RUMOR: Hong Kong Disneyland to Tear Down Sleeping Beauty Castle

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I have heard some crazy rumors in my lifetime, but never in a million years could I fathom that a Disney theme park would remove its castle. Surprisingly, it seems that Hong Kong Disneyland park will be…

Sleeping Beauty Castle at Hong Kong Disneyland
Sleeping Beauty Castle at Hong Kong Disneyland

Rumor has it that Hong Kong Disneyland is unhappy with the carbon copy of Sleeping Beauty Castle that they received from Disneyland back in 2005 when the park opened. While the small castle looks rather beautiful with the real mountains behind it, the castle itself is rather unimpressive.

2005 was a very different time at Walt Disney Imagineering and in the Walt Disney Company. Some might even call it the dark ages. The company was still under the direction of Michael Eisner, who was frightened by the failures of Disneyland Resort Paris, a project in which they spent time and money to build a gorgeous park that just never grew the audience they expected. He also was on his way out of the company as many shareholders were becoming restless with many of the company’s decisions.

In designing and executing Hong Kong Disneyland, the company wasn’t looking to break the bank. In fact, at one point in development, the Castle wasn’t even going to have a backside, it would be hollow like a movie set. Like I said folks, the dark ages.

Still, it was cheaper to just copy what had been built in California, a small Castle with little interior. It seems that Hong Kong is a little jealous of little brother Shanghai Disneyland’s giant Storybook Castle and wants a bigger and more impressive park icon of their own.

Storybook Castle at Shanghai Disneyland
Storybook Castle at Shanghai Disneyland

If the plan comes to pass, a larger castle (smaller than Shanghai, but completely unique in design) will be built on the site of the current Sleeping Beauty Castle in Hong Kong. This would mark the very first time that a castle was torn down in a Disney theme park.

This project is part of a rumored second expansion phase of the park that would include new attractions as well. The last expansion phase added Mystic Manor, Grizzly Gulch, and Toy Story Land to the park.

An announcement from Disney is expected soon.

What do you think? Does this seem like a good idea or should the current castle be left alone?

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About the author

Tom Corless

Tom has been regularly visiting the Walt Disney World® Resort from the time he was 4 months old. While he has made countless visits in the last 28 years, he did not become a truly active member in the Disney fan community until the summer of 2007, when he decided to launch the WDW News Today website and podcast. Tom has since become an Orlando-local and is a published author on Walt Disney World.
Contact Tom at [email protected]

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