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A Spirited Valentine ...

Bocabear

Well-Known Member
I agree that the interactive Queue really ruins the overall tone of the mansion and the pacing of the story that unfolds... But I do LOVE the idea of a Mansion themed restaurant a la BOG...I think it would be brilliant. People LOVE themed restaurants... Look at the popularity of the Blue Lagoon, The Mexican Restaurant at EPCOT, BOG, Prime Time Cafe, Sci Fi Dine In Theater and Cinderella's Castle. A fully themed Haunted Mansion restaurant would be another huge hit!...then they could gut BOG and ENchanted Tales, and put in the Beauty and The Beast ride that should be there...:)
 

ZodIsGr8

Well-Known Member
Spirited Quickees (because they are the best kind!):

For all of the excitement over the 'Star Wars Cruiser'/AbD/Comic Con type boutique hotel experience, I would caution patience. As a kind Spirit wrote me today, "this isn't something that will happen in near term."

Said source also says that while designed for WDW, this is something that will be considered for Anaheim too. (And who said Bob Iger and TWDC isn't looking to make SW seem more important than the rest of DL? ... Oh yeah. Nobody.)

Despite Bob's fixation with SW and China, don't expect any SW product of substance to find its way to those parks soon. While people over there seem to love Marvel, his other big buy, they are not rabid fans of Rey, BB-8 and Princesses with hair buns. Indeed, I've had multiple people tell me that the temporary SW Launch Bay in SDL is one of the least popular attractions (not that it is one) in the park.

Will get back to China in a bit, but just want to make sure I was very clear that the Club 33s coming to WDW will simply be small upscale private bars at first. No gourmet restaurants. ... And before Tom Amity decides to break news that was broken here a long time ago, let me again spell out that a new Haunted Mansion eating venue/experience is coming to the MK, despite the mixed reviews of the Skipper Canteen.

Word from Ops people is that most of Pandora could open tomorrow and could have been open weeks ago now. No word on when (if?) unannounced soft openings will be starting. Also heard is that WDW leadership has no real idea on what to expect when it does open on everything from park visitation to how it will effect the rest of WDW's gates. There is a fear that DHS could be a ghost town this summer if the buzz on Pandora is great.

Heard from a friend that Frozen at HKDL is a done deal, even if TWDC winds up paying for it entirely. Heard from another that the Maelstrom/EPCOT clone will be shelved for a new unique attraction with another small scale attraction that will be a sleigh-themed clone of the Mater ride from DCA (that also will be a TSL ride in FL and a BH6 ride in Tokyo). I don't have confirmation of the unique attraction (meaning not the LPS ride headed for Anaheim and Tokyo post 2020), but it certainly sounds more plausible than repeating the EPCOT mistake (it is a crappy attraction, even forgetting its location, sorry).

D23's annual CrazyFest/Expo is approaching and people want to know if there will be P&R announcements. The answer is yes. But if this is anything like the last one, expect them to go back and forth on what will be announced right up until showtime.

I generally only give shoutouts to Disney Blogger/Lifestyler to the Stars Tom Bricker (@WDWFigment if he is around here), but was unable to sleep a few nights ago and instead of looking at the home made 'materials' sent to me by adoring fans, I instead read a non-outlet store column by that dude Derek Burgan on what apparently were the six least popular restaurants at WDW based on a sample-size of 122,000 (we all know why @Len Testa is loaded, right?) from TP: http://blog.touringplans.com/2017/04/22/s6_wdwlowestrated/

They were: 6.) Garden Grove at the Swan; 5.) Portobello at DS; 4.) Bongo's at DS; 3.) Picabu at the Dolphin; 2.) Planet Hollywood at DS; and 1.) STK at DS.

