Wizarding World of Harry Potter secrets

Hey Thrill Seekers,

So Gavin and I let you in on some secrets we know about the Wizarding World of Harry Potter the other week on OAT Live and I’m going to tell you all my favourites including some new ones we didn’t have time for…

  • Universal hired a large amount of its staff from Britain to ensure the experience is as authentic as possible. Each staff member also has to sit an exam to test their knowledge of the books and films to make sure interactions with guests are as seamless as possible.
  • Harry and Hermione’s voices in Escape From Gringotts aren’t actually their real voices
  • We all know that the Leaky Cauldron serves as a gateway between the magical and muggle world and Universal have added a hint of this to the sign of the Leaky Cauldron. Lets just say be careful of drips if you’re standing underneath the sign..
  • The perfume advertisement that can be found in Kings Cross Station at Universal Studios is not exactly the same as the one in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. The advert in the film says ‘Tonight make a little magic with your man’ however the one used in Kings Cross says ‘make a little magic’ so it is a little less suggestive.
  • In Zonkos Joke Shop you can hear whispering coming from the Extendable Ears which can be found hanging over the registers. If you wish to purchase one, you can however there is a sign warning you of eavesdropping.
  • Also in Zonkos you can buy your very own Pygmy Puff – if you do decide to buy one the attendant will ring the bell and announce your Pygmy Puffs name to the whole shop!
  • Look out for the Pots and Pans cleaning themselves in the window to the left of the Three Broomsticks.
  • If you need to make a pit stop at the single restroom in Hogsmede you won’t be alone… Moaning Myrtle can be heard complaining in the men and the women’s loo’s!
  • It’s not just the Dragon that comes to life every 15 minutes.. every 15 mins a owl will pop out the top of the Owlery just like a cuckoo clock.
  • When in line for The Forbidden Journey if you stop by the potions classroom door and listen very carefully you will be able to hear Neville Longbottom being told off for not performing a spell correctly.
  • Keep an eye out for Kreacher in the window of 12 Grimmauld place if you decide to knock…

So there you have it.. some secrets to impress your mates with the next time you visit The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Some are tried and tested and some aren’t so let us know if you know of any more!!

Smiles Included,

Abby

Fast & Furious Supercharged is now open!

Hey Thrill Seekers,

‘Life’s simple, you make choices and you don’t look back’ – Han Lue. I know something you will look back on though –  memories and Fast & Furious – Supercharged will give you and your family thrills and memories that will last forever.

Fast & Furious – Supercharged is now open at Universal Studios so what are you waiting for? Get yourselves over to Universal and step right into your very own Fast & Furious film. (I know for most of you that it will take a 9hr flight but still.. get yourselves over there.. on your next holiday 😉 )

On Monday lucky old Mr Blog Squad himself, Gavin is heading out to Orlando to attend the special evening event being held for the opening of Fast & Furious – Supercharged which is being held on the 2nd May and will feature some of the stars of the films.

Here’s what we know so far about the attraction..

You’ll get to ride alongside members of the Fast Family such as Dom, Letty, Hobbs, Roman, Tej and Mia who are all played by the stars themselves. You’ll find yourself immersed in a recreation of the crews warehouse headquarters where there will be actual props from the films, iconic scenes and of course, supercharged vehicles, 15 to be exact that you will be able to see throughout the queue, the ride and in the retail shop. Many of those 15 have been driven by the Fast Family themselves.

Whilst waiting to enter the action you can gear yourself up by using the special mobile experience to play games, receive messages from Mia and the rest of the family, do quizzes, check out character bios and even try and unlock some surprises – this can be found on the Universal app.

Last but not least Fast & Furious – Supercharged is the next attraction at Universal Studios to feature the new Virtual Line system.. Just like Jimmy Fallon, all you will have to do is select the time you wish to ride on the app or at a kiosk located near the attraction entrance. You can then do whatever you like while you wait for your ride time.

