Hong Kong Disneyland – Mystic Manor: pre-show tour

Mystic Manor - Mystic Sunset

Mystic Manor, the latest attraction to open at Hong Kong Disneyland, is an incredible dark ride. There are countless special effects, charming new characters and a light-hearted story – all weaved with an amazing soundtrack. But before we get to the ride itself, have a tour of the queue and pre-show experience.

Mystic Manor – in two parts

This is just Part One of the Mystic Manor Grand Photo Tour, covering the queue and pre-show. The second half will cover the actual ride experience. This is for two reasons: There is way too much content to pack into one entry, and some readers have requested for a “spoiler-free” feature.

Mystic Manor - Exterior overview

Step into Mystic Point from Grizzly Gulch and you will be greeted with a dramatic vista of the manor and its tour entrance.

Mystic Manor - Gardens queue

But look to your left and you will notice a small garden, adorned with statues, which feels oddly like Tower of Terror at Tokyo DisneySea.

Mystic Manor - Gardens queue 2

Mystic Manor - Private Residence!

Just like two of the Haunted Mansions worldwide (Magic Kingdom and Tokyo Disneyland), the entrance to the manor is for show, with guests having to enter from a side entrance at the basement.

Mystic Manor - A familiar plaque

The Mystic Manor plaque also has some resemblance to the iconic Haunted Mansion plaques.

Mystic Manor - Side Entrance

Now, let’s go on the Manor Tour!

Mystic Manor - Grand Signage

Mystic Manor - Wait Time

I couldn’t believe that Mystic Manor had such a short wait time. The longest I’ve seen was 30 minutes. It’s not that this attraction is unpopular. Despite having ride vehicles with low ride capacity, the ride is designed in such a way that all of its scenes would be running almost all the time. More on that in the next entry.

Mystic Manor - Rare art

One of my visits to Mystic Manor is part of a guided tour, so we went into the manor via a shorter route for wheelchair access. It’s a real shame really, because this shortcut bypasses the amazing queue. But you get to look at some artifacts up close:

Mystic Manor - Rare art 3

Mystic Manor - Gazing above

You also get to stare at the Manor, really close.

Mystic Manor - Covered queue, outside

Let’s hop back to the normal line.

Mystic Manor - tour entrance

Mystic Manor - Mystic Manor Introduction

Mystic Manor is a private museum of rare art from around the world, built at Lord Henry’s outpost in a secluded rainforest. He decided to open a part of his home – the museum – to invited guests (which is everyone in Hong Kong Disneyland). This greatly differs from Harrison Hightower’s Hotel Hightower, which is constructed and open to public for an entirely different reason (and let’s not forget the way the Hightower acquired his collection).

Thus, Mystic Manor has a very welcoming and friendly atmosphere.

Mystic Manor - Henry Mystic and Albert

The first paintings you see tell the story of Albert. He was trapped in the web of a giant spider. After being rescued by Lord Henry, he became the trusted companion.

Mystic Manor - Scale Model

The scale model of the Manor and Mystic Point can also be seen in the queue area.

Mystic Manor - Society of Explorers and Adventurers

The next section is dedicated to the Society of Explorers and Adventurers (S.E.A.).

Mystic Manor - Society of Explorers and Adventurers 2

Don’t miss the S.E.A. group portrait in the hallway, showing some members gathering at Mystic Manor in 1899.

Mystic Manor - Society of Explorers and Adventurers 3

1899… The same year when Harrison Hightower disappeared. This is probably the last time Lord Henry met Hightower (carrying the Shiriki Utundu idol in this portrait).

Mystic Manor - More Art (Danny Elfman!)

Moving on, more portraits of Lord Henry’s distinguished friends. Can you spot the award-winning composer Danny Elfman?

Mystic Manor - World of Travel

The next part of the hallway shows paintings of Lord Henry’s adventures with Albert, including some moments of discovery. There is a glass case showing some exquisite pieces.

Mystic Manor - Snettisham Hoard Great Tore

Snettisham Hoard Great Tore

Mystic Manor - Sutton Hoo Helmet

Sutton Hoo Helmet

Mystic Manor - Yemeni Boudin Necklace

Yemeni Boudin Necklace

Mystic Manor - Egyptian Headpiece & Necklace

Egyptian Headpiece and Necklace

Mystic Manor - Teaser Art Frames

The paintings in the hallway feature some art pieces that guests would see in the ride later.

Mystic Manor - Jade Monkey King

Mystic Manor - The Merge

The path leads into a waiting area for the Presentation Room.

Mystic Manor - Waiting for Preshow

Mystic Manor - The Collection of Lord Henry Mystic

While waiting, have a look at the diagrams of Mystic Manor’s exhibition facilities.

Mystic Manor - Manor Layout

This one shows a layout of the Mystic Manor Tour (which is rather accurate to some extent, but not the true layout).

Mystic Manor - Explorer's Club layout

A layout of the Explorer’s Club Restaurant can also be found here.

Mystic Manor - Preshow room

The doors finally open after some waiting, and we step into the Presentation room.

Mystic Manor - Preshow room lights

This pre-show room reminds me of both the Foyer and Expanding Rooms of the Haunted Mansion.

