Many fans of “The Little Mermaid” have been asking for a mermaid-related update over the past few weeks, so today we’re happy to share the first look inside Ariel’s Grotto, a new character greeting location coming to New Fantasyland.
As you can see, Ariel will greet guests in mermaid form, seated on a giant seashell throne. The grotto will be located within the base of the seaside cliffs upon which Prince Eric’s Castle sits, but is separate from the Under the Sea ~ Journey of The Little Mermaid attraction.
This character greeting will debut with the rest of New Fantasyland for a preview period beginning November 19, and then a grand opening on December 6. What do you think? Will you visit Ariel when New Fantasyland opens?
Change the scheme, Alter the mood! Electrify the boys and girls if you would be so kind!
Kristen loved this meet and greet at Tokyo Disney Sea. This setup looks very similar to that. My only concern will be wait times. They only had 'one' little mermaid in Tokyo, hopefully they'll have more in Florida or you'll be in line all day for this!
Aren't some Meet & Greets in one or more Disney parks starting to use a fastpass system, as well as attractions?
I thought there was going to be a few of them using this system as well, so parents can plan their children's Meet & Greet into their day's planning. Which I think is a good idea considering all the tired and dazed kids and/or parents I have seen in some M&G lines, around Disney's themepark world, lol.
Maybe the new Ariel M&G will be one of those with FP.
(EDIT TO ADD: Probably can't be done, with so many families coming into the parks. And if there's a sellout of FPs to see Ariel... probable chaos will ensue, LOL! So - I withdraw my suggestion <blush> )
Last edited by Nrthwnd on Mon Sep 03, 2012 2:24 am.
We got invited to come preview "Enchanted Tales With Belle" at Magic Kingdom's New Fantasyland today. The best was to describe this attraction is like a "Character Meet and Greet on steroids!" In a way in shares some similarities with Turtle Talk or Monsters Inc Laugh Floor in that the characters in the room interact with the audience, but this is a much more close and personal experience.
Much like some of the walk-through attractions or pre-shows to attractions at Tokyo Disney, Enchanted Tales has some very impressive technology in both animatronics and visual effects.
The attraction is staged in three rooms, where about 25 guests are with you, and follow the story through each section. Each room has it's own unique set of "tricks" which and every one of them are very impressive. This is not your average meet & greet by any means!
The first room is Maurice's Cottage where the "mirror" transforms into a portal leading to the Beasts castle. The next room is where you'll encounter the "Wardrobe" where several members of the group volunteer to help act out the story of Beauty & The Beast. The final room is where you meet Belle, who is accompanied by a VERY impressive Lumiere animatronic.
The "show" is extremely well done! My only constructive feedback I'd have during this time of tweak & adjust would be that not all the kids in the final room got to take a picture with Belle, only the ones who volunteers for the story-telling aspect of it. I would have to think this would be a pretty big issue for most kids and parents having stood in line for a while to not get a picture with the princess. All of the kids get to meet her, and talk to her, just not everyone gets a picture on their Photo Pass card. I'm confident they will sort this out by the time it opens officially.
Anyway, here's some pictures and a video of the complete attraction!
Oooh! We are walking on the other side of the "wall" to get to Enchanted Tales With Belle!
Here's what it looks like, looking back!
You enter the attraction through Maurice's Cottage.
Some of the details that can be found inside the cottage.
Yup, more details and stuff....
Looks like a normal mirror, right?
Take a slightly closer look... See anything interesting? No?
As the mirror comes to life, the video (which is impressive quality) shows you the way to the Beasts castle. The mirror then extends to the floor....
And transforms before your eyes into a doorway leading to the castle.
In the next room we are greeted by the Wardrobe - this character reminds of a cross between a physical prop or animatronic, mixed with some of the video and interactive technology from Turtle Talk. This effect was very cool!
Gah! The wardobe exposes herself! (ok, not really!)
The cast member host finds volunteers to help act out the story of Beauty and the Beast, and along with the Wardrobe interacting with the audience, they decide which volunteers to choose.
The next room we move to is the library, where this very impressive Lumiere animatronic also interacts with the audience.
Belle comes in, speaks with Lumiere and then says hello to everyone in the room.
Lumiere and Belle exchange words, He tells her the audience wants to act out her story....
She meets all the volunteers and takes pictures with them.
Belle and Lumiere interact with what is going on in the room making each experience unique.
Belle says her goodbyes to the audience.
You exit once again next to Maurice's Cottage.
Here is some of the surrounding area of New Fantasyland.
More detail of the New Fantasyland area.
Another look at Maurice's Cottage.
This will eventually be the top of the Seven Dwarfs roller coaster.
A look over towards the Little Mermaid area.
One of the castle walls at the entrance to New Fantasyland.
This will eventually be the walkway into New Fantasyland.
Here is the concept art on how the walkway and the castle walls from the two photos above will eventually look.
And here on the map is Enchanted Tales With Belle to give you an idea of where in New Fantasyland this attraction is located!
Looking forward to more previews of all these new attractions! Looks great so far!
Admittedly I am a Disneyland fanboy... I don't even like MK as a park and Fantasyland was one of the reasons why because it used to look kind of like a lame county fair. After all of these updates it now looks absolutely amazing in every way and Enchanted Tales looks perfect for what Disney is looking for, a truly magical, interactive and innovative way for people to interact with their favorite characters. I hope some of this gets added soon to the West Coast because even if we get nothing of this scale it would be cool to see something like this in Mickey's and Minnie's respective houses in Toontown. This looks amazing!
Very impressive! The Cast Managers in the video were doing a great job keeping the story and plot going, but I could see where a less enthusiastic CM (especially after a long day) could make or break the whole experience.
I'm very impressed with what has been shown so far of the new Fantasyland. It sounds like I may have to take a trip back out there to see this cool experience and the Snow White coaster when they open.
Also ghost I have to disagree with you, I hope they DON'T bring this to Disneyland. I want some incentive to visit the MK.
Ghostbusters Ride at Universal Studios....let's Make it Happen!
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