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ESJ developing $300m eco-adventure park in Miami

ESJ Capital Partners is developing a $300 million eco-adventure park and resort in Miami, a reimagining of the historic Jungle Island.

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jungle island miami

ESJ Capital Partners has secured the final approvals to move forward with the development, located on 18.5 acres of waterfront close to downtown Miami and Miami Beach.

The $300m project involves reimagining the Jungle Island zoological theme park and botanical gardens on Watson Island and rebranding as Jungle Island: Miami’s Adventure Oasis.

“Florida is finally getting its first true eco-adventure park, where nature and wildlife provide inspiration for guests to explore, play, challenge themselves physically, or simply relax,” said Arnaud Sitbon, CEO of ESJ.

Jungle Island eco-adventure park opening

“Best of all, it’s going to be in a city that is one of the world’s top-rated travel destinations, just minutes from Miami’s top-rated beaches and attractions.”

Set to reopen in 2022, the redesigned eco-adventure park will include the only aerial adventure course in South Florida, with zip lines, ropes courses, bridges and climbing nets in the treetops.

Additional offerings include a trampoline park, interactive nature tours with animal encounters, an outdoor amphitheatre with family-friendly entertainment, water attractions including a lazy river, and an eco-hotel opening in late 2024 or early 2025.

“A nature-oriented destination of this magnitude in the heart of Miami’s urban core is truly remarkable,” said Micha Dubernard, senior vice president of ESJ.

South Florida’s only aerial adventure course

“Jungle Island’s lush habitat will also serve an important ecological role by helping absorb some of the city’s carbon emissions and serving as a natural preserve for Florida’s wading birds and other wildlife.”

ESJ acquired Jungle Island in April 2017, when the existing land lease on Watson Island was transferred. The company plans to start construction this summer and will break ground on the $100 million hotel in 2022.

Across the pond, the London Resort is expected to make various changes to its plans after being granted a four-month delay due to its “ecological status” and SSSI designation.

Image: Jungle Island

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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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