Wednesday, February 20, 2019

There is Still Disney Parks Where the Entrance Ticket Will Cost You $59 Only !



Sick of the never ending increase of the ticket prices at Disneyland and Walt Disney World? If you find that now the price to pay to enter Disney's U.S magic kingdoms is just insane i have good news for you: there is still Disney parks on the planet where the entrance will cost you not more than $59 / 52€ - and for a regular entrance ticket! Sure, the parks are not in the U.S and the plane ticket will cost you more but as you will see at the end it might cost you less for one week than a week at WDW.

Here we go: The entrance ticket for Shanghaî Disneyland starts at 399 CNY which equals $59 only. No kidding. All you have to do is to visit the park during the week and avoid the three weeks of Chinese New Year in February. As you'll be in Asia why not enjoying a visit to Hong Kong Disneyland at the same time? Entrance ticket for HKDL starts at 619 HKD which equals $78 only.



If you live in the U.S, chances are that you know already almost all attractions of DL and WDW and that you've never visited HKDL and SDL and both of them have plenty of attractions that you'll find nowhere else ( Tron Light Cycles, Jet Packs, Raging Rapids, Adventure Isle Challenge Trails, Pirates stunt show, Alice in Wonderland Maze, Voyage to the Crystal Grotto,  at SDL, Mystic Manor, Grizzly Gulch, Iron Man Experience, Ant-Man and the Wasp : Nano Battle, at HKDL and more ) or awesome new versions of your favourite attractions ( Pirates of Caribbean Battle for the Sunken Treasure, Peter Pan's Flight, Buzz Lightyear Planet Rescue at Shanghaî Disneyland ) and some of the best themed lands you've seen!

And here comes the good news: by chosing to visit both parks it will allows you to get insanely cheap plane tickets round trip prices! First let's see what cost normally a round trip ticket from New York or L.A or Toronto to Orlando International Airport, thanks to a search with the great skyscanner.com website ( below prices from NY La Guardia or Los Angeles LAX or Toronto YYZ ):




Now, let's see how what it would cost to go from the same cities in the U.S or Canada to Shanghaî, then Hong Kong then back to the U.S or Canada, with dates chosen in March. The search was done again on skyscanner.com and you must choose the "multi-city" option on the top to get the right prices. And i remind you that we're not talking now about a two hours flight but about 12 or 14 hours flights which are of course generally more expensive.

New York JFK - Hong Kong - Shanghaî - New York JFK, from $644 for the THREE flights:


Los Angeles - Shanghaî - Hong Kong - Los Angeles, from $632 for the THREE flights:


or:


Toronto - Hong Kong - Shanghaî - Toronto, from $688 for the THREE flights:


Don't want to go to HKDL but only visit Shanghaî Disneyland? Here is what will cost you the round trip flight to Shanghaî from New York JFK, and it starts at $408 only:


Editing: For our friends in England who like usually to go to WDW and here is what would cost a round trip London Heathrow - Hong Kong - Shanghaî - London in July. Star Wars land won't yet be open at WDW this summer, neither the awaited new Harry Potter roller coaster at Universal Orlando, so why not going this year to visit Disney parks in Asia instead? It'll cost you for the THREE flights £655 when the cheapest round trip flight at the same dates in July from London to Orlando cost £610!



And for our friends in France, here it is and it will cost you 624€ only for the three flights, and on Lufthansa and Cathay Pacific, two legendary airlines!



Now, although these flight prices are surprisingly cheap,, the idea to fly to Disney parks in Asia and save money will probably work better for a couple than a family of four. There is no doubt that it cost more than flying to Orlando, meaning that you need to save money somewhere else so the trip will remain competitive with a week spent at WDW. 

The first important thing you need to know to save money is this one: normally everyone needs to pay for a visa to enter China main land ( Shanghaî ), and the visa for U.S citizens is quite costly ( around $120 or so ). The trick to avoid to pay this insane price - and so to save money - is to use the 72 hours tourist free visa which allows you to stay 72 hours / 3 days in Shanghaî from the moment your next destination when you will leave Shanghaî is NOT the same one you were coming from, which will be the case if you go to Hong Kong next and not back to the U.S to the city you came from. Got it? Thanks to this you'll save $250 if you're two people, $500 if you're a family of four.


Now, even if the park entrance tickets will cost you half ( or almost ) than at WDW you still will need hotel rooms. This is where you can save a lot of money. If you stay in Disney resorts at HKDL or SDL - which are wonderful, no doubt about that, but expensive - you have to be ready to spend a lot of money for the hotel room only. BUT if instead you stay in hotels at Hong Kong itself or Shanghaî you'll find great hotels for a third or half of the price. And Shanghaî and Hong Kong are fantastic cities, you don't want to miss the view of Hong Kong harbour at night or the one of the stunning Shanghaî Bund when the sun goes down, believe me! And for those of you Americans afraid of security your really don't have to worry, both cities are more safe than where you live in the U.S!


