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  • Opinion/photos from HLDK Preview at EPCOT

    Yesterday was a lovely day in Orlando and I headed out to EPCOT to check out the new HKDL Preview Center in China.

    Along the way, I got a chance to preview a little bit of the new gardens for the upcoming Flower Festival this April 15th (on TDL's 22nd aniversary Also was hoping to go on 'Soarin' but it was at that time close, so no soaring for me today...

    After checking out and drooling over the lovely new "Happiest Celebration" merchandise now on sale at MouseGear (and later finding it again at DTD's WOD where I dropped a ridiculous amount of money on these new collectibles and getting my puny 10% AP discount, thank you very much WDW), I finally made my way to China, enjoying the cool breeze and late afternoon Sun on my way there.

    One thing I noticed first and foremost is the lack of a sign outside China advertizing this new exhibit. The front chinese archway is under rehab so it doesn't help that the entire front of the pavillion is blocked off. Anyways... making my way to the exhibit, only the small marquee sign is visible. Upon entering the exhibit, I came uopn a love huge rendering of HKDL's Main Street USA. From there, as I made my way counter clockwise, I enjoyed the many aspects of the exhibits, which is not as extensive as I had hoped but it does serve to pick my interest a bit more and maybe appreciate this park for what it appears to be: elegant park.

    The only things that disappointed me a bit was that most of the photos and renderings on display here are items we have already seen at so many other Disney fan sites and even in the official HKDL website. Also...there were NO video monitor exhibits that would show construction updates and such other HKDL developments or milestones, such as the ground breaking ceremony or castle topping ceremony. These milestones are shown briefly via photos that (again) we have already seen before. Also...there were NO CMs in the exhibit at all, so no one was available to explain further or answer questions from guests. More horrific to me was also the lack of a pre-opening merchandise stand. No tees or pins or keyrings that would read "HKDL-opening sept 15th 2005" anywhere. Zip. Nada in the merchandise dept. ..and believe me... I would have love to own some of those renderings in post card format at least.

    As for the exhibits..it does make a great show and does give curous guests an idea of what is there to be seen come sept 2005. At least I overheard one guest commenting to his wife..."oh honey, we are going to have to go to HK!!" so I guess that's one point in favor of Disney and what they are trying to accomplish with this preview exhibit.

    I did learn of some things that I didn't know about the park, and also saw some artwork I had not seen before, but all in all, the displays are as basic as possible and lack a lot of indepth information, but still made me more curious than ever to discover the place and anticipate what's in store. It also made another concern of mine quite clear... as it is frightening to find out about the very few attractions this park will offer on opening day. I tried my best to look closely at the renderings and models on display but my fears are true (at least for what I saw), the park will be a pedestrian park for the most part, and I sure hope that Imagineering's magic in regards to the park's cosmetic looks and themeing will be enough to carry HKDL thru it's first few years. They definitely need more attractions here if they are to satisfy the masses that will most likely decend upon HKDL after it's opening.

    With that said and done...I invite you to take a look at my photos from the exhibit, and do take the time to read captions so you too can learn of somethings I discovered while touring the exhibit. Enjoy.

    http://albums.photo.epson.com/j/Albu...a=31714348&f=0

  • #2
    Hmmmm, I wonder what the new gazebo will be used for?

    And didn't they have that Lion King stuff elsewhere in the park last year? Same topiaries, though?

    All in all, a GREAT update, TDL! Thanks very much for once again sharing your FABULOUS photos!
    -Ann

    WDW:
    July 1987 - offsite, 1-day visit to the MK; July-August 2000 - honeymoon - Port Orleans (now POFQ); May 2003 - Caribbean Beach Resort; Dec 2003 - Coronado Springs; April 2004 - Pop Century (PC) & POFQ; Sept 2004 - Animal Kingdom Lodge; May 2005 - Port Orleans Riverside; Sept 2005 - PC; Oct 2006 - POFQ; Apr 2007 - PC; July 2007 - Boardwalk Villas (WOO HOO! I was at WDW in the MK on the 20th anniversary of my first visit!); August - Sept 2007 - Old Key West; Sept 2007 - Saratoga Springs; Oct 2007 - BWV; Mar-Apr 2008 - SS

    DLR:
    Dec 2001 - Grand Californian; Jan 2005 - GC; July 2005 - HoJo Anaheim & GC; Dec 2008 - Best Western Park Place Inn



    p.s. Wanna buy a :monkey:?

    Comment


    • #3
      Hmm... interesting...

      I need to check that place out next time I go. Glad to see it's open now.

      One question though, you mean that there was no one there to answer questions, sell anything, or do anything? That's pathetic.

      Comment


      • #4
        is it just me, or does that look like the autopia attraction on the right of tomorrowland?
        http://albums.photo.epson.com/j/View...348&p=71469942
        "Walt Disney World may have more than Disneyland, but Disneyland has quality, and quality triumphs over quantity" -DL_CRAZE
        __________________________________________________________

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by DL_CRAZE
          is it just me, or does that look like the autopia attraction on the right of tomorrowland?
          http://albums.photo.epson.com/j/View...348&p=71469942
          Yes it is, but that map only shows the bridge over Tomorrowland within the park's bern and nothing else outside the train tracks perimeter. The other property map shows the entire attraction layout and guests will have to go underneath the railroad track outside the bern to go on the attraction. It should be cool once completed.

          Comment


          • #6
            Well, as usual I must say that TDLFAN's pics were terrific. Maybe you should consider becoming a photographer for Disney. Oh wait, you'd likely have your pay cut 75%!

