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Old May 13th, 2005, 10:14 PM   #101
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Old May 14th, 2005, 05:46 AM   #102
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Agence France Presse
May 9, 2005 Monday
Smog unlikely to deter Hong Kong Disneyland visitors: HK finance chief

BANGKOK

Hong Kong's worsening air pollution is unlikely to deter visitors to the new Hong Kong Disneyland theme park when it opens later this year, the territory's
Financial Secretary Henry Tang said Monday.

Tang said some 5.6 million visitors, including one third from outside greater China, were forecast to visit the park in its first year from its September 12
opening.

"We're not particularly worried about it, that people will not come because they're concerned about the air pollution problem," Tang told reporters on the first stop of a four-country trip highlighting 4.0 billion dollars worth of new tourist facilities in the southern Chinese territory.

Most of Hong Kong's air pollution, which a senior government meteorologist in January said cloaked the city in smog for 65 days in 2004, originates in the industrialised Pearl River Delta.

The smog often thwarts views across the territory's famous harbour, and causes breathing problems among residents not to mention several accidents between cargo boats and ferries.

Hong Kong attracted a record 21.8 million visitors in 2004, said Tang, who has acknowledged the city's deteriorating air quality.

The city's Tourism Commissioner Eva Cheng said of the 5.6 million people forecast to visit the new Disneyland, one-third would be from Hong Kong, one-third from mainland China, and the rest from other areas, largely Southeast Asian countries.
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Old May 14th, 2005, 06:32 AM   #103
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I read somewhere that one of the rides on the way in 2007/2008 is Pirates of the Caribbean, but crossed with Splash Mountain (e.g bigger drop).
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Old May 14th, 2005, 07:37 PM   #104
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Free visits to Disney lake
Cheung Chi-fai
14 May 2005
South China Morning Post

Free visits to a Disney-related tourist attraction in Penny's Bay will be allowed from early August, officials said yesterday.

The water recreation centre, an artificial lake built next to the Disney theme park, will be among the first facilities to open before the park begins operating on September 12.

Managed by the Disney company, officials hope the lake will be open to visitors from August 1, but water sports facilities may not be available by then.

The site will also house a botanical garden featuring more than 200 trees, flowers and shrubs.

But officials are concerned that the tranquility of the area could be disturbed by too many visitors attracted by free admission.

Lorenz Tsao Tak-kiang, director of the Civil Engineering and Development Department, said that the lakeside scenery was very beautiful, but admitted: "This lake is likely to be very popular among visitors and it might be a bit noisy when there are too many people touring around."

The 12-hectare lake will also provide an irrigation source for the Penny's Bay facilities.

Water for the lake is mainly drawn from natural surface runoff of rainfall and from the Tai Lam Chung reservoir near Tuen Mun.
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Old May 17th, 2005, 07:26 PM   #105
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Fairy Tale Wedding in Hong Kong Disneyland

HONG KONG, May 17 (Xinhua) -- A romantic dream for many young couples to be prince and princess or to get married in a fairy tale castle will come true, Hong Kong Disneyland announced here Tuesday.

Don Robinson, Managing Director of Hong Kong Disneyland, told reporters that Hong Kong Disneyland now welcomes couples to celebrate their nuptials in Disney style with a personalized Fairy Tale Wedding.

He said Hong Kong Disneyland has so far received about 1,000 inquiries from couples interested in holding a fairy tale wedding.

However, Robinson said couples with intentions to get married in Hong Kong Disneyland are still in the stage of consultation and the date of the first fairy tale wedding has not yet decided.

Before the romantic and unforgettable Disneyland wedding, cost is the most practical problem for new couples to consider.

According to the package samples sent out by Hong Kong Disneyland, the price for a wedding banquet in the fairy tale world is around 10,000 Hong Kong dollars per table and the minimum requirement will be ten tables.

