Saturday night we had the opportunity to go and see the dinner show Arabian Nights in Kissimmee. It was one of the last nights in June where they were offering a discounted rate if you worked in hospitality, so naturally we had to jump on this offer after having never been before!
We went in a large group and were told to reserve on the phone, then we can all pay separately once we picked up the tickets on the night of the show. However, once we got there we were informed that in order to sit together we must all pay together and only 2 forms of payment can be used. This was a little challenging as not all of us brought cash, so if you go as a group just keep in mind that bringing cash is definitely recommended!
As you enter the Arabian Nights building they take your photograph in front of a green screen to then sell to you later in the show. We were told our group of 11 was too many for one picture so we all went separately. it turned out later that you could indeed go in a big group, which was a shame as we would have bought the group photo. So remember to ask for a group one if that’s what you really would like, as many other families had even more members in the same picture and it looked great.
We then walked through the gift shop, which is very tempting, and past some workers selling flashy light up hats, lanyards and pins etc…of course I had to get a photo of them as it looked pretty cool!
You walk into the pre-show area to walls painted with murals of horses and cowboys. In the center of the room is the appetizer buffet. This buffet consisted of chips and salsa, and raw vegetables with dip. It was only a small table, but if you like that kind of finger food it was a nice start to the show.
Options at the bar before you enter include a few alcohol packages such as $10 for unlimited Bud light or rose wine, or $15 for unlimited spirit cocktails. These had to be purchased at the bar before you entered the show.
It was time to go to our seats, so we were led up the stairs to our section, which despite being further back had a great view of the whole arena, it seems anywhere you get seated would be a good view.
Once we were seated we chose our meal and complimentary soft drinks. They had a decent selection of dishes and provided vegetarian options as well as Kosher. They also suggest if you require any special dietary needs to call at least 24 hrs in advance to discuss the options with them.
As the show started they began by introducing some of the horses, and showed how tame they were by bringing down pre selected children to come pet the horse. They then showed how their performers were able to do acrobatics on top of the horses, by using a technique that meant they landed softly and evenly upon the horse’s back.
Now the main part of the show started, featuring their current production, American Princess. It features Princess Scheherazade on her 21st Birthday and her genie Abracadabra, who set forth on a mission to find her Prince!
During the show we are shown many different Princes, from many different countries and cultures. One of my personal favorites was when we were shown the Gypsy camp, as we were treated to some amazing acrobatics! We saw them riding standing up, one foot on each horse!
Some rode in tandem, upon 2 horses performing dance moves normally seen in ballrooms as opposed to on horseback!
One of the most visually stunning parts was seeing one rider jump through a hoop of fire only to land back perfectly on his cantering horse!
A crowd pleasing moment was getting to see the mystical Unicorn enter the arena! The music and the lights really added to the elegance of the moment, all you could hear was gasps as the unicorn majestically walked in!
Another favorite of mine was when the Native American entered on his horse! The horse was painted in day glow markings, so when they shone the black light spot light on to it, it lit up so beautifully. Smoke covered the arena floor and the track they played, “End Of Innocence” by Enigma, created such a powerful visual! Easily my favorite part of the whole show, I literally did not take my eyes off the horse! it was stunning!
Along the journey, Abracadabra must protect the Princess from the evil Prince Vaneer, who’s outlook appears to be “if I can’t have her, no one can”.
Toward the end of the show, we are brought back to America, and a visually beautiful performance was put on filled with a lot of patriotism, but also a salute to other nations around the world.
The food we had during the show was average at best, including the dessert. But the service was friendly and they were very much on top of keeping our drinks filled up throughout.
After the show was a lot of fun as they let all the horses out into the arena, and it was so cute to watch them frolic around and rub on the floor! I had no idea horses did the rubbing on the floor like dogs and cats do! It was so precious to watch! It also gave the audience a chance to take photos alongside some of the performers and to pet the horses. As we were seated further back it was fun to come down and see the horses up close.
When you leave the arena you are given an opportunity to line up and take a photo with some of the lead characters if you wished. There was no intermission during the show so my advice is don’t go to the first restroom you see, the line was terrible. Go to the next one back in the appetizer pre show room, much quieter!
On the whole we really enjoyed this show, and although the food provided isn’t great, the show is really unique and we really had fun seeing it! A fun group activity also!
To make reservations at Arabian Nights you can book on-line at www.arabian-nights.com or call on 407-239-9223.
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