Saturday, November 24, 2007

Where should Disney be building Parks?

If you're anything like me, when you heard that Disney were opening a resort in Hawaii, you started grinning uncontrollably. Reason being, Hawaii is one of my most desired holiday destinations outside all the Disney Parks. And now that there's going to be a Disney Resort there, I have twice the reason to visit.

But it got me thinking. Where are the future Disney Parks going to be? And what could be some possible locations?

The more credible rumours I've heard suggest Disney is planning an Australian Park and a Mainland China-based one. Australia is a logical choice, Oceania is a major gap in the market and it makes sense to put a Disney Park somewhere not geographically close to any of the others.

China is a tad disappointing. There is some logic in the move - there are a vast number of people who could visit a Chinese Disneyland - but owing to the fairly recent opening of Hong Kong Disneyland and the presence of TokyoDisney, some were hoping for some expansion elsewhere.

And so, to the potential candidates. Debunked rumours suggested a South American Resort was in the near future, an idea which has cropped up several times.

Yet, it's difficult to see how this could work. South America isn't really known for it's infrastructure and most of the continent's major cities are jam-packed. It would have to built in a rural area - and the public relations nightmare this would cause would be unbearable for good old Mr. Iger.

I myself believe Disney should open a park in Spain, possibly near Barcelona or elsewhere on the coast.

Indeed, a similar idea was presented whilst Disney were planning what eventually became Disneyland Resort Paris. The idea has a number of advantages, especially now.

A second resort would give EuroDisney SCA a better income. And it could also serve the burgeoning Disney Cruise operation. Building the Resort right on the coast would allow Disney to build a dock exclusively for the ships, offering a permanent port of call for European cruises - Europeans could board in Spain rather than America.
Perhaps this could even form a seaside-themed land. It's an idea with legs.

One bizarre rumour I have heard, which I think may have been spawned as pure speculation and as such is probably based on pretty much zero evidence, is that Disney (Or more likely EuroDisney SCA or one of the other Disney subsidiaries) might buy The Tussauds Group - comprising a number of UK attractions including theme parks like Alton Towers. However, the recent sale of the business to Blackstone - who rolled it into Merlin Entertainments, has put the proverbial kibosh on that idea.

I must confess, I'd also like to see Disney open one more Resort stateside. Perhaps in Central America, perhaps not. However, I believe this is not currently in Disney's plans, so I shan't hold my breath.

Where would you like to see Disney expand to?

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Disney to expand Mobile Venture to Japan

ZDNet, via Reuters, has it that Disney is to go into partnership with Japanese mobile phone carrier Softbank in a move moderately similar to the existing Disney Mobile service stateside, though it sounds like it may be more focused on downloads than that particular venture.

Reuters suggests that this move will spark increased saturation in an already crowded Japanese market. My interest is more in the idea that Disney is finally taking its mobile venture international.

Here in the UK, virtual operators are prevalent - Tesco, Virgin and the Carphone Warehouse all operate virtual networks - Tesco for example on the dominant O2 carrier.

As such, it piques my interest that at some point soon, Disney may move into the UK Mobile network. As a die hard Disney fan, that excites me.

Hit up the link for more details.

Jens Out