHER MAJOR MILESTONE
ON SHANGHAI THEME PARK PROJECT

BURBANK, Calif. – November 3, 2009 – The Walt Disney Company today announced that the Project Application Report (PAR) for a Disney theme park in the Pudong district of Shanghai has received approval from the relevant authorities of the central government of China.

“China is one of the most dynamic, exciting and important countries in the world, and this approval marks a very significant milestone for The Walt Disney Company in mainland China,” said Robert A. Iger, president and CEO of The Walt Disney Company.

The PAR approval will enable Disney and its Shanghai partners to move forward toward a final agreement to build and operate the park and begin preliminary development work. Upon completion of the final agreement, the project’s initial phase would include a Magic Kingdom-style theme park with characteristics tailored to the Shanghai region and other amenities consistent with Disney’s destination resorts worldwide.

Shanghai, China

About The Walt Disney Company China
The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS), together with its subsidiaries and affiliates, is a diversified international family entertainment enterprise with five business segments and is a Dow 30 company with revenues of nearly $38 billion in its most recently reported fiscal year. Our first animation screened in China in the 1930s and today our long association continues with offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou with over 600 employees.

About Walt Disney Parks and Resorts
Walt Disney Parks and Resorts are where families experience and enjoy the magic of Disney’s beloved characters and where dreams come true. More than 50 years ago, Walt Disney created a new kind of entertainment families could experience together, immersed in detailed atmospheres and vibrant storytelling. His vision now includes a collection of five of the world’s leading family vacation destinations – Disneyland Resort, Anaheim, Calif.; Walt Disney World Resort, Lake Buena Vista, Fla.; Tokyo Disney Resort, Urayasu, Chiba, Japan; Disneyland Paris, Marne-la-Vallée, France; and Hong Kong Disneyland Resort, located on Lantau Island. In addition, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts includes the world-class Disney Cruise Line; Disney Vacation Club, with 10 resorts and more than 400,000 members; Adventures by Disney, a guided group vacation experience to some of the world’s most popular destinations; and Walt Disney Imagineering, which creates and designs all Disney parks, resorts and attractions.

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