Disney, Universal Studios And Other Major Theme Parks Close Amid Coronavirus Pandemic
Published in Mar 2020 / Updated in Feb 2021
All Disney theme parks worldwide and Universal Studios in the US will remain closed to prevent further spread of the coronavirus.
The announcements came on Thursday, March 12, not long after California Gov. Gavin Newsom held a press conference to address the state’s measures on coronavirus prevention and containment.
At the conference, Newsom outlined the new guidance, to postpone or cancel any gatherings with 250 people or more in California.
After Newsom’s statement, Disney complied with the recommendation and shortly announced that it’ll temporarily close Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure starting Saturday, March 14, through the end of the month.
Newsom hailed Disney’s decision saying:
“Late last night, California put out a new policy on mass gatherings and engaged in deep conversations with Disney and other companies about meeting it.”
“Using that policy, Disney made the right call in the interest of public health and agreed to shut down its California parks. Expect more announcements like this shortly.”
And the announcements did come shortly.
Universal Studios Hollywood stated that it’ll also close beginning Saturday, March 14, with an anticipated reopening on March 28.
Universal Studios spokesperson said in a statement:
“The health and safety of our team members and guests is always our top priority.”
As well, Walt Disney World in Florida, Disneyland Paris, and Universal Studios Orlando said they’ll close business starting Sunday, March 15, until the end of the month.
The Disney Cruise Line is also suspending all new departures beginning Saturday through the end of March.
Disneyland Resort hotels will remain open until March 16 to allow its guests to make necessary travel accommodations.
But the hotels at Disney World and Disneyland Paris will remain open until further notice, as will the retail and dining complexes, Disney Springs at Walt Disney World, and Disney Village at Disneyland Paris. Universal CityWalk will also remain open, as do Universal Orlando’s hotels.
Disneyland Resort anticipates reopening its doors at the end of the month.
Disney said in its initial statement:
“While there have been no reported cases of COVID-19 at Disneyland Resort, after carefully reviewing the guidelines of the Governor of California’s executive order and in the best interest of our guests and employees, we are proceeding with the closure of Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure, beginning the morning of March 14 through the end of the month.”
“The Hotels of Disneyland Resort will remain open until Monday, March 16, to give guests the ability to make necessary travel arrangements; Downtown Disney will remain open.”
“We will monitor the ongoing situation and follow the advice and guidance of federal and state officials and health agencies. Disney will continue to pay cast members during this time.”
This is the fourth time in history the Disneyland Resort and resort in Anaheim, California, has fully suspended operations. The other instances are the Northridge earthquake, the 9/11 attacks, and the national day of mourning after President John F. Kennedy’s assassination.