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  • 12/29: New World

    A look back at 2009 in Disney World... Discuss it here...

    DIRECT ARTICLE LINK: MiceAge.com - A different look at Disney...
    "Politics is the profession whereby the inevitable is made to seem a great human achievement" - Quentin Crisp

  • #2
    Re: 12/29: New World

    I think you did a nice positive job reflecting on the past year. Unfortunately, the only things they did this year to interest me at all were the refurb of Hall of Presidents and the opening of the new restaurant at Animal Kingdom Lodge. Contrasting WDW with Disneyland Resort you find Disneyland Resort to be doing much more to please the guest. Just in the fireworks shows alone, we see the addition of Dumbo and Zero. Why couldn't WDW add them at the same time? Space Mountain in CA got GHOST GALAXY for Halloween, why not WDW? Fantasmic got Eels and a new Dragon in CA, why not WDW? Okay, I'll give American Idol some credit as it's the only real NEW attraction to open at any of the parks. But i have t say, reading both well done reports of 2009, WDW is rapidly losing me to DL Resort.

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    • #3
      Re: 12/29: New World

      None of the additions summarized in the article make me want to plan another visit. Sum of All Thrills sounds the most intrigueing.

      My next trip will likely be timed to see the Christmas decor or the Food & Wine Festival again.

      A new E-ticket attraction is what piques my interest. The changes listed in the article may be positives, but none of them are attendance drivers imo.
      My Micechat cruise trip report, Part 1:http://micechat.com/14795-disney-wonder/

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: 12/29: New World

        Wow - you go through all the effort to post a mostly positive article, and what happens? Your responders all want to point out the negatives! I want new E tickets, too, but I'm pleased at the amount of changes and upgrades in the parks. Nice article, Kevin!

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: 12/29: New World

          Originally posted by BC_DisneyGeek View Post
          Sum of All Thrills sounds the most intrigueing.
          And even that is really nothing more than Cyber Space Mountain using a new motion system. Even uses the same software system to create the ride (but with fewer choices than Cyber Space Mountain at Disney Quest). There is nothing special about Sum of all Thrills. Lego Land has had this ride for years (and with more motion bases to increase capacity).

          Disney World is in TERRIBLE shape and getting worse by the year. We have gone twice a year for at least 10 years and it is pretty easy to see the slide in quality and entertainment value at the resort. So sad when compared to Disneyland which has actually improved substantially over that same period of time.

          Hard to believe that they are both being run by the same company. One resort is being maintained and enhanced and the other seems to be in a process of being dismantled from the inside out with only minor new enhancements which hardly make up for what has been lost.

          Disney World needs a management team that cares about it and understands what guests want. A team with an emotional attachment to the parks at least equal to their emotional attachment to guests wallets.

          (A tip to Walt Disney Parks and Resorts executive staff - time to reevaluate the team running Walt Disney World - perhaps you have positions available for them in Siberia where they can't do any more harm to your brand!)
          MiceChat 101: Be NICE! If you don't play well with others, you are in the wrong sandbox.

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          • #6
            Re: 12/29: New World

            Originally posted by danyoung View Post
            Wow - you go through all the effort to post a mostly positive article, and what happens? Your responders all want to point out the negatives! I want new E tickets, too, but I'm pleased at the amount of changes and upgrades in the parks. Nice article, Kevin!
            I agree with you as well. But, because it is DISNEY, I have bigger expectations. I expect that they will be keeping up with maintenance and make periodic upgrades that aren't meant to generate huge crowds. They used to delight and surprise with something new (big or small) several times a year. Lately, the surprise is that they are taking something away. Even the new Fantasyland expansion comes at the cost of losing Toontown Fair. Most of which, no one will miss, but really, getting rid of Mickey and Minnie's houses for a Pixie meet and greet? I'm just looking for something really exciting. A new COUNTRY at EPCOT, A new film at SOARIN', a party that isn't a rip-off. Here's hoping 2010 brings something.

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            • #7
              Re: 12/29: New World

              Originally posted by danyoung View Post
              Wow - you go through all the effort to post a mostly positive article, and what happens? Your responders all want to point out the negatives! I want new E tickets, too, but I'm pleased at the amount of changes and upgrades in the parks. Nice article, Kevin!
              I specifically said the changes sounded positive, but I disagree with Kevin's assertion that someone reading the list would be enticed enough to want to plan a trip.

              I'm not shelling out the big bucks to visit WDW based on a list of minor improvements, positive as they may be.

