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Mattel creating interactive family entertainment centres with Barbie, Hot Wheels

barbie mattel

Mattel has announced that it will be creating interactive family entertainment centres featuring Barbie, Hot Wheels and Mega Construx.

Mattel-branded indoor attractions will bring its iconic brands to life via physical and digital play. The first location will open in Toronto in spring 2020, with additional global locations to be confirmed.

The centres, featuring immersive, hands-on play and entertainment experiences, will be geared toward families with children aged four to ten.

Created in partnership with iP2Entertainment, a leading provider of out-of-home experiential entertainment destinations, attractions will include:

  • A magical Barbie mini-world, this experience draws on the brand’s mission to support 21st century learning skills through play – specifically creativity, communication and collaboration.
  • Experiential activities, including customising your own Hot Wheels car, designing its race track and creating custom rides to experience on a massive racing simulator.
  • Challenge kids and families to design, build and test their construction skills in the ultimate Mega Construx building scenarios.

Shopping and F&B at Mattel’s new attractions

In addition, the centres will also be home to events including family game night, experiential retail, and food and beverage options.

“The family entertainment centers will extend the emotional connection of our brands with kids and allow Mattel to continue to bring wonder and imagination to families,” said Janet Hsu, Chief Franchise Management Officer, Mattel.

“The family entertainment centers offer a powerful combination of physical and digital play that give kids the chance to interact with Barbie, Hot Wheels and Mega Construx through live events and experiences, gaming and content.”

mattel play sevenum bob the builder

Roger Houben, CEO, iP2Entertainment, said: “Our partnership with Mattel reimagines the indoor entertainment center experience, which, until now, has seen limited innovation for nearly four decades.

“Together, we’ll create brand new physical and digital play-based experiences for kids that will get them moving and engaged in ways that no small screen device could.”

Mattel Play! in Liverpool and the Netherlands

The £1.5 million Mattel Play! family entertainment centre at Liverpool’s Albert Dock has proved both a hit with families and a boost to surrounding attractions.

Elsewhere, mainland Europe’s first Mattel Play! outlet launched last summer in the Netherlands as part of the wider Family Entertainment Center Sevenum.

Lappset Creative designed, planned and supplied all the play equipment inside Mattel Play! Sevenum – the largest single project it has ever delivered.

Image: Mattel/Instagram

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Bea Mitchell

Bea is a journalist specialising in entertainment, attractions and tech with 10 years' experience. She has written and edited for publications including CNET, BuzzFeed, Digital Spy, Evening Standard and BBC. Bea graduated from King's College London and has an MA in journalism.

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