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Water parks are good business: how a water park amenity adds value to resorts

Adding a water park to a hotel or resort can offer something new in a crowded marketplace

Opinion
Atlantis Aquaventure Dubai

by the ProSlide team, the third part of a 5-part series on Atlantis Aquaventure

The hospitality industry is all about experiences. Hotels and resorts are competing for the disposable income of tourists that are seeking the best experience for themselves and their families.

Pools, spas and restaurants have been anchor amenities at hotels and resorts for over a century, offering relaxation and pampering as guests spend time at these homes away from home. In many ways, they define the brand of the destination and differentiate it from other hotels and resorts in the same market.

ProSlide Double TornadoWAVE water park hotel

Water parks emerged as a new kind of hotel and resort amenity in the 1980s and 1990s, first with single slides and then with more purposefully designed water parks. Major breakthroughs emerged in the 1980s with Compagnie des Alpes, Center Parcs and West Edmonton Mall all setting new standards for guest expectations. These properties used a water park amenity in a resort to complement a theme park and to anchor a mega-mall.

In the 1990s and 2000s, the hotel water park concept gained momentum. Companies like Great Wolf Lodge, Kalahari, Wilderness and Lalandia developed multiple properties and made water parks the anchor experiences and a core element of the hotel’s brand.

A water park can transform a hotel or resort

Like those companies discovered, adding a water park to a hotel or resort can make all the difference in the world to define a brand and differentiate in a crowded marketplace.

Iconic, high-performance water rides don’t just attract guests. They also provide countless other benefits to a park’s bottom line. Hotels and resorts, like the recently opened expansion at Atlantis Aquaventure in Dubai, are setting a new standard with their water parks, offering guests a differentiating amenity and even more reason to stay.

Trident Tower Atlantis Aquaventure

ProSlide’s Jeff Janovich has been working alongside major water park and hotel brands for over 30 years. For instance, he has worked with Great Wolf Lodge, Kalahari, Wilderness Resorts, American Dream and Europa-Park’s Rulantica. From initial development to a successful business model, Janovich has helped shepherd top brands into new stages of profitability and guest experience.

In the following Q&A, Janovich offers his expert opinion on the power of water parks for hotel and resort destinations:

Q: Why do we see so many hotels and resorts adding water park amenities to their properties?

A: The hotel and resort industry really understands just how impactful iconic water ride attractions can be for their property.

ProSlide Atlantis Trident Tower

These proven water rides set a hotel or resort apart from others. They also give potential customers another reason to choose their resort over another. Particularly with families, any additional activities for the kids that are close by and included in the price of their stay can influence their choice of resort.

Q: What kind of benefits does this translate to for hotels and resorts?

A: You can expect to see all sorts of benefits across the business! First and foremost is an increase in guest satisfaction. By offering your guests an exciting, thrilling amenity that comes with their stay, you’re giving them more value and a memorable water park experience that is associated with your resort or hotel.

ProSlide Dueling PIPElineBLAST (Medusa's Lair) Hotel water park

For example, the recent expansion of Aquaventure Dubai offers guests of Atlantis, The Palm a world-class water park experience. This is in addition to their stay at the equally world-class resort. Combining these two elevates the entire guest experience and creates an increasingly satisfied customer.

Q: Does it have any sort of impact on a property’s revenue or bottom line?

A: Absolutely! Adding a water park or amenity can result in an increase in perceived value and higher occupancy rates. When hotels and resorts can increase those metrics, they’ll start to see increases in other areas.

You’ll also see higher secondary spending. This is because guests are spending more time at the property and have the option to purchase refreshments and merchandise. And with a higher perceived value comes an increased ability to raise your ADR (average daily rate) as well as your RevPAR (revenue per available room).

MammothBLAST Atlantis Aquaventure Hotel water park

Not to mention the additional revenue realized from opening the water park to non-hotel guests during slower periods.

Q: What kind of attractions are best suited for hotels and resorts?

A: Families are a key guest demographic for hotels and resorts. Our own research indicates that the most successful properties focus a large percentage of their attractions on kids aged 2-15. Young families make up a big market. So, having something for the youngest members of that family ensures there’s something for everyone.

Atlantis made the choice to include a robust family experience. Together with ProSlide, it created two distinct family areas in the new expansion. These are Splasher’s Cove and Splasher’s Lagoon – one for older kids and one for young kids.

Spray-Park-at-Splashers-Lagoon hotel water parks

Both locations feature rides from ProSlide’s WaterKINGDOM suite of attractions that are specifically designed for families. These rides have a smaller size and are also infinitely customizable to any sized footprint. This makes them the perfect attractions for hotels and resorts of any size.

Q: What makes Atlantis’ Aquaventure water park the gold standard?

A: Atlantis, The Palm is one of the biggest hotel projects and water parks in the world. It offers its guests and visitors a first-class experience at every touchpoint. Now, they’ve extended that experience to their new water park expansion at Aquaventure by bringing together an extraordinary vision for entertainment with the newest water ride technology.

ProSlide developed an exclusive, world-class ride mix with 17 high-performance water rides, including multiple region-and-world-firsts spread out among the three areas: Trident Tower, Splasher’s Cove, and Splasher’s Lagoon.

The new water park expansion aims to exceed guest expectations at every turn. And it succeeds in establishing a new industry standard for water parks around the world.

In the previous post in this series, ProSlide explored how high-performance water coasters can help transform a water park. Tomorrow, the team will also look at graduated ride designs, engineered for high-energy entertainment and ideally suited for younger guests

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ProSlide Technology

ProSlide is a global leader in water ride design and manufacturing. Over their 34-year history, they have pioneered almost every major water ride innovation in the industry. Their rides power the best, most successful, and recognised parks around the world. Working with their clients they are driven to create the world’s best water ride experiences and deliver incredible value. They do this through relentless vision, strong customer focus, and commitment to design excellence. If it’s world-class, it’s ProSlide. https://www.proslide.com/

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