Stay tuned for lots of pics, videos and information from Gavin on our Facebook and Instagram pages next week!

Smiles included,

Abby

NEW Justice League experience at Madame Tussauds Orlando Launches May 25th

Hey Thrill Seekers,

‘Justice will be served this summer’ as Madame Tussauds Orlando announced that Madame Tussauds Orlando’s Justice League: A Call for Heroes will be launched on May 25th 2018.

There are Madame Tussauds’ all over Europe, Asia and of course, North America but this week our very own Orlando got its own announcement as the world famous attraction revealed its plans to ‘unite an all-star cast of DC Super Heroes in a epic new experience’  This will be the first time EVER that fans of DC’s Justice League will get to come face to face with their fave heroes!

HEROES UNITE! The Justice League™ have swooped into Madame Tussauds Orlando and they need YOUR help to save the world (Yeah, YOU!). Bring your bravery and join the ultimate battle. Be transported to the streets of Metropolis and Gotham City for an experience that will BLOW. YOUR. MIND! Think you’ve got what it takes to wield the power of Wonder Woman’s wrist gauntlets? Can you muster the strength to help Superman™ lift a REAL helicopter? Will you act fast enough to summon Batman™ into battle? Reveal your inner Super Hero this summer! Justice League: A Call for Heroes – the battle begins May 25th, only at Madame Tussauds Orlando. Will you answer the call?

Guests will have the opportunity to ‘star alongside Justice League’s Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman, Henry Cavill as Superman and Ben Affleck as Batman’ (YES to a waxwork Ben Affleck) “Fans have never come this close to the action,” said James Paulding, General Manager.

Wonder Woman:

You have been recruited to help to destroy LexCorp’s dangerous technology that has disabled the city. By using your inner super powers, you will will be able to emit a powerful blast from Wonder Woman’s gauntlets which should weaken LexCorp’s control over the city.

Superman:

LexCorp’s experiment has also caused havoc in the sky, you will need to help Superman lift a real helicopter that is hurtling toward the ground to send it back in to the sky to save the passengers and onlookers.

Batman:

Guests will also need to call Batman using the Bat-Signal. Billowing smoke and wind reveal Batman as he’s called into battle on the rooftop, ready to save the world.

This looks awesome as it is but what’s better is that Madame Tussauds Orlando are also running a competition! They want the bravest of Justice League fans to step forward and bring Mother Boxes to Madame Tussauds Orlando which have surfaces in 5 cities across the globe. Those of you who find the Mother Boxes will be rewarded with;  a once-in-a-lifetime VIP experience including a five-day, four-night trip for the winner and one guest to Orlando, plus two tickets to be among the first to help save the planet in Justice League: A Call for Heroes. Winners will also receive two tickets to MegaCon Orlando® and SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium. 

 

Don’t forget, you can get your tickets to Madame Tussauds Orlando here!

Smiles Included

Abby

 

Check out Woody’s Lunchbox Menu!

Hey Thrill Seekers!

Gavin wanted to write this blog but because of his childlike mind I though it would be safer for me to tell you all about what you can find inside Woody’s Lunchbox. 😀

You’ll find Woody’s Lunchbox inside Toy Story Land which is opening in Hollywood Studios on June 30th and will see guests shrink to the size of a toy to be able to explore Woody, Buzz, Jessie and friends world. Yesterday we spoke a bit about some of the food and drink that they’ll be serving up at the walk-up window on OAT Live. (please feel free to skip the first few minutes as Gavin broke the microphone)

Disney have put a hell of a lot of effort in to this menu and the team at Flavor Lab – the concept development kitchen have created ‘sentimental food favourites’ and put a modern twist on them both in the flavours and look of the food. Lenny DeGeorge – Concept Development Culinary Director of WDW said “Everyone has a special food memory, so it can be tricky putting a modern spin on the favorites, we honoured these classic dishes by using the best ingredients to elevate the flavors. How we constructed the sandwiches was important, such as layering the ingredients in a specific order, to maximize textures and flavors. Why have a cold sandwich when you can have a toasted hot, gooey cheese-filled one?” The menu has been in development for around a YEAR!!!

