The Past, Present, and Future Magical Makeovers of Cinderella Castle

Earlier this year, Walt Disney Resort announced how they would be giving Cinderella Castle an overdue upgrade. The royal makeover is in conjunction with the 70th anniversary of the animated feature film Cinderella. To many Disney fans, Cinderella Castle is an icon representing both Magic Kingdom and the entirety of Walt Disney World Resort. We’ve been keeping up with the progress of the magical makeover as workers continue to transform the exterior of the castle. We’re still a few months away from seeing the finished product unveiled to guests, but it’s shaping up fast with its new look! In the meantime, we thought we’d take a moment to review the history of previous redesigns of the Magic Kingdom castle. Below is a summary of some of the various magical makeovers we’ve seen since 1971.

MagicalBirthday Cake Castle (1996)

In 1996, Walt Disney World celebrated its 25th anniversary. So how did Disney celebrate the major milestone? With a birthday cake, of course!

The birthday cake design is considered somewhat controversial to Disney fans. Even though some individuals enjoyed seeing the birthday castle in person, there were others who thought its appearance was gaudy. The bright colors, candy pieces, and cake frosting gave the traditional castle an appearance fit for Toon Town. The regal castle design is a popular photo opportunity for many guests who walk down Main Street, but we do cherish the unique 25th anniversary design!

Stitche’s Great Escape (2004)

Now this is certainly unique! Stitch certainly showed his naughty side when he added his personal touch to Cinderella Castle. Overnight, Stitch added graffiti to show he’s the new ruler of Magic Kingdom and threw toilet paper all over the castle. It wasn’t the prettiest redesign, but it’s certainly the most hilarious! The prankster alien has thankfully left the castle alone since this not-so-magical makeover.

“The Happiest Celebration on Earth” (2005)

In 2005, Magic Kingdom honored the “Happiest Celebration on Earth” by celebrating Disneyland’s 50th anniversary. However, it was a very subtle redesign for Cinderella Castle. For instance, the castle’s exterior was affixed with gold statues and tapestries. Those who gazed upon the castle could find golden statues of Disney characters from films such as The Lion KingThe Little Mermaid, Alice in Wonderland, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, The Jungle Book, and Peter Pan. Lastly, this castle design included a “magic mirror” that continuously changed images to showcase each Disney castle from Disneyland, Magic Kingdom, Tokyo Disneyland, Disneyland Paris, and Hong Kong Disneyland.

The Future – 50th Anniversary Celebration

Here comes tomorrow! The upcoming design is filled with fresh blue and pink paint along with the new golden spirals. In terms of progress, the blue spires show the most noticeable paintwork so far. It went from a baby clue to a vibrant royal blue color. This bold color choice gives a vibrant appearance to the top of the castle. Also, the inner curtain, which is what we call the interior section of Cinderella Castle, is getting a rose gold paint treatment. It’s a subtle color choice, but it definitely adds a pop of color to a traditionally grey castle.

What’s your favorite castle redesign? Tell us your thoughts in the comments!

Photo Credit: Disney



Kevin Koszola