Universal Studios Hollywood officially reopened Friday to California residents with new and revamped attractions including Jurassic World—The Ride and The Secret Life of Pets: Off the Leash!.
Annual and Season Pass Members attended a preview yesterday. The park announced its reopening plans March 30. Most but not all rides are operational while the park works with health and government officials on procedures for controlled capacity, physical distancing and required face coverings. Party size is limited to three households.
“We have been looking forward to this moment for over a year and are incredibly thrilled to reopen our theme park today,” said Karen Irwin, President & COO, Universal Studios Hollywood. “There is certainly lots to celebrate and we are overjoyed to return team members to work and welcome guests back to enjoy a Universal Studios Hollywood experience that is better than ever.”
Fans on Twitter are particularly taken with the Jurassic World ride where “Indominus rex will lunge from her hillside setting, stalking guests just before they descend the giant waterfall drop to escape her grasp,” the park said. The fully-articulated, lifelike Indominus spanning nearly 55 feet horizontally from head to tail and over 22 feet vertically, then stakes her claim at the ride’s finale in a forceful battle with arch-rival, Tyrannosaurus rex.
A more sedate “stroll along the cleverly themed Pets Place will bring guests to the front of Katie’s NYC apartment building where the The Secret Life of Pets: Off the Leash! ride resides, so you can see what you pets are really doing when you’re not at home.”
Other new attractions include The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Hogsmeade village and rides Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey and Flight of the Hippogrif; Transformer The Ride-3D; Revenge of the Mummy: The Ride; Despicable Me’s Super Silly Fun Land; and Springfield, U.S.A., home of The Simpsons.”
Park fans in general seem more than willing to return in large numbers as sign of return to normalcy and fun after a pandemic year. Universal Studios Hollywood had been shuttered for more than a year.
“We’re the one in California. NOW OPEN!!!!!!” said the park in a tweet, getting a jump on Disneyland, also shut by Covid, which will reopen April 30. In a good sign for the business, ticket-buying online was a slog yesterday due to high demand when they went on sale at 8 am.
“The wait is almost over,” said a page on DisneyParks.com. “Thank you for your continued patience! Due to high demand, this is taking longer than expected. We have a lot of Guests accessing our system, so you are now in a waiting room to plan your park visit.”
Let’s GOOOOOO! pic.twitter.com/qveOzIRf3B
— Dylan Clark (@Dylan_T_Clark) April 16, 2021