Check out this snippet of what you will be able to get at Woody’s Lunchbox come June 30th..

S’more French Toast Breakfast SandwichOozy goodness in a chocolate ganache- and marshmallow-stuffed French toast topped with graham cracker crumbles. Inspired by the classic American campfire treat. This actually sounds veeerrrryyyyy tempting to me, although maybe not for breakfast.. or before a big ride..

Smoked Turkey, Eggs, Swiss, Peppers, and Onions on SourdoughThe perfect hand-held stack of breakfast goodness.

Breakfast BowlThe green army men line up for this hearty bowl of potato barrels, brisket-country gravy, and scrambled eggs. Scrambled Eggs and GRAVY?!?!

BBQ Brisket MeltWith a nod to cowboy Woody, this Texas-style smoked brisket features cheddar, Monterey Jack, pickles, and BBQ sauce on garlic butter-grilled sourdough. 

Monte Cristo with Raspberry JamWoody’s version of this classic sandwich has layers of ham, turkey, Swiss, and raspberry jam…and is grilled to a golden brown.

Smoked Turkey, Tomato, and Lettuce on Multigrain Bread – This quintessential lunch box sandwich is a light and fresh option. And to give it a kick of flavor, we add a creamy Dijonnaise.

TotchosPotato barrels, corn chips, chili, and cheese – what’s not to love?? 

The younger toys can get a grilled cheese sandwich or turkey sandwich, both served with potato barrels and mandarin oranges.

Sides Include: tomato basil soup, vegetable macaroni salad, and potato barrels. Mini Babybel snack cheese, the official snack cheese of Walt Disney World Resort, is also an option to eat with your meal or as an on-the-go snack.

And now for pudding mmmmm…
Raspberry Lunch Box Tart garnished with Icing and Dried Fruit and Chocolate-Hazelnut Lunch Box Tart garnished with Icing and Caramelized Bacon
Even toys need a sweet treat! Inspired by breakfast toaster pastries, this modern interpretation, with its uniquely delicate crust, is the perfect hand-held pastry.

Banana Split Yogurt ParfaitLayers of banana-vanilla Greek yogurt (with a hint of honey), fresh bananas, strawberries, and pineapple topped with granola and chocolate chips. A delicious and healthful way to start the day! Take out the honey (yuck) and i’m all for this!!

Also, check out this really cool Alien Sipper cup which can be bought and filled with any fountain drink or ‘the signature Mystic Portal Punch – Powerade Mountain Berry Blast with flavors of lemon-lime and tangerine.’

Adults or the ‘big kids’ as they will be known in Toy Story Land can try the ‘Grown-Up’s Lemonade cocktail’ which consists of cherry vodka, Odwalla Lemonade, and black cherry purée or the usual beer, or cider.

It’s not long now until Toy Story Land opens (it’s77 days away to be precise) and its looking better and better each time Disney give us some more info, who’s excited?!

Smiles Included..

Abby

Universal Buy’s More Land And Clears The Way For A New Theme Park

Hey Thrill Seekers,

It’s a good time to be associated with Universal Orlando Resort, as an employee told me yesterday

It’s great to work for a company doing things

And its hard to disagree! Universal are currently at the forefront of everything theme park related so much so that rivals have been accused of straight up copying.

So the news coming from Florida that Universal yesterday not only purchased 100’s of acres of additional land but also the deed of restrictions that would have blocked Universal’s master plan probably wasn’t welcomed.

According to the Orlando Sentinel,  deeds filed with Orange County on Thursday showed the transfer of land from Georgia businessman Stan Thomas to Universal’s subsidiary, SLRC Holdings LLC. How much Universal paid for the additional land and the exact acreage haven’t been confirmed but by the looks of the map below it’s a lot.

