Update (September 22, 2017, 3:30 p.m.): We finally know where the first Christmas in the Wizarding World extravaganza in the U.S. will be held! That honor goes to The Shops at South Town in Sandy, UT. The retail experience will be open from November 8, 2017, through January 31, 2018.
"Utah has demonstrated an intense loyalty to the Harry Potter franchise, from big numbers at the box office to one of the most well-attended Comic-Cons in the nation," Najla Kayyem, the senior VP of marketing at Pacific Retail Capital Partners, the developer of the Shops, tells Refinery29. She adds that PRCP will cover the cost of admission, "so that anyone that wants to visit us in Sandy, Utah, can experience the magic this holiday season for free."
This story was originally published on July 18, 2017, at 2:30 p.m.
For Harry Potter fans, it's Christmas in July. A holiday extravaganza called Christmas in the Wizarding World is coming our way — possibly to a shopping center near us. Warner Bros. Consumer Products and Global Experience Specialists, the people behind the traveling Harry Potter: The Exhibition, have teamed up to create the interactive experience.
"This holiday season, we are excited to introduce new Christmas-themed experiences that further extend J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World into the lifestyle of our fans and consumers," Peter van Roden, senior vice president of global-themed entertainment at Warner Bros. Consumer Products, said in a statement.
The themed retail experience will be "reminiscent of the setting and atmosphere of a wintry Hogsmeade village."
There will be an Ollivanders wand shop and animated windows that bring the wizarding world to life. You'll also get the chance to take holiday-card photos on a variety of background options from the Harry Potter movies. And, it wouldn't be a shopping experience without the merch: You'll be able to buy all sorts of Harry Potter gifts, like house sweaters, robes, jewelry, and, yep, plush owls.
But, but...is there going to be one near me? you might very well be asking. We asked, too, but the response we received leaves a little bit to the imagination — which is the intent.
"We have not yet revealed the exact locations — for now, that's a magical secret! We'll be sure you receive the information once it's available," a spokesperson for GES told Refinery29.
For now, get excited to enjoy the mall during the holiday season again. It might seem hectic when you're making your way through the crowds, trying to find presents for everyone on your list — but in the middle of July, we're actually getting nostalgic for that December hustle and bustle.