Disneyland opens Secret Entrance to Haunted Mansion
Written By: GN
As Disneyland reopens after several months of closure due to the pandemic, expect a few magical surprises. The famed Haunted Mansion attraction’s ‘secret’ entrance has long been an extra feature reserved for VIPs and staff. This entrance allows guests to bypass the stretching room elevators and go directly to the doom buggy loading dock.
Now, select guests will be able to experience the secret passage for a limited time—and get to experience the classic attraction like never before. Exciting thrills await you behind the doors of the Haunted Mansion.
Twists and turns
The Anaheim theme park’s reopening of the Haunted Mansion comes with a few upgrades such as new landscaping in the site for dearly departed pets in the outdoor area and the return of “April to December” to the portraits hallway. However, the opening of the secret entrance to the general public isn’t merely for design, but also to adjust to California’s social distancing protocols amid the pandemic.
Regulations limit ride capacities to 25 percent only, which spells long extremely long lines for the fan-favorite attraction. To shorten waiting times, the secret entrance will be opened whenever it’s necessary.
At the moment, guests who will use the secret entrance are chosen at random and there’s no set times in which it will happen. However, you may also opt to ask a cast member to take you to the entrance—politely, of course!
Where the magic happens
Once selected, riders will be directed towards the crypt where the door is located. Cast members will also ask if they are comfortable with using stairs, and upon affirmation, will be ushered inside.
Guests will then find themselves inside the secret entrance’s hallway which is aptly decorated with spooky decorations such as flickering candles and mirrors. Portraits of the mansion’s former guests also line the hallway, which leads to another passageway at the foot of the stairs. Similar to the previous hallway, this one is also decked out with more props like clothes and chairs. There are also social distancing markers and sanitary dispensers along the route.
At the end of the hallway is a door that will lead to the part of the portrait gallery near the doom buggy loading area, effectively cutting guests’ waiting times for the ride.
Time is ticking
For 50 years, the Haunted Mansion has been a classic ride for Disneyland’s beloved guests—providing thrills and spooks through visual tricks, songs, and spectacular setpieces. It has stood the test of time—and evolved with it too. Walt Disney Imagineering makes sure that the attraction’s haunting qualities continue to be modern yet familiar.
With the pandemic, Disneyland needed to evolve more than ever. Which is why regulation changes were implemented ahead of its April 30 reopening such as temperature screening, social distancing protocols, and limited number of groups. Guests would now also need a theme park reservation and a valid admission ticket.
The opening of the Haunted Mansion’s secret entrance is just one of Disneyland’s adjustments. As mentioned, this rare opportunity will only be available for a limited time. Once pandemic mandates are lifted this coming June 15, Haunted Mansion’s secret entrance will close its doors.
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