Earlier today, Disney Vacation Club announced plans to transform Building 9 at Disney’s Grand Floridan Resort, Big Pine Key, into 200 resort studios.
The work is expected to begin in the spring of 2022 with an opening during the summer of 2022 The new resort studios will join the Villas at Disney’s Grand Floridan Resort as part of the Disney Vacation Club.
In the announcement Terri Schultz, senior vice president of Disney Vacation Club stated –
This is great news for Disney Vacation Club and our Members. It will provide us with new and diverse inventory at a resort that is cherished by our Members and their families.
Panchito, José Carioca, and Donald Duck have returned to their rightful place at the finale of the Gran Fiesta Tour in the Mexico Pavilion after being fully restored.
The three audio-animatronic figures have been missing since the early part of the year because of a refurbishment. According to reports, the historic trio have been rebuilt from the ground up using the latest technology to replace components that were originally made by hand nearly 50 years ago.
Today Disney announced that Disneyland Paris will be re-opening on June 17th with Disneyland Park, Walt Disney Studios Park, Disney’s Newport Bay Club Hotel and Disney Village.
Of the Disneyland Paris hotels, Disney’s Newport Bay Club will re-open on June 17th, while Disney’s Hotel New York – The Art of Marvel will see-open on June 21st, Disney’s Hotel Cheyenne on July 1st and Disney’s Davy Crockett Ranch on July 13th.
Starting June 21st, guests will be able to stay in the heroically-appointed Disney’s Hotel New York – The Art of Marvel. This four-star hotel, styled as a New York art gallery, will pay tribute to the birthplace of so many Marvel Super Heroes and their artists, while offering premium comfort and personalized services.
Guests will be able to book stays at Disney’s Hotel New York – The Art of Marvel starting on May 18th. If guests book before July 29th of this year with an arrival date before March 30, 2022 they will receive a take-home exclusive MARVEL print by artist Matt Ferguson and complimentary mocktail of their choice in one of the hotel’s bars.
Disney added –
With the health and well-being of guests and cast members remaining a top priority, health and safety measures will be implemented throughout the resort in queues, attractions, shops, hotels, restaurants and other facilities, and will be reinforced in ride vehicles. This includes limited attendance and required advanced ticketing and reservations to support physical distancing, per government guidance. Before booking a reservation, guests are encouraged to visit disneylandparis.com for more information.
Following the latest CDC and Orange County COVID-19 guidance changes, Walt Disney World will no longer require masks to be worn when guests are outdoors.
The new policy will go into effect on May 15th at all of the Walt Disney World theme parks, Walt Disney World Resort hotels and Disney Springs. Masks will still be required at the Disney theme parks when guests are indoors, which includes when guests are queuing for and riding attractions. Masks will continue to be required on Disney transportation. As was announced earlier, physical distancing will also remain in place, with the original 6ft. being reduced to 3 ft. over the coming weeks.
Here is the new face mask policy that will be effective May 15th –
Face coverings are required for all Guests (ages 2 and up) and Cast Members. Please bring your own face coverings and wear them in all indoor locations, except when actively eating or drinking while stationary and maintaining appropriate physical distancing. Face coverings are optional in outdoor common areas at Walt Disney World Resort, but are still required upon entering and throughout all attractions, theaters and transportation.
Face Coverings Required
Upon entering and throughout all attractions
All theaters, including theater entrances
All transportation, including transportation entrances
All indoor locations, including restaurants, except when actively eating or drinking while stationary
Walt Disney World announced that they will soon begin the phasing in of reducing physical distancing at the following updated guidance from Orange County.
Disney has not made any immediate changes following the announcement, by Orange County, but has started to notify Cast Members that the process will take place over the upcoming few weeks.
Walt Disney World has stated that the reduction from 6 feet to 3 feet will take place only in certain areas at the parks, resort hotels and Disney Springs. The reduction won’t apply to dining areas, shopping areas or any area where guests can remove masks.
Disney has updated its website with the following description of its physical distancing policy:
Temporary adjustments are still in place to promote physical distancing. While we will reduce physical distancing measures for Guests across many areas with a gradual, phased approach, six-feet distancing measures will continue in all dining locations, merchandise stores and in areas where Guests can temporarily remove their masks.
Walt Disney World also announced that Disney’s Animal Kingdom will be re-opening more of its snack kiosks this week as the park’s phased re-opening continues to move forward.
