Ouannii at Star Wars: Galactic Staircruiser in Disney World

Disney Reveals Just How Much Money It Lost on Overpriced Star Wars Hotel

In its most recent quarterly report, Disney revealed an embarrassing $250 million loss on its overpriced Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser hotel. The luxury Star Wars-themed hotel opened at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida in the spring of 2022, and has been plagued with controversies and embarrassment for Disney from the jump. Things started going downhill when Disney announced the steep prices associated with the hotel: A two-night stay for a family of two or four ranges from $5,000 to $6,500. This doesn’t include travel costs or even admission to the Disney parks, which are also pricey.

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It didn’t take long for Disney to receive criticism for the prices because they instantly made the hotel inaccessible to the vast majority of families. Additionally, Disney opened the hotel during a time when most were predicting an economic decline and right on the back of the COVID-19 pandemic, when many were struggling financially. During such a time, it was disappointing to see Disney catering only to the rich. It also didn’t seem very smart—the company was pouring millions and millions into a hotel that it likely wouldn’t be able to fill.

Galactic Starcruiser’s failures were swift and steady, with the hotel boasting extensive vacancies immediately after opening during the busy summertime, Disney enduring promotional blunders, and the corporation being ridiculed by Universal Studios for transporting luxury hotel guests in what appeared to be box trucks. Finally, barely more than one year after Galactic Starcruiser opened, Disney announced it will shut down the hotel for good come September 2023. Now, we’re learning just how much Disney lost from the whole Galactic Starcruiser debacle.

Galactic Starcruiser’s closure came with steep costs

Concept art of Disney's Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser
(Disney / Lucasfilm)

According to Disney’s third-quarter report, the company took a $250 million hit from closing the Galactic Starcruiser. The report reveals that the company is taking the $250 million loss in “accelerated depreciation,” and even blames the hotel for contributing to Disney World’s low performance this quarter. Which raises the question: how did Disney supposedly not see this coming? Based on reviews and public discourse, it seemed the issue with Galactic Starcruiser was pretty simple. It wasn’t a matter of lack of interest or even of the economy, but simply that Galactic Starcruiser was way too expensive, and no one was going to blow $6,000 on a two-night hotel stay when that same price could get them so much more in any other part of Disney World.

Disney parks are already overpriced as it is and inaccessible to tons of families, so it’s hard to see how the company thought an even pricier park feature would be lucrative or gain it any favor. The only explanation is that Disney is out of touch with reality. Considering the company is run by Bob Iger, who is expected to take home a salary of $26 million this year, it’s not surprising the company doesn’t seem to understand how the majority of people live or how their finances work. Amid the SAG-AFTRA and WGA strike, Iger claimed it wasn’t “realistic” for Disney to pay its workers a livable wage. However, if a multi-billion dollar company like Disney won’t even pay its workers a livable wage, how exactly does the company also think that it’s perfectly realistic for a family of four to afford a $6,000 hotel stay?

The downfall of the Galactic Starcruiser has been embarrassing to watch and is yet another example of how Disney needs to re-evaluate its spending priorities and gain some awareness of how the working class lives.

(featured image: Disney Parks)

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Rachel Ulatowski
Rachel Ulatowski is a Staff Writer for The Mary Sue, who frequently covers DC, Marvel, Star Wars, literature, and celebrity news. She has over three years of experience in the digital media and entertainment industry, and her works can also be found on Screen Rant, JustWatch, and Tell-Tale TV. She enjoys running, reading, snarking on YouTube personalities, and working on her future novel when she's not writing professionally. You can find more of her writing on Twitter at @RachelUlatowski.