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Old 07-28-2012, 11:38 PM   #1
Hong Kong Dis Bruce
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Hong Kong Disneyland Trip Report / Introduction 28-07-2012

Hong Kong Disneyland Trip Report / Introduction 28-07-2012

I will use my very first post to introduce myself, and to give my first trip report about my day at Hong Kong Disneyland. I’m most surprised that I find very little on The Dis boards about Hong Kong Disneyland. Thus I intend to pick up the slack and on a regular basis, introduce the park, and to bring everybody up to date on all new construction news. As I will treat my first post an introduction about me, photos will be added to my second post.

As a young child, Sunday nights after eating a burnt pot roast around the family dining table with, we sat down to watch the Disney show. Those were simple days, days when dreams were as simple. We had no color TV, no cell phones, no fax, no ipad, no computers at all, and our home land line telephone, was a party line with a rotary dial. But I loved watching all of the Disney shows, I think that we never missed one show, and the pot roast was still burnt every Sunday. At least we had burnt gravy to go with it, life was good!

I can clearly remember watching Steamboat Willy, but then one day the Disney shows took a new turn. Walt always introduced the show, and Walt closed every show. One Sunday Walt had a Disneyland special, more about Walt himself, but all about Disneyland. I still remember this show, I sat there and said to myself, “wow”! The very next day I wrote a letter to Disneyland in California, California was a million miles away, my parents said they won’t answer you, why you? I wanted to know more, I wanted to know all I could know about Disneyland, I had ten questions in my letter. I posted the letter that day, Dear Walt.

I marked the day I posted the letter on a calendar I had in my bedroom, and started to count the days. One month went by, my Mum said that she was right, they would never answer me, she told me to forget about it. I would not forget about it, I sent a letter to Walt Disney himself, and I felt that Walt was not the sort of a guy who just forgot about anything. Six weeks went by, seven weeks, I never lost hope, I knew Walt would not let me down. Just shy of eight weeks from the very first day I posted my letter to Walt, and huge brown envelope was waiting for me on the kitchen table when I got home from school. Can you see the look on my face, it was a package from Disneyland, I ran to my bedroom, package tightly tucked under my arm.

I could not believe my eyes, inside was a letter answering all of my questions made by a typewriter, this was official stuff, this was the real deal. On top of the letter and that would have been more than enough for me, there was a Disneyland park map, information about the Disneyland Hotel, a sheet in color about Main Street U.S.A., information about attractions, and a event list for the rest of the year. There was information about the prices to enter the park, wow a one day ticket was $5.00, I better save up every penny of my allowance, it would take me five months to save for a one day ticket to Disneyland. There was information about the ticket books, and the cost of the different ticket books. There was a sticker of Mickey Mouse, wow a sticker, this was ground breaking stuff! I clearly remember saying to myself again, Walt is a sure guy, and my dream was to one day, go to Disneyland and enjoy the happiest place on earth, I needed some happy. By the way I was seven years old when I sent that letter to Walt, and to this day, I have never forgot the kindness of Disneyland to send to me so much cool stuff. I have never to this very day forgot, I was hooked.

One Sunday Walt came on his show and told us that he has a big announcement. Walt was standing in front of a huge map hanging on the wall with a pointer in hand, and this pointer must have been ten feet long, well not really, but it was the longest pointer I ever saw in my life. Walt went onto tell us all about a new project, Walt Disney World in Florida. I just melted. Yes I sent off a letter to Walt Disney World in Florida, and yes they answered me, the envelope was packed full of Disney World stuff and again, I have never forgot that Kindness of the Disney company for answering me. I said to myself, one day I will go to Walt Disney world, watch me, one day.

Time went by, a few years, and upon my return from school one day, a family meeting was called in the kitchen by my Mum, Dad was there also and he did not look happy. This was never a good thing, what did I do now? Dad sat there and stated that we were all going on a family vacation. We had never had a family vacation, apart from filling up the plastic pool in the backyard of our home. I said okay. They then went onto say that we would be going to Walt Disney World in Orlando Florida. I was speechless, I was ready to get a kick in the head again, but this time this kick was a good one. I could not sleep that night, I said that I have to get ready. The next day I went to school library, there was nothing about Walt Disney World in Florida, but there was lots of information about Florida. I studied everything I could about Florida. I had the information that I was sent from Disney World, and I knew all that one could know about Florida. Do you know that real oranges grow on trees everywhere in Florida?