              I'll go to Disneyland in the next few years to see World of Colour, The Little Mermaid, and Carsland. I'm supposed to want to visit WDW because they added lights to the People Mover?
              My Micechat cruise trip report, Part 1:http://micechat.com/14795-disney-wonder/

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              • #8
                Re: 12/29: New World

                Originally posted by Dustysage View Post
                There is nothing special about Sum of all Thrills. Lego Land has had this ride for years (and with more motion bases to increase capacity).

                Disney World is in TERRIBLE shape and getting worse by the year.
                Bummer, it sounded good.

                It's a shame they're allowing WDW to deteriorate so much. I haven't been frequently, so my experience has been largely positive, but I certainly will take your word for it.

                For somone like me who only goes every few years, it's not so noticeable. If I saw the Christmas decor I couldn't tell you what was missing or cut back on, I'd just enjoy it.

                For someone going regularly, the decline in quality will be more noticeable. If they're going to push DVC so strongly, they should maintain standards in the parks better. Annual visitors are going to notice the decline, and they're just going to get more and more vocal about it.
                My Micechat cruise trip report, Part 1:http://micechat.com/14795-disney-wonder/

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: 12/29: New World

                  Originally posted by Dustysage View Post
                  (A tip to Walt Disney Parks and Resorts executive staff - time to reevaluate the team running Walt Disney World - perhaps you have positions available for them in Siberia where they can't do any more harm to your brand!)
                  Absolutely Hilarious! I could not agree more! Well said!:clap::yea::clap:

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: 12/29: New World

                    Originally posted by Dustysage
                    Disney World is in TERRIBLE shape and getting worse by the year.
                    Originally posted by BC_DisneyGeek View Post
                    I haven't been frequently, so my experience has been largely positive, but I certainly will take your word for it.
                    Why take any single person's word for it? I agree that there have been some declines, but the place is by no means in terrible shape. I was just there for my birthday in September, and had an AWESOME time. If I wanted to sit down and list all of the things that have declined, well I might get a little bummed. But if I wanted to go to a place I love and see stuff I enjoy seeing and eat food that's better than anything I ever eat at home - well, that's the experience I had, and it was totally worth it.

                    I am in no way saying that Dustysage is incorrect - he has the right to his opinion, same as me. But his and my take on the current state of WDW are vastly different.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: 12/29: New World

                      Originally posted by danyoung View Post
                      Why take any single person's word for it? I agree that there have been some declines, but the place is by no means in terrible shape. I was just there for my birthday in September, and had an AWESOME time. If I wanted to sit down and list all of the things that have declined, well I might get a little bummed. But if I wanted to go to a place I love and see stuff I enjoy seeing and eat food that's better than anything I ever eat at home - well, that's the experience I had, and it was totally worth it.

                      I am in no way saying that Dustysage is incorrect - he has the right to his opinion, same as me. But his and my take on the current state of WDW are vastly different.
                      I'm glad you had a good time, but I can tell you (being an old-timer from way back) WDW has definitely fallen from grace. Your comment about meals is atrocious. 10/15 years ago I would have agreed with you, but there is no way I can justify dropping $150/$200 for a meal at WDW when I can get a better meal with more variety at an off-site restaurant for less than half the price. Back in the late 80's trough late 90's the sit down restaurant food offerings at WDW were tremendous. My wife and I used to love the Brown Derby at DHS. Since the Holidays coincide with our anniversary, this was our place of choice to dine. Two years ago was our last dining experience there and it was terrible. The variety on the menu had been cut by at least a third and the meal itself (quality/presentation) was horrendous for the price we paid.

                      For crying out loud, I spent $65 for my family of 5 at Cosmic Rays fast food eatery just this past September. That blew my mind. I could've taken my family to Red Lobster and gotten a better meal for a few bucks more.

                      WDW, for the prices they charge all around, definitely does not live up to what it used too.

                      Kevin, Dusty, you just go right ahead and continue knocking current WDW management in the mouth cause you are both correct that a change is way overdue!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: 12/29: New World

                        I went to Disney World for Christmas this year, after not going for a few years. When you take a break for a few years, you can really see the decline. I found that the number of really exciting new attractions really minimal. I found that so many small wonderful things removed. (For example, there used to be a walk way in Epcot at Christmas that played Christmas music and blinked lights in time with the music. That is gone.) Illumination is the same tired program, with the same Christmas coda that was used five years ago. But this year, they left the ugly firework stand in the middle of the lake. It ruined the view. Many guests kept on asking what was that ugly black thing in the middle?

