The Force is definitely not with them.
Disney slashed prices at its widely-criticized, ultra-expensive “Stars Wars” Galactic Starcruiser hotel, where some rooms have been derided as a “windowless bunker.”
Billed as an immersive experience where guests can interact with characters from the “Star Wars” franchise, the 100-room hotel requires guests to book a minimum of two nights, priced at about $5,000 per couple and closer to $6,000 for a family of four. The cost of a “tricked out” suite jumps to $20,000.
But early on, guests complained about the out-of-this-galaxy-priced room rates, food costs and “Star Wars” themed-extras like a private portrait session with photographer.
Anger bubbled up before the hotel opened last March over a promotional video which was eventually scrubbed from Twitter and YouTube. Fans slammed the lodging as subpar and too expensive, with some referring to the hotel as a “windowless bunker” and a “suburban junior high school built in the mid-1970s.”
“The ‘light saber training’ looks about as exciting as a roadside sobriety test,” one Disney watcher commented on YouTube.
“It’s way too expensive,” another said.
The price of the stay also does not include alcohol — which runs around $13 for beer, $11 and up for wine and $23 for specialty drinks — or any fun “Star Wars”-themed extras. For instance, it costs $99 minimum to hire a photographer for a portrait. If you want to sit at the head of the captain’s table in the Starcruiser’s Crown of Corellia dining room, you’ll need to cough up an extra $30.
CNBC did rave about the interactive experience, saying the “immersion takes on new meaning.”
As of Friday, only Presidents’ Day and Fourth of July weekend are fully booked. The rest of the calendar is wide open through August, which has the most sold-out days so far this year.
In order to entice guests, the Mouse House is now offering up $700 on a 2-night stay, according to the company’s website. Last November, Disney announced that discounts of up to 30% were being made available to Disney Vacation Club members. But now non-vacation club members can access the discount — a rarity at the House of Mouse.
The biggest discount — $350 per night — is for packaging a Starcruiser stay with additional nights at Disney World’s Beach Club, Grand Floridian or Yacht Club resorts. The offer is valid for stays between Feb. 5 and Sept. 30, although there are some blackout dates.
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