This Box Truck Will Shuttle Guests at Disney’s $2,500/Night Star Wars Hotel
It’s an amusing choice of transport for Disney’s new luxury Star Wars experience, designed to be totally immersive.
For those that have fallen in love with Disney properties, a stay at the company's theme parks and hotels can be a dream come true. The entertainment company has recently been developing a new Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser theme hotel experience at its Florida park. However, the luxury experience may not be all its cracked up to be, with reports that the company is using dirty old box trucks to transport guests, as shared by YouTubers Clownfish TV.
The initial idea was that Disney would use modified luxury buses to transport guests from its new Star Wars hotel to the Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge experience within Hollywood Studios at the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida. The aim was to create an immersive experience that would place guests within the Star Wars universe, taking in a 2-night "space cruise" during their stay. Costs are in the realm of $4800 for the two-night, three-day experience for two people, or closer to $6000 for four.
To achieve this, guests would be shut away from the outside world, using projections of deep space instead of windows in the hotel to create the feeling of being aboard a spaceship. The luxury buses would have to match this immersion to avoid spoiling the effect. Disney released concept art of how the buses would work, with passengers boarding via a jetway-like system to avoid them seeing the outside world.
However, that all proved too difficult and expensive, and so Disney retooled the concept to use box trucks instead. News of the change comes from WDW News Today, the self-proclaimed "Worldwide leader in Disney Parks news."
In theory, for the passengers, who will theoretically never see the outside of the vehicle, it won't make much difference. Vistiors will still board via the jetway, and the interior will be themed to appear like a small shuttlecraft, taking guests on a day trip to the fictional world of Baatu.
However, pictures of the box trucks have drawn mockery and derision from all quarters. A shot taken by Rogue Disney on Twitter shows what apears to be a Chevy box truck fitted with a Star Wars-esque door for passenger boarding, with a shabby paint job on the outside. The truck is likely still under construction, but the image of such a vehicle being part of a "luxury" Disney experience is a potent one.
Given that a stay at the hotel is so expensive., many have found it galling that Disney is cutting costs. Even competing theme park Universal Orlando got in on the action on Twitter, posting a cheeky zinger of their own.
Despite the cost-cutting, Disney has nonetheless been going hard on the marketing tie-ins for the hotel experience. They've even developed lore for the hotel, releasing a comic about the Halcyon Legacy ship that the hotel is themed after. The comic costs $5, and "it'll all tie into the events of the Walt Disney World Resort experience." Clownfish TV host Kneon noted that it came across as bit of a cynical cash grab, noting that Disney "should be giving this away" given the huge expense of the Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser experience.
Disney has put great effort into its Star Wars worlds in the past, even going as far as creating X-Wing fighters that fly over the park. Ex-Disney employees have often gone on to other high-end roles, too, some working with the Thunderbirds on improving their air show routine.
In any case, the fans who stump up big money for the experience will likely have a great time, assuming the box truck doesn't throw an alternator belt and come to a halt on a busy Florida street at peak hour. Meanwhile, realists will have a chuckle at the seemingly-slapdash effort Disney has put into the new project.
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