                        I think that WDW is really is bad shape. It is not getting the need improvements to draw families back at the rate in the past. I believe that is one of the reasons for the decline in attendance this year. There really was not much new to see. American Idol Experience... Please, what a bore!

                        I did hear people talk about the new expansion of Fantasyland. Guest seem to be aware something is coming. But I fear that the hype will be greater than the reality. I think that with the present economic down turn, the Disney Execs will cut back on all the little details that will make the new expansion magical.

                        The Magic Kingdom really needs a blow out, E-Ticket ride that really has guests talking. Something like Everest is for DAK or Sourin' for Epcot.

                        My personal belief that WDW is so large that you really need a new attraction for every park every year to keep the excitement up. When WDW was being built, Disneyland had a few years where not much was going on. All the money was going to WDW, and little attention was made to Disneyland with few new additions or changes were made to the park. Attendance started to suffer after a few years with the lack of improvement. If only Disney management could learn from the past. Amusement parks need to be constantly improved to grow attendance and spending. People have to feel they are getting their money's worth in terms of joy and excitement. There is really little really new coming for WDW in the near future. Give them a reason to plan a trip back next year.

                        I just wish that someone would put together a 5 year plan. I believe too much is being added because of what movie or TV show is popular this week. Those things are way to transitory to plan attractions around. Do we remember what happened to Pirate's Lair at Disneyland, for example?

                        I have to speak personally that knowing that little will be coming to WDW in the next few years, there really is not much drawing me to make the expense of a another trip to WDW, and I am a Disney Fan.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: 12/29: New World

                          Originally posted by danyoung View Post
                          Why take any single person's word for it? I agree that there have been some declines, but the place is by no means in terrible shape. I was just there for my birthday in September, and had an AWESOME time.

                          I am in no way saying that Dustysage is incorrect - he has the right to his opinion, same as me. But his and my take on the current state of WDW are vastly different.
                          I agree that "terrible" is probably too strong a word. I had a wonderful time in 2006 and 2008. They're just not wowing us with new things like they used to.

                          The Magic Kingdom is sorely overdue for a new attraction. It's the most visited of all the Disney theme parks, but has less attractions than Disneyland. The crowds are enough to justify some additions.

                          The food is definately good, but the prices are getting to be a bit much. You shouldn't be forced to use the dining plan to get a reasonable price.
                          My Micechat cruise trip report, Part 1:http://micechat.com/14795-disney-wonder/

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: 12/29: New World

                            Originally posted by Lightning509s View Post
                            Your comment about meals is atrocious. 10/15 years ago I would have agreed with you, but there is no way I can justify dropping $150/$200 for a meal at WDW when I can get a better meal with more variety at an off-site restaurant for less than half the price.
                            I'll put a meal at the California Grill up against any meal, any restaurant, anywhere on the planet. I eat at the Brown Derby maybe once a year, and have never had a bad meal or a bad experience. And for fast food it's hard to beat Cosmic Ray's, and you get Sonny Eclipse on top of it all! The Coral Reef, Bistro de Paris, Tutto Italia - there are some really great restaurants on property. Now, were the menus better in years past? Yup, especially at the Coral Reef. But I still manage to find great food and terrific experiences in WDW.

                            I don't disagree that there have been declines. The removal of the Lights of Winter from Epcot was just about criminal. I'm hoping that Lasseter or some other like minded leader will come in and start putting things in better shape. But there's a huge difference between wanting things to be better and saying that everything's all crap and not worth it. For me, that simply isn't true.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: 12/29: New World

                              Originally posted by danyoung View Post
                              Wow - you go through all the effort to post a mostly positive article, and what happens? Your responders all want to point out the negatives! I want new E tickets, too, but I'm pleased at the amount of changes and upgrades in the parks. Nice article, Kevin!
                              I guess he really took that "challenge" to heart!

