2012 ended up being an amazing year for the Universal Orlando Resort, with some great additions: Re-animated Spiderman, Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem, Hollywood Drive in Mini Golf, Universal Super Star Parade, Universal Cinematic Spectacular, Sponge Bob Storepants, revamped Blue Man Group show and lots of little improvements and area entertainment additions. But, 2013 is looking to be even bigger, with huge projects that will be completed this year and in the years to come!


The land that was once Amity and the home to JAWS is begining to take shape. Soon, the sights and sounds of London will be here.  The ride track for the Gringotts Bank attraction continues to be assembled behind construction walls, and scaffolding has been added in the interior of the show building for what promises to be an amazing adventure.

Beautiful ride track!


The replacement of the International Food and Film Festival restaurant  continues to move ahead at full speed as they get ready for a Summer 2013 opening for this themed area.

We can already hear the clinking of the glasses at Moe’s Tavern.  Meanwhile, the reshaping of the water front area continues to progress as this once drab section of the park receives some real theme.  A huge plus for future park guests.


The show building for Transformers has been closed off for a few weeks, however set pieces, and scenery are being installed at a furious pace to get this attraction opened in time for summer crowds!


A quiet project happening across from the Transformers show building is the improvement of Revenge of the Mummy.  Gone is the metal scaffolding sign, and wait time sign.  The new signage is better themed with the building, and the new wait time sign fits the architecture.  A simple but elegant plus for the attraction.  (Now if someone would just get Brandon Fraiser his coffee so that ending can be changed as well).


The scaffolding came down this past week around the shop next to the exit of Disaster, and revealed a simple and cleaned up facade.

Over at Islands of Adventure, the stage for the Wizarding World of Harry Potter entertainment has finally been completed. However, the large stone that was originally there has had some work done, and is not 100% ready for show time.  This stone is where the speakers and other show equipment are kept.   From what can be seen so far, the new live entertainmentset up in the Wizarding World will give more people the ability to see these lovely street shows.


The Snack Cart over at the Lost Continent came out from it’s rehab with a wonderful new addition… FLAVORED POPCORN!  Ranch, Cheese, and Sour Cream & Chives now available.


Hogwarts Express construction continues with much of the work currently being done in the backstage areas between parks.


Construction for the newest hotel at the Universal Orlando Resort has finally gone vertical!  You will have to excuse these sloppy photos, as we had to take them on the fly.


On Monday January 7th, Universal Orlando unveiled it’s full line up for the 2013 Mardi Gras concerts!

February 9 – Lifehouse
February 16 – Steve Miller band
February 17
 – Boys Like Girls
February 23 – Trey Songz
March 2 – Demi Lovato
March 9 – Montgomery Gentry
March 15 – Sean Kingston
March 16 – Matchbox Twenty
March 22 – Austin Mahone
March 23 – Phillip Phillips
March 30 – Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo
April 6 – TBD
April 13 – Pitbull
April 20 – TBD


If you missed our supplemental article late last week, we filled you in on Universal’s attempt to acquire the theme park rights to The Lord Of The Rings. If the deal goes through as planned, it will place Universal in a very strong position. We recommend you click through to read more about it HERE, and let us know your thoughts.


Kck off 2013 with a bit of UUOP in your ears.


2013 is shaping up to be another incredible year at the Universal Orlando Resort, and the Orlando Parkhopper will be here through 2013 and beyond to share it all with you!