Epcot’s Morocco Pavilion is under new management, as Disney itself has taken over operations from the third parties who struggled thanks to the financial fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

WDW News Today reported in September that the owners of Restaurant Marrakesh had emptied their offices and terminated all employees with no severance pay. Disney assumed operations Saturday, with Blog Mickey reporting that the Tangerine Cafe and the main shopping area remain closed. 

The Spice Road Table restaurant is expected to reopen Sunday. Blog Mickey also reported that the Souk Al-Magred shop selling Aladdin toys along with remaining stock from the previous owners — with cast members physically walking over handfuls of merchandise from shuttered shops elsewhere in the pavilion. 

Icon Park opening new family entertainment center and arcade in spring 2021

Orlando’s International Drive tourist corridor will get a new attraction next year: In The Game, a 7,000-square-foot family entertainment center and arcade. 

The Orlando Business Journal reported that the center, which will open underneath the giant observation wheel known as The Wheel at Icon Park, will feature 70 games. It will also house an interactive maze, escape rooms and virtual reality experiences. 

Illinois-based Family Entertainment Group is building In The Game, replacing and expanding Icon Park’s existing Arcade City facility. 

Dragon Quest attraction coming to Japan theme park 

Legendary RPG series Dragon Quest will be brought to life in spring 2021 at Japan’s Nijigen no Mori park, as an immersive attraction that sounds more like live-action roleplaying than a traditional theme park attraction. 

According to Blooloop, guests will be put into their own adventure collecting armor and weapons and battling with monsters, much like the Dragon Quest video games. The 80,000-square-foot attraction has been planned and produced by Square Enix, the legendary RPG developer behind Dragon Quest as well as the Final Fantasy series. 

Video game properties have been the basis for many permanent theme park attractions, but 2021 may change that dynamic. Along with the Dragon Quest attraction, next year will see the debut of Super Nintendo World at Universal Studios Japan. 

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