Disney World Tiki Room to be restored to original glory?

Jim sez, "The Disney Parks blog has announced that the Walt Disney World Tiki Room (Under New Management) is going to be re-tooled again, bringing it more in line with the original theme of the show. Renovations are scheduled to be completed by this summer. No more Iago and Zazu!"

Regular readers will remember that the WDW Tiki Room caught fire earlier this year, burning out the revamped show (which was loathed by traditionalists, including me). Subsequent reports brought the news that the new, reviled animatronics had suffered the worst damage in the fire, which, in addition to being a kind of karmic justice, also led many of us to hope that the Tiki Room might be restored to its former glory. Hope blossoms anew!

The attraction was based on Walt Disney's Enchanted Tiki Room, which opened at Disneyland park in 1963. Its debut marked a huge milestone in Disney history, becoming the first attraction to ever feature Audio-Animatronics figures - a breakthrough that took 10 years to develop.

The latest version of the attraction, which will be called Enchanted Tiki Room, will debut at Magic Kingdom Park later this summer. Be sure to check the Disney Parks Blog for future updates on the attraction's progress.

Enchanted Tiki Room: Classic Attraction Transforms This Summer

(Thanks, Jim!)

(Image: The Enchanted Tiki Room, a Creative Commons Attribution (2.0) image from disneyworldsecets's photostream)

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  1. If they don’t fill it with volcanoes and hula dancers walking on fire then there is no glory worth visiting that room for.

  2. In abstract I’d LOVE to go to a place with 50s era “Tiki” culture. But I fear getting cute Hula dancers and hard sexy dancing and hard drinks would be against their modern “Family Friendly” image.

    Appeals to the white man’s greatest fantasy, to run off to a deserted island somewhere, live off a near-zero economy and cuddle with cute native girls.

    1. HEY, that’s not… well… yeah, okay. That does sound pretty great. But you don’t have to be white to live the dream; how often do you hear of Samoans, Micronesians, native Hawaiians or other Pacific island people emigrating to the US (or anywhere)? You could argue that they’re too poor to emigrate, but I say they stay put because they know they’ve got a better deal than us rubes living in smoggy high-rises and eating questionable, factory-farmed “food.” If it weren’t for this cursed Irish skin of mine, I’d move to Fiji in a heartbeat.

      1. There are a lot of people from American Samoa living in Southern California, specifically in the area around the City of Carson. There are also a whole lot of Samoans in the NFL and in pro wrestling.

        Since AS is an American territory, they don’t have to “immigrate” per se; they can just move here, where there are more jobs.

        There may not be a whole lot of them in absolute numbers, but some of that is just because the Pacific islands away from Asia don’t have very big populations. Take a look at countries that send a lot of emigrants to the U.S.: Mexico has 112 million people; the Philippines have 94 million; and Vietnam has 87 million.

        Compare that with some Pacific island nations and territories: American Samoa has 68,000 people; the Indepedent State of Samoa has 187,000 people (and would probably emigrate to New Zealand), and French Polynesia has 267,000 people, who would probably emigrate to France. If equal proportions of people were to move from, say, American Samoa and Vietnam to the U.S.A., there would be more than a thousandfold difference in the number of such people in the U.S.

        So yeah, tiny islands in the Pacific are great and everything, but people still move to where the jobs are. But there just aren’t that many people to begin with living in the Pacific, so we don’t notice them much in continental countries.

        That being said, tiki stuff is awesome.

      2. how often do you hear of Samoans, Micronesians, native Hawaiians or other Pacific island people emigrating to the US (or anywhere)?

        When watching the All-Blacks play rugby.

        (2004/5 figures – 2,365 Samoan immigrants to New Zealand. Also 2,894 from Fiji. (In context they also took 15,045 from the UK, 5,061 from China, 3436 from South Africa, 3359 from India and 1,600 from the USA)

      3. Thanks for your reply:-)

        I’m mainly Irish too, though my ancestors ran out even before the Potato famine and went far west, so I’ve got some small amount of Native American in me also. What that means is that my skin tans good:-)

        More or less what I’m planning to do. I’m helping out a relative and working and saving, but I’ll run (hopefully before America collapses) to the Pacific as soon as I’m ok to move.

  3. Cory,

    I’ve never read a comment from you about the Jungle Cruise, its a shadow of its former self. I worked the cruise in the early eighties and the highlight of captaining the boat was getting to fire a real gun. Also, we kept those boats clean. We had to wipe them down and oil the teak in the mornings before bringing a boat online. Whose bright idea was it to get rid of the seat cushions? Last time I rode the Jungle Cruise it felt like all the life and energy had been sucked out of the cast.

  4. Hmmm, there’s a fire in the Tiki Room, burning the parts Cory hates the most, and now they’re restoring it closer to the original. Where was Cory the night of the fire?

  5. Good, now bring Pirates back to its former glory so I can actually ride it again! (I saw Edward Scissorhands at a very young age and as a result am terrified of Johnny Depp).

  6. I went to the Enchanted Tiki Room a couple of years ago hoping to relive the fun of my 1974 visit as a kid. I was horrified by the new treatment, which not only was execrable but mocked the previous classic version. Gilbert Gottfried torched his own career with his stupid comments about Japan, and I wouldn’t be surprised if a Disney exec torched the Tiki Room to get out of their contract with him.

  7. I went to a Hawaiian festival in Northern California last weekend. There are a lot more Hawaiians in NorCal than you’d think. (Then again, the last time I went to Hawaii I ran into a lot of NorCal folks too.)

  8. “2,365 Samoan immigrants to New Zealand”

    To put that in perspective, if a similar proportion of the population of China had moved to New Zealand, NZ would be home to 16.94 million new Chinese-born residents. That’s nearly four times the actual population of New Zealand.

    So yes, there are a lot of Islanders moving to larger countries. It’s just that the larger countries are so much more populous that they dwarf the smaller countries’ populations.

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