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SplashQuest brings story


to life Yas Waterworld marks the first installation for WhiteWater of SplashQuest, its new interactive treasure hunt game designed for waterparks. Marketed in Abu Dhabi as PearlMasters, it plays an important role in reinforcing the park’s ‘Lost Pearl’ storyline, and offers players an added layer of activity as they race around the venue hunting for lost treasures, interacting with magical creatures, firing water cannons and solving puzzles. The game can be played alone or as pat of a ‘tribe.’ After purchasing a ‘Magic Pearl’ wristband (packages are available from one hour to a full day), guests take the take oath of the PearlMasters and are given a video training session before beginning their adventure by seeking out the ‘Quest Ports’ throughout the park and completing the challenges to become the ultimate PearlMaster. Developed in partnership with MagiQuest inventors Rock Briggs and Denise Weston, SplashQuest is the first in a series of interactive games and technology-led experiences being developed by WhiteWater since its acquisition last year of the company Apptivations. Some of the future products will be app- based and playable on guests’ own smartphones and tablets rather than with wristbands or other dedicated devices. So isn’t this a bit of a departure for WhiteWater, and are guests really going to want to carry their phones with them all day inside a waterpark? “Our belief is that gaming will become a bigger and bigger part of park experience in the years to come and we can’t afford to be wrong on this,” says WhiteWater CEO Geoff Chutter. “We are already seeing that many new cell phones are waterproof and as this increases, guests will feel as comfortable using them inside a waterpark as in everyday life.”


whitewaterwest.com/ SplashQuest_.html


Bandit Bomber by Vekoma


Yas Waterworld Abu Dhabi general manager Mike Oswald takes time to answer a few of Park World’s questions:


Tell us more about the ‘Lost Pearl’ story It’s about a young girl named Dana who lives in a village along the Arabian Gulf. She goes in search of ‘The Lost Pearl’ in order to bring prosperity back to her village. The story is linked to the local Emirati culture and ties all the areas of the park together.


What is your personal highlight of the park? There are so many things that are amazing, but my favourite is the Bandit Bomber interactive rollercoaster by Vekoma. It is a really great ride that runs around many of the park’s attractions. Plus it is the first in the world to integrate laser and water effects into one ride.


How important was it to add a rollercoaster as well as waterslides etc? For me personally, it was very important. I really wanted to do something special that would make this park a truly innovative ‘theme’ park, rather than just a waterpark. I like to describe it as a water theme park.


Why did you decide to add the PearlMasters interactive game? We added this attraction as it is really fun and also something that will drive repeat attendance. There are over 15 different quest ports and 70 quest challenges


Yas Waterworld is a gloriously-tangled web of slides, rides and attractions


throughout the park. It is something that guests will continue to play until they reach the ultimate quest – becoming a PearlMaster!


Who is your target market? Primarily families, but with the diverse rides and attractions that we offer, we will attract both teens and adults looking to live the ultimate water adventure! Abu Dhabi did not have a waterpark before Yas Waterworld, and so we feel that we will be very competitive in the resident market. We are estimating roughly 700,000 annual attendance.


Is there sufficient transport to help tourists reach Yas Island from Dubai and other Emirates? There can always be more, but it’s getting there. We are partnering with destination management companies as well as established tour operators to increase the options for guests.


Would you consider adding a hotel adjoining either Yas Waterworld or Ferrari World, or are the existing hotels at Yas Island sufficient for the time being? Yes, a hotel is being considered along with a third theme park that is currently under development. We believe the island will need more hotels as further development takes place, such as the Yas Mall which opens next year and will drive additional footfall to the island .


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FEBRUARY 2013


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