It’s time for October’s photo update around CityWalk Hollywood! This month, we continue to focus on progress on the projects taking place throughout CityWalk, as well as a look at the arrival of some Halloween spirit at various locations as October 31 approaches.

Let’s get started!

Park Update Index

» Karl Strauss Brewing Company
» NBC Sports Grill & Brew
» Toothsome Chocolate Emporium
» CityFood
» Halloween 2020 at CityWalk
» A Little Bit of This, A Little Bit of That

Karl Strauss Brewing Company

Though no official announcement has been made as of this update, Karl Strauss Brewing Company – which never reopened at CityWalk after its temporary closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic – has been removed from the CityWalk directory, indicating the restaurant’s likely permanent closure. The inside of the restaurant is now mostly barren, with many tables removed and the beer kegs and soda fountains gone. In contrast, Antojitos Mexican Restaurant is bustling with business just down below.

NBC Sports Grill & Brew

As construction appears to have completed on the new NBC Sports Grill & Brew, the restaurant remains dark on the inside while the big screen on the front of the building continues to play a loop of sports clips. No opening date has been announced as of this update as the location’s front patio continues to be used as overflow seating for Antojitos.

Toothsome Chocolate Emporium

Construction remains stalled on the transformation of Hard Rock Café into Toothsome Chocolate Emporium, with no visible changes to the location since our most recent update.


The new restaurant, The Habit Burger Grill, has received its signage and now looks nearly complete on both the inside and outside.

Little progress appears to have been made on the transformation of Subway into Firehouse Subs, with the building still lacking any signage.


Though the store has yet to be removed from the CityWalk directory, GUESS also appears to have closed, with most of its signage removed and the inside now dark.

Halloween 2020 at CityWalk

While there will not be any trick-or-treating happening this year at CityWalk Hollywood as Los Angeles County remains under tight precautionary restrictions, some Halloween spirit can be found at a handful of locations on property.

Voodoo Doughnut now releases a new Halloween-themed doughnut each week. During our visit, we tried the doughnut that looks like Frankenstein’s monster, bolts and all. While it was delicious as always, we do wish that it had some kind of filling to combat all the dough.

Moving on to Production Central, a new pressed penny machine featuring eight unique designs based on the classic Universal Monsters has arrived just inside the store. Guests can choose to purchase one design for $1.00, or all eight for $5.00. Additionally, the year-round Universal Monsters merchandise – including items featuring the art of Tristan Eaton – has been moved to the front of the store for prominent display.

Cinnabon has also decked the interior of their store with plenty of Halloween decorations in the spirit of the holiday.

A Little Bit of This, A Little Bit of That

A handful of new retro Universal merchandise items have arrived at the Universal Studio Store, including a vibrant windbreaker and striped T-shirt. Additionally, in honor of the upcoming unofficial Back to the Future day on October 21, specialty items autographed by the cast are available for purchase at both the Universal Studio Store and Production Central.

As crews have wrapped up filming at the front entrance of the theme park, guests can now take a much closer look at the iconic Universal globe, which was recently refurbished, as well as a look inside the park through the front gate under the arch. Just inside the park, the Minion statue has returned to the front entrance of the Universal Studio Store, accompanied by a display of merchandise for The Secret Life of Pets just beside. Water now runs in the main fountain and the mist has returned, bringing a refreshing element of life back to the closed theme park. No reopening date has been announced for Universal Studios Hollywood as of this update.

We also noticed what appears to be a new pole with a directory near Frankenstein Parking.

As WaterWorld: A Live Sea War Spectacular approaches its 25th anniversary on Friday, October 23, 2020, the show remains closed with the rest of the theme park.

That’ll do it for this month’s photo update. From all of us at Inside Universal, we hope you are doing well and staying safe and thank you for following our continuing coverage of Universal Parks and Resorts.