This week Universal Studios’ creatives hosted a press event attended by Attraction Tickets Direct, that unveiled detail on Universal Orlando’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter expansion. To the UK press, Universal revealed elements of the Hogwarts Express journey that park guests will embark on from Diagon – Alley to Hogsmeade. Find out the details here….
I was privileged to be invited to a Universal Orlando press event at Kings Cross on Monday evening where they released some more details about the new Diagon Alley area at Universal Studios - due to open Summer 2014 - and in particular The Hogwarts Express which is going to connect Diagon Alley at Universal Studios to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Islands of Adventure. Mark Woodbury, the Creative Director of Universal Orlando (what an amazing job he has!) was on a live link from Orlando and James Phelps who plays George Weasley in the films was there in person. All of the major UK press were also there so expect to see this exciting news in your weekend newspapers although you can read about it on the Attraction Tickets Direct blog first.
The Hogwarts Express is a key part of the Harry Potter films and books so Universal Orlando were keen to replicate the experience for their visitors and they have spared no expense and attention to detail in trying to do so. Their creative team rode trains in Britain and visited the countryside where the Harry Potter films were made in order to increase the authenticity of the new experience. Passengers will walk through a brick wall to get to platform 9 ¾ where the Hogwarts Express will be waiting for them. To cut down waiting time Universal have introduced two trains. Once on board, passengers will experience a journey just like in the films and books and be able to wave to Hagrid, see owls in the British countryside and buy sweets. There is no height restriction for The Hogwarts Express, the journey will last around six minutes and all pre-purchased Universal tickets from Attraction Tickets Direct will be valid for the experience.
Also opening this summer is the new Harry Potter ride at Universal Studios called Escape From Gringotts. No new details of the ride were released at the press event but Mark Woodbury said “It was a daunting task to take the bar to another level and try to beat Forbidden Journey [the Harry Potter ride at Islands of Adventure which opened in 2010 and won best overall attraction in the Attraction Tickets Direct Orlando Awards] but we are confident that we have done so with Escape From Gringotts.” As soon as there are more details on this ride, we will bring them to you.
So, exciting times at Universal Orlando and guests travelling this summer are sure to be in for a real treat.
Check out our range of Universal tickets to be the first to experience the wizardy this summer 2014 at Universal Studios Florida. Keep reading Attraction Tickets Direct's Latest News for more details on the Harry Potter expansion.
Oliver Brendon, Founder of Attraction Tickets Direct