Starbucks Opens in Downtown Disney, Serves Up Caffeinated Magic

Source: Thinkstock

Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) just took a turn for the magical. The world’s largest coffee chain opened a new shop at Walt Disney Co.’s (NYSE:DIS) Disneyland Resort in Anaheim’s Downtown Disney on Monday, and now Starbucks is ready to caffeinate parkgoers with just a little extra pixie dust. According to USA Today, though there are many Starbucks licensed stores already in existence inside Disney theme parks, this is the first company-owned Starbucks store on a Disney property, and there are many more to come.

New Starbucks stores go up almost daily throughout the world, but this new location in Anaheim is especially significant because at this shop, the Seattle-based chain is clearly trying to link itself to the Disney brand while working to effectively appeal to the park’s visitors. According to USA Today, Arthur Rubinfeld, chief creative officer and president of global innovation for Starbucks, says that, “This will be one of the most unique indoor/outdoor Starbucks stores in North America,” and the 150-seat restaurant will have many attractive features, including a video screen inside showing the places where Starbucks grows and harvests its coffee beans, a chalkboard-like interactive touch screen that is free to use for Starbucks customers, and an outdoor wall designed with 1,000 native plants in the shape of a coffee cup.

Further, consumers don’t even have to pay the park fees to enter the Starbucks, as USA Today explains that the store is located in downtown Disney, a non-admission area that welcomes locals as well as tourists. Parkgoers in Anaheim have to travel through downtown Disney to get to the theme parks, but before they pay their park dues, they can pick up a coffee right outside Disney’s famed Grand California Hotel. What’s more, the new Starbucks location has long hours that are made to accommodate just about any parkgoer’s schedule. It is open from 7 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 7 a.m. to 12:30 a.m. Friday through Sunday.

As USA Today highlights, Starbucks’s new location is reflective of its desire to infiltrate its brand into every aspect of American consumers’ lives. Sure, many coffee drinkers consider Starbucks a regular part of their morning routines, but do they expect to feed the addiction even on a family vacation? Maybe not in the past, but they do now.

In addition, Starbucks is also working to ensure it can serve the beverages that consumers find appealing in Disney’s often steamy Californian park. Read: not hot coffee. Although the traditional Starbucks beverages will be available, Rubinfeld tells USA Today that he expects iced beverages to be a big attraction, and the chain will even offer some rare coffees from its Starbucks Reserve coffee line and Clover brewing system.

Source: Thinkstock

The company has now added to its list of locations in Disney resorts, and USA Today reports that Starbucks stand tall in Disney Village at Disneyland Paris; in Disneyland Resort’s Fiddler, Fifer, and Practical café at Disney California Adventure Park; Market House at Disneyland park; and two locations at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida. It is clear that Starbucks maintains the belief that parkgoers need some caffeine either before or after they take on their tourism duties, and the coffee chain is more than happy to fill their cup.