Chuck over at O-Meon, posts a round up of the latest rumors for the Disneyland Resort. Seems like Tony Baxter’s idea of opening up California Adventure has been moved aside in favor of Tom Fitzgerald’s idea to expand the place-making efforts with the eventual goal of a new overarching theme for Disneyland’s neighbor. Maybe then it will be worthy of having Walt’s name as part of it’s title. Until then I will continue to refrain from using it.
Two other rumors that interest me are that the ‘Cars’ attraction previewed in the recent WDC Annual Report is being considered for California Adventure. Another step down the path to an eventual Pixarland (Lasseterland? Ranft Country?). Adding an e-ticket Cars attraction is a great idea for the park, alas, the ideal area where it should go, Route-66, is clear on the other side of the park and there is not enough room to fit a major attraction in over there and expand the Grand Californian (as they are doing to add a few DVC rooms right now) at the same time. It would be great place-making to just relocate the Route-66 theme to the other side of the park, bring in a few new attractions to bookend the ‘Cars’ attraction and make it a mini-land, like the Bug’s Life area is now. Moving Route-66 would also let them expand the San Francisco area, or just get ride of it all together with a goal of unifying the theme around the lagoon (and doing away with the horrible paradise pier theme at the same time).
The other rumor that really interests me is the possible addition of a real hotel ‘within the berm’, as they say, of California Adventure. This hotel would be ’boutique’ size and would roughly occupy the space of the old ‘Hollywood and Dine’ restaurant and outdoor dining area of the park. An area that is terribly under utilized right now but has been considered both as a way to expand the Hyperion Theater, give it a real lobby and access to Harbor Blvd for Broadway length shows, and as a possible home for an indoor roller coaster similar to the Rock’n’Roller Coaster at Disney-MGM Studios. While I love the idea of a boutique hotel for California Adventure, I’d rather have either of the other ideas in that particular location. I’d place the boutique hotel near the Grand California, so it could capitalize on the infrastructure of that hotel the way Las Vegas boutique hotels use the resources of their larger corporate neighbors.