10 Tips: Trinkets and Treasures Thrive at Walt Disney World Resort
--‘Tis the Season for Great Shopping |
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- "Hard-to-finds" and "one-of-a-kinds"
abound at Walt Disney World Resort, where a wonderland of 300 shops
sprawls across the 40-square-mile Vacation Kingdom. During Disney's
"Year of a Million Dreams," what better way to "gift" someone -- or
yourself! -- than with dreamy merchandise from Walt Disney World
Resort at holidaytime. And whether the budget leans to economical or
extraordinary, a practically perfect present awaits for everyone on
any holiday list. Here's a small sampling, from the sensible to the
tots will love collecting Epcot's internationally-themed
beanie babies that feature Mickey, Minnie and the gang
dressed in the traditional garb of the 11 World Showcase
nations. Look for Minnie Mouse in a Japanese kimono, Mickey
Mouse in German lederhosen and Pluto in a Viking hat from
Norway; $9 each.
Epcot's China pavilion, folklore of by-gone days comes to life
in the shape of a four-inch, imitation-ivory elder. The
statuette, pictured holding a dragon-head cane, peach and
scroll, is said to bring power and longevity to its owner; $18.
- At The
Art of Disney in Downtown Disney, animators are on hand to
create personalized character sketches -- with you as the
boss! After selecting a design (more than 400 choices), guests
choose a shading color and options like a custom frame or
collectible pin, then watch as the art comes to life in about 30
minutes. Standard designs are $35-$65; those framed with
collectible pins start at $95.
a truly distinctive gift, visit Epcot's The Village Traders,
where Andrew Mutiso creates African wood and soapstone
carvings. Among his artwork is a family sculpture, their
arms intertwined to symbolize unity. The piece, made of teak
wood and dyed black with leather dye, is carved over four hours
with an African tool called a ngomo; $75.99.
Epcot's Germany pavilion, little girls can watch as the dolls
of their dreams are created piece by piece at Engle Puppe.
Guests choose everything from the doll's face (one of seven) to
its eye color, hair color, hair style and clothing. Disney
princesses are also available in the likeness of Ariel, Jasmine,
Snow White, Alice in Wonderland, Belle, Mulan, Tinkerbelle,
Cinderella or Aurora; $160.
all about the nose for this 3-foot-tall, solid wood,
hand-painted and hand-carved Pinocchio in the Italy pavilion
at Epcot. The striking toy's wooden nose unscrews and comes with
a variety of lengthy attachments; $250.
your way to Starabilia's in Downtown Disney where for $4,500
guests can own a piece of a pirate. Captain Jack Sparrow's
pistol, used by Johnny Depp in "Pirates of the Carribbean:
Curse of the Black Pearl," is nicely packaged in a shadow-box
and gold frame, with a mini movie poster signed by Depp, Orlando
Bloom, Keira Knightley and Geoffrey Rush. A certificate of
authenticity guarantees it's an original.
- For a
dose of history that's close to the heart, swing by Epcot's
United Kingdom pavilion where a massive encyclopedia holds the
personal genealogical history of more than 100,000 last names.
For $70, guests can have their family crest embroidered on a
polo shirt and for $325, they can have that same embroidered
patch matted and framed along with a parchment detailing the
history of the family's last name.
beware! This crystal replica of Cinderella Castle
sparkles like a thousand stars. Weighing 42 pounds and standing
20 inches tall, the limited-edition piece features 28,255
hand-set Swarovski crystals, 23kt gold plates, and hand-applied
enamel. The castle, featured at four locations around Walt
Disney World Resort including Arribas Brothers in Downtown
Disney, comes with a certificate of authenticity; $37,500.
can't buy you love, but it can buy you this Hoffner Bass guitar
signed by all four Beatles and housed at Starabilia's in
Downtown Disney. The guitar is matted on black velvet, with an
original black and white photo of the group to its right. With a
$75,000 price tag, it holds the record for priciest item in the
Walt Disney World®
Resort Unwraps Unique Shopping Treasures Throughout Vacation Kingdom
BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Whether it's an unforgettable souvenir or an
extravagant gift for someone special, Walt Disney World®
Resort is a shopper's paradise of more than 300 shopping locations.
There's just about everything imaginable at the Vacation Kingdom --
from a shiny red antique carnival bumper car and Italian leather
handbags & to a Winnie the Pooh cuckoo clock and a Waterford crystal
Spaceship Earth. And the shops are open to guests every day of the
year. So there are 365 days to shop for memorable holiday gifts.
some insider tips and window-shopping discoveries:
A walk down memory lane: Starabilias, a nostalgic memorabilia
shop at Downtown Disney West Side, has a grand selection of
out-of-the-ordinary items -- for example, a Schwinn Red Phantom
Bicycle, a Wurlitzer Juke Box, props from movies, an original Indian
Chief 1950s motorcycle, autographed photos, an antique bumper car
from a Jersey Boardwalk carnival, plus signed celebrity posters and
photographs. Movie buffs will love Sid Cahuenga's One-of-a-Kind at
Disney-Hollywood Studios. Inside this California-style bungalow are
celebrity books, films, posters, and a collection of Hollywood
wardrobe pieces such as a shirt worn by Cuba Gooding Jr. in the film
"Chill Factor" and clothing worn by Arnold Schwarzenegger in the
film "True Lies."
treasures: Armani-crafted Seven Dwarf figures are available in
the Italy pavilion at Epcot; original cels and animation art from
classic Disney films in Art of Disney at Downtown Disney
Marketplace; authentic Goebel and Hummel figurines, Volkskunst beer
steins and hand-painted eggs in the Germany pavilion at Epcot.
