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Attractions Review 2019: September
POSTED 27 Dec 2019 . BY Andy Knaggs
Part of the new visitor experience at the Empire State Building harks back to the classic 1930s film King Kong
It has been another momentous year in the attractions industry, and Attractions Management has been there reporting the big news, good and bad, all the way. After yesterday's look at the events of August 2019, today we move on to September 2019, considering some of the biggest stories that made the headlines that month.

King Kong was to the fore as the Empire State Building, one of New York's most iconic landmarks, unveiled its new visitor experience. Disney batted away lower than expected visitor numbers following its launch of Galaxy's Edge, and in the UK, Chester Zoo looked to bring a touch of the African savannah to the north-west of England.

No sweat for Disney over visitor numbers

With the launch of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge at Disneyland in California, significant attendance increases were expected. However, initial visitor figures fell well short of expectations, with attendance dropping by 3 per cent, drawing comment from Disney’s parks and resorts chair Bob Chapek in September 2019.

While Disney chair Bob Iger blamed the decline on visitors staying away because of expected overcrowding, hotel price increases and a significant increase in entry fees for the park, Chapek told CNBC that a lack of extremely long lines despite the hugely hyped launch was a good thing for both Disney and its customers, and that a 10-hour queue line should be seen "as a sign of failure".

The reference to 10-hour waits was interpreted as a swipe at Hagrid's Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure – a new rollercoaster at Universal's Island of Adventure in Orlando – where visitor reports following launch suggested queues for the ride were more than 10 hours long.

Empire State experience reimagined

A new observatory experience at the Empire State Building was completed in September 2019, following a multi-phase redevelopment costing US$165m (€149m, £128m).

The visitor experience at the iconic New York City landmark has been reimagined by design firm Thinc, with a new visitor entrance, a glassed-in observation deck on the 102nd floor, and galleries that tell the story of the Empire State Building and its impact on pop-culture over the last 90 years.

Tom Hennes, principal at Thinc, said: "From start to finish, we made the whole thing experiential. The aim was to create memorable moments that visitors could hang onto, really treasure and really associate with the Empire State Building. It clearly had to involve its construction and its place in popular culture, but we wanted to look at life inside as well."

Most importantly, King Kong is present, with his eyes peering menacingly through a set of 1930s windows as his gigantic fingers break through the walls.

Chester's African savannah

Chester Zoo received approval to its plans to build an extensive African savannah habitat as part of its 217-acre expansion masterplan.

The expansion – called the Grasslands – could open in 2022, and will feature multiple rare and endangered species including zebras, giraffes, antelopes and ostriches, while existing buildings will be transformed into 28 lodges,14 tents and a restaurant, which gives visitors a view of the new area.

The project will boost the zoo’s work to prevent species extinction, with the creation of conservation breeding facilities, and more natural habitats for endangered animals. Plans also include an option for the zoo to develop overnight accommodation which would incorporate an additional 42 traditional discreet African-themed lodges overlooking the Grasslands.

Check back with Attractions Management tomorrow for a look back at the highlights from October
Fans queued overnight in Orlando for the launch of the Florida version of Galaxy's Edge
The English savannah? Chester Zoo plans to build an African grasslands habitat
RELATED STORIES
  Thinc transforms iconic Empire State Building with new visitor experience


Work was recently completed inside the Empire State Building, with design firm Thinc creating a spectacular reimagining of the iconic New York City landmark's popular observatory experience.
  Chester Zoo gets approval for major Grasslands expansion


Chester Zoo has had plans approved to build an extensive African savannah habitat adjacent to a wide range of accommodation in the form of lodges and safari tents.
  '10-hour queues a sign of failure' says Disney's Bob Chapek


Disney’s parks and resorts chair Bob Chapek has spoken out about smaller crowds at the operator's parks, saying that a 10-hour queue line should be seen "as a sign of failure".
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Jobs    News   Products   Magazine
NEWS
Attractions Review 2019: September
POSTED 27 Dec 2019 . BY Andy Knaggs
Part of the new visitor experience at the Empire State Building harks back to the classic 1930s film King Kong
It has been another momentous year in the attractions industry, and Attractions Management has been there reporting the big news, good and bad, all the way. After yesterday's look at the events of August 2019, today we move on to September 2019, considering some of the biggest stories that made the headlines that month.

King Kong was to the fore as the Empire State Building, one of New York's most iconic landmarks, unveiled its new visitor experience. Disney batted away lower than expected visitor numbers following its launch of Galaxy's Edge, and in the UK, Chester Zoo looked to bring a touch of the African savannah to the north-west of England.

No sweat for Disney over visitor numbers

With the launch of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge at Disneyland in California, significant attendance increases were expected. However, initial visitor figures fell well short of expectations, with attendance dropping by 3 per cent, drawing comment from Disney’s parks and resorts chair Bob Chapek in September 2019.

While Disney chair Bob Iger blamed the decline on visitors staying away because of expected overcrowding, hotel price increases and a significant increase in entry fees for the park, Chapek told CNBC that a lack of extremely long lines despite the hugely hyped launch was a good thing for both Disney and its customers, and that a 10-hour queue line should be seen "as a sign of failure".

