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Local Name:
Fantasy Land
Budget:
430M
Announced:
12 Sep 2009
Construction Start:
10 Feb 2010
Opening:
28 May 2014
Location:
Area:
4 ha
  1. research007 is offline themeparX Top Investigator
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
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    420
    Great article here with quotes from Tom Staggs, Jay Rasulo and Thierry Coup:
    http://www.foxnews.com/travel/2012/12/05/disney-world-new-fantasyland-paves-way-for-more-impressive-guest-experiences/

  2. Theme Park Insider Robert Niles review:
    http://www.themeparkinsider.com/flume/201211/3267/

  3. Little Mermaid ride POV:



  4. research007 is offline themeparX Top Investigator
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
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    USA TODAY got an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of the multifaceted attraction as well as a first look at the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train scheduled to open in early 2014.

    This family-friendly coaster, with no upside-down turns, will be the centerpiece of the expansion. "It's right there in the heart of it, which poses a bit of a construction challenge," says Tom Staggs, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. "But at the same time, (this attraction) will really complete it."

    Set on rolling countryside, it will take guests into the "mine where a million diamonds shine" while navigating 31-foot and 41-foot drops. With its patented train of vehicles mounted in cradle-like pivots to allow them to sway independently as they swing around the track, the coaster will be the first of its kind. Spanning more than 1,900 feet of track, it will give visitors a glimpse inside the dwarfs' cottage.

    Since July, the expansion has unfolded in phases, starting with Storybook Circus, which includes a water play area, gift shop, character-greeting location, roller coaster and revamped Dumbo ride that now has an indoor queue lounge. Guests receive a pager that holds their place in line. Children have a playground and adults have comfy seating while they wait.
    Source:
    http://www.freep.com/article/20121109/FEATURES07/121109018/Disney-s-New-Fantasyland-adds-whimsical-personal-touches?odyssey=nav%7Chead

  5. admin is online now Administrator
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    May 2011
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    164
    Hi Rod, thank you for posting them again. The matter raised happened due to an error that we are looking at right now.

  6. Rod Serling is offline Curious Chap
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
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    5
    I noticed the pics were broken. Not exactly sure why they're showing up as attachments, because I inserted the photos from URL, so they were just tagged inline. Nothing was attached. In any case, all of the pics and videos are in the album.

    Some of my favorites:











    Quote Originally Posted by Rod Serling View Post
    I heard about the soft opening this weekend, so I went by this afternoon with my fellow passholder buddy to check out the attractions. Here are a few pics I snapped; I have uploaded the rest (many more!) here:

    http://s567.photobucket.com/albums/ss118/yetijonesbear/Fantasyland%20Soft%20Open/

    These include Ariel's grotto, Gaston's Tavern, Be Our Guest Restaurant, The Under Sea/Little Mermaid dark ride, Belle's Library, etc., everything was open. I also have some videos that I will upload in a little bit.

  7. Rod Serling is offline Curious Chap
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    Apr 2012
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    Videos from today have finished uploading. They are available in the same place:
    http://s567.photobucket.com/albums/ss118/yetijonesbear/Fantasyland%20Soft%20Open/

  8. Join Date
    Apr 2012
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    1
    So I was the other person that went with "Rod Serling" - I just figured I would give a bit of my thoughts concerning the new area. For lack of a better method here, I will give a review of each area of interest and then provide an overall review at the end. Also, throughout, I will do my best to drop as few spoilers as possible.

    Under the Sea: Journey of the Little Mermaid - This ride is essentially a clone of the ride in California. It is, for the most part, well done. I feel there are definitely some kinks that still need to be worked out. For instance, when Ariel is singing in a specific scene, her mouth was barely moving and it definitely took you out of the ride and brought down the realism. There are some really good effects early in the ride surrounding your "descent" into the ocean and the motion on all of the characters is extremely fluid. It is amazing how far we have come from standard animatronics. Overall, a fun ride that should be done once but after doing it this once, I don't think I would wait any more than 15 minutes for the ride on repeat visits. As a sidenote, I did not get to play much with the interactive game in the queue - But from what I saw, it worked very well and will be fun for kids.

    Ariel's Grotto - This is essentially an Ariel meet-and-greet. Nothing exciting to see here really (besides Ariel). The queue is covered but still outside so it is a bit hot in Florida's October heat. There is nothing exciting in the queue itself - Just a standard line. Then, upon meeting Ariel, the room itself is a bit boring. She has a bench in the center that she sits on and invites you over to, you get your picture, and leave. That's it. No bells and whistles - You get in and get out. It would have been pretty nice if they were to have played music while meeting her or something. Otherwise, it just felt rushed and lacked the personal touches that Disney typically provides. This is something I would never have to do again on a repeat visit unless I was with people who wanted a picture with Ariel.

