Let it snow! Let it snow! Let it snow!
All around the world, Disney theme parks and resorts have transformed into festive winter wonderlands. D23 caught up with the resort ambassadors for a worldwide update on these very merry celebrations. From Tokyo to Paris, Hong Kong, Anaheim, and Orlando, the holiday shows, parades, and decorations make it the most wonderful time of the year to visit Disney’s parks and resorts.
Tokyo Disney Resort is most beautiful this time of year, and both parks are gorgeously decorated. At Tokyo Disneyland, Santa has taken up residence in Disney’s Santa Village and he’s making special appearances in Disney’s Santa Village Parade, which can only be seen during this special season. And, of course, Duffy and ShellieMay welcome you in their special holiday costumes as well!
Over at Tokyo DisneySea, our seven themed ports are decked out with the all-new “Christmas Wishes” celebration. In each port, you will find Christmas trees and artistic ornaments decorated with the holiday wishes of Disney characters. In the new Colors of Christmas show, which started this year, the glistening trees in the Mediterranean Harbor create a gorgeous holiday water display. I hope your Christmas is as romantic and heartwarming as Christmas at the Tokyo Disney Resort!
—Eriko Yokata, ambassador, Tokyo Disney Resort
When I start thinking about my fondest childhood memories, most of them are related to Christmas. As such, I always look forward to the time of the year where this favorite holiday of mine takes over our resort for almost two months of celebration.
Throughout its 20 years, Disneyland Paris has found many original ways to celebrate the season. For example, we were the first Disney park to transform Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant into a crystal castle each night. This year, we debut the Christmas Cavalcade. This fantasy in parade, going down Main Street, U.S.A. three times a day with a cast of 60 performers, features elves, dancing toy soldiers, airplanes, dolls, and of course the one and only Père Noël (Santa Claus).
Still, Christmas is also about traditions, and returning this year is a guest favorite and one of mine too, “it’s a small world” Celebration. In this seasonal version of the beloved attraction, more than 200 dolls are dressed in their finest holiday attire. All the costumes were crafted by our in-house team of tailors and seamstresses. Accuracy was very important to the Paris team, as this talented group of people worked on traditional costumes originating from their very own European and African native countries. And talking about traditions, each day guests gather around Town Square at nightfall, where a child is selected to light up our 79-foot-tall Christmas tree, celebrating a classic feature that dates back to Disneyland Paris’ first Christmas season, in 1992.
So here is a taste of how we celebrate the holidays at our Paris resort, and all that is left to say is Joyeux Noël et meilleurs vœux de la part de Disneyland Paris! …Merry Christmas and best wishes from Disneyland Paris!
—Regis Alart, ambassador, Disneyland Paris Resort
During this time of year, we celebrate one of our biggest festivals here in Hong Kong, and our city skyscrapers are lit with creative and festive designs. Sing Daan Jeet, commonly known as Christmas Festival, is the celebration of Santa Claus, who we fondly call Sing Daan Lou Yan. It roughly translates to “Christmas elderly man.” One of our traditions, popular with the whole family, is to travel to the city center at night to admire the beautiful lighting that makes the famous Hong Kong skyline even more picturesque.
At Hong Kong Disneyland, Main Street, U.S.A. has been transformed into a merry town exuding a great holiday atmosphere. Guests can enjoy the Santa Mickey’s Toy-riffic Street Party with their favorite characters. And when night falls, Mickey Mouse and his friends lead a Christmas illumination with more than 50 performers. With the magic of Mickey, the Christmas tree comes to life!
One of my favorite things about the holiday season is seeing our Disney characters all dressed up in their holiday clothes. I particularly like the new styles Mickey and Minnie are sporting. They are always my superstars! This year, park guests can create personalized Disney character ornaments with Chinese characters.
As a Disney ambassador, I get the chance to join different Disney VoluntEARS activities. These activities take on even more meaning in this season of love and sharing. I still remember clearly all the smiling faces I saw at my first Disney hospital visit event last year as Hong Kong Disneyland’s ambassador! I am looking forward to spreading love and blessings to our community again this year during the special holidays!
—Fion Lai, ambassador, Hong Kong Disneyland Resort
Greetings from the Disneyland Resort! Jolie and I are thrilled to have an opportunity to share how the Happiest Place on Earth just got merrier along with some of our favorites during this holiday season. With the recent grand re-opening of Disney California Adventure park and the grand opening of Cars Land, we have plenty of new offerings for our guests this holiday season.
We must say it is quite amazing to see how Buena Vista Street comes to life for the holidays. From the 1920s and ’30s-inspired decorations and ornaments to the Buena Vista Street Community Bell Ringers, you truly feel like you have been transported to another place and time. And Buena Vista Street wouldn’t be complete without the classic department-store Santa. Old St. Nick has found a home at Elias & Co. through Christmas Eve.
As you enter Route 66, Lightening McQueen and Mater did some overhauling of their own to make sure Cars Land is just as festive. You are welcomed by Snowy the Snow Car (the Radiator Springs version of a snowman). Snowy sets the holiday “tune” as you begin to see how all the residents of Radiator Springs have personalized their locations for the holiday. Mater has made his Christmas tree out of junk in his junkyard, and Sally now has a Cozy Cone Tree Farm. At the end of Route 66, the courthouse statue of Stanley is decorated with a Santa hat and a big bag of rims, wheels, and other accessories for all the residents of Radiator Springs. Of course, it wouldn’t be a complete holiday season without sharing some traditional Disneyland favorites.
We have always been fans of the traditional offerings at the Disneyland Resort. “it’s a small world” Holiday, with 300,000 lights on its outside facade, and Haunted Mansion Holiday, welcoming Jack Skellington and all of his friends, definitely rank top on our lists. But our favorite holiday-time tradition happens on Main Street U.S.A. at night. Our Believe… In Holiday Magic fireworks are an incredible backdrop to the already amazing decorations on Main Street U.S.A. When you add snow to conclude the fireworks spectacular, it is truly something else! We love watching the snowfall and seeing how the children dance around trying to catch each snowflake before it hits the ground. Those moments are what make the holiday season at the Disneyland Resort truly unforgettable!
—René Torrico, ambassador, Disneyland Resort
The holidays at the Walt Disney World Resort are especially magical. Whether it’s a stroll down Main Street U.S.A. with snowflakes gently falling from the sky during Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party or experiencing the glow of the more than five million bulbs at the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights at Disney Hollywood Studios, there are many things that make the holiday experience so magical at Walt Disney World holiday.
Our newest resort, Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, takes guests into the world of an animated film. The holiday decorations carry out the theme of starting with a black-and-white sketch, then adding color to complete the animation process. The holiday garland on the outside of the resort keeps a tone of white while the lobby area adds touches of color to correlate with the stylized paint bottle check-in counters. Everywhere you visit across the parks or resorts, you not only feel the magic, but you feel the magic of Disney holidays.
—Jen Mason, ambassador, Walt Disney World Resort