The reference to 10-hour waits was interpreted as a swipe at Hagrid's Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure – a new rollercoaster at Universal's Island of Adventure in Orlando – where visitor reports following launch suggested queues for the ride were more than 10 hours long.

Empire State experience reimagined

A new observatory experience at the Empire State Building was completed in September 2019, following a multi-phase redevelopment costing US$165m (€149m, £128m).

The visitor experience at the iconic New York City landmark has been reimagined by design firm Thinc, with a new visitor entrance, a glassed-in observation deck on the 102nd floor, and galleries that tell the story of the Empire State Building and its impact on pop-culture over the last 90 years.

Tom Hennes, principal at Thinc, said: "From start to finish, we made the whole thing experiential. The aim was to create memorable moments that visitors could hang onto, really treasure and really associate with the Empire State Building. It clearly had to involve its construction and its place in popular culture, but we wanted to look at life inside as well."

Most importantly, King Kong is present, with his eyes peering menacingly through a set of 1930s windows as his gigantic fingers break through the walls.

Chester's African savannah

Chester Zoo received approval to its plans to build an extensive African savannah habitat as part of its 217-acre expansion masterplan.

The expansion – called the Grasslands – could open in 2022, and will feature multiple rare and endangered species including zebras, giraffes, antelopes and ostriches, while existing buildings will be transformed into 28 lodges,14 tents and a restaurant, which gives visitors a view of the new area.

The project will boost the zoo’s work to prevent species extinction, with the creation of conservation breeding facilities, and more natural habitats for endangered animals. Plans also include an option for the zoo to develop overnight accommodation which would incorporate an additional 42 traditional discreet African-themed lodges overlooking the Grasslands.

Check back with Attractions Management tomorrow for a look back at the highlights from October
Fans queued overnight in Orlando for the launch of the Florida version of Galaxy's Edge
The English savannah? Chester Zoo plans to build an African grasslands habitat
RELATED STORIES
Thinc transforms iconic Empire State Building with new visitor experience


Work was recently completed inside the Empire State Building, with design firm Thinc creating a spectacular reimagining of the iconic New York City landmark's popular observatory experience.
Chester Zoo gets approval for major Grasslands expansion


Chester Zoo has had plans approved to build an extensive African savannah habitat adjacent to a wide range of accommodation in the form of lodges and safari tents.
'10-hour queues a sign of failure' says Disney's Bob Chapek


Disney’s parks and resorts chair Bob Chapek has spoken out about smaller crowds at the operator's parks, saying that a 10-hour queue line should be seen "as a sign of failure".
MORE NEWS
Nohlab's 'Everything' installation among Noor Riyadh festival highlights
An immersive audiovisual experience that "observes everything as it is" was a among the highlights of this year's Noor Riyadh festival in Saudi Arabia.
Interactive TV gameshow experience to open in London in 2023
A new interactive visitor attraction that promises guests the opportunity to experience the thrill of being a TV show contestant is set to open in London in early 2023.
Alton Towers' iconic Nemesis coaster closes for major revamp
The famous Nemesis ride at UK theme park, Alton Towers, has closed for a major revamp.
Bob Iger's return to Disney sparks major restructuring focused on creativity and storytelling
Disney is set to undergo a "major restructuring" following the shock return of CEO Bob Iger.
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COMPANY PROFILES
Polin Waterparks

Polin was founded in Istanbul in 1976. Polin has since grown into a leading company in the waterpa [more...]
Red Raion

Founded in 2014, Red Raion is the CGI studio specialized in media based attractions. [more...]
Mather & Co

We lead the world in incredible museum, exhibition, and attraction design. We work across the herita [more...]
instantprint

We’re a Yorkshire-based online printer, founded in 2009 by Adam Carnell and James Kinsella. [more...]
+ More profiles  
FEATURED SUPPLIER

Attractions industry to reunite this September at IAAPA Expo Europe in London
For the first time in more than a decade, industry leaders from across the global attractions industry will once again gather in London as part of the annual IAAPA Expo Europe, the sector’s premier international event. [more...]
VIDEO GALLERY

Red Raion TV - Testimonial: Leolandia
When you work in the Attractions Industry, there’s nothing better than seeing that dreamy look in the eyes of the people who have just tried your attraction. Find out more...
More videos:
Keynote | Moby Dick - Friends to the rescue! – Red Raion
ProSlide's all-in-one waterplay entertainment center – Proslide Tech Inc
Red Raion Showreel 2021 – Red Raion
+ More videos  

CATALOGUE GALLERY
+ More catalogues  
DIRECTORY
+ More directory  
DIARY

 

01-07 Dec 2022

World Leisure Congress 2022

tbc, Dunedin, New Zealand
05-07 Dec 2022

East Cape Futures

Hotel Palmas de Cortez, Los Barriles, Mexico
+ More diary  
 


ADVERTISE . CONTACT US

Leisure Media
Tel: +44 (0)1462 431385

©Cybertrek 2022

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