Tag Archives: Now Open

Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon may be scheduled to open April 6, but the gift shop, named The Tonight Shop, is already open and selling lots of Jimmy Fallon, NBC, and Universal Studios items. The new shop opened to guests over this previous weekend and will remain open while the ride construction continues.

At The Tonight Shop you can get your very own Hashtag the panda plush, Tonight Show shirts, NBC Studios mugs and so much more. Construction continues as workers get the finishing touches complete for this new ride, including new lettering being added to the entrance marquee, as well as lighting in the sign and more. Check out the video and full photo report below to see construction and everything in the new shop and stay tuned for more updates!


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Hulk-Marquee-Reopening3-1170x731The Incredible Hulk Coaster at Islands of Adventure has been completely refreshed and is now open for guests! We've witnessed the entire track being replaced piece by piece, the queue building get new paint, signage, and storyline, the whole area receiving beautiful nighttime lighting effects, and a gorgeous new entrance created with a realistic full-size Hulk statue standing tall. But now we finally get to see what the queue looks like inside, how the launch tunnel has improved, and what the on-board music sounds like on the ride! It's wonderful to see such a classic attraction like the Hulk receive some much-needed TLC. I love the new area music around the Hulk courtyard, (hear it in the video below just after a minute in.) It has a military feel, and is very cinematic, perfectly punctuating the new area theming as a secret military base and scientific lab. Check out the video for your area update plus the images below of the updated ride, queue, and grand opening ceremony. Stay tuned for more theme park updates coming soon!


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CnQOiNZUMAAaUhAUniversal's newest attraction, Skull Island: Reign of Kong at Islands of Adventure is now officially open! The announcement was made during the Today Show with Al Roker and Tamron Hall earlier today. It has also been tweeted by Universal Orlando with them saying "Skull Island: #ReignOfKong is now open at #IslandsOfAdventure!" The attraction has been in soft open, or 'technical rehearsals' as Universal calls it, for a full month, but as of now will be officially listed as open in the Universal Orlando app and map, and will (hopefully) be open all day along with the rest of the park (starting tomorrow). You can see the official opening ceremony from earlier this morning below along with some more images as well. Check out our extensive coverage of the construction of Kong since the beginning here, and stay tuned for more theme park news and updates coming soon!


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00838.MTS.Still006It was only the second day that Skull Island: Reign of Kong had soft opened to the public when I got to ride this magnificent beast! What an incredible experience this has been, not just getting to be one of the first to ride this amazing new attraction, but also covering the story since it was just a pile of dirt and a rumor two years ago. So, Friday I decided to stick it out. As long as it took. To be one of the first to ride this baby! And after 7 and half hours in the hot sun, I got to do just that! It was totally worth it. You can see video from my experience at Friday's soft opening, plus a walk-through of the entire queue below. And there's lot of screenshots below as well with descriptions. Stay tuned for more Kong news as this thing goes from soft opening to grand opening in the coming weeks! And to those of you that have been following this project with me, thank you. I hope you stick around, as we have some amazing new things on the horizon for theme parks in Central Florida, as this time in history has become somewhat of a theme park Renaissance, and we're just getting started!


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P1040770Last month, when the long construction period was over and the dust had settled, the NBC Media Center was finally opened inside of Universal Studios Florida. As I have previously reported the new state-of-art media center will be used for market research involving multiple forms of media, including previewing new television programs. Now, Orlando Theme Park News is reporting that an article posted to an internal publication has released further details for industry insiders, boasting the Media Center as the largest biometrics facility in the country. See the press release below, and do check out my full report on what it's like inside the new Media Center along with many photos of the completed compound.

The NBCU Media Center (or NBC Media Center) recently opened in Universal Studios Florida in the Garden of Allah area. The center is a state-of-the-art research facility which is available to all NBC Universal businesses and Comcast. The facility, which is the largest biometrics facility of its kind in the country includes the following research capabilities:

  • Dial Tests for video content (programs, pilots, promotions, and movies);
  • Advanced tools for measuring personal engagement and response to content;
  • Focus Group Facilities for qualitative research;
  • “Living Room of the Future” which enables research on consumer use of new technologies in a “real life” environment.

 
The facility will be open only when research is being conducted. During that time, the facility will open one hour after official park opening and close one hour before official park closing. The NBCU Media Center is a facility built to support research across the company and is not open to the public unless a guest has been accepted as an applicable research participant.

Check out our full report and photo update on the Media Center here and subscribe to the feed for more park updates!

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P1040763The Garden of Allah Villas construction is finally complete and we now have the brand new shiny NBC Media Center. What's the NBC Media Center you ask? Why it's the new home for fall TV previews and focus groups of course! I just happened to be walking by today while they were looking for volunteers, so I was able to be one of the first people to experience the new Media Center. They've been doing TV previews in the parks for years, but this is a new, more high-tech approach. And having a neat storefront building helps convince people to volunteer, as opposed to taking folks to the back of a dark alley somewhere off the path. Check out my report and lots and lots of photos below!

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