As Christmas 1971 came ever so closer we packed for our big trip. You know what, dreams do come true! I was on my way to Walt Disney World. My report here is an introduction about me, and Hong Kong Disneyland. Thus I will not go into detail of our trip at Disney World only three months after it opened, and the very first Walt Disney World Christmas. I was there and I will never forget that magical trip, I was now hooked, I was everything Disney.

To fast forward a bit, I have over the years visited every Disney park around the world. I study everything Disney, and I love everything Disney. I’m a pin collector, and I’m a bit nutty about pins. I trade pins, and collect pins from around the world. If you were to ask me what my favorite Disney park is, I would answer you by saying Walt Disney. I just returned from a trip at Disneyland in southern California, and I had a great 16 days there, running all around the park. The blisters on my feet hurt, but I was at Walt’s place, I was at Disneyland, I went nonstop for every minute of the 16 days. I loved it! Every single time I walked past the fire station on Main Street, I looked up, and I said, “Thank you Walt, thank you”!

Well, I now live in Hong Kong, and guess what?

I will start out with reports about our Hong Kong Disneyland. I will cover everything, and if you want to know about anything about Hong Kong Disneyland, then just ask. I will include photos, and video when possible. It is my dream to have a Hong Kong Disneyland podcast, and I will move in this direction. I have been listening to the Dis Unplugged for over 10 years now, along with a few other podcasts. I will be right up front with you, I’m going to work real hard on all of my trip reports here for you all to enjoy. It is my dream to one day be able to work with the fine people at The Dis, and it is my dream to one day have a Hong Kong Disneyland podcast at The Dis Unplugged.

I also want to dispel the fact that Hong Kong Disneyland has had all bad press, and let you see from my eyes just what is going on out here in Hong Kong Disneyland. Hong Kong Disneyland is small you say, well I don’t think so. Nothing to see at Hong Kong Disneyland you say, well I don’t think so. I will also organize Hong Kong Disneyland meet and greet, pin trading meet you, and quiz nights. Stay tuned for the time and dates. I just returned from a full day at Hong Kong Disneyland, I had a wonderful time. I will return to the park tomorrow, so let’s keep in touch.

Remember what Walt said, “Dreams can come true”, and I’m living proof of that!

Cheers & Love:

Hong Kong Disneyland Bruce

Last edited by Hong Kong Dis Bruce; 07-29-2012 at 12:20 AM.
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Old 07-29-2012, 12:10 AM   #2
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Thank you for sharing your story! How amazing about the packages. As as kid, that would be so incredible to receive.

I can't wait for you to share your stories of HK Disney. For those of us that don't get to travel there, it will be wonderful to see.
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Old 07-29-2012, 01:41 AM   #3
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looking forward to your reports!

DD was at HK disneyland 4 years ago - she said it was small but a lot of fun!!

she's the only one of us who has been to every disney park in the world...
i'm missing only HK disney...

i haven't been to hong kong in 27 years!!! i'm guessing it's changed just a tad since then
i used to go all the time before that, but not since...
DH goes on business (but really mostly only to chung king, and hits HK on the way in or out)...

i hope you're planning on sharing lots and lots of pictures!!!!!!
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Old 07-29-2012, 06:52 AM   #4
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Greetings fellow asianer....is that a word? LOL I'm currently living in Shenzhen, China. My Dh and my 2 small boys hold annual passes to HK disneyland and we get over to the park several times a year. I have many pictures of the park I'd be happy to share...not sure how to post them here...as I'm a new disser...

PLUS and more importantly I don't want to step on your toes here...I was told by a fellow disser that knew I lived here (pp by Beth) that you started this thread.
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Old 07-29-2012, 08:43 AM   #5
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Welcome to the Dis!

What a wonderful story. Looking forword to hearing more about your travels and Hong Kong Disney!
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Old 07-29-2012, 11:20 AM   #6
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Happy to hear more about the park! We live in Japan and just visited Hong Kong! Disneyland was so much fun, but we also have a house in Jacksonville, FL and are annual pass holders. The shock? That's a very small castle! But, boy the passes are CHEAP!
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Old 07-30-2012, 10:48 PM   #7
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I was just there in April and it was a lot more crowded than when I was there in 2007.

Loved Toy Storyland but the Slinky Dog ride seemed to last only 30 seconds while the line lasted FOREVER. LOL
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Old 07-30-2012, 10:58 PM   #8
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BTW, there is a thread on Hong Kong Disneyland somewhere here ... not sure where but I think it's clumped with a thread on the Japanese parks too. Not sure if you want to post your stuff here or there or put a link there to here. LOL I think the people would like to know more about HKDL would look there before here.
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Old 07-31-2012, 12:24 AM   #9
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OH WOW!!!!! What an awesome story. Thank you so much for sharing.

