We walked up to the new castle walls and saw a cast member standing outside a hidden door. I immediately went up to her and asked what was on the other side? She explained they were testing the new attraction and if i wanted to check it out I could. Woooo DAY MADE!!!
We all walked through the door and immediately was transported to Belle's village. You could see the new Beast Castle sitting on top of the hill as well as Maurice's cottage where Belle grew up. The theming throughout this area was very well done. It's easier to show you rather than explain:
The outside part of the queue was a little hot as it is in direct sunlight, (we were warned by the CM) but moved pretty quickly and before we knew it we were in the shade then inside!
This attraction consists of 4 (air conditioned) rooms that each have so much to look at so you don't feel like you are waiting. Once you are inside you feel like you are in the attraction the whole time even though it really doesn't start for another 2 rooms.
You first go into the front of the cottage which has a lot of details of Belle's childhood like a picture of her and her mom, various details complete with her childhood growth chart (makes for a good photo opp). About 20 people fit in this room and you wait only about 5 minutes.
The next room is Maurice's (her inventor father) workshop. Here you can see his inventions in real life from the movie! However the focal point of this room is a magic gold framed mirror that you are told is a gift from the Beast so he can see Belle anytime he wants. This is the most impressive part of the attraction in my opinion as this mirror stretches and expands to a passage way that leads you to room number 3!
You walk through the mirror/passageway and you are taken into a room that has the animated wardrobe from the movie (another great effect). In this room they cast all the parts to tell the story of how Belle and the Beast fell in love.
The last and final room is the library where you get to meet Belle in a fun and intimate setting. Basically this entire attraction is an interactive meet and greet. Instead of standing in line and getting a few seconds and maybe a picture with Belle, the kids get to be a part of a story she tells and interacts with each one. The room holds about 25 people and the ones sitting are mostly the parents or family of the children who are in the story.
At the very end she takes a bow with each participant while a photopass photographer captures the moment. As you leave the room the photographer hands out a special photopass card to anyone who had a family member in the story so they can relive the entire event.
While this is not a thrilling ride, it is a good place to get out of the heat and meet a princess in a special and unique way. Definitely a must see if you have children!