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MARKET REPORT: MIDDLE EAST Market Report: MIDDLE EAST


Motiongate Dubai


Dubai-based industry expert and consultant brings us up to speed with projects from the UAE and wider Middle East region.


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Before we focus on the astonishing quantity and scope of new projects already open or on the way, it’s worth commenting on some of the flagship theme park projects that were developed in the Middle East as far back as the mid-1980s. The sad reality is that they have all failed in one way or another and either continue to limp along with government support or are now in the process of being redeveloped as mixed-use developments with a smaller, more modern leisure


hat an amazing period the past 12 months has been for new theme park and attraction openings in the United Arab Emirates, writes Phil Taylor. Here the


offering. Entertainment City in Kuwait, Hili Fun City in Al Ain and Wonderland in Dubai are all good examples of this. Some of the projects developed in the ‘90s and “noughties” – including a handful of waterpark star performers – have fared better; for others the jury’s still out.


So what about the latest additions to the rapidly expanding parks


and attractions industry in the United Arab Emirates (UAE)? Certainly we’ve moved on from a strict diet of mall-based family entertainment centres (FECs) and waterparks. Highlights of the past year include Al Ain Safari, the world’s largest manmade safari; IMG Worlds of Adventure, billed as the world’s largest indoor theme park (though the folks at Ferrari World Abu Dhabi may disagree); the Dubai Park and Resorts cluster of Motiongate, Bollywood Parks and Legoland Dubai/Legoland Water Park; Green Planet, Hub Zero and Mattel Play Town at Citywalk Dubai from Meraas Holdings; Aventura Zipline Park in Mushrif Park and three new trampoline parks in Al Ain, Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Soon also to open are Dubai Safari, The Dubai Frame, an


architectural oddity featuring an observation deck, and, as the UAE places growing emphasis on cultural attractions as well as tourist attractions, Louvre Abu Dhabi. The list of projects under development continues to grow. Opening


Warner Bros World Abu Dhabi 18


within the coming years will be Warner Bros World Abu Dhabi, Clymb and SeaWorld Abu Dhabi at Yas Island, already home to Ferrari World Abu Dhabi (undergoing its own AED700 million expansion), Yas Waterworld and the Yas F1 Marina Circuit. While


PARK WORLD Handbook & Buyers Guide 2017


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