You are correct. There isn't much information about Hong Kong Disneyland on the Dis, so your reports will be most welcomed. And, I am sure, enjoyed by everyone here on the boards.

That is what makes these boards so great. We can share our Disney stories with each other. And with each story learn a little more about the Disney theme parks in America as well as those around the world.

I can't wait to read your stories and perhaps see some pictures.

AND I agree...welcome to the DIS!!!!!!
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Old 05-17-2013, 08:46 AM   #10
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Hong Kong Disneyland – Mystic Point – Diz Exclusive

Hong Kong Disneyland – Mystic Point – Diz Exclusive

I went to Hong Kong Disneyland early this morning, I was so excited waiting for the rope to drop. Today is May 17, 2013 and this was the opening day of Hong Kong Disneyland’s newest attraction “Mystic Point”. I have visited many times each Disney theme park around the world. I love Disney, everything Walt stood for, and as a child growing up in the 60’s, Walt was on every Sunday. You know what I’m talking about here I’m sure!

I have seen Buena Vista Street, Carthay Circle Theater, Cars Land, and New Fantasyland. You know I see new attractions, streets, and lands that the imagineers are working overtime to remember Walt. I have been to Tokyo & Paris Disneyland, been to Walt Disney World for the first Christmas on December 1971. I love everything Disney. It is like they have finally thought about it for the first time in decades, “let’s make Disney California Adventure (DCA) an extension of Disneyland”. “Let’s think about what Walt might have done”? If Main Street U.S.A. is so successful, then why can we not extend that theme to DCA? As a result we have been given some of the best entertainment from the Disney Company in decades. Walt is back, and I love every second of it! I feel that we are in some of the most exciting Disney stuff, that we have ever seen.

Okay, this brings me back to Hong Kong Disneyland this morning at 9:30am, I could not nearly hold myself. Mystic Point was about to open, we have waited three years for this day! Every week when I visit Hong Kong Disneyland, I would walk past the construction and wave at the workers building what I believe to be a worldwide Disney attraction. I mean, look at Cars Land, this has to better all of that!

I will give you a fair and equal description of my day, I went on Mystic Point seven times, I ate at the Mystic Point restaurant, and I bought my pins at the Mystic Point shop. I will use a rating system out of ten, ten being the best and highest rating possible. I may even have a couple of rants, so please excuse me if I ramble a bit.

I walked through Grizzly Gulch nearly running to the huge wood and brick gates of Mystic Point. Once through the gates, I could not believe my eyes, this was incredible! In the back of my mind I said to myself, step aside Cars Land, this is Disney at its best, and it is all here in my Hong Kong Disneyland. I ran straight to the line up and stood my spot. I must tell you that the theme of the architecture of this zone is incredible. Disney has stopped building lands so it seems, but we now get zones. A “zone” means 15 attractions that consists of 14 photo opportunities, one ride attraction, one gift shop (maybe), and one sort of food outlet. So far to date, all counter or cart service. On a side note, I do not like it at all when Disney calls a photo opportunity an attraction, please give me a break. Been there and done that gets real old for attractions that are only a photo opportunity! One photo is good, been there done that, no need to do it again, sigh.

I rate the architecture of Mystic Point to be at least 9.8, it is beautiful and wonderful. I now could not wait to get in the door, I was at times jumping up and down wanting the line to move faster. I first walked through a lush outdoor garden winding my way to the entrance of Mystic Point. The only down side while I was waiting in the garden area of Mystic Point, Grizzly Gulch was about 2 yards away at times, the western music show that was going on at that time (good show by the way), was the only thing I could hear, but I was in Mystic Point Zone. Hong Kong Disneyland has totally lost the point of land separation by sound. I thought to myself that it was okay, not really a big deal I guess, I was being far too critical. In this garden there was no real story telling and the theme was greatly lacking I thought. I give this garden area a 6.0.

I can see the door of Mystic Point!

Once through the door, and a couple of line wind backs, we started to see some pictures on the wall of this area, but still no story yet. I walked through the door, and we were introduces to The Adventures Club, who Henry was the owner of Mystic Pont, and this is where he lived. Now inside we winded our way back and forth several more times, this was okay, this is Disney. There still was no real story told as yet, we knew that Henry lived at Mystic Point. The next are gave us many more clues.