Mystic Manor Pre-show script

Lord Henry Mystic: “Hello, can you hear me out there, from the back of the projection room? Ah! Welcome to Mystic Manor! 歡迎大家來到迷離大宅!Home to a world-class collection of art, antiquities and my personal residence. I am Lord Henry Mystic. The young fellow by my side is Albert – my travelling companion, confidant and…”

Mystic Manor - Preshow in session 1

As Lord Henry welcomes guests to Mystic Manor, Albert interrupts the presentation.

Albert: “你好!”

Mystic Manor - Preshow in session 2

Lord Henry: “Yes Albert, that’s you! Now run along, shoo! Ah well. For several years now, Albert and I have traveled the world, in search of rare and precious artifacts – for you to enjoy as you tour our home in Mystic Manor. These are just a few of our treasures!”

“And here’s our latest acquisition – an ancient music box. Legend has it that this charming music box has the power to bring inanimate objects to life – with a touch of its enchanting music. Superstition and nonsense!”

Mystic Manor - Preshow in session 3

Most adorable character ever! In other news, I’m so glad to say that the Albert audio-animatronic figure is expressive and has very fluid movements. Fantastic execution by Garner Holt Productions.

“Oh my – well, we shall see when we open it shortly! Looks like that little fellow can’t keep his hands off that music box. Yes you like that box, don’t you? We’ll examine it later. Now, shoo, shoo!”

“Now what was I saying… Ye-oh, yes! Welcome one and all to Mystic Manor! Hmm, I think I better go find that little bugger. He’s always on to something!”

Mystic Manor - Road to Loading Area 1

After the presentation (and some Albert mischief), we are guided to the loading area.

Mystic Manor - Road to Loading Area 2

The clean and refined look of the previous rooms slowly morphs as the walls tear away to reveal the brickwork beneath.

Mystic Manor - Road to Loading Area 3

It brings a subtle transition into the loading area – the exposed brick wall look.

Mystic Manor - Road to Loading Area 4

Mystic Manor - Mystic Magneto Electric Carriage

Mystic Magneto Electric Carriage! Fancy name for the ride vehicle, but a wonder no less. This ride does not use any visible track, and apparently is powered with some RFID technology (though how that is implemented is never explained). Disney’s other trackless rides include Pooh’s Hunny Hunt (Tokyo Disneyland) and Aquatopia (Tokyo DisneySea). However, I’ve learned that Mystic Manor’s trackless technology is different from the Japan Disney parks.

Mystic Manor - Safety Sign

There is no height requirement or minimum age to go on the Mystic Manor ride. However, young children must be accompanied with a supervising adult at all times. The safety sign also mentions that the ride may be frightening for children. Frankly speaking the ride is really mild, but there are some loud sound effects and moments of darkness, as well as large props with slightly scary expressions that some kids may find frightening.

Mystic Manor - Loading Area

Anyway, the loading area reminds me of Tower of Terror.. a lot. Actually this ride feels more like a closer cousin to Tower of Terror (without the drop) than Haunted Mansion.

Mystic Manor - queue artifacts

Well firstly, there are tons of props for you to look at while waiting to board the ride vehicle.

Mystic Manor - Loading Area 7

Mystic Manor - queue artifacts

Like seriously, a lot of things. Everywhere.

Mystic Manor - Loading Area 3

Mystic Manor - Loading Area 4

Look at the gates of the loading area. Custom-designed, with the Mystic Manor monogram. So much detail in this ride.

Mystic Manor - Mystic Magneto Carriage

And there we have it – The Mystic Magneto Electric Carriage.

Mystic Manor - Mystic Magneto Carriage 2

Each carriage seats a maximum of three guests in each row (though two adults comfortably in each). Maximum capacity of six guests per vehicle, then.

Mystic Manor - Loading Area 5

The Electrical Carriages are dispatched into the ride in groups of four, but usually travels in pairs. More on that in the next entry – but let me just say the ride is not random and each vehicle has a specific route. Some vehicles will bypass certain area of scenes in the ride. For the Full Mystic Manor experience, you have to go on this ride at least twice in different vehicles.

Mystic Manor - Magneto Moving

Front row or back row? Well it depends, but common sense: The first row lets you see the props up-close, while the back row provides a wider, more complete view of each scene.

Mystic Manor - Loading Area 6 / Going into Show

In this shot, two carriages enter the first room of the ride: Acquisitions and Cataloguing.


To be continued… in Part two


A Sparkling Christmas is held at Hong Kong Disneyland from now till 5 January 2014

Puppets in the Park | Christmas Illumination | Main Street, U.S.A. - Christmas Town
Flights of Fantasy parade - revisited | Mystic Point | Mystic Manor - Part One (Pre-show)
Mystic Manor - Part Two (The Ride) | Disney's Hollywood Hotel |

Hong Kong Disneyland - Photo Tour series

Mystic Point (under construction) | Main Street U.S.A. | Toy Story Land (Day)
Toy Story Land (Night) | Adventureland | Fantasyland | Grizzly Gulch
Grizzly Gulch: Big Grizzly Mountain | Tomorrowland | Flights of Fantasy parade
NEW: Mystic Point | Mystic Manor (Pre-show) | Mystic Manor (The Ride)
Disney's Hollywood Hotel
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One Response to Hong Kong Disneyland – Mystic Manor: pre-show tour

  1. Nick December 6, 2013 at 10:36 am #

    Incredible pictures! Truly looks like one of the best theme park attractions on the globe.

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