Walt Disney World and Disneyland aren’t the only parks eexperiencing high attendance this time of year, Islands of Adventure at Universal Studios Orlando has had to close its gates for the first time in its existence. This is, of course, largely due to the popularity of the new Wizarding World of Harry Potter attractions and themed land. The closure was only for a few hours each day, but still, it’s a sign of how much the park has matured with that wizarding addition.
This puts an exclamation mark on what has already been a pretty spectacular year for Universal Orlando. With NBC/Universal’s acquisition by Comcast conditionally approved, we’ll have to see if the park continues to build on this momentum to truly give Disney a run for its money.
It’s just a fad- they will never keep up with Disney. They might have potter, Disney has real estate
What an accomplishment for Universal… Congratulations to them! Hopefully if they keep up the pressure and attendance numbers, Disney might actually be forced to do something about it and respond with a mega-attraction of their own.
I agree with you Gary. Potter is a fad and once the last Potter movie has come and gone after next year the one single new attraction based on the movie will not have lasting legs. Disney has a rich, deep culture full of stories and characters that lend greatly to further enhancing Disney’s parks and resorts. Potter may have helped IOA, albeit temporarily, it hasn’t really moved Universal Studios numbers upward, if at all. And while it was speculated that Potter hurt WDW’s numbers, in reality it may have impacted the numbers during the summer months only, but overall for the year WDW is still quite solid. WDW is doing fine and will jump in attendance further once the expanded Fantasyland is open.
Congratulations to Universal and Islands of Adventure. This is great news for all theme park lovers.
Regarding both Gary and Disneyphile’s comments regarding Harry Potter being a fad, not so. The first Harry Potter book came out in 1999 and has gained in popularity ever since. A fad is something embraced very enthusiastically by people for a very short time; a fad does not last over a decade (twelve years in 2011).
Also, given the park has been at capacity, it is impossible to say, “It hasn’t really moved Universal Studios numbers upward.” When a store has a 90+ minute wait, a beverage cart an hour, and an attraction with a 2 to 3 hour wait, Universal has done something right. No reason to be upset or defensive about Universal’s success, be thankful for it and enjoy it knowing this will motivate Universal and other parks to create better product for all of us enjoy in the future.