Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure NEW Details!

Hey Thrill Seekers,

First of all, check this out (i’m sure you’d rather listen to Draco Malfoy and the Art Director of the Harry Potter films talk about this than me writing about it.. 😉 )

Opening on the 13th June this year I think it’s fair to say that it is going to be one hell of a coaster experience!!!

Here’s what Universal also had to say..

THE EXPERIENCE:

It begins when you join Hagrid’s Care of Magical Creatures class and board magical motorbikes specially designed to make you feel the freedom of flight. For your journey you can either ride the motorcycle or board the adjacent sidecar, providing two unique experiences. For the first time, you will soar through the Forbidden Forest and come face-to-face with some of the wizarding world’s rarest magical creatures… but as often the case with Hagrid, things don’t go as planned.

  • This new experience combines a new level of storytelling and innovative coaster technology with rich environments and sets – including an actual forest with 1,200 live trees!
  • Experience a freewheeling coaster flight where you’ll twist, turn and rush forward – and backward – at speeds of up to 50 mph into the dark forest
  • Encounter some of the wizarding world’s rarest magical creatures, such as a majestic Centaur; a swarm of mischievous Cornish Pixies; Fluffy the three-headed dog; and even one that’s never been seen in the films
  • Hurl past challenging obstacles, drop into an endless pit of Devil’s Snare and so much more …while encountering a few surprises along the way

Back last month we came across a rendering of what the coaster was rumoured to look like and I think it was pretty bang on.. check it out.

This is a image taken from the newly released video showing the track layout!

Some things Universal have still not revealed are the queue and the pre-show experience. Is this going to be a surprise or are we going to find out more soon??
I also wanna know what else we may encounter in the forbidden forest, what are the other ‘challenging obstacles and surprises’? I suppose an element of surprise can make it a lot more thrilling but i’m super intrigued!

Who’s excitement is building the more we get to know this coaster? Mine is!!

Smiles Included,

Abby

New TODAY Cafe coming to Universal Studios

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Universal have just announced that the ‘TODAY’ cafe is coming to Universal Studios this spring. ‘TODAY’ is a morning show on NBC and the cafe will be set out to make you feel like you’re on the TODAY set with unique theming and speciality items.
It will be located just inside the iconic arches, across the street from the Universal Studios Store so it is in a great location to grab breakfast before you start your date or dinner towards the end of your day.

This isn’t just going to be an average cafe, Universals creative and culinary teams got together with TODAY to create this one of a kind experience.
The venue will be designed to look and feel like Studio 1a in NYC where the show broadcasts daily .
There will be orange awnings, floor to ceiling windows, stage lighting and outdoor seating to make it as similar to the real thing as possible.
There will also be a chance to catch up on the days headline as live broadcasts play.

Food & Drink

Now let’s get down to the important stuff, what food and drink will be up for grabs in the cafe..
Universal have said that The TODAY Cafe will offer a specialty coffee blend, made exclusively for the venue, featuring locally-roasted private label coffee. You’ll be able to sip handcrafted cappuccinos, espresso, lattes, iced coffee and more while chowing down on pastries, made fresh on-site daily, for the perfect breakfast and afternoon pick-me-up.

And, inspired by the fourth hour of TODAY, there will be wine and beer on tap, as well as a delicious cheese platter for two. Plus, one of the standout features of the TODAY Cafe menu will be seasonal dishes inspired by a TODAY personality.

Universal haven’t given an exact opening date however they have said spring so this cafe should be opening soon! 🙂

Excited?!

Smiles Included,

Abby

Have Universal let HHN dates slip… again?

Hey Thrill Seekers,

***UPDATE***

Universal have now confirmed this to be true.

Everyone should know by now that we LOOOVE Halloween Horror Nights here at OAT and at any given chance we will speculate on anything we can that is related to the worlds best Halloween event!

Back when Universal confirmed that Rock the Universe was moving from early September to February we were hoping that the reason behind it was to do with more HHN dates and it looks like Christmas has come early! This was removed as quickly as it was added but luckily HHN Unofficial managed to grab a screenshot of the exciting information before it was removed..

Now there is a Friday the 13th in September and we did think that it would be a good day to start 2019’s HHN event but by the looks of it we can visit all our favourite horror characters even earlier.. from the 6th September! Yes that’s right.. the 6th! This would surely mean over 40 nights of scares, laughter and fun?! WOOO!