Use Agoda.com to find rooms in Hong Kong or Shanghaî - for Hong Kong my favourite area to stay is Hong Kong "Central" and for Shanghaî as close as possible to the Shanghaî Bund. Two hotels in Shanghaî that i recommend at reasonable price: the Jinjiang Metropolo Hotel Classiq Shanghai Bund Circle and the Bund Riverside Hotel, both art-deco style, with prices starting from $50 or $70 only on Agoda. In Hong Kong room prices might be slightly more expensive but you even have on Lantau Island, same island where HKDL is, next door to it, the Silvermine Beach Resort with rooms, if you're lucky, starting at $50 only on Agoda ( HKDL Hotels will cost you at least $170 even on Agoda ). On Hong Kong Island itself it will be harder to find a decent room under $100 but you'll still save money.

So, here it is, you can enjoy two great Disney parks which will be "new" for most of you - and two parks with some of the best "entrance" i've seen - in exotic and safe locations for a price equivalent or probably less than what will cost you a week at WDW but you have to forget about staying in Disney hotels to keep the price competitive with a week at WDW. Which might be a bit annoying i agree but Shanghaî and Hong Kong are so great that in exhange you'll discover two fantastic cities, and access to both parks are easy and direct with the subway. Who will be the first to book his flights?

Monday, February 18, 2019

First Pictures of HKDL Ant-Man and the Wasp : Nano Battle Ride Opening March 31st !



Hong Kong Disneyland released totay their 2018 fiscal year earnings and the park achieved record revenue and EBITDA in 2018 and International guest attendance hits record high for second consecutive year with an overall attendance growing 8% to 6.7 million. Below, the official press release of HKDL AND the first pictures showing the inside of Ant-Man and the Wasp : Nano Battle, opening at HKDL Tomorrowland on March 31!

February 18, 2019, HONG KONG – Today, Hong Kong Disneyland Resort (HKDL) reported record high revenue and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (“EBITDA”) for fiscal year 2018. Revenue rose 18% to HK$6.0 billion for the year ending September 29, 2018. EBITDA jumped 48% to HK$1.4 billion. The robust growth in revenue and EBITDA was attributed to increases in occupied room nights at the resort hotels, park attendance and guest spending.

Annual attendance reached 6.7 million, up 8% from prior year. Across-the-board growth was seen in local, mainland China and international markets, which accounted for 40%, 34% and 26% of total attendance, respectively.

International attendance hit a record high for the second year in a row, mainly fuelled by strong visitation from Japan, South Korea and the Philippines. The continued growth in international guests underscores HKDL’s contribution to bolstering Hong Kong as a top tourist destination in the region, both in the family and young adult segments. Since park opening in 2005, total cumulative attendance has reached more than 77 million.

During the year, per capita spending increased 6%, representing nine years of continuous growth. Hotel occupancy was up six percentage points to 75%. Disney Explorers Lodge, which opened in April 2017, contributed to 44% growth in occupied room nights.

Record revenue and EBITDA reduced net loss by HK$291 million to HK$54 million, an 84% improvement from fiscal 2017.

“This past year HKDL continued to strengthen its appeal as the ideal vacation destination. Our strong entertainment lineup throughout the year, coupled with the launch of ‘Moana: A Homecoming Celebration’ and the global debut of Cookie as a new character in the highly popular Duffy the Bear family, have enticed guests from all markets,” said Stephanie Young, managing director of Hong Kong Disneyland Resort. “Additionally, innovative initiatives to capture new opportunities were launched, including the first-ever, large-scale outdoor concerts, and the signature 10K Weekend running events, which have broadened our guest base for the park and hotels.”

“The launch of a new Marvel-themed attraction as part of a multiyear expansion and the addition of year-round entertainment offerings and products, along with the opening of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge and the High Speed Rail (Hong Kong Section), will allow us to continue our positive momentum,” said Young.

On March 31, 2019, HKDL will open “Ant-Man and The Wasp: Nano Battle!” to the enjoyment of Marvel fans from around the world. This all-new interactive experience is the second instalment in the expansion project that will continue to build HKDL’s Marvel-themed area into an ultimate hub in Asia of thrilling Marvel experiences. This new ride will extend the success of “Iron Man Experience” as guests fight alongside Ant-Man and The Wasp (played by Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly, respectively, from the popular blockbuster film). Guests enter the world of Marvel in Tomorrowland at the S.H.I.E.L.D. Science and Technology Pavilion in the Stark Expo. After boarding a state-of-the-art vehicle at S.H.I.E.L.D.’s research and design facility, guests will join Ant-Man and The Wasp in an epic battle against Arnim Zola and his army of evil Hydra Swarm-bots.

