Pirates Dinner Adventure Orlando have signed a partnership with Magic Memories, memory product developers for the attractions industry, to offer visitors personalised content to provide cherished memories of their experience of the Pirates Dinner experience.

Pirate Dinner Orlando features a full-size pirate ship within an indoor lagoon. Electrifying duels, romance, comedy and adventure take place onboard the pirate ship for an unforgettable family adventure on the high seas.

The new deal means Magic Memories has responsibility of Pirate Dinner Adventure Orlando’s photo operations. The memory product developers use pioneering technology to create personalised photos designed to enhance the guest experience.

With the high-tech, bespoke photos, visitors can relive experiences of their interactive evening on the pirate ship.

As Mike Weber, Magic Memories’ vice president of sales in North America explains:

“Pirates Dinner Adventure Orlando is a truly one-of-a-kind experience that has been entertaining guests for many years. By partnering with a specialist in experience capture, the attraction will be able to tap into the huge consumer demand for personalised content and ensure guests can bring their most exciting moments to life.

“We are introducing our new mobile platform this summer to the attraction which will enable us to further improve and extend our engagement with guests.”

Dan Falls, general manager and vice president of Pirates Dinner Adventure, commented:

“Our show is famous for its interactive nature so we really wanted to offer guests an innovative memory making platform that allows them to feel like part of the show long after the curtain has gone down.

“After seeing Magic Memories’ technology in action, we knew they would be the perfect partner to help us deliver a compelling media solution, open fresh conversations about the show and, most importantly, drive visitor satisfaction.”




The Bristol-based interactive entertainment and attractions studio Aardman has signed a long-term deal with Farmer Ted’s Adventure Farm to bring Shaun the Sheep to his first farm attraction in the UK on a permanent basis.

The family farm experience opened in Lancashire farm in June 2019. The whole farm stretches for six acres, two of which are now devoted to the award-winning world of Shaun the Sheep and his much-loved friends.

The Lancashire site is the only farm experience in Britain to have Shaun the Sheep in permanent residence.

The area features daily shows with Shaun the Sheep and his pal Bitzer, where visitors can enjoy ‘meet and greet’ sessions with photo opportunities.

Young guests at Farmer Ted’s Adventure Farm can enjoy taking part in a number of themed Shaun the Sheep activities, including a navigation game known as Moley Moley, Bitzer’s Kinetic Club House, the reaction game Hog Splash, and Mossy Bottom Crafts, where youngsters can practice their creative skills.

Mark Edwards, who has managed Farmer Ted’s for more than 16 years, shared his excitement of having Shaun the Sheep as a permanent resident.

“I’ve been a long-term fan of Shaun the Sheep and Aardman, so we are excited to welcome Shaun and his flock to Farmer Ted’s Adventure Farm. It really is an excellent opportunity to help maintain and boost tourism within the North West of England,” said Edwards.

Ngaio Harding-Hill, head of attractions and live experiences at Aardman is equally as thrilling, stating:

“We’re delighted to be launching Shaun the Sheep’s first UK farm attraction experience at Farmer Ted’s.  The Adventure Farm is the perfect home for Shaun, Bitzer and the Flock and we’ve worked closely with the Farmer Ted’s team to ensure the visitor experience captures all the fun, humour and creativity fans love.”



Waterpark manufacturers, WhiteWater, have opened the world’s longest spinning rapids ride at Shanghai Haichang Ocean Park, China.

Lava Drifting opened in May 2019. Not only is it the longest spinning rapid ride in the world, but its is also the world’s first spinning rapids ride with actual rapid rivers.

The Spinning Rapids Fusion water ride is approximately 1km long. Asides boasting actual rapid rivers, the ride takes visitors through tunnels, conveyor belts and multiple drops, before coming to a finale comprising of a steep drop into giant Manta feature.

The whole ride takes 11 minutes from start to finish.

Nathan Jones, president of Park Attractions at WhiteWater, commented on the new spinning rapids ride:

“It’s the first water ride ever to combine elements from the spinning rapids ride, a traditional rapids ride, and new iconic water slide elements. I believe that this is not only the longest spinning rapids ride in the world, but the longest of any rapids rides yet.”

WhiteWater collaborated with Legacy Entertainment, which developed the preliminary layout for the ride.

Taylor Jeffs, Legacy’s president and chief creative officer, commented:

“I have been a huge fan of this ride system since first riding L’oxygénarium at Parc Astérix in 2002, so it is a great pleasure to collaborate with WhiteWater on the most ambitious incarnation of this type of water ride ever conceived.”

“Legacy always puts a great deal of value on the integration of attractions into their environments, and as such, the ride path has been carefully woven through the Rainbow Falls section of the park, including a climax in the park’s iconic volcano. This symbiotic relationship is instrumental in activating the land,” Taylor added.