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Re: 12/29: New World

                                The irony was, that particular article was already written during that micechat exchange (I'm on vacation last week and this week) - I had already planned and executed a mostly-upbeat review of the year!
                                Kevin Yee
                                MiceAge Columnist

                                I am the author of several Disney books:
                                Jason's Disneyland Almanac - a daily history of Disneyland
                                Walt Disney World Hidden History - tributes, homages, and ride remnants at WDW
                                Your Day at the Magic Kingdom
                                Mouse Trap
                                Tokyo Disney Made Easy
                                101 Things You Never Knew About Disneyland
                                Magic Quizdom (The Disneyland Trivia Book)

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                                • #17
                                  Re: 12/29: New World

                                  Originally posted by BC_DisneyGeek View Post
                                  For someone going regularly, the decline in quality will be more noticeable. If they're going to push DVC so strongly, they should maintain standards in the parks better. Annual visitors are going to notice the decline, and they're just going to get more and more vocal about it.
                                  But Disney got the money it wants from the sale of the timeshare, or in short, "the prepayment of vacations for some very long time."
                                  Prepayment on a good or service seems like a great deal, until the good or service is changed to worse. And it happens in lots of cases:
                                  1. Fitness club memberships (broken machines don't get fixed or repaired as quickly);
                                  2. AP's at DL (overcrowding due to overselling has lowered the benefit);
                                  3. Prepaid dry cleaning (only to discover that the place has closed or has a new owner who won't accept the card), etc.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Re: 12/29: New World

                                    Originally posted by KevinYee View Post
                                    The irony was, that particular article was already written during that micechat exchange (I'm on vacation last week and this week) - I had already planned and executed a mostly-upbeat review of the year!
                                    Is there an "On The Other Hand..." column forthcoming?

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Re: 12/29: New World

                                      Originally posted by danyoung View Post
                                      I'll put a meal at the California Grill up against any meal, any restaurant, anywhere on the planet. I eat at the Brown Derby maybe once a year, and have never had a bad meal or a bad experience. And for fast food it's hard to beat Cosmic Ray's, and you get Sonny Eclipse on top of it all! The Coral Reef, Bistro de Paris, Tutto Italia - there are some really great restaurants on property. Now, were the menus better in years past? Yup, especially at the Coral Reef. But I still manage to find great food and terrific experiences in WDW.

                                      I don't disagree that there have been declines. The removal of the Lights of Winter from Epcot was just about criminal. I'm hoping that Lasseter or some other like minded leader will come in and start putting things in better shape. But there's a huge difference between wanting things to be better and saying that everything's all crap and not worth it. For me, that simply isn't true.
                                      Hey Danyoung, I'm glad you had a good time. Each person bases his/her visit differently. My point is that, through the years, WDW is not offering the same experience to my family and I as in years past. I can not see giving my hard earned $$$'s to WDW year after year when they continually decrease the offerings and continue to charge premium prices for their product.

                                      Here's a good example: Just this year the Magic Kingdom did away with the character dining at the Liberty Tree tavern, but in doing so, the food prices at the restaurant remained the same. Why should I be expected to continue to pay a premium price when WDW has diminished the product? If you take something away from your venue, your prices should reflect the new experience is that not right???? Well, WDW laid a big fat egg on that one.
                                      There are literally hundreds more such atrocities that have occured and I for one have grown tired of it...

                                      Perhaps, if WDW does not course correct, you will be singing a new tune yourself...Till then, enjoy your ever diminishing experiences at WDW.
                                      Last edited by Lightning509s; 12-29-2009, 01:48 PM. Reason: spelling correction

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Re: 12/29: New World

                                        Originally posted by danyoung View Post
                                        I'll put a meal at the California Grill up against any meal, any restaurant, anywhere on the planet. I eat at the Brown Derby maybe once a year, and have never had a bad meal or a bad experience. And for fast food it's hard to beat Cosmic Ray's, and you get Sonny Eclipse on top of it all! The Coral Reef, Bistro de Paris, Tutto Italia - there are some really great restaurants on property.
                                        I can walk around DC, Chicago, NYC.. and beat any of those restaurants with almost hole in the wall places. The dining experiences used to be very unique and worthwhile in WDW. Not anymore. Limited menus, atrocious prices, and average at best food in many locations = very select choices left to enjoy.

                                        Beat Cosmic Rays? You mean walk down to my local strip mall? And pick from Wendys, Five Guys, Boston Market, etc?

                                        I'm glad Kevin did a retrospective. Most people forget how much actually went on during the year. But most of the upkeep and upgrades are missed by Kevin and others here.
                                        Check out my blog - Coreplex: Rambling from inside the Grid


                                        Am I evil? yes, I am
                                        Am I evil? I am man, yes, I am

                                        Originally posted by sleepyjeff
                                        Disneyland was meant to be sipped not chug-a-lugged

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