Published: October 7, 2013 at 3:57 PMI was there recently and it looks like work on the Hogwarts Express station in IOA is well on its way too.
Published: October 7, 2013 at 4:23 PMI visited recently and construction on the Hogwarts Express station in IOA is well on its well too. Get a great view from Dragon Challenge.
Published: October 7, 2013 at 9:04 PMIt's mind numbing how fast Universal is able to turn out world class, E-Ticket attractions and experiences. They really are the industry leaders when it comes to this.
Published: October 8, 2013 at 9:17 AMWe will be in Orlando next fall, to experience this expansion and the completed new Fantasyland at the Magic Kingdom. Those expansions, and the halloween events, will make it an exciting time to visit!
Published: October 8, 2013 at 10:20 AMI just wish Universal would fix the ugliness of all that exposed coaster track in their themed areas. The coasters and all that steel really take away from the theme and feel of Hogsmeade. If Universal really wants to be "the industry leader" as a commenter above said, it should find ways to make all the coaster tracks be hidden in the parks. Especially in the Harry Potter areas...where i don't recall steel coaster tracks ever appearing in any of the books or movies.
Published: October 8, 2013 at 3:48 PMI never said they were the hands down industry leader in all of themed entertainment. My comment was as to how "fast" they are able to turn out E-Ticket attractions. Which is something they have now consistently done since Wizarding World opened several years ago now. Their pace and high level of product is a combination unmatched by any other entity in the business at this time. I'm all for theming coaster tracks when possible, but Dueling Dragons was a ride that was absorbed into WWoHP, making it difficult logistically and very cost prohibitive to build any type of show building or incorporate a new fully fleshed out ride experience taking place during the actual ride. On their own merits, these are two very fine steel coasters that appeal to a large demographic of thrill seekers. Retro fitting them would be a waste of resources.
Published: October 9, 2013 at 4:33 AMRobert, as a theme park fan living in the UK, I often make the trip to Orlando with Virgin Holidays (Richard Branson's holiday-branch of his Virgin empire). I am noticing that to book a week at Royal Pacific Resort in mid-June is £1000 more expensive (that is like £150 per night more expensive) than booking a week in early June.
Now, clearly there might be some extra cost involved because of the traditional 'high season' during the school holidays, but such a large increase and difference in price structure clearly indicates that Universal know when they are expecting WWoHP Phase 2 to open. ;)
You might be interested in that 'spoiler'.
Published: October 9, 2013 at 2:14 PMThe difference between Disney and Universal when it comes to construction is Disney seems to use labor that is on what I refer to as "Island Time". 9 to 5 workers that seem to shut down around 3PM... it's a Florida thing. I worked down there for years.
Universal construction is 24/7, which allows a project to be completed roughly 3X faster. I was watching the welder's torches glow from our hotel room at 3AM one night.