Walt Disney Company
Opened June 16, 2016
Resort News - (5/13/20) Disney has confirmed that the goal is to slowly increase the park’s attendance gap each week that they are open going forward. Currently the park is actually operating at UNDER 30% capacity, but going forward they hope to increase the cap by about 5,000 extra guests each week until they get to 30% capacity. This will allow the park time to grow, shift and adjust to the new operational standards now in place.
(5/11/20) A few videos have been posted to show off the kind of changes guests can expect to find at Shanghai Disneyland when it reopens today. One goes over the items you will need to present and the procedures being used to check guests as they enter the Disney property. The second takes you on a tour of the park to see how restaurant and gift shops queues will function, how attraction queues will be spaced out and how loading will be changed to allow for social distancing while within the park.
(5/10/20) Perhaps the most exciting news for the industry this week was the announcement that Shanghai Disneyland will be reopening on Monday, May 11th. A follow-up news piece may prove to be a shining ray of hope for other theme parks, as Motley Fool reports that tickets for Shanghai Disneyland that went on sale on Friday morning sold out completely within minutes.
While this is clearly a case of the park opening with a strict attendance cap in place to limit the number of guests in the park to just 30% of capacity on the first day (approximately 24,000 tickets), the fact that the demand to visit was so great does show that there is a huge pent-up demand for the public to return for the theme park experience as soon as they are able to do so.
(5/7/20) The news that I think the amusement park world has been waiting for came this week, as Disney has finally confirmed that Shanghai Disneyland will reopen on Monday, May 11th. It was the first major theme park to close way back in late January 2020 and while they reopened Disneytown back in March, it has been a long wait for the confirmed reopening date for the park. According to the official Disney Parks Blog, they will take the lessons and methods learned from the reopening of Disneytown along with “new and enhanced health and safety measures” to create a new “magical experience” for the guests at Shanghai Disneyland.
They also confirm that the rest of the Disney parks are busy preparing for their own reopening plans, and once the time is right, each park will once again welcome guests.
(4/22/20) According to this article some Shanghai Disneyland Cast Members are said to be back on-site in the park as attraction testing is taking place, including seating guests in every other row on ride vehicles, cutting capacity in half. Parades and show at the Castle are also being tested, so it looks as if the reopening of Shanghai Disneyland may not be too far away.
(3/11/20) According to the reports so far guests visiting the Shanghai Disney Resort’s “Disneytown” retail/dining area are required to undergo a temperature screening before being allowed to enter. After that, everyone is required to wear face masks at all times and keep a respectable distance away from each other with no unnecessary touching. Those who want to eat at a restaurant need to actually present a valid mobile code for scanning, as part of some Alipay Health Code status app on their mobile device. Citizens signed up with the program are assigned a color code (Green, Yellow or Red) to indicate their health status as reported in the live network. A lot about how the program works or assigns these classifications is unknown, but it was mentioned that an examination of the code also includes programming that will report the information and users location to the police if deemed necessary, as part of the user’s agreement to use the app and give it access to your personal data. The same code scanning process is being used for access to many locations in China, such as access to public transportation where all riders need to show a green status code.
(3/9/20) According to this article workers are starting to return to the Shanghai Disneyland Resort today as conditions regarding the spread of the COVID-19 virus have improved. The article says that China has now been able to close several of the “makeshift hospitals” that were put in place to handle the large number of patents as the number of new cases has started to decline. While the majority of the new cases being reported are still in the Wuhan area, many schools elsewhere in the country have reopened, or are planning to reopen within the next week or so. Meanwhile the Shanghai Disney Resort has announced the reopening of the “Disneytown” shopping and entertainment district, which is said to be the first step of a plan that will eventually see the theme park reopened. Some travel restrictions may soon also be lifted as the Hubei Airport Group has told their workers to prepare to turn to work on Thursday.
(2/7/20) According to a report from the OC Register, the Walt Disney Company reports that they expect that the closure of the Shanghai Disneyland and Hong Kong Disneyland Resorts could keep the parks closed for the next two months. The estimated loss from the closure of both resorts is expected to result in an approximate $175 million loss to be reported in Disney’s Q2 2020 report if it lasts that long.
Just prior to the park’s closure there were already rumors that the Hong Kong resort’s lower earnings due to other instability issues in the region may possible have a more long term effect on the planned expansions for that park, such as the Frozen land that had already started construction and more.
(1/25/20) Amid concerns about the new coronavirus breakout in China, Shanghai Disneyland is now closed until further notice to help prevent the spread of the very contagious virus. This is despite the fact that the park was entering the week long Lunar New Year holiday period that would normally see the park packed to capacity.
