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Photo TR: "Terror at the Inn" Orlando

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Just last week a friend brought to my attention that a new haunt attraction has sprung up in Orlando, and with that, it didn't take long to make our plans to go over and check it out firsthand! As it turns out, the Holiday Inn Resort Orlando Suites - Waterpark is hosting this new Halloween offering this year, in partnership with the team behind Dark Harbor at the Queen Mary II in Southern California! It wouldn't surprise me if this is that team's way of gauging market interest for a larger Halloween presence in Orlando in the coming years...


If you've never been before, you'll be surprised by just how big the Holiday Inn property is... Located close to Walt Disney World, the resort has a large pool and water fortress with slides (hence the water park) and a large marketplace area in the center of the resort that features lots of shops, dining options, a 4-D theater, a stage venue for variety acts, a laser maze and an arcade. Take all of these elements and add in the a series of new Halloween offerings including a surprisingly lengthy haunted house, a family friendly 4-D film called Panic House (with no shortage of jump scares), a midway with custom themed games of chance and a themed bar to grab drinks and light bites!


Starting with the main event, the maze is a bit of surprise in that is incredibly effective despite being filled with a small cast of live scare actors in a venue not designed for this function. Guests are pulsed into the maze in groups of no more than 18 at a time (and for us, we were among only a few others) so the scares are more intimate and there is no "conga line" effect like you find at the major Halloween attractions in Central Florida. The house is filled (almost to excess) with animatronic spooks, some moving by default and others springing to life in response to those passing by... But as a result of there being so many "dead spirits" surrounding you, you're hard pressed to prepare yourself for the moments in which the live scares jump out. There are no drop doors, shaker cans or triggered scream effects with these performers. They rely solely on their own screams and some creative placement to scare you in multiple places without leaving their post. You'd never realize just how few actors are actually in the house (I didn't until I asked) because of just how effective the layout of the maze and the placement of these scare actors is in relation to the animatronics. The maze is hosted in the resort's variety stage venue, but you'd never realize it thanks to the dark and foggy air inside. You twist through a progression of corridors within the space that twist and turn within the room, going up onto what would normally be the stage and returning to ground level later in the house. Add in the light story that has been added with a live pre-show delivered by one of the house cast, as you're looking for a professor who has gone missing in the tomb. I am easily startled, but I cannot deny that some of the jump scares I got in Terror at the Inn: The Mummy's Curse rivaled those of Howl-o-scream and Halloween Horror Nights. You can't argue that this haunt has the same set quality as what you'd find down the street at Universal, but the intimacy of the experience (with the limit of guests allowed in at once) really makes a difference and amps up the vulnerability that makes for a great scare.


Panic House was the special 4-D theater film for Terror at the Inn, running you through one person's nightmare encounter in a haunted house teeming with zombies and a variety of creatures looking to feed. The film is presented in a first person point of view, giving all in the audience the perspective that they're being chased through this haunted house. There are water effects from overhead and the seats move in tandem with the onscreen action. There's no excessive gore but there are a few good jump scares that make this a neat experience for horror fans and families alike.


The midway features a variety of classic redemption games custom built to match the macabre theme of the event and they are a fun diversion in between runs through The Mummy's Curse and Panic House.


The event runs through October 31st on select weekdays from 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm, and 6:00 pm to 11:00 pm on Friday and Saturday. For $19.95 (plus tax) you get unlimited access to The Mummy’s Curse haunted house and unlimited entry to the Panic House 4D (and other films in the theater). The Midway games are an extra cost per game. There are discounts for Florida and Georgia residents, military personnel and first responders and parking is free for the event. You can find more info about the event here: http://www.terrorattheinn.com/


If you're looking for a change of pace when it comes to haunts in Central Florida, I definitely recommend the intimate experience of The Mummy's Curse at Terror at the Inn. Here's hoping next year brings even more scares (and perhaps even more houses)!