Pic credit: (Adelaide Chen/Orlando Sentinel)

An email sent by Universal SpokesmanTom Schroder stated;

We are excited about our plans for this area, and we are looking forward to sharing more at the right time. We also look forward to working with our neighbors in the area and our partners in the community as we move forward.

Universal now have access to 500+ acres of land and are free (local government permitting) to do whatever they like with it. For me I think its pretty clear that Universal are build a resort the introduction of 1 or even 2 new parks would make them much more of a match for Disney.

I believe its pretty certain that one will have a large Nintendo presence or could just be a dedicated park. If this is the case the next big battle could be for more IP.

What would you want to see at a new Universal park?

Smiles included…

Jamie

Disney Updates It’s Purple Wall

Hey Thrill seekers,

Have you got an upcoming trip to Walt Disney World?

The Famous purple wall in Tomorrowland At Disney’s Magic Kingdom has been updated and in my opinion looks better then ever! Disney have repainted a section of the purple wall in a kind of off-white and light-purple colour with a geometric design,the rest of the 50ft area remains purple.

What is the purple wall?

In very basic terms it’s a purple wall where you’ll find lots of instagrammers snapping selfies and pouting like their life depends upon it. The wall’s purple colour is a photographers dream and makes for an amazing back drop.

Currently the hashtag #Purplewall has 30,998 photo’s associated to it and with summer holiday’s on the way we’ll definitely see that rise, who knew a wall could be so popular?

A post shared by L E X 💚 (@thepixietraveler) on

So why is this purple wall so popular?

In a nutshell, its cool…. Not only does it provide the perfect Instagram background but its also pretty popular when it comes to trending topics. Influencers and bloggers can often be found hanging around this wall and by association its become a thing.

The redesign has split opinions which isn’t surprising as Disneyheads (is that a thing?) hate change but we’ll have to wait a while to see what effect the redesign has.

Personally I think the purple wall is cool and i will 100% be taking a selfie there next year when i go, well maybe… depending on how busy this wall is.

Will you be taking a selfie in front of the Purple Wall? If so make sure you tag us in your pics.

Smiles included…

Chloe

Take A Sneak Peak At Fast & Furious Supercharged

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Fast & Furious Supercharged is set to open this Spring at Universal Studios and although we don’t have a firm opening date confirmed today’s images seem to imply that our wait is almost over…

Here’s what Universal had to say;

From the moment you enter the attraction, you’ll become immersed in the storyline. You’ll encounter Dom’s iconic car parked out front of the new home base of operations for the Fast & Furious family.

Once inside, you’ll get to explore familiar scenes from the films like Tej’s high-tech War Room, where you learn more about your mission.


And of course, garages filled with supped up cars designed by Dennis McCarthy, the man behind the vehicles created for the films. Several of the cars you’ll see are from the Fast & Furious movies. You’ll even come across an all-new vehicledesigned exclusive for the attraction – Letty’s Turbo Truck!

If you’re a car fanatic, keep your eye out for modifications that only a true fan would recognize. I’m not what you would call “car savvy”, but it was pretty cool to walk through and see it all.

Keep checking our blog and facebook page for more information about the release date of this highly anticipated attraction.

Smiles included…

Jamie

STRANGER THINGS is finally coming to Halloween Horror Nights!

Hey Thrill Seekers,

It’s all system’s go for Halloween Horror Nights 28 and we couldn’t be happier. Here at OAT towers a HHN28 release is like Christmas, Easter and someone else’s birthday all rolled into one!

Last week we had a brand new ticket hit the streets with the introduction of the Halloween Horror Nights 2nd night free ticket we then had full confirmation of the HHN dates and today we’ve had the first house reveal!!!

