This week, Mr E and I travelled to the lovely Soho Hotel in London (have you been there before? It’s SO funky! Plus we saw beautiful Kate Beckinsale chatting away with a couple of mates in the lobby and she gave me the most gorgeous smile). Anyway we were in London to find out more about Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights in Orlando, Florida.
First up, though, there was a chance to catch up on other news, like the opening of Universal Orlando’s brand new Caribbean themed hotel, Loews Sapphire Falls Resort, which looks utterly gorgeous (I’m so excited that we’re going to go and stay in September), with a breathtaking 16,000 square foot pool with incredible waterfalls, it looks like a proper island escape. I can’t WAIT. It’s looking stunning on Instagram:
The updated, enhanced Incredible Hulk Coaster is open again too at Universal’s Islands of Adventure. For those of you, like me, who weren’t keen as they felt they stepped off the ride with brain damage, it’s now apparently a much smoother ride, with newly designed, sleeker vehicles, great new graphics and an amazing soundtrack created especially by Patrick Stump from Fall Out Boy. I can’t wait to give it a go.
Next up, there’s news of the much-hyped new water park Volcano Bay at Universal Orlando Resort, a huge park spanning 28 acres, themed around the islands of the Pacific, which is due to open in June next year. Attraction Tickets Direct are already allowing booking and their Universal Orlando 3 Park Explorer Ticket looks like it’s going to represent incredible value, including 14 days unlimited access to the new water theme park plus Universal Studios and Universal’s Islands of Adventure with prices starting from £215 per adult and £207 per child (to book call free on 0808 271 4453 or visit www.attraction-tickets- direct.co.uk).
Anyhoo, back to the spooky stuff. If you don’t know much about them, Universal Studios’ Halloween Horror Nights are basically the scariest thing ever to be seen at a theme park. The event has been going on for 26 years and attracts some real hard core fans. As you would imagine, it’s not really recommended for younger children as it basically immerses you into the set of some of the most famous horror films. From September 16th to October 31st, 2016, the streets come alive after dark with a cast of nightmarish creatures and are transformed with ‘scare zones’ filled with terrifying actors and ACTUAL HAUNTED HOUSES or ‘mazes’ are built and you can wander inside these buildings to basically have the pants scared off you a bit more.
Next it was over to Michael Aiello, Director of Creative Development at Universal Orlando to basically scare the living poo out of us for the next 20 minutes or so by showing us clips of the horror films that are going to be appearing as the themes to the mazes at this year’s Halloween Horror Nights:
A maze called ‘Halloween: Hell comes to Haddonfield’ will resurrect the frankly bloody terrifying Michael Myers (he put in an appearance at the event and it made me all sweaty).
Next up is this really scary woman/doll/clown thing called Chance, the trailer of which was so, so scary, I can’t even tell you.
The Walking Dead
This maze is going to be picking up on fan favourites and feature walkers from all six seasons. Prepare to be scared shitless.
I’d never actually seen The Exorcist but my goodness, it’s an absolute classic. I was on edge all the way home on the tube. Michael was a bit cagey about how this one will come to life, but I think the challenge of recreating the whole shaking bed/possessed child/gallons of vomit thing within a tiny bedroom should make for a terrifying maze.
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre
The cult psycho thriller movie will also be brought to horrifying reality. Lock those garage doors and watch out for Leatherface!
This is a new one on me but the trailer was enough to persuade me that this is well terrifying enough to fit in VERY WELL INDEED with the other films. We saw a clip and it’s a terrifying horror flick, set around the Christmas celebrations of a pretty dysfunctional family where a horrible ancient spirit, Krampus, a kind of demon anti-St-Nick comes and joins the party. SHUDDER.
We had a look at the plans for these mazes (top secret I’m afraid – I’ve only just been able to reveal the bit about Krampus) and the sets are literally movie quality as you can imagine from Universal. So there you have it. We then basically crapped ourselves all the way home on the train but seriously, I cannot wait. I don’t even really know what to expect, but I’ve warned Amy, we’re in for some very scary nights indeed!
For more information about Halloween Horror Nights at either Universal Studios Hollywood or Universal Orlando Resort, visit www.HalloweenHorrorNights.com. The Universal 2-Park Bonus with Halloween Horror Night Combo Ticket is priced from £235 per person. To book visit www.attraction-tickets-direct.co.uk