To common Hong Kong people with average salary per month around 10,000 Hong Kong dollars, a romantic wedding in Disneyland is still a dream.
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Old May 17th, 2005, 07:27 PM   #106
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Disneyland keeps travel agents in dark
Sylvia Hui
16 May 2005
Hong Kong Standard

The date of Hong Kong Disneyland's opening is fast approaching but the theme park is reluctant to let the tourism industry in on its ticket sales plans, frustrated local travel agents told The Standard. Crucial information on the projected swarms of visitors to the park when it opens September 12, and the mechanisms of selling entry tickets to them, has been withheld and communication with the tourism industry is lacking, according to travel agents.

"We have been in numerous discussions with them [Hong Kong Disneyland] but we regret that they have so far been putting off giving us definite answers," said Bonny Ho, in-bound travel manager at Hong Thai Travel.

Ho said he and others in the industry are most anxious about whether they can have a share in the benefits Disneyland will bring.

"The government _ and you and I _ all have a part in the park. But it seems that we cannot do anything to share in the benefits," he said.

According to Travel Industry Council executive director Joseph Tung, Disneyland allows local travel agents a 10 percent commission when they take bookings for the two hotels inside the theme park.

The commission rises to 15 percent when agents book packages for both Disneyland hotel rooms and entrance tickets.

"But Disneyland makes it clear that no one can have any commission for selling entrance tickets because they fear that commissioning tickets will give rise to a black market," Tung said.

Ho said he has learnt of talks between Disney and agents in mainland cities such as Beijing and Shanghai.

"According to what I know, Disney has agreed on a definite number of tickets to be sold through these agents," said Ho. "It would be unfair to local agents if Disney does not sell through us."

A Hong Kong Disneyland spokeswoman, however, was vague about directly selling tickets or offering tour packages to mainland travel agents.

"I can't tell you whether we have or have not been distributing tickets to mainland travel agents. We can only affirm we are in talks with Hong Kong, mainland and overseas agents alike."

Last month, the Immigration Department stepped in and asked Disneyland to help avert potential chaos and uncontrollable crowds at the gate and Lok Ma Chau checkpoint by selling all its tickets in advance, possibly through travel agents.

But the Disney spokeswoman said the proposal is against park policy.

She said ticket-sale arrangements and crowd-control methods are still being studied.

She gave no estimates of the number of visitors expected within the first weeks of the park's operation, but reiterated that 5.6 million visitors a year, or an average of 30,000 visitors a day, are expected and that Hong Kong, mainland and overseas visitors will each make up one third of the numbers.

"Our view is crowd control will be easier with advance ticketing, and 30,000 could be an underestimate on September 12 and the first few days. But it's a question of their policy. We can only remind them that they must disclose relevant information to us and they have agreed," said Tung.

"We hope we can obtain more information by June or July. The market for Hong Kong agents is mainly from Southeast Asia and China _ two to three months will hopefully be sufficient time for promotion."

The agents' fears that the theme park could be a lopsided deal between Disneyland and the government are not new. Although the park has created thousands of jobs, critics have said the government is too accommodating, with taxpayers paying most of the park's HK$27.3 million cost.
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Old May 26th, 2005, 04:02 AM   #107
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Hong Kong Disneyland Draws Fire Over Soup
By CHUCK CHIANG, Associated Press Writer
Mon May 23, 3:58 AM ET

HONG KONG - Environmentalists urged Hong Kong Disneyland on Monday not to serve shark fin soup when the park opens in September, but Disney officials said they planned to offer the dish at special banquets in accordance with local customs.

Greenpeace and the Worldwide Fund for Nature have asked Hong Kong Disneyland to take shark fin soup off the menu after the theme park announced last week the delicacy would be served at wedding banquets and other special events at the park.

Environmentalists say millions of sharks are killed each year for their fins, driving many species close to extinction. The fins are hacked off and the fish are dumped back into the sea to die.

