Outbreak closes one of Disney's largest theme parks

January 24, 2020, 9:32 AM · One of Disney's largest theme parks is closing indefinitely, at its busiest time of the year.

The Shanghai Disney Resort announced today that will close all of its destinations, including Shanghai Disneyland and the adjacent Disneytown, starting tomorrow. The closure comes as part of a massive shutdown of public attractions in China in response to the spreading coronavirus outbreak. This outbreak started in Wuhan, but is now spreading around the world, including two cases already in the United States. But the epicenter remains China, which is why leaders are now beginning to react.

The resort posted the following statement on its website today:

In response to the prevention and control of the disease outbreak and in order to ensure the health and safety of our guests and Cast, Shanghai Disney Resort is temporarily closing Shanghai Disneyland, Disneytown including Walt Disney Grand Theatre and Wishing Star Park, starting January 25, 2020. We will continue to carefully monitor the situation and be in close contact with the local government, and we will announce the reopening date upon confirmation.

Shanghai Disney Resort will assist in the refund for guests who have purchased tickets for admission to Shanghai Disneyland, have booked a resort hotel, or have booked tickets for Beauty and the Beast Mandarin Production through the original ticket purchase channel, and we will introduce the detailed procedure and guidelines via the resort’s official platforms as soon as possible.

We wish our guests a healthy and happy Spring Festival!

The new strain of flu-like coronavirus has killed more than two dozen people and infected hundreds, but since it is a new strain, it can spread quickly due to a lack of immunity or immunizations to slow it.

Outside forces have closed Disney theme parks before, most notably the Tokyo Disney parks following the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. That closure lasted more than a month. Hurricanes have closed the Walt Disney World Resort temporarily, as well.

Shanghai Disneyland was preparing for a rush of tourists celebrating the Chinese New Year, which has been one of the busiest time of the year at the park. The park's Spring Festival events started January 13 and were scheduled to run through February 9.

Shanghai Disneyland is the eighth most visited theme park in the world, with 11.8 million visitors in 2018, according to the most recent TEA/AECOM Theme Index global attendance report

Replies (5)

January 24, 2020 at 11:37 AM

Robert, what is the record for longest Disney park closure? I’d have to assume it was Tokyo right?

January 24, 2020 at 11:52 AM

Correct. March 12 through April 28, 2011 for Tokyo DisneySea.

FWIW, I would love to find out if a contingency such as this was addressed in Disney's deal with the government.

January 24, 2020 at 1:19 PM

I hope for Disney's sake that they've got a good insurance policy to cover the losses....

January 24, 2020 at 2:06 PM

Ouch but it's understandable. Once again, things just out of control sometimes, we've seen it happen to other parks. Hopefully they're back up and running but a major blow to the park.

January 27, 2020 at 11:11 AM

Closure in 2015 in DL Paris after the terroist attacks, was 4 days.

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