The mummy is huge!


Adam did a pretty good job!


Signage throughout The Marketplace area of the Holiday Inn remind guests that Terror at the Inn is running during October.


The classic frog-on-the-lily-pad game but with a brainy twist.


Land rings on the mummy's hands to win a prize in the midway!


And it is a really fun addition to the overall event!


There's some fun photo opportunities inside!


Animatronics don't just adorn the entrance of The Mummy's Curse...


It is what you can't see that jumps out at you when you least expect it!


We've got to go looking for the doctor... He's gone missing inside of the tomb.


Use a slingshot to knock over the vultures to win even more prizes.


It isn't what you can see that scares you...


Not my forte, but definitely fun!


A look at The Marketplace including Terror at the Inn.


In case you need some liquid courage, the Hideaway Lounge has plenty of drinks to choose from.


Panic House is a SimEx-Iwerks film offered just for the Terror at the Inn season...


I might have let slip a few non-PG words inside here.


More details about the event.


You think you're prepared for a scare because you see the animatronic, but it is in that moment that a live scare actor can get you!


Time to head in!


Live actors interact with animatronics and are creatively interspersed throughout the maze to scare you in multiple areas without moving too far.


A taste of the lighting and feel inside of the maze.


See if you can spot some of the scares...


They can be found throughout the house.

Edited by jedimaster1227
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I had no idea this event existed. I've stayed at that Holiday Inn Waterpark resort a few times and really enjoyed it, it's the perfect kind of property for my kids at the age they are so having an on site haunted walk through it just a bonus this time of year. Great report.

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The themed carnival games look wonderful!


Kudos to them for really thinking "beyond the walkways and haunts", etc.


I wish Playland (Take Note, Playland!) did this with some

of our Arcade games during Fright Nights.

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  • 8 months later...

It looks like last year's Terror at the Inn at the Holiday Inn Resort Orlando Suites was enough of a success to warrant a larger event! Auditions are about to begin for a new event from the people behind Dark Harbor, Dark Horizon! I really enjoyed the experience last year, so I'm hoping to see an even more in-depth, expanded concept this October!



HUGE - and SURPRISING - breaking haunt news!


It looks like our friends at The Queen Mary's Dark Harbor - one of our favorite Halloween events in the country, are expanding to a second location for 2019!


DARK HORIZON is headed to .... ORLANDO?!


Now you have us excited!


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  • 4 weeks later...

Dark Horizon has officially been announced with its first Orlando run set to take place from October 4th through November 2nd, 2019!






Event Overview

The creators, producers, and directors of one of the most terrifying haunts in the world, The Queen Mary’s Dark Harbor introduce the first West Coast-style haunt in the East – Dark Horizon!


Dark Horizon emerges in Orlando with much anticipation, to feast upon your fears, fray your nerves, and curdle your blood. Escape the clutches of one of Florida’s most infamous serial killer’s, Bloody Ed Watson. Navigate Captain Killigrew’s ship and her deviously mad crew, and wade past the Vodou Priestess before she has a chance to evoke the (Lwa) spirits to possess your body and steal your soul. Hundreds of heinous monsters await to drag you toward the event horizon. Thrill-seekers will revel in 16 nights of terror featuring three gruesome haunted houses, immersive bars, festive fare, death-defying entertainment and more! Brought to you by some of the most celebrated minds in the industry, don’t miss Dark Horizon, the Halloween event of the season.


BEWARE: Not for the faint of heart and not recommended for children under 13.



Dark Horizon isn’t a quick stop, it’s a destination. So come hungry and thirsty there’s plenty to feast upon (provided you aren’t feasted upon first)! Grab a drink from one of the many immersive watering holes and graze on themed grub throughout the event.