There were maps on the walls of the interior layout of Mystic Point. This was really cool as we now knew that there are eight rooms to explore. To be honest there are only seven rooms as one room is visited twice. I held back a bit to study the maps, but the cast members really wanted me to move along. I thought that was not a problem, but I did not have a chance to study all of the rooms as yet. We then walked into a room very nearly like the first room that stretches at the Haunted Mansion. I was going nearly nuts at this point, I would give this room a 8.0 for theme, but a 5.0 for show. Suddenly the lights went out, I nearly screamed out that we are here! The show was a short slide show where Henry introduced himself as the owner of Mystic Point. He then introduced Albert his pet monkey who wanted to play with Henry’s magic music box. Henry invited us in to see his house, and to see all of his artifacts that he has collected in his journeys around the world. I never really did sort out how Albert the monkey fit into all of this except that this monkey is Henry’s pet. Please remember I did go through Mystic Point seven times. Well the room did not stretch, we can’t have it all, we walked through a door that had just opened, we are on our way!

No we were not on our way, there was two long hallways, one with a switch back, and nothing on the walls, no photos, no further story. I did kind of feel that we were in the basement of the manor, but I was still not sure. At the end of the second hallway I could now for the first time see the trackless buggy. I stood there watching but it seemed really clumsy, but I still could not see everything really close up. In the loading area, I was not sure if we were in the basement of the manor, or dockside at some port. There were some cool artifacts around. Again there were strong hints of the Adventures Club.

We then move into the first room, four buggy groups were sent off in one lot. In this first room I found myself being really confused, the story was all over the place. Albert shows up in front of this magic music box, and stands there looking at it. Then Henry welcomes us again, and reminds Albert not to open the music box. Henry takes off, and Albert opens the music box to a shower of LED light that were really cool. The lights that came out of the box started to wake up the artifacts, there was a stone statue head from the Haunted Mansion that said something, but I could never understand what he said. There was also a mummy that spoke something, we went on our way to the next room that was the music room.

Around the music room there were many instruments hanging on the walls, and they all started to play. The buggy that we were in spun around so that we could see all of the instruments playing music. Suddenly we went into the next series of rooms. Most of the rooms had photos on the walls, some of the photos had video built around it, but it was just boring. In the solarium there was a man / woman eating plant. It was all one sided because this buggy was being thrown around to make you look at the next scene so to speak. I remembered the smooth action of the Haunted Mansions Doom Buggy being a smooth ride. This ride was not smooth at all in mystic point. In fact it reminded me of the Toy Story attraction at DCA. There is nothing wrong with Toy Story, but this buggy just did not fit the Mystic Point attraction at all. One cool part were four knights armors hanging on the wall in one other room. The knights were holding their helmet in there arm, and the helmets were singing. I wondered if this was a rejected scene from the Haunted Mansion.

We then went into the China room to see a short video playing with Albert trying to get the music box out of a tree. I have no idea what all of this had to do with China, I was very confused about this room. The next room brought us back into the first room that we visited, Henry pops back up and asks Albert if he had touched the music box? We then went through a door, and unloaded.

As I have said I rode the attraction seven times, but after seven times I still never really got what was happening. I tried to look at and listen to something different with each time I went through the manor.

The buggy with no track was clumsy, not smooth, and at times throwing us around, but with no meaning. When looking at the photos on the walls, we would look one way, then in a one action, do a 180 turn to see the wall that was behind us. This action was rough, in no way smooth, and not enjoyable at all. To load the buggy was very slow, and each time I went, it seemed it took forever to get going. This was not first day jitters, they had a soft open for quite a while already so the cast members knew what to expect. It would have been better for faster loading, and much more intimate look around Mystic Point. The trackless buggy sits on top of a huge hockey like platform, thus it is at least 18” off of the ground. I just felt like we were far to high up. All of that aside, it was just far too slow to load. I give the trackless buggy a 2.0, and I pray that Disney never uses this in another attraction again.

To be honest with you, I guess you can tell that I’m really disappointed about Mystic Point. It is a go once, been there and done that. The Haunted Mansion never gets old, I was tired about Mystic Point after the third run. I give Mystic Point a total of 3.5 points. I have “NO” desire to return back to see Mystic Point as the story is very confusing, with no point. Really it is a LED light show, with some video through the house. Whatever else that was there it looked far so plastic, rather that looking like old artifacts. A few cobwebs might have been nice, Henry keeps Mystic Point way cleaner than it should be. I did see “Mark” the imagineer who designed Mystic Manor, and I looked the other way, I did not want him to ask me what I thought of Mystic Point.

