Joins in Shanghai Expo Festivities to Further Develop the Eastern China Market
The development of tourism in China is receiving a tremendous boost as the Expo 2010 Shanghai continues to capture the attention of the entire world. To seize this momentous opportunity, Ocean Park Hong Kong is participating in “Now Shanghai! Next Hong Kong! – Festive Hong Kong Celebrations”, a Hong Kong Tourism Board campaign launched yesterday to promote Hong Kong during the Expo. From now until 15 June, Ocean Park will host a distinctive 3D display at Xintiandi to showcase the Park’s latest attractions. The public will also have a chance to meet the Park’s famed mascots, including Whiskers, Redd and Later Gator, performing in a fantastic show that will run from 11 to 13 June. Ocean Park will also take part in a parade in Expo Park during the five-day “Hong Kong Week” starting on 18 October to help present some of the best-loved tourist attractions in Hong Kong.
According to the Attraction Attendance 2009 report released in April 2010, Ocean Park was ranked number one among theme parks in China and fifth in Asia. Ocean Park’s Chief Executive Tom Mehrmann said, “The success of Ocean Park relies on the support of tourists from mainland China. As of March 2010, tourists from the mainland account for over 50% of the total annual admission to the Park. Almost 80% of these guests from Mainland China come from eastern and southern China, with Shanghai representing the second largest source of our guests among Chinese cities.”
Mr. Mehrmann added, “In terms of marketing strategy, we have established representative offices in first tier cities, such as Shanghai, Guangzhou and Beijing, to work with over 500 travel trade partners to promote different tour packages. We are also working tirelessly to extend our market reach to cities like Wuhan, Nanchang, Changsha and Hangchow. To target independent travellers, we have been collaborating with various retailers, banks and department stores nationwide to introduce strategic promotional offers on admission and in-park spending for our guests from China. And to thank our guests from Shanghai for their support, we have specifically introduced Buy-One-Get-One-Free promotions on our Behind-the-Scene tour and specialty cuisines from now until the end of August.”
As a world class theme park, Ocean Park is partnering with 17 themed attractions around the world, including Shanghai Happy Valley and Shanghai Ocean Aquarium, to offer reciprocal admission discounts to visiting guests. Mr. Mehrmann added, “Ocean Park is committed to offering our guests fun programs that are rich in education and conservation messages. With 40 attractions now, the Park will be unveiling seven brand new attractions and programs throughout the second half of this year, including the Chinese Sturgeon Aquarium – Yangtze Exploration, which is scheduled to open this summer; the Sea Life Carousel; The Flash – a gravity-defying ride that reaches a speed of over 60km per hour; the Summer and Halloween themed festive celebrations; and also the new flagship attraction Aqua City. We are confident that our guests will have fresh new experiences every single time they visit!”
Chinese Sturgeon Aquarium – Yangtze Exploration – Conveying Water Conservation
After the completion of a multi-million dollar renovation, the Chinese Sturgeon Aquarium – Yangtze Exploration will be unveiled to the public this summer. Guests will find an extensive representation of the natural heritage along Yangtze River outside the Aquarium and be greeted by a unique screen of water droplets once they make their way past the entrance. The aquarium will be home to ten “living fossils” Chinese sturgeons and other unique freshwater species distinctive to the Yangtze River, including Chinese suckers, largemouth bronze gudgeons, Chinese spined barbs and white barbell fish. The Aquarium offers guests an immersive experience of the Yangtze River habitats and they will also learn about the importance of freshwater conservation through a series of engaging educational materials and interactive games.
Summer Splash 2010 – An Ultimate Water World
From 1 July to 31 August, Tai Shue Wan Plaza of Ocean Park will be transformed into the largest water world in Hong Kong, highlighted by the debut of the Mega Slide, the tallest and longest inflatable slide in the world, where guests can experience the extraordinary thrill of a long, wild slide into the water. Kids can challenge each other to water gun games and water war nearby, where getting soaked has never been more fun! After the water battle, both friends and foes can enjoy heart-pounding rhythms and dazzling lighting effects at the foam rave party.
Guests will be wowed by the not-to-be-missed new high diving show, in which performers will jump from an 80-feet high platform into the water in all sorts of highly challenging positions. The Park will also feature a number of water battle set-ups and various water-themed performances, including water drum, interactive shows and a parade to beat the summer heat.
Halloween Bash 2010 – Reaching the Height of Fears
Ocean Park is the first in Asia to introduce a Halloween celebration in a theme park. With this year being the 10th anniversary of Ocean Park’s tremendously successful Halloween Bash, guests can look forward to Asia’s largest and scariest haunts with many of the Park’s signature “ghosts”, and a new haunted house themed after the story of a chilling Chinese water village. To ensure that all guests will be thoroughly terrified, this year’s celebration will feature a total of 8 brand new haunted attractions and 444 “ghosts”, each with its own distinctive appearance and scary story.
Aqua City – Major Milestone of Master Redevelopment Plan
Slated to open at the end of this year, Aqua City promises to plunge guests into a fantastic world of marine life as soon as they walk through the Park’s brand new entrance. The highlight of Aqua City will be the new Grand Aquarium, one of the largest in the world. The 3-storey structure will afford guests a chance to learn about some 450 fish species through an up-close and immersive experience. The largest acrylic dome in the world and one of the largest viewing panels in the world will also leave our guests enthralled by the breathtaking views and fascinating perspectives of its aquatic residents. Not to be missed as well is Hong Kong’s first and only nighttime extravaganza called Symbio, a compelling visual, water, fire and special effects presentation staged on a 360° water screen.
The Future: Full Steam Ahead
Looking ahead, Ocean Park’s Master Redevelopment Plan is well underway and is expected to double the number of attractions in the Park from the original 35 to over 70 upon completion. The three upcoming attraction areas – Rainforest, Thrill Mountain and Polar Adventure – are expected to be completed between 2011 and 2012. With support from the Hong Kong SAR Government, the development of three hotels in Ocean Park – Fisherman’s Wharf Hotel at Tai Shue Wan, Ocean Hotel at the Main Entrance and Spa hotel to be built at the Park’s Summit area – will be proceeding apace.
Mr. Mehrmann concluded, “There is no doubt that the Shanghai Expo greatly propelled the development of tourism in China. Given our proximity to China’s immense market and our redevelopment plan, Ocean Park will continue to help promote tourism in the region as we strive to become a world-leading theme park. Our goal is to ensure that every guest at Ocean Park can honestly say – ‘you haven’t experienced Hong Kong until you’ve experienced Ocean Park!’”
Photo: Ocean Park’s Chief Executive Tom Mehrmann posed for a photo with mascot Whiskers at the launching ceremony