Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Wizarding World Expansion Reveals Everything We Speculated and More

It's been officially confirmed what we've all known for a while now. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is being expanded into Universal Studios park and will act as a bridge between them and Islands of Adventure. At this point, I think Universal Studios should just change it's name to Harry Potter World and Other Stuff.

In a press release from Universal Orlando, this is what they had to say:
Building on the global phenomenon that is The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Universal Orlando Resort and Warner Bros. Entertainment today announced an expansion of historic proportion with the entirely new themed environment, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley.
Scheduled to open in 2014, the world’s first centrally themed, multi-park experience expands The Wizarding World of Harry Potter across both Universal Orlando theme parks and allows Universal’s creative team to bring an unparalleled vision to this unique project. The new area will bring to life some of the experiences and places found in and around London in the Harry Potter books and films, offering brand-new adventures for fans and theme park guests from around the world.

Diagon Alley and ‘London’ will be located within the Universal Studios Florida theme park, which is adjacent to Universal’s Islands of Adventure theme park, where guests now experience Hogwarts and Hogsmeade. The new area within Universal Studios will be just as expansive, immersive and authentic as the existing themed environment.

And – just like in the books and films – guests will be able to travel between ‘London’ and Hogsmeade aboard the Hogwarts Express.

Work on the new area is already underway. When complete, it will feature shops, a restaurant and an innovative, marquee attraction based on Gringotts bank – all directly inspired by the fiction and films.

More details on The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley will be released over time.

They also released the highly anticipated concept art for the project which has already been under construction for a while now. And boy does is please they eyes. Take a look!

I remember when the first images of the Wizarding World and being completely blown away. And this one definitely doesn't let down. I personally can't wait to ride the Gringott's ride. This is one of the things I'd speculated years ago when they were first announcing building a HP park but unfortunately didn't happen so when it popped up on the radar again for this expansion, I was pumped.

Another thing I can't wait to ride is the Hogwart's Express. Getting to be engrossed in such a huge part of the books and movies is going to blow me away even more than it did the last two times I visited the park. Check out this great post on Hypable, 7 Secrets and Clues about Diagon Alley, that goes into more detail about the image.

They even share my same guess as to the Hogwart's Express being covered in screens so it looks like you're riding through the countryside to Hogwarts. I even speculate that it will be a completely interactive ride. Imagine riding to Hogwarts on the train and the entire thing stops suddenly then begins to look out the window and they start to freeze before the lights start flickering...Dementors have boarded the train. See? How cool would that be?

I can't wait to see more information regarding the park expansion and you better believe I'll be traveling back down the Summer it opens!

Thanks to Theme Park Insider for the update!

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