Themed Bars abound at Dark Horizon. From crafty cocktails to mysterious moonshine, Dark Horizon serves up killer spirits in private cabanas and outdoor patios. But if that’s not cool enough, seek out the secret bar inside one of the mazes or spring for an RIP Lounge Pass for access to the exclusive air conditioned watering hole. Not enough time? Don’t worry, someone will be wandering the lines with shots so be ready to choose your poison...




7:00pm – 11:30pm (last call 11:15pm)


Stumble upon this hidden treasure for some of Captain Killigrew’s rum stash. Be on the lookout for the coin to gain access to this illusive spot. If you’re lucky, you may just strike gold! Baller Status: For guaranteed access to the secret bar and front-of-the-line access to Ghostship, reserve a tasting and tour the haunted house with Captain Killigrew for $99. (Up to 10 guests). Email for details: VIP@DarkHorizonOrlando.com





7:00pm – 12:00am (last call 11:30pm)


This underground haven can only be accessed by those whom possess the key. Storm Cellar RIP Lounge Keys grant access to this uber exclusive joint while also scoring each key-holder two complimentary cocktails. Unlock Moonshine tasting flights and craft cocktails while seeking refuge in this ultra cold zone. Baller Status: Reserve a section on the patio for your own exclusive soiree for your favorite peeps! Does not include admission to the event nor Storm Cellar RIP Lounge access. Admission and Storm Cellar RIP Lounge Key required for all guests. (6-8 guests) Starting at $69. Table minimum required. Email for Details: VIP@DarkHorizonOrlando.com




7:00pm – 12:00am (last call 11:30pm)


Saddled up to the exclusive Storm Cellar & Shelter Patio, this no-frills walk-up watering hole is the perfect stop between houses – servin’ up cold brews and cocktails to the masses.




7:00pm – 12:00am (last call 11:30pm)


Across from the Siren Stage, this is the perfect place to post up for high-flying aerial shows while sipping craft suds and cocktails. Baller Status: Reserve a section on the patio for your own exclusive soiree for your favorite peeps! Does not include admission to the event. Admission required for all guests. (6-8 guests) Starting at $69. Table minimum required. Email for Details: VIP@DarkHorizonOrlando.com




7:00pm – 2:00am (last call 1:45am)


In the corner of the Marketplace is an air-conditioned oasis called the Hideaway. This year round watering hole is the perfect place to cool off and end the night!



Nearly 200 monsters lurk in every crevass to feast upon the fear and chaos they ensue. If you think you are safe outside of the gut-wrenching houses, think again. Led by Captain Killigrew, Mambo Cecile and Florida’s first serial killer, Bloody (Ed) Watson, the haunted houses are riddled with breath-taking scares at every turn.


If you are the daring kind, opt into an enhanced horror experience called TERROR UP at no additional charge. This experience will invite our monsters to take particular notice of you, separate you from your guests, and maybe even send you into secret areas alone. This is an intense and very limited experience on a first come first serve basis and may not be available during your visit. If available, it will be offered ONCE upon entry to the event. You will have a split second to make the decision, so choose wisely and proceed with caution.



Akin to one of the early 1800’s pirate port’s in what is now Florida, this zone features the Bootlegger’s Bungalows, Walk the Plank Pub & Pier, Siren Stage, Dark Horizon Gift Shop, Shark Bites and the entrance to the Marketplace and Panic 4-D Maze Experience. The signature attraction at The Port is Ghostship haunted house. BEWARE: Use caution at all times while navigating your way through The Port under the command of Captain Killigrew and her deviously mad crew!



Avast ye! Rising to the surface, the spirits of the high seas set sail to wreak havoc at Dark Horizon. Also known as a phantom ship, a vessel with no living crew aboard; a common occurrence during pirate rule… This derelict ghost ship is found adrift with its Colonial crew seemingly missing or dead…Your commander orders you to board in search of survivors, loot and rations to sustain your own crew. Late to the looter’s party, you unwittingly become loot and rations yourselves. Lurking below deck are a band of crazed pirates and redcoats suffering from Botulism and starvation and left for dead. These deranged and infectiously diseased seamen stand between you and the safety and salvation of your own brigade. Will you live to tell the tale or will the Pirate Captain and her derelict crew be your demise?



