Hong Kong Disneyland to temporarily close as omicron cases surge

The latest closure for Hong Kong Disneyland comes after the park reopened for the third time in February 2021

The Walt Disney Company will temporarily close its Hong Kong Disneyland theme park as the global spread of the coronavirus's omicron variant has led to a surge of cases in the city. 

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"As required by the government and health authorities and in line with prevention efforts taking place across Hong Kong, Hong Kong Disneyland Park will temporarily close from Jan. 7 to 20, 2022," a notice on Hong Kong Disneyland's website reads. "The resort hotels will remain open with adjusted level of services. Service at restaurants and recreation facilities in hotels will be adjusted according to the latest regulations."

Disney emphasized the arrangements will be adjusted from time to time based on the latest guidance from government and health officials. 

A notice of closure stands at the entrance to Walt Disney Co.'s Disneyland Resort, temporarily closed due to the coronavirus, in Hong Kong, China, on Wednesday, July 15, 2020.

A notice of closure stands at the entrance to Walt Disney Co.'s Disneyland Resort, temporarily closed due to the coronavirus, in Hong Kong, China, on Wednesday, July 15, 2020. (Lam Yik/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

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The latest closure for Hong Kong Disneyland comes after the park reopened for the third time in February 2021.  

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On Wednesday, Hong Kong reported 38 new COVID-19 cases. Among the new cases, 34 are imported, three are epidemiologically linked to previous imported cases and one is local. On Tuesday, the city reported its first untraceable local COVID-19 case, which officials have warned is likely due to the omicron variant, ending a three-month streak without any community cases. 

To mitigate the spread of the virus, city officials have banned passenger flights from eight countries for the next two weeks starting Jan. 8. The countries include Australia, Canada, France, India, Pakistan, the Philippines, the UK and the US. Starting Friday, indoor dining after 6 p.m. will be banned, and all gyms, theme parks, pools, party rooms, clubs, museums and other venues will be closed for at least two weeks. Hospital visits will also be halted and "cruises to nowhere" will be canceled.

Hong Kong chief executive Carrie Lam encouraged private companies to allow their employees to work from home. Meanwhile, the city's Civil Service bureau is assessing whether it will be possible for civil servants to deliver services without working in the office. Lam added that schools will not suspend face-to-face learning for "the benefit and the interest of the children."

The new cases bring Hong Kong's total to 12,799, while the city's death toll stands at 213. Over 10 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered in the city to date, with more than 4.9 million people receiving at least one dose, more than 4.6 million receiving two doses and over 455,000 people receiving a third vaccine dose.