Below the first pictures showing the inside o yje ride - don't forget that all this will be lighted in "black light" so the colors will be more bright than on the pictures below.








Some of the merchandise that will be avaible at the ride exit shop.



Pictures: copyright Disney

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Gift of the Day : Disneyland Paris United States Steamship Company Billboard



The gift of the day is this great picture of the United States Steamship Company billboard located on Town Square, near the entrance of Liberty Arcade at Disneyland Paris. It don't looks like but a picture of it is not that easy to shoot as it is often half in the shadow - half in the sun... Click on it to get it in big size!

Picture: copyright Disney

Beloved Walt Disney Archives Founder Dave Smith Passed Away in Burbank, California, at 78



Walt Disney Archives founder Dave Smith passed away in Burbank, California, on February 15, 2019. He was 78. Dave dedicated his four-decade career at The Walt Disney Company to preserving Disney’s precious treasures from film, television, theme parks, and beyond. Named a Disney Legend in 2007, Dave was beloved by fans around the world for his wide knowledge of the Company’s rich history, which he shared in books and through his popular magazine column “Ask Dave.”



“I’m deeply saddened to learn of Dave Smith’s passing,” said Bob Iger, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, The Walt Disney Company. “He was the unsung hero of Disney’s history who, as our first archivist, spent 40 years rescuing countless documents and artifacts from obscurity, investing endless hours restoring and preserving these priceless pieces of our legacy, and putting them in context to tell our story. Dave was a true Disney Legend, and we are indebted to him for building such an enduring, tangible connection to our past that continues to inspire our future.”


Dave was hired in 1970 by Walt’s brother—and The Walt Disney Company co-founder—Roy O. Disney, and his first responsibility was cataloguing every item inside Walt’s office suite, which had been left untouched after Walt’s passing four years prior. Thanks to Dave’s meticulously detailed notes and records, the Archives was able to restore the suite in 2015, and today Disney employees are able to visit and draw inspiration from this remarkable space. During his time as Disney’s Chief Archivist, Dave grew the Archives from a simple one-person department to a model among corpo­rate archives. He was regarded by fans and historians as the final authority on matters of Disney history, and was an active member of the Society of California Archivists. He served from 1980 to 2001 as Executive Director of the Manuscript Society, an international association of collectors, dealers, librarians, archivists, and others interested in manuscript material.


Born and raised in Pasadena, California, the child of librarians and educators, Dave earned a B.A. in history and a Master’s Degree in Library Science from the University of California at Berkeley. Before coming to Disney, he gained library and archives experience working in the Manuscript Department of the Huntington Library in San Marino, California, interning at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., and serving on the staff of the Research Library at U.C.L.A.


Dave wrote extensively about Disney history, with regular columns in Disney fan publications and websites, as well as authoring, co-authoring, and editing numerous articles and books on Disney history, including the official Disney encyclopedia Disney A to Z, Disney: The First 100 Years, The Quotable Walt Disney, Disney Trivia from the Vault, and The Ultimate Disney Trivia Books 1, 2, 3, and 4.


In October 2007, Dave was honored with the prestigious Disney Legend Award. A resident of Burbank, California, Dave retired in 2010 after his 40th anniversary with The Walt Disney Company and continued working for the next nine years as a consultant for the Company, with the title of Chief Archivist Emeritus.

D&M condolences and thoughts go out to his family and friends at this difficult time.

Pictures: copyright Disney

Friday, February 15, 2019

Rare 1992 Disney's Animal Kingdom Map




I've found this early Animal Kingdom map and, as it shows the Beastly Kingdom land that never was built as well as other differences with Animal Kingdom as it was at opening, i asked Joe Rohde if he knew when this map was done. He kindly answered, saying that it was a super early map, may be done in 1993. In fact if you blow up the map you can see the date of October 20, 1992, so i think it was done in 1992. Click on it to see it in big size.

Picture: copyright Disney

Thursday, February 14, 2019

DLP Walt Disney Studios Armageddon Attraction Will Close Permanently on March 31 - D&M Tribute: Exclusive Pictures and Videos of the Attraction Like You've Never Experienced it Before !



Today, Disney and more pay tribute to the soon to be extinct DLP Walt Disney Studios Armageddon attraction with exclusive pictures and videos shot by Max, D&M contributor and DLP Welcome webmaster.

