Goodbye Lucy, Hello Kitty
The Lucille Ball tribute at Universal Studios Florida has closed, to make way for a new Hello Kitty-themed experience.
Universal Parks and Resorts announced in June that it had signed a deal with Sanrio, the company behind Hello Kitty, to bring Hello Kitty and its family of characters to the Universal theme parks. At the same time, Universal Orlando had pulled permits for major interior renovations in the "Lucy: A Tribute" building, tempting fans to put two and two together.
Today's confirmation from Universal makes official that Lucy's now-former home in the Hollywood section of the park will be the new home for Hello Kitty. The new Hello Kitty location will offer an "enhanced interactive retail experience," according to a Sanrio press release. "Customers can shop for custom designed merchandise, enjoy photo opportunities with Sanrio properties, create souvenir versions of Hello Kitty's signature bow, and even meet Hello Kitty herself."
The new Hello Kitty store is expected to open before the end of the year.
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That kind of makes me sad, as that's one of the last attractions from the original park, along with ET...granted, I'm sure not many people will miss it, my wife and I actually stopped by everytime we were at the park.
Hello Kitty is Universal's "Star Wars Swatter". Darth Vader never had a chance. ..LOL.....Seriously, though, I really enjoyed the Lucy area, especially the miniature recreations of her TV show sets. She will be missed, but they are retaining the Lucy character roaming the Hollywood streets..
@Rob That comment was very funny. But you're right, after a weekend of big stories this snoozer doesn't register a blip. And honestly, I am not sure it ever would, regardless of the timing.
Didn't they already replace Lucy with Betty Boop? Unless that was a temporary thing.
So conflicted over this. I heart Hello Kitty, but Lucy was the last link back to why something like Universal Studios even exists. I was really hoping Garden of Allah was going to be a museum. I would love to see more tv/movie set memorabilia. It's sad to see this going away.
My mom's gonna be heartbroken when I break this news to her. I Love Lucy is one of her favorite shows if not her most favorite show ever, and she geeked out when she first walked in.
James T.; Lucy & Betty Boop shared that area. It was close to 50/50. Betty Boop also has a store in Toon Lagoon, plus a lot of hot babes dressed as her roaming both parks.
Gotcha Rob, guess I must not have been paying much attention to the building (or regrettably the actresses playing her). So is she sharing space with Kitty, or will Betty be getting the Boot-Oop-a-Doop as well?
In all honesty, I don't really care about the new store, although Lucy has been outdated for almost half a century.
I went through the Lucy Tribute building once because I was in coaster recovery at that moment. The one thing I remember learning about the show was that the sets were actually painted in tones of grey so that they would look more defined on black and white tv sets. That to me was very fascinating to know.
Aw, as Lucy fan I'm disappointed. However, I can understand that not many people these days have heard of Lucille Ball before and the space needs to be repurposed.
James: I have no info that they are sharing or not. My "guess" is that the whole store will be Hello Kitty.
I Love Lucy, but that was 40 years ago and that was the only thing on television. I saw every episode at least 3 times. My mother watches it endlessly too. It is still on continuous run on some stations. It's so quaint. Sadly, I no longer have that warm fuzzy when I see it on the screen. I feel the same way about "The Love Boat".
The strange thing is that when they've been running one of the old Christmas shows as a special in prime time during the past two years, it's been one of the highest rated shows of that week. I guess classic comedy tends to never get old.
James:Betty Boop is temporarily moving to the Darkroom location on Hollywood Blvd. The stock is already in the building & window displays but it's not open yet.
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