Speaking of Friday the 13th, I’ve had a little think about what houses we could be entering next year..

Could Jason be an icon at this event seeing as we have the perfect date for him or could there even be a special event on that day dedicated to the man himself? The last time there was a house featuring Jason was in 2015 when we had Freddy vs Jason so I think it’s about time he re-visited!

I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that I think there is going to be a Halloween house again next year and in particular one based on the latest Halloween movie. Why? Well the new Halloween movie wasn’t featured in this years house and that is likely to be because they didn’t want to show spoilers. HHN28 began on the 14th September and the movie was released on the 19th October meaning Universal would have spoiled main parts of the movie or not include them.. neither are in Universal nature. Also, right at the end and I mean RIGHT at the end of the movie you can hear Michael breathing and then the ‘Universal parks and resorts’ logo appears which could possibly mean the film will feature.. Who knows? Only Mike Aiello and his team at the moment!

There has also been plenty of rumours that Stranger Things will return to HHN for a second year.. I really hope so seeing as I lucked out on this year! Plus the second season was awesome.

I’m going to keep the rest of my predictions a secret for now until me prediction blog early next year. 😉

Universal will most likely keep hush hush about HHN29 for as long as possible and the dates above have not been confirmed but be assured that we will be the first to update when there is any concrete information!

Smiles Included,

Abby

What did the creative brains behind Halloween Horror Nights 2018 have to say about this years event?

Hey Thrill Seekers,

As Halloween Horror Nights has come to a close the creative minds behind this years event have shared their thoughts on a HHN that has gone down in Universals record books as the ‘hottest’ and most haunted houses ever created!

Firstly i’ve had a look on twitter and found what Mike Aiello : Senior Director Creative Development of Universal Orlando & HHN Orlando had to say.

I have chosen a few of my favourites:

Although it is sad that HHN has come to a close after another spectacular year we can now get excited and speculate on HHN29!! We’ve already had an idea that Netflix’s new show The Haunting of Hill House would make a great addition and Mike and his team are already considering IP’s and working on original content. Wooop!!

Universal posted some closing thoughts from the creative minds behind this year’s Halloween Horror Nights…

Charles Gray: Show Director.

“On the final night of the event, I like to say my goodbyes to not only cast and crew, but to the sounds of the event. I can see visuals anytime on social media or hanging on the walls of our Art & Design offices. But year after year, the audio tracks of Halloween Horror Nights have become a special memory for me.

  • I want the environmental sounds from Seeds of Extinction and the score from Carnival Graveyard to remain in my head.
  • I will walk through the haunted houses on the final night and absorb my favourite scares.
  • I will smile when I walk through Slaughter Sinema and hear a crazed kid scream, “I’ll eat your guts for dinner!”
  • I will snicker when I hear Loomis yell, “No!  No!  No!” into the night air.
  • Hearing, “They’re heeeere” that final time will induce some melancholy and a sense of pride.

I am so proud of what the entire team has accomplished this year. That pride extends from the tech teams to the scareactors. Everyone should be proud of the heart and soul they poured into this twenty-eighth year of Halloween Horror Nights. 2019 is already shaping up to be a year of surprises. See you next year.”

Blake Braswell: Show Director.

“The end of another Halloween Horror Nights has come. And as it fades away into the fog, I know this terror-filled beast will linger long in my heart. What this talented team of creators, designers, technicians and scareactors brought to life were some of the very first horror stories I experienced as a child.

I couldn’t be more proud to have played a part in this year’s event. I hate to see it go, but the tendrils of next year have already crept into our view, and I am thrilled for the screams yet to come.”

Patrick Braillard: Show Director.

“We are about to close the gates on another incarnation of Halloween Horror Nights. Soon the haunted houses and scare zones that you knew this year will disappear, making way for new experiences next year.

The beast that is Halloween Horror Nights is never satisfied with the status quo. It is always evolving, always changing. Sometimes that change is seen as growth—can you say 10 houses?! Sometimes it means welcoming a group of maniacs inside—Academy of Villains, can you feel me?!

But in all of that growth and change, there are things that remain as steady today as they were during our very first event—the passion. The passion of the teams that develop, operate, and manage the event (truly the best in the world). The passion of the scareactors, who are the lifeblood of the event. And of course, the passion of the incredible fans who devote their time and energy to the promotion of all things Halloween Horror Nights (sometimes that involves tattoos…).”

