Guests at the Walt Disney World Resort on Tuesday were forced to evacuate a brand-new high-tech experience at the resort, and the whole ordeal ruined the “magic” for many of those involved.
Disney is good at a lot of things, and if there’s something Disney isn’t good at, it’s only because they’ve created and set the standard for it, making them excellent at it. For all the ways in which The Walt Disney Company has been steered away from Walt’s original intentions, plans, goals, hopes, and dreams for his parks (i.e, making admission so expensive, it has priced out some families, among other things), the fact remains that Disney continues to provide a stellar Guest Experience, the latest in cutting-edge ride and experience technology, and the most immersive attractions available anywhere on earth.
Case in point: the all-new Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser.
You don’t have to be a Star Wars junkie with Mando posters on your walls and four plush Baby Yodas adorning your sofas to recognize and appreciate the fact that Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser is just one more way Disney remains leaps and bounds ahead of the competition.
The new experience has been compared to a theme park, all its own, but it doubles as a Walt Disney World Resort Hotel at which Guests arrive and stay for two consecutive nights. The Halcyon Starcruiser is part theme park, part Resort Hotel, and part intergalactic mode of transportation, a bit like an out-of-this-world cruise ship, except there’s no ocean–only the cosmos and vast expanse of space.
It’s fully immersive, meaning that when Guests step inside the newest Disney World Resort Hotel, they simultaneously step away from earth and into life aboard the Starcruiser in a galaxy far, far away–and every single facet of the experience is aimed at keeping that immersive experience, well, immersive.
On Tuesday, however, Guests were forced to evacuate the Galactic Starcruiser, according to a writer for CinemaBlend. The evacuation reportedly only lasted about 30 minutes. After that time, Guests were permitted to enter the structure again, but not before at least one Guest snapped a few photos of the scenario.
Those photos were then posted on Instagram and sullied the magic of the immersive Starcruiser experience for many fans.
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This writer detects a hint of friendly sarcasm in CinemaBlend’s post, as he ponders, “It turns out the Halcyon is . . . just a building, with regular stairs? How will you ever be able to walk back inside now?”
And he wasn’t exaggerating. The two photos posted to Instagram by JP_visits_Disney depict the backside of the Starcruiser structure, and they are extremely unremarkable–to the point of being deflating, even for non-Star Wars junkies.
The first photo shows a bland-colored building with fire escapes–it’s just a building with staircases stacked on top of one another.
In the second photo, more of the backside of the Starcruiser structure is seen as Guests congregate during the evacuation and wait for instructions to return.
Guests who’ve been Disney World fanatics for any length of time will tell you not to look at aerial photos or “backstage” photos of any part of the Walt Disney World Resort. Doing so can ruin the magic for fans, and the photos depict images you cannot “un-see,” such as roads around the World Showcase at EPCOT and the very unimpressive, unmagical backside of the Expedition Everest attraction at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
This aerial photo of the Galactic Starcruiser, however, doesn’t seem to ruin too much, and it gives fans an idea of the layout of the Halcyon Starcruiser. But just in case you’re one of the uber-immersive Guests who truly believed the Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser experience was an actual trip to the cosmos . . .
Nevermind; you are exactly right. That’s exactly what it is.
It’s not clear what led to the evacuation of the experience, but Guests were permitted to re-enter the building, uh, re-board the Starcruiser approximately a half-hour after they, uh, disembarked.