New Tropical Islands Resort MD eyes expansion

Michiel Illy has taken over as Managing Director of Germany-based theme park Tropical Islands Resort and is looking to take forward expansion plans later this year.

Illy was appointed to the role last year and has been working alongside his predecessor Jan Janssen, learning his new responsibilities, since September. The move was made official with the handing over of the key to the park at a ceremony last week.

Amsterdam-native Illy began his career as a management trainee at Center Parcs, rising up to the role of Innovations Director. He later co-founded a consulting company, which took him to China in 2011 to develop European-style holiday resorts as part of a joint venture.

Illy said: “I am looking forward to the challenges that Tropical Islands brings with it. It is very important that we develop the resort, because the competition in Europe does not strike.”

Janssen joined Tropical Islands in 2013 and leaves the park back in profitability after several years of crisis. In 2017, 1.1 million guests visited the resort and the 2,000 guest beds were, on average, 85% full throughout the year.

Later this year, the new boss wants to push ahead with new projects on the grounds of Tropical Islands Resort, starting with increasing guest beds to 9,000. This will involve construction of two new hotels, 1000 apartments and 130 holiday houses. Other plans include the expansion of the dome and outdoor activities.

“The first stage of the Spatial Planning process has been completed so there is a basis to increase the number of beds to 9,000,” said Illy.

Image: Dietmar Gust