"It's a hugely wasteful practice," said Greenpeace spokesman Martin Baker. "We were incredulous when we heard that Disney would be serving shark fin soup."

Baker added, "We would have hoped that a company with a global reach like Disney could have made a statement on the issue."

Hong Kong Disneyland spokeswoman Irene Chan said, "Hong Kong Disneyland takes environmental stewardship very seriously, and we are equally sensitive to local cultures. It is customary for Chinese restaurants and five-star hotels to serve shark's fin soup in Hong Kong as the dish is considered an integral part of Chinese banquets."

Another Disneyland spokeswoman, Esther Wong, stressed that shark fin soup would only be served when customers requested it at special banquets. She declined to discuss whether not selling the dish would substantially hurt business. Wong said that selling the fins wasn't a business issue.

"The whole point is being respectful to local cultures," Wong said. "It is what the locals see as appropriate."

Another Hong Kong environmentalist, Brian Darvell of the South China Diving Club, said, "The very fact it is traditional does not make it right. It's mind-boggling that Disney could be so inconsistent with their environmental line and go on with defending its decision."
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Old May 26th, 2005, 07:33 AM   #108
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why don't those environmentalist just kill themselves? because almost every single things that they do in life would hurt the natural environment in some ways.
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Old May 26th, 2005, 08:03 AM   #109
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any new pictures?
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Old May 26th, 2005, 10:58 AM   #110
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I agree with vincent, but only on this particular occasion.. I think shark fin is too important culturally and tastfully :-p to be ignored in HK... I remember reading on CNN or sth that HK ppl consume 80% of the world's production of Shark Fin worldwide!

I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE shark fin.
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Old May 26th, 2005, 11:12 AM   #111
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I agree shark fins should not be served. I have a shark tank in my house so I really love sharks and because the method of how people kill the shark is very uncivilized. Besides shark fins dont really taste much you can substitute it with Vermicelli
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Old May 26th, 2005, 06:26 PM   #112
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Disneyland gears up for expansion
Finance secretary says new rides will entice visitors back
Leu Siew Ying in Guangzhou
26 May 2005

Disneyland has embarked on an expansion programme even before it opens to bring more attractions in the second or third year of operation, Financial Secretary Henry Tang Ying-yen said yesterday.

"They were not thinking of it initially but they are already expanding the project. They have a lot of land for expansion and the construction will not affect operations," said Mr Tang, who is leading a tourism delegation to Guangzhou.

A Hong Kong Disneyland spokesperson said the expansion is within the park's first phase of development, and the company is now focusing on a successful opening in September. Mr Tang said the expansion was necessary so that in the second and third years, visitors could return to the park and find new attractions.

Hong Kong Disneyland expects that two-thirds of its visitors will come from Guangdong, which also accounts for a similar ratio of mainland solo visits to the SAR.

Travel analysts, however, said immigration bottlenecks, inconvenience of travel and the time it takes to issue a solo visit permit might dampen enthusiasm.

Hong Kong and Guangdong officials will have to discuss the feasibility of a proposal by Guangdong Governor Huang Huahua to increase the number of buses licensed for cross-border operations to ensure smooth immigration clearance.

"We have to discuss this further," he said.

"We hope it will not overwhelm the immigration department but will make it more convenient for border crossers."

In a meeting with Mr Tang on Tuesday, Mr Huang proposed increasing the bus routes into Hong Kong by 60.

When round-the-clock border crossings were introduced in 2003 there were 680 coaches plying 150 routes.
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Old May 26th, 2005, 08:28 PM   #113
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phase II is coming!
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Old May 28th, 2005, 03:09 AM   #114
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Tell the Norwegians and Japanese to stop eating whale meat. Wonder if you can get whale meat in Tokyo Disneyland or crocodile burger in Disneyland Florida?
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Old May 28th, 2005, 06:28 PM   #115
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Friday May 27, 6:20 PM
U.S. conservation group WildAid joins shark-fin protest at Hong Kong Disneyland

AP - The U.S.-based conservation group WildAid has joined a campaign against Hong Kong Disneyland's plan to sell shark fin soup on its banquet menu at the park's hotel, the organization said Friday.

