Hong Kong Disneyland gets 'Frozen' in $1.4 bn upgrade

Hong Kong : Hong Kong Disneyland announced Tuesday a $1.4 billion expansion featuring popular characters from the "Frozen" and "Marvel" movies, despite competition from a massive Disney resort in Shanghai. 

The upgrade at the world's smallest Disney resort comes after Shanghai's theme park opened in mid-June, pulling in nearly a million visitors within its first month of operation.

The Hong Kong expansion will start in 2018, ending in 2023, with new attractions opening almost every year during that period. 

New attractions will also include a transformed castle, the central landmark in all of Disney's six global resorts. 

Animated mega-hit "Frozen" raked in nearly $1.3 billion in global ticket sales, while Marvel has had a string of blockbuster successes based on its roster of superheroes including Iron Man and Captain America.

"This would attract more high-spending and overnight visitors from more diversified market sources," the city's commerce and economic development minister Gregory So said.

Hong Kong Disneyland has had three years of profitability since 2012, but attendance took a hit in 2015 after mass pro-democracy rallies rocked the city a year previously.

In April the resort fired scores of staff after reporting an annual loss, the first large-scale sacking since its opening, reports said.

Hong Kong Disneyland is 52 percent-owned by the city's government. 


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