2010 Best Theme Park Attraction nominee: Disneyland's Enchanted Tiki Room

January 12, 2010, 11:38 AM · Two months ago, I argued that Walt Disney's Enchanted Tiki Room was, and is, the best animatronic show ever made: an "under-rated attraction that plays to the strength of the animatronic medium."

Well, some of you seem to agree with me that the Tiki Room's a good show because Disneyland's Enchanted Tiki Room has made the field for the 2010 Best Theme Park Attraction Tournament. However, perhaps justifying my call that the Tiki Room is under-rated, my pick as the best animatronic show comes in as only the 12th seed in the Best Movie or Animated Show bracket. (Or, maybe, you just think the show is good, but not that good.)

Disneyland's Enchanted Tiki Room

The Enchanted Tiki Room opened in June 1963, as the Walt Disney Company's first-ever Audio-Animatronic attraction. Set in a relatively small, but immersive room, where singing birds and flowers hang from the ceiling and the walls themselves become part of the show, the Enchanted Tiki Room show takes place all around and above visitors. Most folks under 40 will miss the dated vocal references to 1950s and '60s celebrities such as Maurice Chevalier, Bing Crosby and Louis Armstrong, but kids will enjoy the colorful birds and flowers, not to mention the singing tikis and totems.

Here's a great YouTube video which includes the pre-show, as well as the entire Tiki Room performance:

Can the Tiki Room pull the famed "12 versus 5" upset and move on to the next round? We'll find out when voting begins in March for the Best Theme Park Attraction Tournament. In the meantime, please share in the comments your thoughts about the Enchanted Tiki Room, and its place within the industry.

Replies (11)

January 12, 2010 at 2:10 PM · It's been awhile since I've seen the Tiki Room, but I still, as of yet, gotta give this category to The Hall of Presidents.
January 12, 2010 at 2:38 PM · The tiki room is one of the pleasant surprises at Disneyland. Its amazing that this show is like 47 years old or something like that and still looks pretty good. The beginning and ending parts of the show make it worthwhile, and not just a place to take a rest(which is good too).
January 12, 2010 at 9:38 PM · It should get points for trendsetting. It seriously one of the oldest and most memorable shows out there. Its one of the few attractions that people can remember no matter who they are.
January 13, 2010 at 1:02 AM · The Tiki Room is one of my favorite attractions at Disneyland. Totally charming. I love the pre-show outside, too.
January 13, 2010 at 2:50 AM · "Its one of the few attractions that people can remember no matter who they are."

True, but not always for the same reasons. My wife and I went to the last showing one night. We were alone except for a couple in the last row. They were - um, enjoying themselves - literally - so hard I thought ALL of us might become pregnant.

No wonder we angered the gods.

Actually, our most memorable time was when the Room was hosted by the (in)famous Maynard.

January 13, 2010 at 2:55 AM · I know you've heard it all before. I'm sorry. I just prefer that original Tiki Room show more than it's current format.

OK. With that single gripe out of the way I can also say that I still like the Tiki Rooms and it's animatronics are exceptionally good. It not only provides a nice slice of entertainment but it's also great for taking the weight off on those hot and physically demanding days at the Park.
It's going to be an interesting battle in this part of the Draw.

Regarding Mark's story about the " performance within a performance" : It's a pity that Zazu wasn't able to drop a message or two on the offending couple.

January 13, 2010 at 8:36 AM · I wish they would bring the Disneyland show to Disney World! That Under New Management show is a sin. I agree though that the "Real" show at Disneyland deserves to be voted the best.
January 13, 2010 at 11:02 AM · Rob, Disneyland's Tiki Room is the original show. You're thinking of Disney World's Under New Management which I'm pretty sure wouldn't get anywhere near this tournament.
January 13, 2010 at 12:57 PM · Yes, I've posted guards at the doors to the Tournament Stadium, with strict instructions to keep the Under New Management show out. Heck, those birds don't even get to watch from the stands.
January 13, 2010 at 6:28 PM · Mark -

Your story is the best theme park story I've heard in awhile. Those people are gutsy, much more so than the Flash Mountain folks.

January 14, 2010 at 2:35 AM · There you go you see. I was sooo wound up over "Under New Management" being so poor that I didn't notice that this was only for the superior Disneyland version.
Apologies all round.

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