After plenty of speculation recently that Laos will be the location of the next installment of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, the rumours have been dispelled by Disney.
“We continually look for ways to grow our business and as part of that process, we have conversations with many different entities,” Disney spokeswoman Christi Erwin Donnan told Khaosod English. “While Laos is an attractive market, we have no plans for the region at this time.”
Star TV reports that the rumours had only been drummed up in the first place in a bid to increase property prices on the Thai-Laos border, although it seems more likely that various media outlets and social media commentators had simply misunderstood a press release from a developer claiming to be building ‘Disney Laos’.
‘Disney Laos’ is, in fact, a nickname for the upcoming Thakhek Dream World City project, which is being built on the Thai-Laos border. It has no relation to the Disney empire.
While Laotian Disney fans may be disappointed, they will be able to get up close and personal with some real life Dumbos instead.
Laos will be hosting the 10th annual Elephant Festival between 19 to 21 February at the Sayabouly stadium, reports TTR Weekly.
67 elephants will be on show at the festival, showcasing themselves in a beauty pageant, Baci ceremony, bathing performance and a town parade. The festival was created in order to raise awareness of the Asian elephant and to promote Laotian culture.
200,000 visitors this year are expected to pump an extra US$6 million into the economy.
Which would you prefer to visit – Disney Laos or the Elephant Festival?
Featured image via Elefant Asia