Tokyo Disneyland, DisneySea combined to break visitor record in 2012

Kyodo

Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea drew a combined 27.50 million visitors in fiscal 2012, a record high, their operator said Monday, attributing the 8.5 percent year-on-year increase to a new ride, Toy Story Mania!, launched at DisneySea last July, and seasonal events at both parks in Urayasu, Chiba Prefecture.

The figure topped the previous record of 27.22 million marked in fiscal 2008, according to Oriental Land Co.

In fiscal 2013, which began Monday, the operator plans to draw visitors with events throughout the year celebrating the 30th anniversary of the opening of Tokyo Disneyland.

Meanwhile, the number of visitors to Universal Studios Japan in Osaka increased around 10 percent to 9.75 million during fiscal 2012, boosted by the success of a new attraction opened a year ago and its Halloween events, according to officials of the park’s operator.

The theme park attracted 11.02 million visitors in its first year of operation in fiscal 2001. The number of visitors for the just-ended fiscal year was the third-highest ever and reflects a steady recovery owing to added attractions targeted at families with children, the officials said Monday.

While visitors in the first half of fiscal 2012 reached around 4.90 million, the number during the Christmas and New Year’s holiday season was affected by colder weather and more rain-plagued weekends than usual, they said.

The park operator is hoping to see record visitor numbers once a planned new attraction based on the “Harry Potter” movies opens in 2014, they said.

Skytree drawing crowds

Jiji

Since its opening last May, 44.76 million people had visited Tokyo Skytree and its commercial complex by the end of March, Tobu Railway Co. said, far exceeding the 27.5 million that had been anticipated. Tokyo Skytree Town — the 634-meter tower and complex — thus outpaced the Roppongi Hills commercial-residential complex in Tokyo, which attracts about 40 million visitors annually.

The Tokyo Solamachi shopping center inside the Tokyo Skytree complex “contributed significantly” to the strong result, a Tobu Railway official said.

About 5.54 million visitors went up to the Tokyo Skytree observation decks, exceeding the anticipated level of 4 million.