Out-of-the-ordinary: Eclectic art and decor such as Zen
fountains, Japanese painting boards and colorful hand-crafted
sculptures can be found at Hoypoloi at Downtown Disney West Side.
Mickey's Groove at Downtown Disney West Side offers clothing, gifts
and toys devoted to Mickey Mouse. The Main Street Gallery in Magic
Kingdom features animation cels, lithographs and figurines. A
Waterford crystal Spaceship Earth is a shimmering treasure found in
Art of Disney at Downtown Disney Marketplace. Natural bath and body
products -- soaps, bath crystals and shampoo bars -- are showcased
at Basin at Downtown Disney Marketplace.
for play: Once Upon a Toy is a wonderland of toys and playthings
for youngsters and the young at heart. This 16,000-square-foot toy
store features exclusive new toys, games and collectibles that
combine the magic of Disney and the fun of Hasbro, including a
special Disney-themed MR. POTATO HEAD, My Little Poney, and a Disney
theme park version of MONOPOLY.
at work: At Disney's Animal Kingdom, artists craft woven African
baskets in Ziwani Traders, Indonesian bamboo carvings in Mandala Hut
and African woodcarvings in Mombasa. Glass-blown crystal and metal
creations are presented in Eurospain at Downtown Disney Marketplace.
Sketch artists are on site at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa.
Mouthwatering: Homemade fudge, hand-dipped candy apples, cotton
candy, chocolate-dipped marshmallows and truffles are sure to soothe
the sweet tooth in The Candy Cauldron at Downtown Disney West Side.
La Bottega Italiana gourmet shop at Epcot displays an assortment of
Italian pastries, wines, olive oils, vinegars and specialty coffees.
In the Italy pavilion at Epcot, Il Bel Cristallo offers elegant
cameo rings and pendants, gold bracelets and necklaces. Disney's
Contemporary Resort features a vast selection of Disney watches,
plus costume jewelry and colorful kid's bracelets.
stuffers: Disney dollars and gift certificates are available
throughout Walt Disney World Resort as well as at participating
Disney Stores. NEW: Special gift certificates for spa treatments and
admission to the Cirque du Soleil original production La Nouba.
scents: Guerlain, the oldest family-owned fragrance and cosmetic
company in the world, has a presence at Epcot -- La Signature in the
France pavilion offers an assortment of Guerlain products.
Every day's a holiday: Disney's Days of Christmas shop at Downtown
Disney Marketplace showcases hundreds of hand-crafted ornaments,
candles, cards, character stockings and traditional holiday
decorations 365 days a year.
One-stop-shopping: The largest Disney character showplace
anywhere, World of Disney at Downtown Disney Marketplace is 51,000
square feet of take-home treasures. The superstore's 12 themed areas
include everything from princess pajamas and Disney luggage to
Goofy-shaped pastas and Mickey and Minnie wedding-cake toppers.
Magic Kingdom offers a vast selection of Disney-logo merchandise as
well as custom-embroidered mouse ears inspired by the original
"Mickey Mouse Club."
goods: Sports enthusiasts can load up on gear at Team Mickey’s
Athletic Club at Downtown Disney Marketplace featuring character
sports merchandise; athletic shoes and socks; Nike apparel; golf
accessories; college-themed apparel; plush toys and tennis balls.
ESPN Club at Disney’s BoardWalk offers ESPN logo merchandise. Sports
apparel and equipment can be purchased at Main Street Athletic Club
in Magic Kingdom .
Merchandise purchases don't have to be a burden to Walt Disney World
theme park guests. There are three alternatives to carrying packages
in the parks:
Package pickup is available at no charge. Merchandise is moved to
package pickup, located near the front entrance of each theme park,
for guests' pickup when they leave the park.
2. Hotel delivery is available at no charge. Purchases made
prior to 7 p.m. will be delivered to the guest's hotel by noon the
following day. Purchases made after 7 p.m. will be at the hotel on
the second day after purchase.
3. Shipping is available for an additional charge at the time
can shop the theme parks by phone after vacationing at Walt Disney
World Resort. Just call 407/363-6200. Describe what you saw and
where you saw it. With the help of computers, the Attractions
Merchandise Guest Services Department can locate that gift, arrange
the purchase and ship it. The Guest Services Department can help
with merchandise from all Walt Disney World-run shops in the theme
parks. It is open weekdays except holidays.
the shops vary. Some shops are open after regular theme park hours.
Contact 407/824-4321 for more information.