Terra Treats, located on Discovery Island just across from Starbucks will be re-opening and serving up pizza slices.
Dino Diner, located in Dinoland U.S.A. will re-open and will offer hot dogs and churros.
Disney on Broadway has announced return dates for “The Lion King” and “Aladdin” as the lights are set to be turned back on at The Great White Way.
“The Lion King” will return to the Minskoff Theater on September 14th and “Aladdin” will resume at the New Amsterdam Theater on September 28th. Tickets are currently on sale.
Disney on Broadway is including some added benefits in order to offer guests greater flexibility in their Broadway experience.
These benefits include:
Disney paying 100% of Ticketmaster service and order fees on performances through August. 7, 2022
Ability to exchange or cancel tickets at no charge up to and including the day of the show, available for performances through August 7, 2022
Double the Magic, a two-show package, starting at $149 total, available through July 1, 2021
Broadway has traditionally offers no flexibility when plans change; or last-minute options like TKTS and lotteries, which offer a greater value but hinders advance planning.
From Thomas Schumacher, President & Producer of Disney Theater Productions –
After 18 months of being apart we are thrilled to welcome our audiences back and are proud to introduce these unique benefits to make buying Broadway tickets risk-free, flexible and affordable. Broadway’s reopening — before tourists fully return — will be the perfect time for us tri-staters to attend Broadway as shows will be more accessible than ever.
Along with the above shows, September 14th will see the return of “Hamilton,” and “Wicked,” on September 14th. Beyond Broadway, the North American tours of “The Lion King” and “Frozen,” as well as international productions of five titles will be among the 20+ Disney Theatrical productions resuming performances in nine countries on four continents this year.
Today Walt Disney World announced that a new ticketed event will be arriving for the Halloween season to take place this year at the Magic Kingdom.
The new event is a return of the Disney After Hours events with a Halloween flavor. Unfortunately, this means there won’t be a return of Mickey’s No-So-Scary Halloween Party. Based on all of the changes surrounding the re-opening of the theme park due to the pandemic, this really doesn’t come as a huge surprise.
“Disney After Hours BOO BASH” will take place on select nights, Aug. 10 – Oct. 31, from 9 PM to midnight. Some event nights in August and September will be from 9:30 PM to 12:30 AM.
Spooky festivities will include Halloween-themed cavalcades, character sightings throughout the park, special performances by the Cadaver Dans, décor, lighting, music, treat stops with plenty of candy and so much more!
“Disney After Hours BOO BASH” tickets will grant admission to Magic Kingdom Park as early as 7 PM without the need for a day park ticket or Disney Park Pass theme park reservation, giving guests time to enjoy even more favorites.
Disney said the tickets will go on sale next month, with an early purchase window available to guests of select Walt Disney World Resort hotels. Disney has not mentioned pricing for the event as of yet.
Walt Disney World has just announced that they will be phasing out temperature checks for cast members and guests within the next two weeks.
From the Walt Disney World website…
Since reopening, we have considered guidance from public health authorities, government agencies, and our own team of health and safety experts as we assess and update health and safety measures to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
As this guidance continues to evolve, and with the support of local health and government officials, we are making some additional adjustments. Following the advice of the CDC and our local health officials, we will phase out onsite temperature screenings at Walt Disney World Resort for Cast Members beginning May 8 and Guests on May 16.
We will continue to follow the guidance of health and safety leaders going forward and most importantly encourage people to get vaccinated.
Another step towards life returning to normal at the parks in Florida.
Today Walt Disney World announced that three more of its restaurants will be re-opening this summer, including two more character dining options.
At Disney’s Animal Kingdom, character dining will return to Tusker House this summer. The modified character experience will be a family-style meal. The menu will be inspired by the flavors of Africa and guests can snap photos of Donald Duck and friends, dressed in their safari best as they promenade through the restaurant.
Cape May Café will also be re-opening with a date of May 18th at Disney’s Beach Club Resort. The restaurant will be serving breakfast and dinner. But sadly Minnie’s Beach Bash Character Breakfast and the Seafood-and-More Dinner Buffet will not return with the re-opening.
At Disney’s Contemporary Resort, Chef Mickey’s will re-open for dinner on May 16th and will offer a family-style dinner complete with character appearances.
Both Cape May and Chef Mickey’s will begin taking reservations on May 7th. No opening date nor a date that reservations will be accepted has been mentioned for Tusker House. More details on the menu and reservations will be coming soon.