Editor’s Note: This post is a part of the Disney Blog Carnival #41. Check it out to read more things all about Disney!
You still have some time to check out Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” in theaters and in 3D. We went last weekend and it was awesome! The Oscar-nominated Best Picture still stands the test of time with its opulent dining room dance number, “Be Our Guest,” and other classic tunes that my generation grew up listening to.
It reminded me of a few pictures I took while in Florida in December. Fantasyland is undergoing a HUGE development and part of it is “Beauty and the Beast” themed.
Let’s take a look!
Above is the overall artist’s rendering of what the new Fantasyland will look like when it’s complete later in 2013, but with phases of it beginning to open up this year. The project includes new rides like an undersea adventure with Ariel, a mine train ride with the Seven Dwarfs, an enhanced Dumbo the Flying Elephant experience and story time with Belle. (Want more on the project? Check out the Disney Parks Blog here.)
Before we take a look at how the “Beauty and the Beast” theme will take shape in the new Fantasyland, let’s see how Imagineers are having fun with it. Pictured above, this popcorn cart built by Belle’s eccentric inventor father, Maurice, is quirky, yet very helpful to all the hungry tourists passing through the park.
I’m always amazed at the intricate details that Disney’s Imagineers put toward their projects. From little nobs and whistles, you’re whisked away to the movieland that animators created years ago. It’s like a little piece of my childhood popped out of the moving, colorful illustrations.
One part of this project is Gaston’s Tavern, a manly place with many antlered items adorning the walls. I can’t seem to find out much information about what will be on the menu here but I’ve heard whisperings that this will be the first place in Magic Kingdom to get an alcoholic beverage. The Disney World discussion board seems to squelch that rumor by saying that MK will probably remain a “dry” park so Gaston’s will more likely serve some form of root beer to rival Universal Orlando’s mucho popular butterbeer at the Harry Potter park. No matter what it serves – it will be a fun new addition. (I wonder if they’ll serve tons of eggs? Now wondering…does anyone get that movie reference in BATB?)
This area of Fantasyland also will include a new dining experience – the “Be Our Guest” restaurant inside Beast’s castle. This huge new restaurant in Magic Kingdom allows more than 500 guests to enjoy a meal in the mysterious west wing of Beast’s castle (where the enchanted rose is housed), in the library or gallery (for those bookworms, just like Belle and I) or the massive two-story ballroom with windows that will have a view to a bewitching wintry scene.
According to Disney Food Blog, “Be Our Guest” will be a counter-service eatery during the day and a sit-down experience at dinner. It’s expected to open in late 2012, so Advanced Dining Reservations should be just around the corner.
The progress of Beast’s castle (in early December 2011, above) was impressive. It will be a purely magical experience for all of the little princesses (even us big ones) to walk up to Beast’s castle and enjoy a story with Belle and Lumiere or eat next to the beautiful enchanted rose.