What I found interesting was that all of the above were non-Disney owned and operated locations/third parties. They were all places that didn't cater (with possible exception of the last one) to the O-Town blogger crowd or the Mommy Bloggers or even Disney fans per se. And except for STK, which is likely simply just a bad concept for WDW, they are old and tired (these results were before PH's recent redo). Considering I'm a fan of 3-6, I'll simply say that it's amazing what WDW addicts will tell themselves to enjoy a meal at a place like Chef Mickey's, The Wave, Le Cellier (more for value and what you have to go through than food quality), Be Our Guest, Cosmic Ray's, Electric Umbrella, any QSR at DHS etc. Don't want to give Derek too much extra pub here, but it's amazing how people will turn their noses up at say Portobello (a favorite of mine for the last dozen years) yet eat at Tony's Town Square ... or say that Garden Grove's atmosphere lacks atmosphere, yet have a character meal at Chef Mickey's etc.

Finally, just a word that I'll be taking a leave shortly. I do have visits to DLP, SDL, TDR and DLR in the pipeline and am not sure whether to drop in one by one with some thoughts or wait and do a long deal. Leaning toward the dropping in after each visit ...
Hello Spirit,

First I want to thank you for the information that you provide to all of us here, so thank you. I noticed last week that you made reference to a HM dining experience and now you have confirmed that it will be coming in your latest spirited quickie. My question for you is where are they going to put it? I am hoping that they do not decide to replace Columbia Harbor House, but that is the only place I can see it going unless they rearrange the layout or entrance to HM or the Rivers of America. Any insight that you can provide is greatly appreciated and hope you have fun on your trips.
 

ford91exploder

Resident Curmudgeon
Shh, no one's supposed to question Universal. They do everything right and everything is amazing ... (and for the record, I was just there Saturday and had a fantastic day with low crowds and little wait)

The issue with TPWMNBN relative to Disney is the former is constantly plussing its experience while Disney is constantly downgrading theirs
 

Bocabear

Well-Known Member
They could actually fit a building about the size of BOG behind the Interactive queue area, creat an old carriage road style path to bypass the queue, terminating in the West Wing of Gracey Manor...complete with a grand yet delapadated Porte Cochere (where the fictional Ball guests would have been dropped off)...Themed the "Chilly Reception and Swinging Wake" dining experience... It could be amazing!
HM Restaurant.jpg
 

Kman101

Well-Known Member
The issue with TPWMNBN relative to Disney is the former is constantly plussing its experience while Disney is constantly downgrading theirs

Eh, I kind of agree but at the same time Universal still has their problems. I do notice a lot more happier team members. They've added a lot of attractions. But they're too reliant on screens and I heard a lot of complaining about "we have to get glasses AGAIN" ... as fun as the rides are ... I think Disney still offers a lot of "little things" that make the difference in the long run, but they're trying to do away with a lot of the nostalgic pull that the parks have which is a shame. I just notice that anytime Universal gets an ounce of criticism a few pounce as if it's the worst thing in the world ... it's the same as some getting so infuriated if anything negative is said towards Disney ... criticism IS ok. Constantly complaining on the other hand ...
 

Princess Leia

Well-Known Member
Our luck they close Columbia Harbour House. I hope not. I love that place. Heaven forbid they do a new build ...
Since Disney barely uses the Diamond Horseshoe (I have some fond memories of that one from the 90s), it seems silly to build another restaurant (like you, I also like the Harbour House). If they decide to build a Haunted Mansion restaurant, I just hope that they leave enough space on the side for a potential walkway. Obviously it won't be in the near future, but in 50 years, it seems plausible that the river will be surrounded by attractions and restaurants (they can always just fill a part of the river in if they need the path space, but I hope that they wouldn't do that).
 

FigmentJedi

Well-Known Member
They could actually fit a building about the size of BOG behind the Interactive queue area, creat an old carriage road style path to bypass the queue, terminating in the West Wing of Gracey Manor...complete with a grand yet delapadated Porte Cochere (where the fictional Ball guests would have been dropped off)...Themed the "Chilly Reception and Swinging Wake" dining experience... It could be amazing!View attachment 201309
Neat idea, though I could see a downside in how it could potentially affect the Rivers of America shoreline.

