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Park News


Efteling launches 3D film in collaboration with UK studio Aardman


E


fteling – the fairytale theme park in the South of Holland – has announced that 4D theatre attraction PandaDroom will re-open with a new


restaurant, a new 3D film and a new name; Fabula. PandaDroom was first opened in 2002 in


collaboration with the World Wildlife Fund for Nature (WWF NL), to celebrate Efteling’s 50th anniversary, showing a film about the fragile nature of Mother Earth. Fabula will comprise a new 3D film in a 4D theatre,


featuring 4D effects, such as water, smell and wind effects. The new film is created in collaboration with award-winning studio Aardman – also known as the producers of much-loved British shows Wallace & Gromit, Chicken Run and Shaun the Sheep. The film will be created with the aim of providing an improved and updated experience for visitors. Fons Jurgens, CEO at Efteling said: “We, at Efteling,


are delighted to be working with one of the best animation studios in the world. Working with Aardman


on the production of Fabula has allowed us to combine the latest in film and animation technology with a humorous and dynamic film that also teaches important moral lessons.” Heather Wright, executive director of partner content


at Aardman commented: “This is Aardman’s first major piece of original content for the theme park environment, bringing our unique skills of storytelling with brand new


CEO of Grupo Xcaret recognised at HOLA Conference in Miami


Grupo Xcaret CEO, Miguel Quintana Pali, a lifelong devotee of sustainable architecture in the tourism field, was yesterday awarded the “Lifetime Achievement Award” during the annual HOLA, or Hotel Opportunities Latin America, Conference held in Miami last month. Quintana began to look at the environmental impact of tourism infrastructure as far back as the mid-1980s, when the architect and former furniture salesman first acquired five hectares (12 acres) of coastal land in Riviera Maya, Quintana Roo, to develop what became Xcaret Park. The area was known at the time as “Rancho Xcaret,” and was remarkable for its natural beauty and biodiversity as well as its history. In ancient times, it was the Mayan port previously known as Polé. Quintana’s original plan had been to develop the area as a private retreat for his family, but on discovering cenotes, underground rivers and other unique natural structures, he worked with Constandse brothers, who owned the land, to create Xcaret, which opened in 1990 as a park, later adding several other parks and most recently Hotel Xcaret Mexico. During his acceptance speech, Grupo Xcaret CEO Miguel Quintana Pali


20


said, “At Grupo Xcaret, we are constantly searching for aspiration, quality and uniqueness, and we keep our standards very high in order to provide our guests with the best possible experience.” He then added, “We noticed our guests were demanding more than just sun and beach; other hotels did not offer a complete vacation experience, and that’s part of the success story for Xcaret park. Grupo Xcaret has a wide-range of attractions, and with the opening of our first hotel, we are able to capitalise on our unique All-Fun Inclusive concept.”


The Hotel Opportunities Latin America Conference is the highlight of the year in the Latin American hotel investment community, attended by hundreds of participants interested in conducting high value deals in one of the


world’s hottest hotel markets. Many delegates are C-Suite level executives, and during the 2018 conference one out of three delegates held the title of Chair, CEO, President or Owner. Each year, HOLA has an important honoree, someone who has distinguished through great accomplishments, earning the


group’s admiration. Jeff Highley, president of the


BHN Group and organizer of the


HOLA conference said, “It is not common to find a person who takes his passion and makes it his life, while serving others and allowing his collaborators to enjoy it,” referring to Miguel Quintana. “He is a nature advocate, innovator and fine hotelier who clearly loves his country, a true patriot. He has approached hospitality putting people first and the way he has embraced those elements of giving back to humankind is what this Lifetime Achievement Award stands for,” Highley added. The HOLA award is among many over the years Quintana Pali and his work at Xcaret have received. Late 2018, IAAPA, the Global Association for the Attractions Industry, gave an Applause Award to Xcaret and Quintana. The biannual award recognises the world’s most elite attractions whose management, operations and creative accomplishments have been achieved with forward thinking, originality and sound business practices. The Applause, HOLA awards and other recognitions come at a time when Xcaret is set to welcome its 50 millionth visitor.


f d JUNE 2019


characters to a fresh audience. We have relished the challenge of combining humour, emotion and drama with 4D effects in this exciting experience. The impassioned collaboration of the creative and technical teams from Aardman and Efteling has been critical in delivering a project we are all proud of. We hope fans of Aardman and Efteling alike, will love Fabula as much as we do.”


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