I already can’t wait for HHN29! What about you?

Screams included,

Abby

How similar is Universal Beijing going to be to Orlando?

Hey Thrill Seekers,

I think it’s time to talk about Universal Beijing, said to open in 2021, the Beijing park will be the next Universal park to open and  it’ll be the only other location besides Florida to (eventually) be a proper resort they have confirmed that it will cost $6.5 billion!! Some new information has come to light which seem to confirm some details of this project which give us some nods towards what Universal may have planned for their already existing and new parks in Orlando.

After reading a post on Orlando Weekly I think we should keep a close eye on Universal Beijing as they are not only creating a lot of the same rides, attractions and lands as Orlando but they are adding new rides and ideas which i think gives us clues into what we can expect stateside.

In images found on the web the resort looks a VERY similar layout to the Orlando resort with 3 parks, a hotel that resembles Cabana Bay, a City Walk and a waterway that links everything. Thinking about this, it doesn’t really make sense.. why would Universal basically recreate their Orlando resort in China? Wouldn’t it draw visitors from that part of the world away from Orlando?

Just like Orlando there is what looks like a Universal Studios on the right, what could be Islands of Adventure on the left and a Volcano Bay themed water park too.. One difference we can see straight away is the entrance to Studios which is covered by a hotel which would actually look over the park itself.

Due to some leaked documents we can see what lands will be included. In what looks like a leaked plan, posted on Reddit shows more detail:

What’s the same as Universal Orlando? 

It looks as though there will be a central lagoon, an outdoor performance venue, a coaster the same as the Hulk but themed to Transformers here (YES!) as it looks like there will be a transformers based land so would also include the same Transformers 4d ride that is in Orlando.

Near a rumoured WaterWorld is a Jurassic World where it looks as though there will be 3 attractions.. A water ride, steel coaster and an attraction based on the Gyro-spheres featured in the films. Do we think they’ll move Jurassic to the new Universal park to fit the same attractions or expand on it in IOA?

There is a Hogsmeade with a Forbidden Journey ride and a Flight of the Hippogriff with a piece of land next to it which fits with the shape and size of Diagon Alley. The area is divided into three sections, the middle and biggest section is where Hogsmeade Village, Flight of the Hippogriff and Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey will be located. The two smaller sections on either side are designated for future expansions. Based on the size of the bottom section and its location it could be the same coaster as the one currently being built in IOA. The smaller expansion at the top could be a future train station for Hogwarts express.

Whats new / different to Universal Orlando?

It looks like there will be a enclosed land themed to Kung Fu Panda including carnival type rides as well as a dark ride.. This is different to Orlando now but has been rumoured to feature in Orlando’s new Universal park alongside Trolls, and Shrek.

Minion Land – this will most likely have the same simulator rides as the other Universal parks as well as another attraction and even an indoor play area. As the popularity of Minions is still growing there are also rumours that Universal Orlando will create a mini-land.

photo from themeparx.com

How similar to Orlando do you think this is going to be and what new attractions would you like to see?

Smiles Included,

Abby

 

A Celebration of Harry Potter will not return in 2019

Hey Thrill Seekers,

We do always try our best to bring you good news from within the world of Orlando theme parks however sometimes we cannot avoid bad news…

This time we aren’t basing off rumours.. Universal have confirmed that A Celebration of Harry Potter isn’t going to return to their parks in 2019. Here’s the official press release:

Universal Orlando Resort is working on exciting new experiences for guests to continue to celebrate the Wizarding World next year. These include the all-new thrill ride coming to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade and additional fan experiences that have yet to be announced. While our focus on these fan experiences means we will not be hosting A Celebration of Harry Potter in 2019, we and other Universal theme parks will always be looking for opportunities to host special Wizarding World experiences.

This poses the questions of ‘is it being replaced by something new?’ or ‘are they too busy with the new ride to host it?’ Gavin thinks that they could be replacing it with something Fantastic Beasts themed ‍♀️ Universal have also said that there are going to be ‘additional fan experiences’ like the Back to Hogwarts event hosted on the 1st September.

Now we don’t know if it is just 2019 that Universal have pulled the plug on or future years as well as that isn’t mentioned in the press release. It is quite unusual though, A Celebration of Harry Potter has been going 5 years and each year seems to become more and more popular so surely it cannot be a case of it not bringing in enough witches, wizards and muggles?

