By Michelle KARAMAN-JONES
It’s not often you get invited to a birthday party in Tokyo and it’s even less likely that it’s the birthday for a theme park there. But when I received Tokyo’s DisneySea request to join them in celebrating its 15th birthday I knew that I had to go.
I finally had the chance to meet my favourite childhood character, “Genie” and although my days of believing in magic are behind me, once you step into Tokyo Disneyland and DisneySea you can’t help but believe for a day.
Tokyo is home to two popular theme parks – Disneyland and DisneySea. In 1983 Disneyland opened and 18 years later in 2001 DisneySea followed suit.
The 15th anniversary year has been dubbed “The Year of Wishes”. Along with the anniversary event, various celebrations are being planned including; a new afternoon harbour show, “Crystal Wish Journey”; a renewed “Big Band Beat” revue to be shown at the Broadway Music Theatre; as well as the July start of the new “Out of Shadowland” musical show at the Hangar Stage.
I’m not much of a thrill-seeker, but thanks to my job I have experienced the two popular rides – Splash Mountain and Tower of Terror. When my kids found out I got to go on such rides I knew I would one day have to take them to Tokyo DisneySea and Disneyland.
Next day, after all the fun and partying we were off to the popular Disney shopping centre – Ikspriari
Ikspiari is more then a shopping complex. It is a “town” filled with stories and entertainment . It is located at the gateway to the Tokyo Disney Resort. It is a very modern shopping mall consisting of four levels of shopping, a food court and cinema complex. Accessed from Maihama station, and just a few minutes walk from Tokyo Disneyland bus stations.
Ikspiari comprises about 140 shops and restaurants, and a 16-theatre cinema complex.
Ikspiari features nine zones, all created upon a distinct background tale. Guests can experience fine dining and shopping at uniquely themed specialty restaurants and stores directly operated by Iskpiari, as well as at those operated independently by tenants.
In the heart of Ikspiari is a cinema complex with 16 screens and 3,152 seats, one of the largest such facilities in Japan. Designers have ensured the structure offers the ultimate viewing experience. Wide screens stretch from wall to wall, stadium-style seating permits an unobstructed view from every seat and the latest in digital sound is featured.
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JAL flies direct to Tokyo times a week and it is a very comfortable airline with a friendly service and has good leg-room with comfortable seats. This is a little gem and I had a nice experience flying with JAL.
JAL is the flag carrier airline of Japan and the second largest in the country. It has three classes economy, premium and business.
For more visit www.jnto.org.au