A WildAid statement accused Disneyland of being "hypocritical" by serving shark fin while saying it cares about the environment.

"You can't have it both ways," WildAid spokesman Victor Wu said in the statement. "Either Disney should withdraw its pro-environment claims, or drop shark fin soup from Hong Kong Disneyland. Anything else is hypocritical."

Greenpeace and the Worldwide Fund for Nature have also urged the park not to serve shark fin when it opens Sept. 12.

Environmentalists say millions of sharks are killed each year for their fins, driving many species close to extinction. The fins are often hacked off and the fish are dumped back into the sea to die.

Hong Kong Disneyland has said it will serve shark fin soup at banquets only when the dish is requested.

Disney spokeswoman Esther Wong said Friday that the park is sticking with its decision to serve shark fin because it's part of the local Chinese culture. She said the need to respect cultures must be balanced with caring for the environment.

But Wu said, "Just because something has been customary in the past is not a justification for wiping out species."

The WildAid spokesman added that Disney "belittles the Chinese people by suggesting that we are not also environmentally conscious or concerned about shark declines."
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Old June 4th, 2005, 01:49 AM   #116
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Honk Kong Disneyland

I’ve just visited Epcot at Walt Disney World, and there was a nice exhibit on Honk Kong Disneyland at the Chinese pavilion. I would like to share some pics of this interesting exhibition of the newest Disney park.

They were giving these cards to all guests





A very schematic model in the middle of the exhibition

















Thanks to ImageShack for Free Image Hosting
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Old June 4th, 2005, 10:41 AM   #117
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Hong Kong Disneyland To Start 100-day Countdown
June 04, 2005 14:26 PM


HONG KONG, June 4 (Bernama) -- Hong Kong Disneyland Friday held a ceremony to celebrate the start of its 100-day countdown before officially open to the public, the Chinese news agency, XINHUA, reported on Saturday.

Hundreds of Disneyland cast members and Hong Kong Disneyland Ambassador Angela To attended the ceremony.

A countdown clock is positioned at the entrance of Team Disney Building to mark the occasion.

Hong Kong Disneyland Group Managing Director Don Robinson said, "the countdown clock will remind every cast member that we are all working together to deliver the magical entertainment experience to our guest from Sept 12."

He said with 100 days to go, Hong Kong Disneyland will deliver a glimpse of the Disney magic to Hong Kong and the nearby region to inspire people to experience the fairy tale land.

-- BERNAMA
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Old June 4th, 2005, 11:03 AM   #118
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spicytimothy
I agree with vincent, but only on this particular occasion.. I think shark fin is too important culturally and tastfully :-p to be ignored in HK... I remember reading on CNN or sth that HK ppl consume 80% of the world's production of Shark Fin worldwide!

I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE shark fin.
Do you know how many millions of sharks killed annually just to serve those shark fin soup for "important culturally and tastefully" purpose?

Let me tell you, approximately 50 million sharks are killed annually by the inhumane way of chopping of their fins and throw them back into the sea to die a slow and painful death. Many species are approaching extinction and it totally disrupts the sea's balance system. Oh by the way, the fins are tasteless and doesn't have any nutritional value. It's like throwing your money into the sea when you could substitute it with vermicelli.
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Old June 4th, 2005, 11:05 AM   #119
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When it comes to nature conservation you Chinese are experts, from consuming bear paws, shark fins, tiger bones to rhino horns, bird's nests and endangered reptiles you people knows no bound.
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Old June 4th, 2005, 11:39 AM   #120
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Come on mate you know the Japanese also practise whaling.
I personally is neutral on this issue because I'm not a shark fin lover :P
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