Lets take a look back at some of the cool shots we got from last years event.

It’s a sort of bitter-sweet feeling as we don’t like to say goodbye to a fantastic event but we can look forward to what Universal are going to surprise us with in the near future..

Smiles Included,

Abby

First Look Inside Slaughter Sinema

Hey Thrill Seekers,

This years Halloween Horror Nights is fast approaching and Universal have treated us to yet another sneak peek into one of the houses.. 😍

Take a look at this teaser trailer..

This original house will see you enter 3 different 80’s B-movies at a local drive-in. The first stop is the snack bar.. not your usual snack bar though as this one will fill you with dread right from the get go.

Before you enter each movie you will be met with posters that will give you a glimpse into the terror that awaits you..

Be prepared to meet biker werewolves, swamp yetis, deadly barbers and in Universals words ‘a few that you have to see to believe‘ 😯

In Pumpkin Guts, you’ll discover more than the gooey entrails of pumpkins waiting for you. Amazon Cannibals from Planet Hell takes you to a distant planet where you’re the main course on the menu. And Cult of the Beast Baby…I’ll leave that one to your imagination.

It’s not long now.. are you excited or scared? 👀

Screams included,

Abby

First look at the Stranger Things house

Hey Thrill Seekers!

Today is a good day! Universal have given us a sneak peak into the Stranger Things house…

From the moment you step inside, you’re going to feel as if you have become a part of the show. The team has recreated all the fan-favorite, iconic scenes from Season 1 in sets that rival the show. The detail is incredible from the Upside Down to the creation of the Demogorgon (which we’re going to leave for you to discover when you come to the event). There are even intricate details that only a hardcore Stranger Things fan would recognize (again, going to let you find those for yourself!)

So Universal have given us an insight…. but not too much has been given away to spoil it. Perfect. Check out the cool images and video that they’ve released..

Eeeeeeekk!

Screams Included,

Jess

The 10th and final house has been announced for HHN28!

Hey Thrill Seekers,

Universal have just announced the final HHN house and it looks like they’ve saved the best until last… Let me introduce you to ScaryTales: Deadly Ever After.

We’re all familiar with the classic fairytales and the warm, fuzzy feelings you get with the “happily ever after” endings. Well, you can kiss those warm, fuzzy feelings goodbye.

This brand spanking new house puts a ‘demented twist’ on everyone’s favourite fairytales.. The Wicked Witch of the West has taken control of the fairytale realm and is tormenting beloved characters in horrible storylines.. pure turned evil!

And with portions of the house nicknamed: “Revenge,” “Toupee,” and “Splatter” during development, you can bet the stories you grew up on will be ending very differently within this experience. The Witch’s spell spares no one. Her influence is felt throughout the land. With so many nightmares around each turn, you’ll wish it was just a story. Below are a few of the banners you’ll come across as you step into the haunted house, leading you to your “deadly ever after.”

This one looks absolutely AMAZING! There is no happy ending here….

WAIT.. THERE’S MORE! Due to popular demand of HHN, Universal have added 2 more event nights: September 19th and 26th! Included with your HHN tickets

Screams Included,

Abby

The Horrors of Blumhouse is back for HHN28

Hey Thrill Seekers,

YAY! Horrors of Blumhouse is back for HHN28 with a all new scary lineup in store..

This year it will feature scenes from Happy Death Day and The First Purge (which i watched on Sunday and found equally amazing and terrifying!)

Survival is key as you encounter not only Happy Death Day’s Babyface Killer, but also the nation’s very first wave of Purgers.

In the Happy Death Day scene you will encounter a college student trying to break a deathly cycle and will relive her death over and over again.. Can you work out who her killer is before you come face to face?

Can you hear the sirens yet?? You’re about to find out how the first purge came about and see how everyone reacts when all crime is legal for one night only. Last years Purge scarezone was my favourite part of HHN27 as i found it the most jumpy and heart racing as you never knew what to expect next and I think bringing it to a more confined space will make it 10 x scarier!!

In this haunted house, there is no escape.

The Horrors of Blumhouse joins an already incredible lineup:

  • Stranger Things
  • Halloween 4: The return of Michael Myers
  • Poltergeist
  • Seeds of Extinction
  • Carnival Graveyard: Rust in Pieces
  • Slaughter Sinema
  • Trick ‘r’ Treat
  • Dead Exposure: Patient Zero

Screams Included

Abby