Disney Springs will reopen May 20, in phases

Guests will be required to wear masks when stores and restaurants open at the Orlando entertainment complex.
Disney Springs will reopen in phases starting May 20.
Disney Springs will reopen in phases starting May 20. [ Walt Disney World ]
Published May 8, 2020|Updated May 8, 2020

There’s no word yet on theme parks or resorts, but Walt Disney World will open parts of its Disney Springs entertainment and shopping complex on May 20, the company announced on its official parks blog.

Disney Springs, which was once known as Downtown Disney, has been closed since mid-March due to the COVID-19 crisis, as have all four of Disney’s theme parks and its many hotels and resorts.

Guests will be required to wear masks at the reopened Disney Springs, the company said, and there will be new unspecified limits on capacity, hours of operation and parking.

Related: Disney says the coronavirus pandemic has cost its theme parks $1 billion

“Disney Springs will begin to reopen in a way that incorporates enhanced safety measures, including increased cleaning procedures, the use of appropriate face coverings by both cast members and guests, limited-contact guest services and additional safety training for cast members," wrote Matt Simon, vice president for Disney Springs, in a post on the Disney Parks Blog.

Disney did not specify which businesses would open on May 20 or give any indication of when its hotels or parks would reopen. At the moment, it is taking reservations at its resorts starting June 1.

“Following the guidance of government and health officials, a limited number of shopping and dining experiences that are owned by third-party operating participants will begin to open during this initial phase," Simon said.

Disney Springs began opening stores in 2016 after a three-year expansion that doubled the size of the entertainment complex.
Disney Springs began opening stores in 2016 after a three-year expansion that doubled the size of the entertainment complex. [ MATT MAUNEY, ORLANDO SENTINEL ]

Shanghai Disneyland, which reopens in China on Monday, did a similar phased reopening after it shut its doors on Jan. 25. In early March, its shopping district called Disneytown opened, as did some resorts and character breakfasts, while the park remained closed. Guests at these reopened attractions were required to wear masks and get their temperatures scanned upon entry.

Disney Springs underwent an extensive makeover and doubled in size in 2016. It debuted the new name then, too, a nod to a man-made “spring” running alongside celebrity chef restaurants, retail outlets and a movie theater. The Cirque du Soleil theater on site was scheduled to debut its new Drawn to Life production in April, but that was postponed by the coronavirus pandemic.

Related: 5 ways Florida's theme parks will be different when they open again

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