Photos and videos surfaced online of trees knocked down at Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park and the Polynesian Resort. Irma caused flooding to the Grand Floridian Resort and to Epcot park.
“We are beginning an initial assessment of our property,” a Disney World spokeswoman said early Monday. “While we experienced high winds and rain, we maintained power throughout the storm.”
Although it’s still too early to tell, the spokeswoman cautioned, the resort doesn’t expect to see significant damages.
Irma struck Disney World’s 25,000 acres of land southwest of Orlando from 1 a.m. to 3 a.m. The National Weather Service reported that the Orlando area saw sustained winds up to 58 mph and gusts up to 79 mph. The city is under curfew until 6 p.m. Monday.
It was only the sixth time in the resort’s 45-year history severe weather has forced the theme park to close.
Disney World comprises four main parks: Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios. The resort employs 73,000 people and also includes water parks, hotels and an ESPN sports complex.
Magic Kingdom is the most popular theme park in the world, according to industry group Themed Entertainment Association’s annual report. More than 20 million people visited the park in 2016.
Epcot, Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios were also among the top 10 most-visited theme parks in the world last year. Water parks Typhoon Lagoon and Blizzard Beach were the second and third most popular water parks last year.
Disney World is an important revenue source for Disney, but BTIG analyst Rich Greenfield doesn’t expect short-term closings to impact investors’ outlook on the company.