Just last week a brand new annual pass event was announced, in fact it went one step further and is actually only for Infinity annual pass holders. The event is being held on March 30th and is to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Hollywood Tower of Terror. It’s a 1930s Hollywood themed costume party with live performers and more to come I’m sure. This was announced in the same press release that saw Infinity annual passes stay at the same price, whilst gaining more benefits, such as exclusive access to this event, with a €39 ticket, all of which may have well sold out by now.
Firstly, this is a great idea, the events part anyway. I’d prefer it to open to everyone and not just annual pass holders, let alone a subsection of annual pass holders who have the most expensive passes. That aside, it is great to see more hard ticket events, as the few I have been to, Halloween and Last Tour to Endor (invite rather than ticket) were superb. This, of course, opens up the speculation as to what we I’ll have next, and going forward.
Pirates of the Caribbean
It should come as no surprise to anyone that I would like to see a Pirates of the Caribbean event, being my favourite attraction in Disneyland Paris. With the Pirates and Princesses season arriving in Spring I would wait until the summer and have it on 24th July (or the nearest appropriate day) to celebrate the 1 year relaunch of the attraction after its revolutionary refurbishment. I’d bring back the fire, lasers and music show in the nearby body of water that looked so spectacular during the 2016 Halloween Soirée. I’d have Pirate Performers around the area and Disney characters dressed in pirate costumes, different to those at the aforementioned season if possible. I’d give guests the opportunity to have empty boat photos with just their group, and maybe a Cast Member or even Captain Jack himself.
Speaking of Captain Jack, the restaurant should be used for this night too, as either a special meal that isn’t usually on the menu, or a drinks and food buffet type affair. Add in characters from the Pirates of the Caribbean films and the party could be inside and out. Just like the Tower of Terror event, fancy dress would be both allowed and encouraged, as long as it was thematically correct, though I’m not sure turning people away for not donning the ‘correct’ costume is particularly Disney. Throw in some exclusive merchandise and I may be forced to break my year of not going to Disneyland Paris and actually make use of my Infinity pass before it expires in December.
I was lucky enough to attend the Disney FanDaze bloggers event back in September last year, and tick something off of my Disneyland Paris bucket list: dining in Studio 1. I’m not talking about counter service pizza meals here, but for years I’d seen corporate events hosted in Studio 1, tables filling what is usually a busy thoroughfare from Front Lot into Production Courtyard. It felt every bit as special as I’d expected, and a dinner of this ilk for annual pass holders I think would go down very well. At that event they had a stage with speakers and characters. Now change that to a show and character meets afterwards and you’d have an evening quite different to anything Disneyland Paris has offered to date. You could even make it a black-tie event, though that might be going a bit too far, and a bit ‘stiff’ for a Disney event.
Phantom Manor/Thunder Mesa
This was the event I predicted would be announced when the topic of annual pass holder events was first floated. It’s an obvious one given that this hugely popular attraction is currently closed for a major refurbishment, the details of which are a well shrouded secret. So when it does open, in late September?, a preview night for annual pass holders, a few nights before it opens to the public I can imagine being very popular indeed. Imagine dressing up as a ghostly resident of the Manor and having the likes of Melanie and the Phantom prowling the area and posing for ghoulish photos with guests. Amazing.
You can see that I wrote Thunder Mesa in the title of this section, and at first I wanted the Phantom Manor event to reach wider, but then decided that the focus should solely be on the haunted house on the hill for that night. Instead, I’d want a second event that would have Phantom Manor, Big Thunder Mountain and the Riverboat involved in a celebration of Thunder Mesa. Guests would be invited to come dressed in their Wild West finery while Cast Member performers would take on the roles of Thunder Mesa residents, something I’ve been saying they should do for some years now. Throw in Cowboy costumed Disney characters, food and drink at Silver Spur Steakhouse and Lucky Nugget Saloon, maybe even a mini parade and possibly some fireworks, and it would be a fantastic night for all.
There are many possibilities for special events in Disneyland Paris, with the obvious Star Wars and Marvel thrown in there for good measure, but these are just a few of my suggestions. What I’d really like to know is what you’d like to see, whether it’s the kind of thing I have outlined here, or something completely different, please comment and let me know your thoughts.