Thursday, September 20, 2012

Alcohol at Be Our Guest?

It has been widely reported, and confirmed that for the first time in the history of Walt Disney World alcohol will be served within the confines of the Magic Kingdom Park. This decision was made regarding the newly created Be Our Guest Restaurant, which is soft-opening in New Fantasyland on November 19. This upscale restaurant is the first to offer any alcoholic beverages in the parks forty-one year history. This decision, confirmed by menu releases, has sparked much criticism and controversies throughout the community.

The critics have argued that Walt wanted Magic Kingdom to stay alcohol-free, or dry as they say, rather than be pressured into offering alcohol. This has always been the appeal for the park, and the thought of beer carts on Main Street have many people upset and angered. The other side of the coin questions whether or not Walt would still be for a dry Magic Kingdom with the amount of money that is in these sales. The truth is, there is no right or wrong answer. It is necessary to change with the times, but does it mean to escape from something that the company once held near and dear. The alcohol-free Magic Kingdom has always had support all over the world, as Disneyland Park continues to be a dry park. The counter to that is Club 33, a private club within the Disneyland Park, that does serve alcohol. This is an exclusive club and should be treated as such.

The question and debate continues on, and it seems the battle lines have been drawn in the sand. Rumors have abounded that guests cancelled reservations when this was announced, but there has been no confirmation that such action has occurred.

Not to delve into my own personal opinion, but what must be considered is the shear lack of a signature dining experience in the Magic Kingdom. Sure Cinderella's Royal Table is considered such, but this establishment is geared toward the family and has character dining. Be Our Guest will be the first "real" signature dining experience, so this must be considered as well.

We will keep the news flowing, no pun intended, as they develop to the upcoming soft-opening November 19th, and the official December 6th opening.

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