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Which Disney Attraction Deserves its own Add-On Restaurant?

Let's Create a New Disney Attraction-Themed Restaurant Donald Dining

Over the last few weeks, I’ve been looking into our next family adventure. Part daydreaming, part procrastination in all the Christmas-related jobs ahead of me; I’ve been buried in all things vacation. Obviously, I love to look at international destinations where I can add in a few days at one of the Disney parks, and I’ve been looking a little further afield than my usual stomping ground.

During my research, I was reminded of some enjoyable dining experiences available in international parks. Disneyland Paris has Bistrot Chez Remy, an add-on to the Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure attraction servicing classic french cuisine in an imaginative space that features oversized, Ratatouille-themed decor. Donald’s Dine’ n Delights was recently revealed to be coming to Disneytown at Shanghai Disney Resort very soon. Donald will serve western classics like pizza and milkshakes with a bit of help from his friends, Mickey and the gang. It all got me thinking about the US-based parks and if our dining experience is living up to the international standard.

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Disneyland Paris

Of course, I went straight into problem-solving / armchair Imagineering mode, trying to think analytically about the situation. After all, if I couldn’t do better, I’d have no place to complain. I realized that much of what I was feeling was me taking locations I’ve been lucky enough to experience many times for granted.

There are glamorous options around the globe, like Mickey & Minnie’s Polynesian Paradise (a character dinner show) in Polynesian Terrace at Tokyo Disneyland, or Sebastian’s Calypso Kitchen a The Little Mermaid-themed restaurant in Mermaid Lagoon at Tokyo DisneySea. Both are full of on-point Disney decor and fun food options, though perhaps their allure is more of a new and exciting feel and less a comparable option lacking in Anaheim or Orlando. Am I only drawn to the shiny and new, not giving the well-known dining options of my home parks enough credit just because they are so familiar?

My last few trips to international parks were on a stringent budget that didn’t allow much room for sit-down restaurant experiences. In some cases, these newer dining additions were not there to be enjoyed at all, which means that the “wow” factor is still alive and calling me. However, when I stop to think about our dining options, I can’t say they are exactly disappointing. Coral Reef has already been fun, an excellent place to take a breath and watch the (undersea) world go by. I have always had a sentimental connection with Jungle Navigation Co. Ltd. Skipper Canteen, and I haven’t yet had a chance to enjoy the newest space-themed dining experience, Space 220.

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Disney Sea

Still, I find myself longing for the immersion in character backstory and detail that comes with some of the international parks. Disneyland will soon have its newest offering, Tiana’s Palace Restaurant, opening in strong connection with the Splash Mountain reboot, Tiana’s Bayou Adventure. That leaves us with Walt Disney World as the missing piece in specifically themed dining, and I’ve got some ideas. Yes, I know Roundup Rodeo BBQ is soon coming to the Hollywood Studios Toy Story Land area, though as my #4 park (4 of 4; aka, last place in the WDW park stakes), I’m going to need something else.

Don’t worry; it’s nothing too scary. It’s not like I am proposing they add a delivery service to it’s a small world or anything. Though, sidebar: that’s not half a bad idea since we were stuck on the ride the last two times I went on it. I’m just sayin’; I wouldn’t have said no to a foreign cuisine-inspired treat at the time. Back to business. I’m voting for a Haunted Mansion restaurant.

Imagine sitting in booths decorated in an old-world gothic mansion-style finish, and every half hour, the bust above your table starts singing just like in the ride. Or, the room darkens, and Madame Leota is projected onto a mystical ball that floats in the air and chants clever rhymes.

The theming on this one could be absolutely incredible and so different from anything Disney has done before, anywhere in the world. Tell me that wouldn’t be awesome; I dare you. The effects could be more intense as the evening wears on so that younger guests can have a less haunting experience in the earlier hours. Oh! And some booths could be shaped like Doom Buggys!

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Haunted Mansion

So now it’s your turn. Before I get out my sketchbook and go down the rabbit hole on my HM Restaurant, hit me with your imagination and great ideas. The more detail, the better. Remember, I am putting off all my upcoming Christmas chores here, so give me something fun to read! What should the next Disney Dining Theme restaurant be?

Zoë Wood is a travel writer from Sydney, Australia. Since her first visit to Disneyland at the age of 6, she has spent her years frequently visiting Disney Parks and traveling around the world.

Join Zoë as she lets you in on all the tips, tricks, anecdotes, and embarrassments that arise from her family adventures.


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