I mean, the reception that the Disneyland reroute has gotten isn't just because they shortened the river, but that because of the shortening, the new River will lack that feeling of wilderness and isolation it once had. A Haunted Mansion restaurant on the shoreline as the first step in a Frontierland expansion that doesn't affect the River's length could go either way. You could potentially keep an emphasis on nature in new attractions on the northern bank or just have civilization further encroach upon it. And what to do with the Indian Village that exists on both sides of the train tracks?
 

ford91exploder

Resident Curmudgeon
Eh, I kind of agree but at the same time Universal still has their problems. I do notice a lot more happier team members. They've added a lot of attractions. But they're too reliant on screens and I heard a lot of complaining about "we have to get glasses AGAIN" ... as fun as the rides are ... I think Disney still offers a lot of "little things" that make the difference in the long run, but they're trying to do away with a lot of the nostalgic pull that the parks have which is a shame. I just notice that anytime Universal gets an ounce of criticism a few pounce as if it's the worst thing in the world ... it's the same as some getting so infuriated if anything negative is said towards Disney ... criticism IS ok. Constantly complaining on the other hand ...

For now Disney has the better park system, How long that's the case is open to suggestion but look at Spirits comments a while back in that WDW wants to decommission the majority of their AA'a in favor of SCREEN based attractions. In the meantime UNI is looking to deploy new AA's

Screens are cheap that's why Uni used them then, And why Disney wants to use them now. Nothing wrong with screens if the ENHANCE the attr
 

the.dreamfinder

Well-Known Member
For now Disney has the better park system, How long that's the case is open to suggestion but look at Spirits comments a while back in that WDW wants to decommission the majority of their AA'a in favor of SCREEN based attractions. In the meantime UNI is looking to deploy new AA's

Screens are cheap that's why Uni used them then, And why Disney wants to use them now. Nothing wrong with screens if the ENHANCE the attr
Just a reminder, operating screen based attractions is cheap, but VFX for large format mediums like theme parks attractions is very expensive.
 

Bocabear

Well-Known Member
View attachment 201311
Maybe something in this area?

edit- whoops, @Bocabear beat me to it :oops:
Great minds think alike! :)
Another option that they would never do, would be to move Small World to EPCOT, take that space and creat a newer larger Peter Pan's Flight, use some of it for the HM Restaurant which would be accessed from the Mansion side, repurpose original PPF as a new Tanfgled dark ride...
HM Restaurant2.jpg
 

Bairstow

Well-Known Member
For now Disney has the better park system, How long that's the case is open to suggestion but look at Spirits comments a while back in that WDW wants to decommission the majority of their AA'a in favor of SCREEN based attractions. In the meantime UNI is looking to deploy new AA's

Screens are cheap that's why Uni used them then, And why Disney wants to use them now. Nothing wrong with screens if the ENHANCE the attr

Is that really the trend, though?

Disney's recent investment in finer and finer facial motion control for figures in Frozen, Dwarves, and the Avatar river thing would suggest a continued commitment to high-end figures in rides. Disney's current design mood for E-tickets is a small number of big-money Garner Holt stuff in the foreground with increasingly inventive uses of projection canvases in the background to create a 3-dimensional space with or without the need for glasses.

Universal, meanwhile, seems mostly content with buying fairly basic figures for most applications, and with 8 Fast 8 Furious on the horizon, no end in sight to screen-based characters and attractions.
 

wannabeBelle

Well-Known Member
Great minds think alike! :)
Another option that they would never do, would be to move Small World to EPCOT, take that space and creat a newer larger Peter Pan's Flight, use some of it for the HM Restaurant which would be accessed from the Mansion side, repurpose original PPF as a new Tanfgled dark ride...View attachment 201315
Love the visuals BocaBear, Very creative!!! Marie
 

RoysCabin

Well-Known Member
Sorta fascinating how the current crop of Imagineers are obsessed with #story, but fail to understand the importance of tone, especially as it relates to HM.

That's an excellent point to bring up: many of the legendary/original Imagineers say to always start your thought process with "Tell me a story...", but when you look at what they created in the WED Ent. era with Pirates, Mansion, EPCOT Center, Thunder Mountain, and other classics, the emphasis was less on A --> B --> C narratives and more on broader "experiences". Those experiences might have sometimes contained a small or subtle narrative, but given the medium they were working in their main job was to transport guests into the experience of pirates attacking a Caribbean town, or in looking at windows into the 21st century.