            Nothing in the photo essay surprised me. Almost all of the artwork and renderings I had seen before in one form or another. Again, this just confirms my beliefs that the park will be very nice to look at, but with very little substance (and as my Mom told me when I started dating many years ago, looks only get you so far). There's simply very little to do at this park, most of the attractions are very short (no AA-filled shows or rides of the 10-30 minute varieties). There are no unique attractions, no matter how Disney spins a character meet-and-greet as a major attraction. Would it have killed them to have a Mulan-themed attraction in Fantasyland?

            And what attraction did they rush into the park? Autopia ... Puhlease ... this is something that should be retired from future parks not added to them.

            And for WDW to not have trinkets for sale, brouchures on the new park and prices, plasma screens showing construction from beginning to current as well as scenes from the city and CMs to answer questions ... well, I think it speaks very poorly of Disney as a whole, the Epcot management team and even WDI.

            As for the Flower and Garden Fest, it does seem that Disney has been recycling the same topiaries for years now. Lion King characters have been around forever. Oh well, I'm still looking to checking the fest out next weekend.

            And thanks TDLFAN, once again, for these pics and the World' Fair pics (which kept me entertained tonight at work ... very kewl!)

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Bill
              One question though, you mean that there was no one there to answer questions, sell anything, or do anything? That's pathetic.
              Yes it is. There is not even a free brochure to take along as a mememto.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by WDW1974
                As for the Flower and Garden Fest, it does seem that Disney has been recycling the same topiaries for years now. Lion King characters have been around forever. Oh well, I'm still looking to checking the fest out next weekend.
                And thanks TDLFAN, once again, for these pics and the World' Fair pics (which kept me entertained tonight at work ... very kewl!)
                Yes..sadly we do get to see the same old topiaries over and over again so expect very little new except for the rumored Butterfly garden they are installing at the spot where the old satellite dishes in Future World used to be, just outside Mousegear and Test Trash. ...And here I am missing all the new stuff for this summer season at TDL beginning on the same day the Flower Festival kicks off!!! AAARRGGHH!!!!

                ..and in case anyone is wondering about those World's Fair (EXPO) pics WDW1974 is refering to... you will find them here:
                http://www.micechat.com/showthread.p...9654#post59654

                Comment


                • #9
                  Hey TDL, besides the attractions they have on the hong kong disneyland site, what other attractions are they gonna have. I know there's a theater in Fantasyland, they havent mentioned it yet.
                  "Walt Disney World may have more than Disneyland, but Disneyland has quality, and quality triumphs over quantity" -DL_CRAZE
                  __________________________________________________________

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by DL_CRAZE
                    Hey TDL, besides the attractions they have on the hong kong disneyland site, what other attractions are they gonna have. I know there's a theater in Fantasyland, they havent mentioned it yet.
                    You mean inside or outside the park?? As for the park's Fantasyland Theater, they have not announced what will be performed there as of now.. Outside DL, there will be Inspiration Lake and it will have a watercraft facilities but I am not sure if guests will be able to rent boats and do activities like that. For a complete listing of attractions, go to their official site,
                    http://www.hongkongdisneyland.com/eng/index.html

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I think it's very odd that Disney hasn't announced what's going in the F-Land Theater ... either they don't know, or are so embarrassed they don't want us to know. My first thought was Aladdin from DCA (based on them borrowing Lion King from DAK), but now I really doubt it.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Is there any more quick fix-ins going on like Autopia?
                        "Walt Disney World may have more than Disneyland, but Disneyland has quality, and quality triumphs over quantity" -DL_CRAZE
                        __________________________________________________________

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Right now at EPCOT there are a BUNCH of HKDL CMs all over the entire park... actually all over the entire resort. They are all wearing the red flags that say Proud to be a part of the HKDL Opening Team or something to that effect. All those cast members are pretty familar with what is going on at their home park, and now that they have been at wdw for a couple of weeks now... they speak english!!! yeah!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I thought that Mickey's Phillharmagic was going into the Fantasyland Theater? Wasn't it originally developed for HKDL and WDW got it before it ever opened?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by ka119
                              I thought that Mickey's Phillharmagic was going into the Fantasyland Theater? Wasn't it originally developed for HKDL and WDW got it before it ever opened?
                              No, PhilharMagic is going in one of the main buildings that flank the castle (I believe on the left side). Yes, it was originally developed for HKDL and Eisner decided it would be a cheap addition for WDW. So, no, I don't consider it a new 'unique' attraction since it's been open at WDW since 2003. And while a pleasant enough movie, it certainly isn't a signature Disney attraction.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by ka119
                                Right now at EPCOT there are a BUNCH of HKDL CMs all over the entire park... actually all over the entire resort. They are all wearing the red flags that say Proud to be a part of the HKDL Opening Team or something to that effect. All those cast members are pretty familar with what is going on at their home park, and now that they have been at wdw for a couple of weeks now... they speak english!!! yeah!
                                As they should since Hong Kong was under British ruling for decades before reverting to China in the late 90's. I have never found one Chinese in Hong Kong who didn't speak English to some degree. So that won't be a problem inside or outside the HKDL property.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  It was actually only in 2000 when HK was handed over to the Chineese.

                                  Amazing how times change, eh?

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Mickey's Philaharmagic was designed for WDW. It was designed specifically for the space in Fantayland to replace the Legand of the Lion King. But Pressler would not approve it unless another park could split the bill on the production costs. The obvious choice became HKDL because they didn't have an ops team that would object.

                                    The Fantasyland Theater will have a character show with charaters from several different films--kind of like Golden Mickey's from the Cruise Line.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Shivers!! Well, at least Golden Mickeys was the better show of the three I saw aboard the Wonder.

                                      Comment

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