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Former Disney Property Continues to Struggle

The Queen Mary attraction in Long Beach, California, continues to struggle according to this story in the Long Beach Press-Telegram.

In the late 1980s, The Walt Disney Company purchased the company that owned the attraction, which at the time, included the plane built and flown by Howard Hughes that came to be known as the Spruce Goose.  More importantly, that company also owned the Disneyland Hotel and the rights to use the Disney name on hotels in the area.  Buying that company helped pave the way to expanding the original Disney theme park into the Disneyland Resort.

Disney also proposed building a theme park and related projects at the Queen Mary attraction, with a concept that later morphed into what was built as DisneySea in Japan.  Some say the Long Beach proposal was only a way to persuade Anaheim to back Disney’s expansion there, but I like to think that if things had been different, we would have seen new theme parks in both Anaheim and Long Beach.  Building large projects along the coast in California is especially difficult – there is even an agency called the California Coastal Commission that property owners must deal with in addition to other local, state, and federal agencies.

Disney ran the operation in Long Beach for a while, transfering some managers there and imposing things like Disney’s appearance guidelines, more strict back then they are now.  Disneyland visitors were handed promotional fliers touting what they was to see in Long Beach. 

It seems like the operation in Long Beach has continually stuggled since Disney sold it off.