I suppose one way to view is that the concept of what qualifies as a "story" has shifted over time, which gave way to the rise of attractions centered on "...but then something went wrong" storylines and riders being directly addressed by the characters in the attraction. In that way, yeah, part of the original lure of the Haunted Mansion was how mysterious it seemed from the outside (even the joke tombstones kept up the effect given the dark humor involved), but things like the interactive queue and whatnot feel a bit too on the nose, insofar as it feels a bit like the attraction itself being in on the joke that the spooky mansion turns into a fun, swingin' wake midway through. It certainly didn't ruin the attraction, I'd say, but it did feel incongruous with the experience that was originally intended.

And yeah, I'd be very interested in seeing how this could impact the Rivers of America; lots of potential directions to go with that area, some better than others, but it's well worth a discussion.
 

FigmentJedi

Well-Known Member
I suppose one way to view is that the concept of what qualifies as a "story" has shifted over time, which gave way to the rise of attractions centered on "...but then something went wrong" storylines and riders being directly addressed by the characters in the attraction. In that way, yeah, part of the original lure of the Haunted Mansion was how mysterious it seemed from the outside (even the joke tombstones kept up the effect given the dark humor involved), but things like the interactive queue and whatnot feel a bit too on the nose, insofar as it feels a bit like the attraction itself being in on the joke that the spooky mansion turns into a fun, swingin' wake midway through. It certainly didn't ruin the attraction, I'd say, but it did feel incongruous with the experience that was originally intended.
I feel like part of what's happened is that with Haunted Mansion being such an established fixture of the parks, newer teams working on stuff for it have assumed everybody's already in on the joke. Like that the Haunted Mansion's ghosts being mostly harmless mischief makers is the theme park equivalent to Darth Vader being Luke Skywalker's father.
 

Bairstow

Well-Known Member
I feel like part of what's happened is that with Haunted Mansion being such an established fixture of the parks, newer teams working on stuff for it have assumed everybody's already in on the joke. Like that the Haunted Mansion's ghosts being mostly harmless mischief makers is the theme park equivalent to Darth Vader being Luke Skywalker's father.

But to follow that analogy, there would be only three copies of Star Wars, and the imagineers have taken to editing in "Darth Tater" into the beginning of one of them.

41%2Bwowf371L._SY300_.jpg
 

the.dreamfinder

Well-Known Member
That's an excellent point to bring up: many of the legendary/original Imagineers say to always start your thought process with "Tell me a story...", but when you look at what they created in the WED Ent. era with Pirates, Mansion, EPCOT Center, Thunder Mountain, and other classics, the emphasis was less on A --> B --> C narratives and more on broader "experiences". Those experiences might have sometimes contained a small or subtle narrative, but given the medium they were working in their main job was to transport guests into the experience of pirates attacking a Caribbean town, or in looking at windows into the 21st century.

I suppose one way to view is that the concept of what qualifies as a "story" has shifted over time, which gave way to the rise of attractions centered on "...but then something went wrong" storylines and riders being directly addressed by the characters in the attraction. In that way, yeah, part of the original lure of the Haunted Mansion was how mysterious it seemed from the outside (even the joke tombstones kept up the effect given the dark humor involved), but things like the interactive queue and whatnot feel a bit too on the nose, insofar as it feels a bit like the attraction itself being in on the joke that the spooky mansion turns into a fun, swingin' wake midway through. It certainly didn't ruin the attraction, I'd say, but it did feel incongruous with the experience that was originally intended.

And yeah, I'd be very interested in seeing how this could impact the Rivers of America; lots of potential directions to go with that area, some better than others, but it's well worth a discussion.
http://imagineerebirth.blogspot.com/2006/11/myth-of-story.html
Re-imagineering: forever essential reading for all who want to understand what makes/made the Disney theme parks great.
 

csmat99

Well-Known Member
Finally, just a word that I'll be taking a leave shortly. I do have visits to DLP, SDL, TDR and DLR in the pipeline and am not sure whether to drop in one by one with some thoughts or wait and do a long deal. Leaning toward the dropping in after each visit ...
When are you going to be at DLP?
 

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