Let the countdown begin. 2015 will usher in a new era for Disney, as the Shanghai Disney resort—a project that cost nearly $5 billion—will open as the company’s second largest resort worldwide, after Orlando. The highly anticipated resort will have six themed lands, like Treasure Cove (the first ever to be dedicated to pirates), and the Enchanted Storybook Castle, which will be the biggest Disney castle on the planet. It’s also billed as the most “interactive” of the Disney castles- complete with a boat ride attraction and a "secret" underground space with impressive sound and light effects.
Unique to the Shanghai resort will be the Garden of the Twelve Friends, a Chinese-Western hybrid showcasing 12 murals with the 12 signs of the Chinese zodiac depicted with Disney characters.
Also noteworthy is Disneytown, a shopping and dining development near the resort that will encompass almost half a million square feet of shops and restaurants. There will be two hotels at the resort: the Toy Story Hotel with 800 rooms, and the Shanghai Disneyland Hotel with 420 rooms.