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Non-Disney Theme Parks
Topic: The Queen Mary. WHAT HAPPENED???

Tue 5/26/2009 9:19a
It has been about ten years since we last visited the Queen Mary. We went there yesterday. What happened to the place? There used to be the little shops out front and things were nice. Now most of the shops are empty, you can barely read the signs on the ship because they are so old and faded, the ships decks are rotting away and the place is just completely run down.

It's pretty sad looking over there, especially if you also head over to all the new development around the aquarium that looks so new and pretty.
Thu 5/28/2009 7:11a
They've been losing money for years.

Isn't it nice that Disney never got to build there?
Thu 5/28/2009 7:16a
It has been years since I have been there, about 10 also. I really enjoyed it back then. But I do remember it being a little pricey. As far as the English village shops, back then you could not get free parking to look around the shops. It was something like $10 just to park. Most people are not willing to do that.
Thu 5/28/2009 8:02a
There are literally weeds growing out of the deck of the ship. People are going to be falling through the rotted deck soon. I can't see it lasting much longer in the state it is in now. That is sad since I've been visiting it since I was a kid.
Jim in Merced CA
Sat 5/30/2009 12:53p
Sad to hear. The Queen Mary has always been a troubled attraction -- even before Disney was involved.

I remember when Disney first bought it -- they spent a ton of money to upgrade it -- and they had a really cool 'Ghosts of The Queen Mary' guided tour -- which was very 'Disney' in its execution.

Biggest issue with The Queen Mary? -- after you visit once -- why do you ever need to go back?
Mr F
Tue 6/2/2009 12:12a
The $25 dollar admission fee is a rip off. The Ship is not doing well because the price is not worth it. I remember when there use to be the Spruce Goose Exhibit as well and carnival rides next to the ship, but now there's nothing. It's a complete rip-off
Tue 6/2/2009 6:22a
What is in the building that had the Spruce Goose? Has it been taken down or is it empty?
Tue 6/2/2009 6:43a
<<I remember when Disney first bought it -- they spent a ton of money to upgrade it -- and they had a really cool 'Ghosts of The Queen Mary' guided tour -- which was very 'Disney' in its execution.>>

Without being overly nickpicky Disney never "bought" the Queen Mary. Disney were lumbered with the management contract when they bought out Wrather in c.'88. They finally decided to buy themselves out of the lease about four years later. It was a disaster from start to finish but DLR felt they should give it a shot. Plus they used it as political leverage against the City of Anaheim when DLR was pushing for tax breaks for the second gate. Ultimately it worked - Anaheim gave Disney a decent deal when they agreed to build out the resort.
Jim in Merced CA
Tue 6/2/2009 8:23a
^^thanks for the clarification, leemac
Tue 6/2/2009 9:16a
The City of Long Beach owns the Queen Mary. For some strange reason they thought a large, grounded luxury liner would be a bigger tourist draw than the historic (and admittedly run down) Pike. The city demolished the Pike and ran the Queen Mary as both a hotel and a tourist attraction.

As pointed out above, Disney was briefly involved when they bought out the Wrather Corp's Disneyland Hotel in 1988. The Queen Mary (managed, but not owned by Wrather) was sort of wedged into the deal. At the time, the Spruce Goose was part of the attraction.

Disney did more than Ghosts of the Queen Mary. They added the Brighton Carnival, induced Harrods to open a boutique in the QM's shopping arcade, and put on a couple of live stage shows (A bon voyage celebration on deck, and a musical show with historic cars in the Spruce Goose dome). For one giddy Summer. guests purchasing a Disneyland ticket would get an attached coupon good for one free admission to the Queen Mary/Spruce Goose. "Voyage to 1939" was the over all theme, actually preceding the Ghosts tour which was added later.

But it was all for naught, as tourists have never really clamored to visit a docked ship and a grounded plane. Disney opted out of the management deal as soon as there was an opportunity, Harrods pulled out, the Carnival closed, and the Spruce Goose was taken up to Oregon where it is being cared for in an aviation museum. But the Queen Mary remains, and apparently in very sad condition. I haven't been to visit it in over 15 years...

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