Today, Walt Disney Parks announced a partnership with Starbucks Corporation. Six locations are planned to open in Disney Parks & Resorts across the country, with the first one to be opened at Disney California Adventure in June (which matches the timing of the openings of Cars Land, Buena Vista Street, and Carthay Circle Theatre, as well as Mad T Party at DCA.) The Disney Parks Blog just said “June” for Starbucks, but my guess is it will be right around the same time as all these other openings. Everything new in DCA should be opened all at once, to truly show off the park’s expansion into its true potential.
Fans are already starting to give mixed reactions on Twitter, message boards, and other outlets – but overall, the ring seems positive. And I completely agree – this is a great move for both companies. Calls for better coffee have long been appearing on message boards, blogs, etc. (one of my favorites is DisneyTouristBlog’s packing list which suggests bringing your own Starbucks Via, their instant coffee, because Disney Parks serves Nescafe, which Tom of DTB calls “seriously bad.”) He’s not alone – many guests have a lot of negative things to say about the quality of coffee at Disney Parks. And now, we have a fix!
There are some that will criticize this move, claiming that it is pushing Disney Parks away from fantasy and more into reality, likening it more to a shopping mall. However, I praise Disney for this move. They realized that fans were complaining about the coffee, and they acted on it.
I’m not saying that Disney should outsource anything they can’t perfect themselves – as an example, I love Chipotle Mexican Grill more than La Cantina De San Angel at EPCOT’s World Showcase, but I’d be upset to see a Chipotle smack in the middle of the park. I think as long as Disney keeps the theming of each Starbucks location relevant to the area it is in (which they appear to be doing – the DCA location will “[play] off the Spanish/Mexican architecture of the period, and baristas will wear 1920s-inspired attire.” If they keep this up, I can’t see many people complaining.
For the official announcement, head over to The Disney Parks Blog.