Many other attractions have also shut down in an attempt to contain the virus from spreading too quickly in crowded locations. A personal friend of my own just came home from China this week who had been working on an install crew for a new attraction in China. Their company deemed it wise to take precautions and evacuated the entire crew and delayed the opening date of the attraction until they can return to finish. According to comments from my source, most places where large groups gather are now closed in China, including theaters, and the hotel they were staying in had been checking the temperature of everyone who entered the building each day before allowing access, as a high fever is a sign of the virus.
After experiencing these kind of precautions in China, they were surprised to find that no similar precautionary screening procedures were being conducted at all on the passengers of their flight upon returning to the United States. So take that for what you will in the weeks to come as reports begin to trickle in of the virus spreading to the US.
???? - Zootopia / New Land - Confirmed - (12/13/19) While the themed construction walls have been up inside the park since the Summer, Shanghai Disneyland has now officially confirmed that work is starting on the new Zootopia land at the park. The park’s eighth theme land will be built next to Fantasyland and feature a lot of the film’s popular characters, and while no details about what will be in the land have been released yet, it is expected to feature at least one major attraction.
(5/30/19) According to photos posted in the latest update to Disney & More, Shanghai Disneyland has put up some themed construction walls for the announced Zootopia themed land.
(1/24/19) BlooLoop reports that Shanghai Disneyland will begin construction later this year on a brand new land at the park that will be themed to the animated film, Zootopia. Disney did not give an expected timeline about when Zootopia would be ready to open, and only mentioned that the land would be home to a major new attraction that will use ‘state-of-the-art technology’ to bring the world to life.
(9/13/18) According to a post at Orlando Parks News, Shanghai Disneyland could become home to a new land themed around the animated film Zootopia. This is just a rumor right now, and I admit, a bit of a wild one, but it should be interesting to watch and see how this turns out.
???? - Future Park Additions - Rumor - (5/12/19) While nothing is set in stone, comments from Bob Iger during an earnings call did indicate that Imagineers were working on ideas to add a Marvel presence to Shanghai Disneyland at some point in the future, and since they have no restrictions on the use of Marvel in China, he expected them to get “very ambitious about what they do with Marvel at Shanghai Disneyland.”
Of course, since we are thinking long term here... if and when a Marvel area arrived, it could be built in as part of a an entire second theme park. As we are seeing now elsewhere, Disney is spending huge on building Star Wars lands, which could easily be an anchor attraction area for an entire second theme park as well.
(8/29/18) While nothing has been decided, the latest update posted to Disney & More claims that officials at Shanghai Disneyland are looking into the idea of adding their own version of Avatar: World of Pandora as a long-term future park expansion project. Yes, long term... meaning if they opt to do it, it probably will be 5 or 6 years before it opens, but it is interesting that they are considering adding a Pandora themed land to the park, rather than jumping on the Star Wars bandwagon.
(6/22/17) In response to comments Bob Iger made a few days ago about the possibility of a second park in China, my own sources have confirmed to Screamscape that work on a second park is indeed already in early development. But to be clear... in development doesn't mean approved to be built. They're just working on ideas and design concepts that will eventually be put together into a final proposal in order to get approval to move forward.
(5/23/16) While Shanghai Disneyland has yet to open to the public, there are many other there already talking about what's next... which Phase 2 projects will we see added to the park over the next decade? (Other than the previously announced Toy Story Land that was to be part of the park's opening lineup at one point, and then pushed back to Phase 2 status, but is now under construction for 2018)
I've got to think Star Wars may be in the works as well somewhere... even if not the entire new Star Wars Land, what about Star Tours? With Hong Kong using the Star Tours ride system for their Iron Man Experience ride opening later this year, putting Star Tours in Shanghai may not be a bad idea before building up to a full blown Star Wars land.
Marvel is the other idea to think about... is Marvel big in China? Big enough to get a Marvel Land, or maybe even just a single Marvel themed ride or coaster? Time will tell.
Other items I've heard mentioned lately include the idea of building a large mountain themed coaster ride with a layout nearly identical to Expedition Everest, but likely with a different theme. There are also rumors of new dark ride concept as well, such as a trackless dark ride themed to the Alice in Wonderland movies. Of course Disney has so many dark rides to choose from that would work in Shanghai, or they could try to copy newer projects tied to films like Frozen, or the new Beauty and the Beast dark ride coming to Tokyo... or perhaps even to build the first Little Mermaid dark ride in Asia instead.
While they will likely wait until the park opens to figure out what to build first, it is certain that new attractions will be on the way fairly quickly as they attempt to build out this new park and fill in whatever gaps are needed.