Presented in Studio 7 and designed on one of the scenes of the hit film Armageddon, this special effects attraction which brings visitors to the Mir space Station will close March 31, 2019. The attraction will be replaced by a brand new attraction supposedly designed with a Spiderman theme in the new WDS Marvel Land from 2020/21.


The concept of the attraction designed by WDI Imagineer show-producer Rick Rothschild and his team was identical to the one of the "Backlot" land since the opening of the park on March 16, 2002: The filming of a new scene of the film with visitors for actors, i.e you! So after a quick pre-show lasting almost 10 minutes, « the assistant director » of the new scene was telling you what will follow and motivates you to be the stars of this scene from Armageddon.


Let's get inside the pre-show area would we?




Moving to the show room...



Max succeeded to have access to the show room with guests inside and shot great pictures of the decor on every angle as well as two videos - that you will see below - one with guests and one with nobody inside the show room. That will be precious to keep memory of the attraction when it will be extinct, something by the way that Disney should do each time they close permanently an attraction to allow to keep the memory of it forever. If they were doing this we would have decent videos of beloved attraction like Epcot Horizons or World of Motion, for instance...









The show room is a faithful reproduction of the central module of the space station that you can see in the Armageddon Movie. Once the attraction is in motion, the effects start crescendo before the meteor arrives and hit the space station. After seeing the film, you can imagine that the atmosphere is becoming more and more catastrophic in the Mir station, plagued at the end by an impressive deadly rain.
























What made the success of the attraction was the multitude of effects and moving elements activated in a meticulous choreography. After access to the main plateau, the 180 crew members ( guests ) would undergo the meteor attack for almost 5 minutes.




















This walkthrough type attraction was unique in the park as it lasted - pre-show included - almost 17 minutes! It was the longest attraction of the park and among the longest of Disneyland Paris Resort. Discover the attraction as you have never seen it, alone, facing the disaster!




Unfortunately today, six weeks before its permanent closure, the attraction don't have any more maintenance on some important effects. Since more than 5 years many rumors about its replacement were discussed on social networks, and since the last 3 years some show effects like the smoke effect were no longer active, or some effects like parts of the suspended structure only work at 30% of their capacities. Disney acted to maintain the attraction but without putting it forward or promoting it in its programs. At the end they kept only one of the two debriefs (pre-show) and a minimum staff of 7 cast-members in the show building.

Last but not least, some informations about the attraction: the attraction had a capacity of up to 1205 visitors per hour, the giant fan brews 10 775 cubic meter of air per second The large fan duct is large and wide enough for a person to enter and stand naturally.

We will end by the second video filmed by Max, this time showing the attraction with regular guests inside it, and by reminding you that those of you visiting the Walt Disney Studios have until March 31 to enjoy it!





More DLP updates will come soon, in the meantime for those desperately looking to put the hands on a printed copy of the 320 pages Disneyland Paris book "From Sketch to Reality" at a reasonable price i want to let you know that i still ahve five copies only of the ENGLISH edition, and taht i will NOT be reprinted!


Price is 150 euros for one copy + 19€ shipping and it won't last long at this price and it's probably your last chance to get a printed copy of this gorgeous book at a reasonable price, no kidding, as the book is now sold on Amazon by others sellers at $2000 or more - check this HERE !

Note to French readers - Lecteurs Français: Etant donné que l'édition française est épuisée, tout acheteur de l'édition anglaise recevra gratuitement l'édition française eBook du livre! Et l'édition eBook contient plus de 60 liens vidéos d'une délection des meilelures vidéos du parc! Note Importante: cette offre avec l'eBook est réservée à ceux possédant du matériel Apple ( iPhone, Ipad ou iMac ) nécessaire pour pouvoir liire l'eBook.

The "Disneyland Paris From Sketch to Reality" book is a 320 pages book with 750 pictures of the park including 250 WDI artworks! It's also probably the best gift you can find for a Disneyland Paris or Disney Parks fan - and it is true! Have a look below to the mosaic pictures showing a selection of pages of the book.

To place your order for the DLP book, please send me an email at: amplittaye@gmail.com with your shipping address. The price for one copy is 150€ and shipping worldwide is 19€ ( except Belgium and Italy for which it is 29€ ).

Also, each order will receive GREAT surprise gifts! ( and believe me they are really great! )

You can pay with Paypal, credit card or bank transfer. For Paypal payments please send directly the full amount including worlwide shipping, i.e 169€ ( except for Belgium and Italy for which it is 179€ ) by Paypal at: nme4@wanadoo.fr

If you wish to pay by credit card and bank transfer, send me an email at: amplittaye@gmail.com   and i'll tell you how to do.









If you've never seen the book before, don't miss the video below or on Youtube HERE showing the full 320 pages of the book!



Article pictures and videos : copyright DLP Welcome