Take a Closer Look at the Incredible Magic Shops at Disney Theme Parks
When it comes to whimsical and wonderful hidden treasures at Disneyland, one of our favorites has to be the Main Street Magic Shop! As a matter of fact, Disney has a history of infusing a bit of extra magic into there theme parks! That’s why we here at MickeyBlog thought we’d share with you a bit more about the hidden treasures you’ll find at these stores!
When Disneyland first opened back in July 17, 1955, Merlin’s Magic Shop was adjacent to Sleeping Beauty Castle and was under license to a firm called Taylor and Hume. The shop was located in a Tudor Cottage and the original inventory featuring items like rubber masks, practical jokes, comical teeth, false eyelashes etc!
Those that remember back to Merlin’s may remember that Steve Martin was one of the employees there and even developed his “arrow-through-the-head” gag based on merchandise in the store! Remembering back on his Disneyland days Martin recalls, “I knew every nook and cranny of the shop.”
The Fantasyland shop was so popular that when the Disneyland Hotel finally opened two years later in 1956, Taylor & Hume opened a toy and trick shop called Taylor & Hume’s Magicland right on the property.
In 1957 a second magic shop opened at the theme park. aptly named Main Street Magic Shop located right in the heart of it all on Main Street USA. You can see a picture of the shop above from the 1960s. It specialized in similar merchandise to Merlin’s including hand magic and illusion tricks.
Both magic shops remained at Disneyland until Merlin’s Magic Shop closed in January of 1983 and was turned into the Briar Rose Cottage. However, the Main Street Magic Shop still turns a healthy trade to this day and will occasionally offer magic classes, demonstrations and more!
Because of the popularity of the West Coast shops when Walt Disney World opened up the House of Magic could be found holding pride of place on Main Street USA. Here East Coast guests could find cards, hand tricks, masks, puzzles and gags. Cast Members were also known for their fun banter as they performed tricks and demonstrated the products for sale. This shop also carried movie quality masks, plaster skulls, tombstones and other macabre merch. The shop remained open until March 19, 1995, when it was remodelled and eventually absorbed into what is now the extension of the massive “Emporium” gift shop.
However, other Disney theme parks around the world have managed to keep the Magic Shop tradition alive! At Tokyo Disneyland, there’s a Magic Shop offering novelties, puzzles, illusions and more! Cast Member demonstrations still take place here with a tip of the hat to Disneyland original magic shop.
On the other side of the pond at Disneyland Paris, you’ll find a quaint cottage- the home of Merlin l’Enchanteur. In this rustic hut wizard shoppers can browse magic-themed gifts including medieval relics, objects d’art in delicate glass and etched crystal and enchanting jewelry. You can also watch glassware being made directly in the shop. Also, be on the lookout for a hidden passage that descends into a cavern with a fearsome reptilian prisoner.
And last but not least, over at Hong Kong Disneyland you’ll also find a shop next to Mickey’s Philharmagic in Fantasyland dubbed Merlin’s Treasures. This quaint cottage promises a place where wizards of every age can discover spell-binding souvenirs and all sorts of magical merchandise!”
So during your next theme park visit be sure to seek out these mystical magical shops for truly one-of-a-kind souvenirs.
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