“After Hours Wind Down” Comes To Epcot

Filed under: Walt Disney World |

Epcot (Photo: Nigel G Worrall)

I’ve always been bemused by the marketing folks at Walt Disney World who seem happy to let a captive audience escape them. Every night for years the same situation occurs and it seems Disney loses thousands of customers who choose to venture elsewhere after the parks close.

Now all of that is about to change at Epcot, at least.

Walt Disney World has now announced its all-new After Hours Wind Down experience starting tomorrow night at Epcot. For an extra $35, Disney World guests will now get the chance to snack on “cultural fare” and toss back a shot of tequila inside EPCOT, after the park has officially closed.

Guests can pick from one of four authentic and exclusive lounges. Award-winning Epcot chefs and sommeliers pair a beverage flight with cultural cuisine (and kids get their own special selections). The extra $35 grants guests a single beverage and a selection of snacks in a choice of four restaurant-lounges, each in a different country-themed EPCOT location: La Cava del Tequila (in “Mexico”), Spice Road Table (Morocco), Tutto Gusto Wine Cellar (Italy), and Rose & Crown Pub (UK).

While $35 may seem like a lot for a drink and some appetizers, the real draw here seems to be the “after hours” exclusivity. The late-night lounge sessions begin after the evening’s fireworks show has ended, and guests can stay as late as 11 p.m. in one of the most “intimate” of experiences possible at Epcot, as most families have gone home.

The new program is available through September 15 with reservations available up to 180 days in advance. It is the latest example of Disney’s relentless strategizing of ways to siphon more money out of guests, during more hours of the day and night. It’s also part of a smaller but noticeable trend, in which alcohol is more readily available at Disney theme parks. Only on Disney’s family-friendly terms, of course. The new EPCOT experience only includes one alcoholic beverage per person, which simultaneously increases the chances of making profits and decreases the likelihood of guests getting too tipsy.



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