    Enchanted Tales with Belle - For this one, the queue is entirely outside and there were no noticeable fans. That was not the best but it ended up being worth the wait. This is 100% geared towards parents with their children. However, there are some amazing effects here that are worth going to see even if you have no kids with you. Again, more smooth animatronics, an AMAZING portal into the Beast's castle that looks great in person, some fun interactivity, and you get to be in a room of about 30 people with Belle for about 15 minutes. So it has a personal, small-scale touch to it that I have seldom felt at other Disney attractions. Overall, I would go back and see this show if I was with a group of friends who were interested but it is not something that I would go out of my way to check the times of during my many repeat visits.

    Gaston's Tavern - This building was much smaller than anticipated. However, the rooms were extremely well decorated and the Beauty and the Beast songs were on loop so it had a great feel to it. My major problem with the tavern is that there was only one choice of food - A roast pork shank. Other than that, all you could get were drinks or desserts. Granted, the pork was cooked well, but lacked a bit of flavor. I was not able to try the signature drink (LeFou's brew) because it has mango in it (which I am allergic to) but "Rod Serling" had it and had no complaints saying that he liked it better than butterbeer. So that definitely says something about the quality.

    Be Our Guest Restaurant - We were not able to go in and eat but we were allowed to go inside and look at the interior. This is the one thing that blew me away. The complexities on the outside of Beast's castle with the gargoyles and lions gave a very ominous feel that I was not expecting. Everything seemed to be larger than life (and for good reason). Upon going inside, it was absolutely gorgeous. The main corridor before the restaurant section had two separate alcoves and each one had elements which truly made me feel like I just walked into a European castle. The dining room itself was magnificent. It looked like a five star restaurant with the amazing, and enormous chandelier centerpiece. I am VERY much looking forward to going back there and eating. We have reservations early next month so hopefully the food will be as good as the decor.

    Overall - Ultimately, I feel that Disney put A LOT of work into the theming of this section and it shows. It felt like everywhere I went there were waterfalls, evergreen trees, and intricate attention to details. It really did a good job placing you into the movies (Beauty and the Beast in particular). However, I do feel that Disney took many notes from Universal's Harry Potter play book. For instance, the use of perspective on Beast's castle, the signature drink only available in Gaston's Tavern, the larger than life theming both inside Beast's castle and Eric's castle both hearkened back to being inside Hogwarts, and even the more small-scale attraction (Belle's) made me think back to the Wand shop. Do not get me wrong, I am not saying this is a bad thing to ANY degree. Disney utilizes these tools well. In my opinion, better than Universal in certain instances. And today sold me on the new area of the park. I was VERY skeptical going in because I am more of a theme park purist - I enjoy the old rides and worry whenever I hear of new stuff coming in or old stuff going out. However, today... Disney was able to make a 28 year old male feel like he was about 12. Well done... Well done indeed.

  9. Rod Serling is offline Curious Chap
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
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    I heard about the soft opening this weekend, so I went by this afternoon with my fellow passholder buddy to check out the attractions. Here are a few pics I snapped; I have uploaded the rest (many more!) here:

    http://s567.photobucket.com/albums/ss118/yetijonesbear/Fantasyland%20Soft%20Open/

    These include Ariel's grotto, Gaston's Tavern, Be Our Guest Restaurant, The Under Sea/Little Mermaid dark ride, Belle's Library, etc., everything was open. I also have some videos that I will upload in a little bit.

  10. research007 is offline themeparX Top Investigator
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
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    420
    Weeks ahead of its announced "soft opening," Walt Disney World quietly allowed guests into new portions of the Fantasyland expansion Friday for what it called a "dress rehearsal."

    Under the Sea — Journey of the Little Mermaid, Enchanted Tales With Belle, Ariel's Grotto, Gaston's Tavern and Bonjour! Village Gifts had been scheduled for a "soft opening" beginning Nov. 19. However, guests already were exploring these attractions Friday. The Be Our Guest restaurant was not open, although folks poked their heads through the iron gates and took pictures of its crowning architecture, Beast's Castle.

    There are no guarantees as to when or if the new Magic Kingdom attractions will be open on a daily basis before Nov. 19, a Disney spokesman said Friday. The grand-opening is set for Dec. 6.

    Irene Ng's vacation was enhanced by Friday's surprise opening, she said. She had planned to go to outlet malls but adjusted her schedule when she saw Fantasyland posts on Facebook.

    She gave high marks to the area, particularly the queue of the Little Mermaid ride, where guests can direct tiny blue crabs on screens.

    "They made the queue very interactive so you never feel like you're standing in a long line," said Ng, an annual passholder who lives in New Jersey.

    On Friday, the ride's posted wait time was 30 minutes.

    Under the Sea is a dark ride where guests sit in gliding clam-shell vehicles and see the story of "The Little Mermaid" play out with dancing starfish, turtles, lobsters and an octopus. Although there's a memorable appearance of the villainous Ursula, there is, naturally, a happy ending.
    Source:
    http://articles.orlandosentinel.com/2012-10-12/news/os-disney-fantasyland-opens-20121012_1_storybook-circus-fantasyland-expansion-great-goofini

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