Once the most feared female pirate in history, this rotting corpse of a Captain gained her notoriety through unwavering brutality. But what started as a routine pillage of an abandoned ghost ship quickly turned deadly, as it wasn’t just gold they struck!” Riddled with Scurvy and going mad from starvation and Botulism, she and her crew never back down from a good fight. Though their fate is sealed, they forge on as their rotting chunks of flesh chum the murky waters below.



Set in the early 1900’s when the Glades were mostly uncharted territory called 10,000 Islands, a place where thugs, gangsters and outlaws went to disappear. This virtually lawless land is home to The Outpost Pub and Gator Grub. The signature attraction in the Glades is Murder Island haunted house. BEWARE: This area is lorded over by Bloody (Ed) Watson’s band of derelict transients and pre-historic man-eating creatures.



In the sinister swamplands of the Everglades lies The 10,000 Islands amidst the mangrove-choked rivers. The area is a hotbed for murderers, ancient creatures and bizarre tales. Chatham Bend on Lost Man’s River – otherwise known as Murder Island, is the home of the infamous Bloody Ed Watson. Known for harvesting sugar cane, Bloody Watson made his fortune on the backs of transient labor. Knowing they wouldn’t be missed, instead of paying them at the end of the season, they pay the ultimate price and are never seen nor heard from again.. Body count on Murder Island: 57 and counting. Step back to the early 1900’s, come face to face with the brutality that shadowed 10,000 Islands and turned it to a grave of shocking terror.



A wealthy sugar cane island owner, Ed Watson is a slippery well-dressed ill-meaning devil with a silver tongue. Able to talk anyone into just about anything, his unsuspecting prey never know what hit them (or in some cases, ate them!). Amassing his Sugar empire is his only goal, so come pay day, run the other way! The payment he is planning to give isn’t what you bargained for!



This remote island village hides a vortex to the Vodouan underworld of Vilokan. Can you safely traverse the waters and make it out alive? This mirky scene is home to Sacred Circle Stage, the VIP Storm Cellar & Shelter Patio. The signature attraction in The Village is Vodou haunted house. BEWARE: This area is under the enchantment of the Vodou Priestess and Lwa spirits!



This remote island village hides a vortex to the Vodouan spirit underworld of Vilokan. Safe passage can be costly, will you traverse the foggy bog? This mystical and murky realm is home to Sacred Circle Stage, Storm Cellar RIP Lounge, Shelter Patio and Village Treats. BEWARE: This area is under the enchantment of Mambo Cecile. The high priestess has awakened the ancient Lwa spirits so proceed with extreme caution.



As the original temptress of the flame, Mambo Cécile will bewitch you in an instant. Her ability to command the blaze is intoxicating and mesmerizing. Under her command, the Lwa spirits will jump at the chance to steal your mortal soul and drag you into the depths of Vilokan with no chance of escape. ​



Whether you brave one or all of the heart-stopping haunted houses, you are sure to get your thrill at Siren Stage highlighting mesmerizing aerial acts and Sacred Circle Stage for smokin’ hot fire shows. And don’t miss the beats of the resident monster DJ.



Our performers will emerge from the depths below and fly to the heavens above with this aerial spectacular. This cirque du scare will amaze and alarm. Guaranteed one hell of a show.



Mambo Cécile has taken over the Sacred Circle with an enchanting dance of the flame. This stage’s entertainment is literally LIT with Fire-breathing spirits commanding the blaze.



Dark Horizon is a full sensory experience. Local DJs will man the tables nightly, spinning the hottest tunes. Close your eyes and let the music move you. Wait. Don't close your eyes.



Sit back, grip your seat and don't PANIC for the last ride of your life in our 4-D Theater!

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