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  1. #1

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    How Important is the Magic Kingdom experience to a Disney resort?

    I grew up with WDW and didn't go to DLR till I was 19 in 2005. My favorite park at WDW as a child was by far the Magic Kingdom. My family spent the most time there during our trips. Now after visiting DL, the Magic Kingdom seems like a rip off. I haven't been back to WDW since I have been going to DLR more recently, but I know it will not live up to what it was before visiting DLR. The Magic Kingdom feels like a condensed cheap version of Disneyland. Lacking many of the rides, and not having enough that is unique to make up for it. Plus, the Magic Kingdom has a horribly themed Fantasyland, ecspecially when compared to the gorgeous Fantasyland of DL. MK lacks any themed areas as good as New Orleans Square and Fantasyland from DL. Theming at DL is so much better. DLP looks to be what the Magic Kingdom should have been. When DLP opened it would be very hard to have the number of attractions found in DL, so the Imagineers created unique versions of attractions such as Phantom Manor and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, plus put great and unique theming in the park. DLP looks to be a great park that won't feel like a cheap condensed version of DL once I visit it. To me the Magic Kingdom experience is very important, because it is why I grew up loving Disney theme parks in the first place. If I had only been exposed to MGM, DAK, and EPCOT then I probably wouldn't have my great love for Disney today. IMO, if the Magic Kingdom park of a resort isn't heathly then the resort as a whole isn't healthly. I am not saying I don't have fun at the non-MK parks, it is just that the MK park of a resort is the most important. Tokyo Disney Sea looks like an exception however, it looks like it has lots of attractions that are as fun and reridable as the MK type rides. Each park should be able to stand on it's own in a Disney resort, and the only non-MK park that looks to be able to stand on it's own is TDS. EPCOT, DAK, MGM, and DCA offer far too little on their own. Basically what I am asking is :Can a Disney Resort survive without a great Magic Kingdom?

  2. #2

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    Re: How Important is the Magic Kingdom experience to a Disney resort?

    I don't understand why anyone would go to a Disney "Resort" without a "Magic Kingdom". Without Disneyland there is no Resort - only some Hotels and a Mall.







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  3. #3

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    Re: How Important is the Magic Kingdom experience to a Disney resort?

    My answer to this would be "No". There is no way that Disney could survive without its "Disneyland" element. The vast majority of people wouldn't identify it as Disney or being a Disney-brand experience. If Walt Disney World decided to close its Magic Kingdom and just have EPCOT Center, Disney MGM Studios, and Animal Kingdom, with no Castle, no Adventureland, no Pirates of the Caribbean, Haunted Mansion, no uniquely identifiable elements, then the public would not accept it as Disney. The Magic Kingdom is central to any Disney resort.

    Now, considering that Disney is interested in urban developments and toying around with the idea of mini-resorts, they would have to incorporate distinct Disney elements into those. And, possibly, like Disney Stores, those could stand alone as definitely Disney. However, Disneyland, Walt Disney World, Tokyo Disneyland, Euro-Disney, and Hong Kong Disneyland, all started off with a "Magic Kingdom", with a "Disneyland". They were really nothing more than a "Disneyland". That park was the building block for all other Disney resorts around the world. It was the initial building block and the keystone that allowed the rest of the resort to be build off of it.

    No matter how lacking a Magic Kingdom is, it is still a Magic Kingdom and carries with it the Disneyland identity, the recognizable symbols that tell the public "this is Disney". Without one, no major Disney resort could survive. I daresay not even Tokyo Disney Sea, with all of its glories, could stand-alone without its sister park. There needs to be something identifiable for people to visit. There has to be a catch to hook the market's attention. In the 1950s, it was Walt Disney and his films that did the trick, as well as the basic appeal the country had for the major elements inside the park, (The Old West and Adventure, The Future, and Fantasy). (Not to mention almost unlimited advertising.) In the 1970s, it was Disneyland that did the trick for Walt Disney World. For Tokyo and Paris it was the American and Disney symbolism, that recognition factor, that made the endeavor worthwhile. For Hong Kong, it was the appeal of Disneyland and Walt Disney World that made it work.

