« Disneyland Paris - Frontierland – Part 3 – Big Thunder Mountain and the Riverboats | Main | Everest Temple »

Disneyland Paris - Frontierland – Part 4 – Phantom Manor

Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris


Phantom Manor is Disneyland Paris' version of the Haunted Mansion. It is neither better than nor inferior to its cousins around the world. It's simply different. And these differences make it very intriguing for those of us familiar with the original version.


Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris

Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris


Phantom Manor has a more complete storyline than the Haunted Mansion. It goes something like this.

Henry Ravenswood made his fortune in the Big Thunder Mountain gold rush. With his money he built an elegant Victorian manor high atop a hill, overlooking the town and mine that made him rich.

Ravenswood was very possessive of his only child, Melanie. When Melanie became engaged to a local miner, Ravenswood swore he would stop the wedding at all costs. But before he could enact his plan, an earthquake struck Thunder Mesa and Henry and his wife Martha were killed. Melanie survived.

Locals believe that the Phantom, who now inhabits the house, is actually the dead Henry Ravenswood and he killed his daughter's intended from beyond the grave. You can see the groom's dead body hanging in the “stretch room.” After the death of her fiancé, Melanie wandered the manor, dressed in her wedding gown, for the rest of her life and after.


Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris


I've read several possibilities as to what building Phantom Manor was modeled after. One prospect is the cartoon house in the Charles Addams drawings.


Charles Addams House


Or the Edward Hooper painting, House by the Railroad.


Edward Hopper House by the Railroad


Maybe the Fourth Ward School House in Virginia City, Nevada.


Fourth Ward School House Virginia City


But I think it looks most like the Psycho House, which also sits high atop a hill. What do you think?


Bates Motel


Ravenswood Manor, now Phantom Manor, was built in the better part of town. Its entrance is near the Silver Spur Steakhouse, which was a fine gentlemen's club. You enter the estate at the bottom of the hill and pass through an iron gate. Here you see me with two of the staff in 1993.


Jack at Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris


As you ascend the hill, you pass by a lovely gazebo. The table inside is set for tea and you can hear the faint sounds of a music box playing from within.


 Gazebo Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris


You continue your way up the hill and through the gardens, eventually reaching the porch and front door. From here you get a sweeping view of Thunder Mesa and Big Thunder Mountain.


Phantom Manor View From Porch


You then enter an anteroom before proceeding to one of the stretch rooms. Here we see three pictures of Melanie and another of her and her bridegroom.


Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris

Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris


When you exit the stretch room, you're in a hallway/picture gallery. This floor plan is reminiscent of Disneyland, California. At the end of the hallway you can see a beautiful picture of Melanie dressed for her special day. .


Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris

Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris


The loading area has a backdrop unique to Paris. Instead of a wall behind the DoomBuggies you see a sweeping staircase.


Sweeping Staircase Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris


The song “Grim Grinning Ghosts” has been re-orchestrated and has a more formal and sometimes foreboding air about it.

Here's an interesting bit of trivia. The ballroom dancers in the California, Florida, and Japan Mansions are all positioned incorrectly. The gentlemen have their right hand extended and their left hand around the ladies' waists. This is backwards. In Paris, the Imagineers corrected this mistake. There is a reason for this oversight, but I'd have to give away Disney secrets to explain the whys and wherefores.

With minor differences, most of Phantom Manor is similar to the Haunted Mansion until you get to the attic. Here we see Melanie crying before a mirror. In the distance we can hear a maniacal laughter. As we continue onward, we come face-to-face with the Phantom.


Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris

Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris


As you descend from the attic you pass some macabre scenes of coffins and skeletons. In my opinion, this section of the Manor is scarier than anything in the American Mansions.


Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris


Most of what was the graveyard section in the Haunted Mansion has been transformed into a western “ghost” town in Phantom Manor. Here, the local residents greet you as you pass by.


Ghost Town in Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris

Ghost Town in Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris

Ghost Town in Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris

Ghost Town in Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris


The scene with the Hitchhiking Ghosts has been replaced with a floating skeleton pointing the way out.


Floating Skeleton in Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris


Next to Phantom Manor is a decaying graveyard with obvious signs of damage from the earthquake. You can walk through this area and examine many of the headstones and crypts. The epitaphs here are slightly more sophisticated than their sillier counterparts in Florida and California.


Phantom Manor Grave Yard Disneyland Paris

Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris

Phantom Manor Disneyland Paris


Phantom Manor is every bit the classic attraction as the Haunted Mansion. I can guarantee that you'll want to hop right back on and ride it again and again.


Next stop, Adventureland.

The previous post in this blog was Disneyland Paris - Frontierland – Part 3 – Big Thunder Mountain and the Riverboats.

The next post in this blog is Everest Temple.

Comments (8)

Sonda Jordan:

I was enjoying your pictures of the Phantom Manor when I realized I could not tell where the ride building was. Is it behind the mansion hidden by bushes or is it underground with the stretching room acting as an elevator?

Answer: Phantom Manor is similar to the Haunted Mansion at Disneyland. The stretch rooms are actually elevators that take you to a lower level. At Disneyland Paris, Phantom Manor is located high atop a hill and guests must be brought back down to the level of the “show building” which is hidden behind a berm and trees. At Disneyland, the show building is located outside of the park. When you’re walking through the Portrait Gallery, you’re actually walking underneath the tracks of the Disneyland Railroad.

The stretch rooms at Walt Disney World and Tokyo Disneyland are not elevators. Only the ceiling rises. The show buildings are located at the same level as the entrance of the attractions.

Jenny:

I just wanted to let you know how much I have enjoyed reading about the different parks around the world. Since I may never have the opportunity to visit them all, it is nice to have a web tour from someone who enjoys them all so much.
My family will be visiting the "World" in April and reading all your entries makes me that much more excited.

Thanks for a great blog,

Jenny

Ash from Australia:

Dear Jack,

Thank you for writing your blog, I check it every morning when I have my breakfast. It's excellent reading, informative and very well-written.

I loved your Tokyo Disney review which was a fantastic source of information for me as I intend to one day visit Tokyo Disney and Disneysea (maybe when the dollar goes up again!). I am now currently enjoying your Paris Disneyland blog. You really make the reader feel like they are there too. Your food reviews are also very much appreciated.

Please keep up the good work!

Kind regards

Ash from Australia.

Kelly:

I just wanted to say thank you for writing about DLRP. This happens to be perfect timing for me, as I am making my first trip there in about a week and a half!

Hermes Chiong:

Hi Jack,
I was reading about how the storyline of Phantom Manor ties in with Big Thunder Mountain. That made me think that at WDW,the Haunted Mansion sitting right next to Liberty Square creates a timeline difference of roughly a hundred years. Do you know if there is a storyline that explains this?

T X:

A brief question that has been troubling me for a while: do you know how they do the stormy window effect in the loading area (grand staircase) in Phantom Manor??

Beth:

Hi Jack!

I am going to Euro Disney on Monday. So excited now! Cannot wait to go on Phantom Manor now!

Beth xx

Ben:

I realise I'm somewhat late to the party here, but in case you were interested, the psycho house was in fact completely based on Edward Hopper's painting.

Post a comment

(All comments must be approved before they appear on the entry.)


By submitting this comment I agree I am bound by the AllEars.net Terms of Use agreement

Return to Blog Central

About

This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on February 21, 2009 5:00 AM.

The previous post in this blog was Disneyland Paris - Frontierland – Part 3 – Big Thunder Mountain and the Riverboats.

The next post in this blog is Everest Temple.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.