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Rainforest Cafe At Downtown Disney Is Being Turned Into A Star Wars Trading Post

by Culture Slate about a month ago in pop culture

Makes Sense

News has come around that the Star Wars Trading Post, a popular destination for Force fanatics located in Downtown Disney District at Disneyland Resort, will soon be relocated to a more permanent establishment at the site of the former Rainforest Cafe. Such news comes with great delight, as fans are finally assured that they can get their hands on exclusive Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge merchandise at an alternative location.

The location was once home to the Rainforest Cafe, which closed in June 2018. Following a series of changing plans on Disney's part, including a scrapped proposal for a four-star hotel at the restaurant site, the location remained empty up until now, as plans to plant the Star Wars Trading Post have materialized. On the other hand, the Star Wars Trading Post used to be a pop-up shop at in the WonderGround Gallery, which will also reopen with products ranging from housewares to Spirit Jerseys.

According to designs by Walt Disney Imagineers, the Star Wars Trading Post will be themed as a hidden jungle Resistance base, featuring Rey's speeder at the entrance. The iconic vehicle first revealed itself in Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens, which marked the beginning of the sequel trilogy. This will fit closely with the rainforest theme of the former Cafe, allowing the existing structure to be relatively easily converted for the gift shop to be one located in a Yavin-4-style jungle setting.

The Resistance base on D'Qar.

As was the case before the relocation plans, the Star Wars Trading Post will be home to a plethora of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge merchandise that excites fans of all age groups. As one could deduce from its name, products available at the Trading Post will boast a wide variety of those sold at various Galaxy's Edge shops in Disneyland. Fan favorites include elegant Jedi robes, classic Dejarik board games, and legendary lightsabers, allowing fans to immerse themselves in the Star Wars universe as galactic citizens and relive iconic moments showcased in the three trilogies.

While such merchandise was once advertised by Disney as being wholly exclusive at Galaxy's Edge, hence giving them a unique hint of rarity, Disneyland's closure in response to the raging COVID-19 pandemic has led to numerous plan changes in order to sustain a business-sensible mode of operation for the sale of the Star Wars theme park products. The opening of a permanent Star Wars Trading Post location in Downtown Disney will undoubtedly serve as a place of refuge for fans before the reopening of key Star Wars attractions in Disneyland.

A permanent location at the former Rainforest Cafe also entails great potential for future Star Wars-themed development. The existing structure housing the former restaurant has room upstairs, and only time will tell whether Disney takes it a step further utilizing such a space for Star Wars destination projects. Ideas for an upstairs Star Wars cantina are among the most popular, which would certainly add a vibrant touch to the already-astonishing Star Wars establishment to be constructed - perhaps it could be a place where visitors can meet the crew of the ship that made the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs.

Amidst high hopes and expectations, an official opening date for the relocated Star Wars Trading Post has yet to be announced, keeping fans on the edge of their seats for the grand opening of the new merchandise shop. In anticipation of the preparations and opening, the temporary Asian Street Eats take-away restaurant in front of the Rainforest Cafe area has been removed, concluding its year of business.

Downtown Disney District is currently open from 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Written By Geoff Lo

Source(s): Orange County Register, WDW News Today

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