In short, Hong Kong Disneyland Mystic Manor is a “miss” for sure. Hong Kong Disneyland has nothing new in the pipeline, thus I guess we are stuck with Mystic Manor for some time to come.

I went in the gift shop, the gift shop theme is cool. All done in dark wood, this was the best part about Mystic Manor. I was looking for a limited edition Mystic Manor opening day pin, but they did not have even one. I did get a Mystic manor pin, but not limited edition, and nothing special. I did purchase three other pins. One pin was from The Haunted Mansion in California, the second pin was from The Tower of Terror at DCA, and the third pin was Expedition Everest from Animal Kingdom. By the way, Hong Kong Disneyland does not have one of the three attractions, thus sales of these pins were weak. I could not sort out why they brought in pins about attractions, very cool attractions, that Hong Kong Disneyland doesn’t have. I thought that the pins were cool, I bought one of each.

It was now time for lunch, I went to try a new counter service restaurant within the Mystic Point zone. There was one open kitchen, with four counter service areas with different Asian foods. More rice is all I said, sigh! This turned out to be counter service, but in no way “quick” counter service at all. Okay I will give it a try, I fought my way to the Indonesian counter. Unfortunately it was completely disorganized, with complete mayhem everywhere. They had ropes set up at each counter that held no more than five people in the line, with at least 100 people in the area. Once the ropes were torn down by the mainland Chinese tour groups, it was a free for all. This is normal for me with daily life in Hong Kong, but I never thought I would have to fight my way around Disneyland. I hope that this was just the first day of full operation, they have to relook at rebuilding this counter service restaurant area to accommodate many more people. This is China right, I thought they knew this? The seating area is set up much like the rooms were set up in the Mystic Point attraction. It is a cool idea, but the artifacts they had in each room had no meaning to the room that they were placed in. I think that someone got the artifacts mixed up. Okay no worries as every table was rammed I noticed that there was some outdoor seating. I like to eat outside, so off I went.

I sat down looking up at the manor, ready to eat my lunch, and all I could here was the scream and music from Toy Story Land. The seating area I was in was right beside Mystic Point, but I might as well have sat in Toy Story Land. This noise really took away from anything that was happening around Mystic Point. I wonder why no one thought of any land or zone separation as it is all kind of mashed together. Never mind I said to myself, let’s enjoy lunch. I ordered the battered fish, but the cast members did not know what the fish was. They told me that the fish was white, I could not fault them on that. There was an Indonesian sauce so they told me on top of the fish. There was, sigh a bowl of steamed rice with no sauce, not even soy sauce. I put my fish on top of the rice. The third dish was boiled cabbage, with one (1) slice of carrot, and one (1) slice of a pepper I think.

There was no way that any of this food was fresh, all frozen for sure. The steamed rice was stone cold and as rice goes no taste, the cabbage was not seasoned at all and really was just boiled cabbage, and the batter on the fish was salty and mushy. The sauce that was on top of the fish had no taste because of no seasoning and also VERY salty, I ate what I could, but I only at about a quarter of anything. It was frozen food prepared poorly, no taste, and cold.

After my sort of lunch, I missed the 14 photo opportunity attractions around Mystic Point Zone, and I went home. I will try the food again on my next trip as it might have just been a bad day for the kitchen. Disney knows what they are doing, but no one clearly tasted this food to see if was any good or not. I looked at other tables to see if people were eating their food, and they were not. A couple of people I spoke to commented that Mystic Point Zone is okay, but that was the best rating I got, the comments went down from there.

I wonder if they could put a track in Mystic point and turn it into the Haunted Mystic Point, it’s not too late!

P.S. If someone could please help teach me how to download photos, I took loads if anyone would like to see them.

Last edited by Hong Kong Disney Rob; 05-17-2013 at 08:52 AM.
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Old 05-17-2013, 04:31 PM   #11
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I love Hong Kong Disneyland. I've been twice and can't wait to get back. In 2010, I went to every Disney park around the world and that was my first trip to HK Disney (though not HK). I love what they did with Toy Story Land, especially the parachutes, because I could see over the construction wall!

The HK Disney forum is under "Other Lands" in the Global section: http://www.disboards.com/forumdisplay.php?f=179.

You can post pictures by uploading them to photobucket and then copying the IMG link (it starts with URL=http) into a comment box. Like this:

Recognize these little guys?

Welcome!
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Old 05-17-2013, 05:20 PM   #12
Hong Kong Disney Rob
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Thank you for your help and direction, new here as I guess all can see. Cheers.
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