August 11, 2014

First Look at Shanghai Disneyland Shopping Village

In the smog filled Shanghai district of Pudong, Walt Disney Imagineering will build a Chinese version of Downtown Disney. It will be the perfect complement to the Shanghai Disneyland theme park. The resort itself will focus on China's fast growing middle class and the wealthy. The shopping district will be Italian themed, providing opportunities for those with the money to spend it on lavishly expensive items and luscious meals. 

Actually, it's a very smart business decision to move away from the "contemporary fantasy" style that Downtown Disneys are known for. Italy's charms are timeless and a very trendy opposite from what the Mainland China residents have experienced. 

Europe is a popular and exotic destination for many Asians. For proof, just take a look at the beautifully charming Mediterranean Harbor at Tokyo Disney Sea. In spite of not having a single "E Ticket" attraction, the land is a popular place to shop, eat, and ride the gondolas. This immersive and vast area makes it a very attractive landscape to view from the suites of the overpriced and successful Mira Costa Hotel. It's my bet the Chinese will also fall in love with the style of it all, creating yet another successful part of this Disney business venture.

Correction: Per my friend Randy- "To clarify, the shopping center in this art and described in recent press releases is not part DisneyTown (SDL's DTD area) or Shanghai Disney Resort at all, but is part of the "Shanghai Resort Area" which, confusingly, encompasses Shanghai Disneyland and a much wider non-Disney zone of the city. It should be near the property, but is owned, designed and operated by an entirely different entity. Regarding DisneyTown, I also think it would be great if it were heavily themed, like World Showcase or Mediterranean Harbor, but what I think you can expect is Entertainment Retail like you find in the Stateside DTDs. Disney's philosophy: If you want immersive theme-ing, you are going to have to pay to get in. "

(Art copyright The Walt Disney Company.)

3 comments:

Randy said...

Hey Mark,

To clarify, the shopping center in this art and described in recent press releases is not part DisneyTown (SDL's DTD area) or Shanghai Disney Resort at all, but is part of the "Shanghai Resort Area" which, confusingly, encompasses Shanghai Disneyland and a much wider non-Disney zone of the city. It should be near the property, but is owned, designed and operated by an entirely different entity.

Regarding DisneyTown, I also think it would be great if it were heavily themed, like World Showcase or Mediterranean Harbor, but what I think you can expect is Entertainment Retail like you find in the Stateside DTDs. Disney's philosophy: If you want immersive theme-ing, you are going to have to pay to get in.

Mark Taft said...

Thanks, Randy!

Randy said...

To correct my clarification... Shanghai Shendi Group (half-owner of Shanghai Disney Resort) is, in fact, developing this shopping mall, but they are partnering with Value Retail, not Disney, for the project. Many of this press-releases make it sound like this is the area attached to the Disneyland park, which it is not.

Cheers,