08 Mar 2006

Disney & China

When unexpected masses of visitors recently flocked to Disneyland Hong Kong on the occasion of Chinese New Year celebrations, the operators were so overwhelmed that the only thing they could think of was to close the park due to maxed-out capacities. Yet a large proportion of the people in the queue had already bought a valid billet for roughly 30 euros, and their resentment ultimately turned into anger and full-fledged wrangling. A few hundred amusement-hungry people finally managed to jump the barriers and get into the park. Ever since the facility opened in September last year, there have been repeated incidents that the media has picked up on instantly, hardly any of which have likely bestowed Mickey Mouse & Co. with good vibrations. Despite this, China’s capital city Peking is planning on opening its own Disneyland, presumably in 2010. Nothing has been definitely decided yet, as the boomtown of Shanghai is also courting Disney. And by the wayside, the aggressive plug and all the celebrations for Disneyland’s 50th birthday also pushed the corporation’s quarterly revenue of the entire park division up 13 per cent to 2.4 billion dollars: more visitors, more restaurant visits, and more overnight stays at the Disney hotels were noted. (eap)


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