    Disney could try a new resort, one built without a "Magic Kingdom", but that place would have to incorporate MAJOR key elements of Disneyland into it. They could build all new lands inside it, but there would have to be some hook, some factor that would attract a lot of people. It would have to be more than just name recognition. It would have to have things that could easliy be linked to the name.


  4. #4

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    Re: How Important is the Magic Kingdom experience to a Disney resort?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sambo View Post
    I don't understand why anyone would go to a Disney "Resort" without a "Magic Kingdom". Without Disneyland there is no Resort - only some Hotels and a Mall.
    That's true for DLR. I might have should of put this thread in the WDW forum, but it still apllies to all Disney resorts. I was sparked into making this thread with all the complaints about WDW's MK, plus my own personal thoughts about what a MK should be.

  5. #5

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    Re: How Important is the Magic Kingdom experience to a Disney resort?

    If if was not important for Disney to add it's Magic Kingdom touch they would be in the business of aquiring other theme parks. Fact is, Disney knows there has to be this sort of quality in everything that has their name on it. Disney mean family entertainment. Precisely why they they put a different company together for movies that didn't meet the family entertainment standards.

    I think the fact that Disney has started all of its theme parks from scratch speaks volumes for the OPs question. As for Cedar Faire & Six Flags: you can try and polish a turd-you still have a turd.

    Chad

  6. #6

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    Re: How Important is the Magic Kingdom experience to a Disney resort?

    Quote Originally Posted by aashee View Post
    If if was not important for Disney to add it's Magic Kingdom touch they would be in the business of aquiring other theme parks. Fact is, Disney knows there has to be this sort of quality in everything that has their name on it. Disney mean family entertainment. Precisely why they they put a different company together for movies that didn't meet the family entertainment standards.

    I think the fact that Disney has started all of its theme parks from scratch speaks volumes for the OPs question. As for Cedar Faire & Six Flags: you can try and polish a turd-you still have a turd.
    *snrk* Yet Cedar Point is still a superior park. Not a theme park, but a hell of an amusement park. Same with Magic Mountain recently.
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  7. #7

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    Re: How Important is the Magic Kingdom experience to a Disney resort?

    Tokyo DisneySea certainly is the best second gate by far, but I don't think it would have been as successful without Tokyo Disneyland. The Magic Kingdoms are the epitome of the Disney experience, and that is why they consistently draw more guests than their respective second gates. Though in Tokyo Disneyland's case, it's only drawing about a million more guests than Tokyo DisneySea. However, I would bet that any Disney resort would not draw nearly as many guests without a Magic Kingdom acting as the anchor and flagship park.
    ~ Tokyo DisneySea’s Arabian Coast at nighttime ~


  8. #8

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    Re: How Important is the Magic Kingdom experience to a Disney resort?

    Quote Originally Posted by TDR_Fan View Post
    The Magic Kingdoms are the epitome of the Disney experience, and that is why they consistently draw more guests than their respective second gates.

    You pretty much hit the nail on the head. The Magic Kingdom style parks are where the "epitome of the Disney experience" should be found. When a Magic Kingdom doesn't give the "epitome of the Disney experience," (sadly WDW's MK is my example) then the resort as a whole doesn't feel like what a Disney resort should.

  9. #9

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    Re: How Important is the Magic Kingdom experience to a Disney resort?

    Quote Originally Posted by GhostHost2 View Post
    You pretty much hit the nail on the head. The Magic Kingdom style parks are where the "epitome of the Disney experience" should be found. When a Magic Kingdom doesn't give the "epitome of the Disney experience," (sadly WDW's MK is my example) then the resort as a whole doesn't feel like what a Disney resort should.
    I agree that Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom is an inferior experience compared to other Magic Kingdoms. Out of the 4 Magic Kingdoms I've experienced (haven't visited Hong Kong Disneyland yet), Tokyo Disneyland has been the best by far.
    ~ Tokyo DisneySea’s Arabian Coast at nighttime ~


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