Christine Hogg is the Associate Digital Editor at PAX Global Media. Prior to joining PAX, she obtained her Honours BA in Journalism from the University of Toronto. Upon graduating, she went on to write for several travel publications while travelling the world. Her longest trip was a three-week stint in Europe, and the shortest was a 16-hour adventure in Iceland. Get in touch: email@example.com.
Just in time for the release of Toy Story 4 next summer, Walt Disney World Resort will open the brand new Toy Story Resort on June 30, 2018.
Yesterday afternoon, representatives from Disney Destinations, including Claire Bilby, senior vice president, sales, service, & events, and Marlie Morrison, managing director, marketing & sales, parks, and resorts for Canada and Asia Pacific, invited approximately 300 travel agents and trade media to the Pearson Convention Center in Brampton for a special unveiling of Disney's new products for 2018 and 2019, the biggest being the reveal of the brand new Toy Story Land.
Set across 11 acres, the concept behind Toy Story Land is a replica of the very same backyard Andy would have played in, featuring larger-than-life building blocks, board game pieces, and all of the beloved characters from Toy Story, including Slinky the Dog, Buzz, Woody, Jessie, and the Green Army Men.
Toy Story Land will boast several attractions, including roller coaster Slinky Dog Dash, the Alien Swirling Saucers, a fun take on the popular spinning teacups ride, and Toy Story Mania, a fast-paced game.
The introduction of Toy Story Land to Walt Disney World Resort is part of an ongoing multi-year reimagination project that will eventually include the all-new 14-acre Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge, as well as Mickey & Minnie's Runaway Railway, which is the resort's first-ever Mickey-themed ride-through attraction.
"Toy Story is one of our most popular franchises from Disney and it really is a timeless tale of friendship and partnership," said Claire Bilby, senior vice president, sales, services & events, Disney Destinations yesterday in Toronto at the Pearson Convention Center. "Today, I am here to tell you that that's how we feel about you... we are in this togther, to infinity and beyond. I've been with Disney for almost 30 years, and I've spent most of that time working with you, our travel industry partners. It really is where my foundations, passions, and heart are. My team and I are your advocates and your allies, and we continue our committment to work closely with you, because we want you to know, that you've got a friend in all of us at Disney."
Disneyland Updates: What's New?
Starting on April 13, Walt Disney Land Resort is bringing some of the public's favourite Disney characters to life through Pixar Fest, a celebration taking place for a limited time at the Disneyland Resort in California.
"We have a brand new firework show at Disneyland Resort called 'Together Forever--A Pixar Nighttime Spectacular' and there's even going to be a special flyover from Buzz Lightyear at the Sleeping Beauty Castle," Bilby said. "Two favourite parades will also return during Pixar Fest. The popular 'Paint the Night' parade will be held at Disney California Adventure, and the Pixar Play Parade will make its way through Disneyland Park for the first time. The fun will continue with the Pixar Short Film festival, character greetings, merchandise, and much more."
Claire Bilby, senior vice president, sales, services, & events, Disney Destinations.
Beginning on June 23, more excitement comes to Disneyland Resort, with the grand opening of Pixar Pier at Disney California Adventure Park. Pixar Pier will take over the existing Paradise Pier, and feature exciting newly-themed feature attractions like the Incredicoaster, a transformed version of California Screaming, based on the Disney film The Incredibles, and is just in time for The Incredibles 2, which hits theatres in North America this summer.
With the film Black Panther breaking box office records, Disneyland Resort is thrilled to announce that for a limited time, guests can encounter Black Panther and the royal guards during a limited time experience at Disney California Adventure.
What's New at Downtown Disney
Disneyland Resort has just opened Splitsville, a luxury combination of dining, bowling, and live entertainment for the whole family. Italian pizzeria Naples Restaurant is set to be revamped with a fresh interior, and whole new outdoor bar for al fresco dining options.
A new restaurant called Black Taft Craft Burgers and Beer, which will serve up award-winning burgers and milkshakes. Ballast Point, a San Diego-based craft brewery will also join the resort's restaurant scene, while promoting southern California cuisine with local ingredients, making its mark as Disneyland's first-ever onsite brewery, tasting room, and outdoor beer garden in downtown Disney.
Award-winning hotels, like the recently-renovated Disney California Hotel & Spa are included in the resort's line-up of refurbishments. "The entire resort has been redesigned to offer an even grander experience with a refreshed lobby, a gorgeous new pool area, a luxurious new lobby, and guestrooms," Bilby said.
Sea What's New With Disney Cruise Line
Three new ships are on the horizon for Disney Cruise Line for 2018. "We will nearly double our fleet by 2023, and we can't wait to share those details with you as we get closer," Bilby said. "But, you don't want to wait to book your Disney cruise with your clients, because we have plenty of reasons to sail with us right now."
Debuting on Mar. 9, 2018, exciting enhancements are coming to Disney Magic. The ship will add Rapunzel's Royal Table, a new dining experience based on the popular Tangled film.
Vibe, Disney Cruise Line's teen retreat, will be redesigned to feature an all-new coffee and foodie bar, virtual reality games, and more.
The adults-only Cove Cafe will be redesigned to feature sophisticated tropical accents, and Disney's Oceaneer Club will get a Club Disney Junior space, making it a spot the whole family can enjoy.
The Rainforest Room at Senses Spa will soon include steam and hydrotherapy treatments.
Day long celebrations for 2018 and 2019, like the Star Wars Day at Sea and Marvel Day at Sea will take place on the Disney Fantasy (Star Wars) and Disney Magic (Marvel). Both special events include special themed deck parties, fireworks, character interactions, youth activities and more.
Yesterday, Disney Destinations announced Disney Cruise Line's summer 2019 cruise itinerary. "We are sailing to some incredible new ports of call, including a first time visit to destinations in Sweden, France, Spain, Denmark, and Northern Ireland," Bilby said. "We are also offering a brand new roundtrip sailing from Rome which is an amazing way to experience the history of this amazing city. Whether your clients choose to sail to the Bahamas, the Caribbean, Alaska, or Europe, a Disney Cruise Line includes something for everyone."
Disney Cruise Line and Adventures by Disney have announced a partnership to offer a pre-guided cruise experience in Rome, as well as guided excursion packages for select European sailings. "These excursions really immerse our guests into the culture and history of the places they visit, and it's a great way for your clients to enjoy two of our wonderful vacation experiences at the same time," Bilby said. "In 2019, we are so excited for your clients to make unforgettable memories on a seven-night trip along the Seine River, followed by two spectacular nights in Paris. Also in 2019, we will take guests to another amazing destination, this time in Japan. Bookings will open later this spring, so stay tuned for details."
Disney has a series of booking incentives for travel agents looking to send their clients on the ultimate Disney vacation.
Travel agents who book their clients on a Walt Disney World vacation package can link their hotel reservation on the My Disney Experience app, which means clients can make selections up to 60 days prior to arrival. Guests who stay at official Walt Disney World hotels can also take advantage of the 'extra magic hours' benefit, happening across all four theme parks this summer, putting guests right in front of the action.
For more information, visit www.disneytravelagents.ca.