We've got a closing date for several Downtown Disney establishments

March 27, 2018, 9:49 PM · The Disneyland Resort has confirmed the final operating date for the Downtown Disney locations that will close to clear space for the resort's upcoming fourth hotel.

Disneyland announced last year that it would close several restaurants and the theaters in Downtown Disney as it built a new luxury hotel in between the existing Disneyland Hotel and the Downtown Disney monorail station. The new hotel is slated to open sometime in 2021.

The AMC Theaters, Rainforest Cafe, westside Starbucks, Earl of Sandwich, and the ESPN Zone all will close by June 30, Disney has confirmed. That does not mean that each location will stay open all way through June — some could close before the deadline. But all locations must be closed by June 30. Demolition will begin at some point after that.

Disneyland already has begun site work on a second parking structure, on the site of the old Pinocchio lot next to Mickey and Friends, as part of the ongoing transformation of the resort. In addition to the new hotel, Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge opens in Disneyland next year and a new Marvel land opens on the site of the soon-to-closed It's a Bug's Land in Disney California Adventure in 2020.

Replies (17)

March 27, 2018 at 9:54 PM ·

I'm surprised they are not waiting until end of summer.

March 28, 2018 at 12:44 AM ·

I, for one am sad to see ESPN Zone go. I love sports and have always enjoyed finding some me time during family vacations to grab a beer and watch a game. Whether it be at ESPN Zone or ESPN Club in Florida. I have fond memories of my father and I years ago enjoying this same tradition.

March 27, 2018 at 9:57 PM ·

I was just at the Rainforest Cafe last night and waiter said the rumor was they were going to have an emergency meeting announcing they all only had jobs for 90 days.

March 28, 2018 at 3:01 AM ·

Disney corp is more about how much more I can from you than anything. Traditions and Fun times do not translate to dollars. The magical experience and wonder has been lost long ago. MR. WALT Disney Sr. WOULD definitely not be happy if he saw what was happening now with his company.

March 28, 2018 at 4:45 AM ·

A new era for Downtown Disney. It’s actually getting smaller.

March 28, 2018 at 5:54 AM ·

They want the money in the park...

March 28, 2018 at 7:40 AM ·

Anton M it is but there will be new restaurants and retail incorporated into the new hotel. It's quite possible that they'll open up a Starbucks, Earl's and ESPN Club in the hotel or something equivalent. I could care less about the Rainforest Cafe. And the movie theater never made a lot sense to me given that Disneyland is geared towards locals and/or shorter visits.

March 28, 2018 at 7:57 AM ·

It's a shame that California will never experience the magic of DSTP

March 28, 2018 at 8:30 AM ·

I think Southern Californians are fine with the shopping malls they have already like the Outlets at Orange (less than a mile south of Disneyland), Stadium Promenade (near Angels Stadium with a much fancier movie theater), and The Village at Orange (just under 2 miles east of Disneyland).

March 28, 2018 at 8:31 AM ·

I think Southern Californians are fine with the shopping malls they have already like the Outlets at Orange (less than a mile south of Disneyland), Stadium Promenade (near Angels Stadium with a much fancier movie theater), and The Village at Orange (just under 2 miles east of Disneyland).

March 28, 2018 at 9:09 AM ·

I had a lot of good memories at ESPN Zone, Rainforest Cafe, and Earl of Sandwich. The monorail station will be changed yet again. The last time was when Downtown Disney was opened in 2000. 18 years later and BOOM. More expansion. Then again, Disney only adds one hotel at a time at Disneyland Resort while WDW gets a couple of new resort expansions. In retrospect, this should be considered a Phase II of the original resort expansion yet every item was announced in a piecemeal approach. It still follows the blueprint from 20 years ago. I wonder what they will do with the undeveloped Eastern Gateway project and Toy Story Lot. It's a waste to not have a plan for them within the next 10 years.

March 28, 2018 at 10:37 AM ·

@ TH Creative what is DSTP?

@ Anton M The blueprint for a hotel on that site goes back 27 years to the WestCOT days! From the design of the new hotel, Splitsville, Naples expansion and some other changes it looks like they are defiantly remaking Downtown Disney to reflect Southern California's Mid-Century aesthetic which I'm all for. So glad they didn't go with faux Victoriana. As for the Eastern Gateway Project I bet they will eventually build it. With the Stars Wars land opening they just didn't have the time to wait around until all the obstacles were removed.

March 28, 2018 at 10:28 AM ·

The Rainforest Cafe was only good for one visit but we will miss Earl of Sandwich. Since the sandwich is my husband's favorite form of a meal we made a point to visit the "Earl" at least twice a year. I know there is one at LAX and another on Grand in Downtown LA, but since we have no reason to go to either area I think we will visit the one in Las Vegas the next time we are there.

March 28, 2018 at 10:32 AM ·

"It's a shame that California will never experience the magic of DSTP."

I know, right? I guess this shows how starved the locals in Orlando are for high-end retail and specialty restaurants that their only option is to go to a theme park's entertainment district rather than other areas of their city. You would think that a city as large as Orlando would have more options in various districts of the city, but apparently not. The locals need to do better.

March 28, 2018 at 10:39 AM ·

Surprised closing down the AMC before summer, always a good spot for those wanting a movie after a day in the parks (or during bad weather).

March 28, 2018 at 2:39 PM ·

Definitely will miss the ESPN Zone!

March 29, 2018 at 9:52 AM ·

The movie theater is going to close at some point, and Disney doesn't own it so they don't really care when. I think having a movie theater on property makes sense, but Disney's going to make more money on the hotel than being AMC's landlord, so I get why its going away.

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