And what a reveal! Prepare to enter the upside down…

Stranger Things is finally coming to HHN! It was a no brainer really…

The first season of Stranger Things was released in 2016 and just kept growing and growing in popularity and lucky for us Universal have answered our prayers for a Stranger Things house and we couldn’t be more thankful..  The house is expected to take guests to early-‘80s Hawkins, Indiana and will give guests an immersive experience into the Stranger Things world as they will recreate some of the most iconic sceneted from the shows. Universal have a ‘#RIPBarb’ in their blog so are we going to see a corpse Barb??

You’ll faithfully follow the storyline, starting off on Mirkwood and then quickly moving to inside Hawkins National Laboratory where things have gone terribly, terribly wrong.

I can’t wait to see ‘real life’ Demogorgoms and to see what the team at Universal do with this concept.

Now not blowing our own trumpet or anything but Abby did predict this would be a house in her annual HHN predictions she believes this now makes her Queen of Halloween.

HHN28 is set to be the best year yet and you can be there with our scarily cheap Halloween Horror Nights 2nd Night Free ticket at just £59 per person.

Screams included…

Jamie

Universal Confirm Halloween Horror Nights 28 Days

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Now we don’t like to blow our own trumpet BUT….  Yesterday we were the first UK ticket reseller to start selling the brand new HHN28 ticket this brand new offering represents amazing value at just £59 per person it gives you the opportunity to visit not once but twice from the 14/ 09/18 until 03/11/18… (imagine flames here)

Now we know that Halloween Horror Nights doesn’t run everyday of the week, yep even zombies and ghouls get a day off, so we’ve been patiently waiting for confirmation of dates and today we finally got them.

The Halloween Horror Nights Flex ticket is Valid any two of the following nights:

SEPTEMBER
14, 16, 20, 21, 23, 28, 30
OCTOBER
3, 4, 5, 7, 10, 11, 12, 14, 17, 18, 19, 21, 24, 25, 26, 28, 31
NOVEMBER
1, 2

Universal also confirmed the number of mazes we can expect by stating

Some of the most terrifying names in horror – both from the past and present – will come to life to haunt you in nine brand-new mazes based on hit TV-shows and haunting original stories.

If you’ve never been to Halloween Horror Nights you’re in for a treat. Check out our top tips video to get the best out of your fright night.

You can purchase your Halloween Horror Nights 2nd Night Free directly from us and get your freak on!

Screams included…

Jamie

Halloween Horror Nights tickets now on sale!!

Hey Thrill Seekers,

YES! Its still March and we have Halloween Horror Nights tickets on sale can I get a WOOOHOOO!

This year there’s been a change to the ticket offered for HHN so drum-roll please…

NEW FOR 2018:  Halloween Horror Nights Flex Ticket

This ticket will allow you entry into 2 HHN28 dates that fall on and between 14th September 2018 – 2nd November 2018 (Saturdays are excluded).  This ticket will allow you into Universal Studios on select HHN event nights from 6.30pm until park close. If you’re a true thrill seeker and would prefer to make a day of it, to enter the park before 6.30pm you will still need your Universal 3 Park Explorer ticket  .

Having had the opportunity to visit Halloween Horror Nights for the first time last September I really cannot recommend it enough. I have never laughed so much whilst being terrified at the same time! Universal Studios will be transformed into a nightmarish labyrinth of haunted houses, outrageous live shows, and electrifying scare zones while an army of mutants, monsters and maniacs roam the darkened studio streets.

Things you should know…
  • Halloween Horror Nights™ are scary! We do not recommend this ticket for children under 13.
  • Please do not wear masks or costumes as you will not be refused entry.
  • The Halloween Horror Nights™ Event begins at 6:30 pm and closing times vary.

The Halloween Horror Nights Flex Ticket will be sold between March 29, 2018 and June 6, 2018. The Halloween Horror Nights event begins at 6:30 pm and closing times vary.

Screams Included,

Abby

* please note that this ticket is a special offer ticket and is not included in any other special offers or promotions.