Investment in cultural tourism projects delivered by the OCT Group (Overseas Chinese Town Enterprises) and its subsidiaries during the first half of 2019, reached around 170 billion yuan.

One of the OCT Group’s most recent investments was for a parcel of land in Baishuizhai Town in the Zengcheng District, Guangzhou. The Group paid 574 million yuan for the land, which they will use for the cultural tourism industry. The total investment for the project is around 1.5 billion yuan.

Several months ago, OCT acquired the 20-year managerial authority of Baishuixian Waterfall Scenic Spot in Baishuizhai. The site comes with an annual management fee of 10 million yuan, and the total investment for the project was 1 billion yuan.

OCT have also invested 10 billion yuan in tourism projects in Yangxi County, Yangjiang City and the Guangdong Province, as well as an 11-billion-yuan investment in Yangshan County, Qingyuan, and 20 billion yuan in Linyi, Shandong.

These projects involve the collaboration of several industries, including cultural tourism, real estate, hotels, themed business, ecological leisure, healthcare and more.

OCT has also completed the initial layout of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area through investing in the Pearl River Delta region. The project involves a number of different cultural tourism developments.

The cultural tourism projects in Guangdong are expected to be completed after 2020.



Wanda Group, the Chinese multinational property developer and owner of Wanda cinemas and the Hoyts Group, has signed an investment agreement with the district government of Jizhou, Tianjin.

In a recent visit to the Jizhou district, Jianlin Wang, chairman of Wanda Group, signed a cultural tourism investment agreement that will involve a number of city complex projects.

On the signing ceremony, Wang introduced the Wanda Group’s cultural tourism and sports industry developments of recent years.

The chairman praised the Jizhou district for its rich cultural tourism resources and solid business environment.

Wanda Group promises to become involved in the construction and development of Jizhou and to play a role in contributing to the city’s cultural tourism industry through the development of tourism, sports, film, television and the hotel sector.

The agreement, which was signed by Bai Xuefeng, senior president assistant and GM of Wanda Group, and Li Jian, deputy head of Tianjin Jizhou District, is known as the ‘Investment Cooperation Agreement for Wanda Cultural Tourism and Urban Complex Project in Jizhou District of Tianjin.’



Bacta, the trade association for the UK’s amusement and gaming machine industry, has launched its Siding with the Seaside campaign, designed to persuade the government to invest and support in the regeneration of Britain’s seaside towns.

Recent years has seen the UK’s coastal towns face challenging economic conditions. Bacta’s campaign will help raise awareness that more needs to be done to improve often deprived communities and economically underperforming resorts.

Tourism is key to the economic success of these towns and Bacta argues that government policies must prioritise initiatives to allow tourism to thrive and provide the investment for local businesses to help attract more visitors.

Bacta is urging the government to invest in several key areas to provide seaside towns with the attention they need.

These essential areas include the prioritising of regeneration, introducing local development programmes, invest in infrastructure, address charges for car parks, reduce tax burdens for amusements to help preserve historical sites, and to approve the Tourism Sector Deal.

The Tourism Sector Deal was announced in November 2018 and will see the government enter an official negotiation with the tourism industry designed to attract more domestic and overseas visitors to help drive significant economic growth.

John White, CEO at Bacta, commented on the Siding with the Seaside campaign:

“The British seaside continues to be a magnet for tourism and an economic engine for coastal communities. The hospitality industry, of which we are part of, employs 1 in 10 people in coastal towns and is responsible for 250 million annual visits, contributing £1.7bn to the economy. Brighton Pier attracts an estimated 4.6 million visitors a year, more than the Tower of London or the V&A.

“Seaside amusements are a quintessential part of British culture dating back to before WWI and this campaign is about preserving Britain’s history of seaside fun for future generations to enjoy. Seaside Family Entertainment Centres (FECs) are an important part of coastal communities, providing essential income for families, but also preserving our heritage.”


A new attraction site is being built in Cambodia by the LYP Group. The new development is located in Phnom Penh, Cambodia and is known as Angkor Water Park. It is estimated to be costing $55 million to build.

The park is extends for six hectares and is being built next to the Safari World Zoo, which opened in March 2018 and is also owned by LYP Group.

WhiteWater, suppliers to the world’s leading waterparks, are providing Angkor Water Park with rides and attractions for the new site, including a flowrider, wave pool, a lazy river, a four-person abyss, a boomerango for one or two people, a four-person constrictor and a super bowl.

Seng Nhok, group director of LYP, said the site will be the first international-standard waterpark and entertainment hub in Phnom Penh.

Ly Yong Phat, owner of LYP Group, said the venue will be bigger than the Cartoon Network Waterpark in Thailand.

The park is due to be completed by the end of 2019.



David Bailey, the general manager of the Pleasure Beach Arena and Globe Theatre in Blackpool, is celebrating being with the company for 40 years.

David began working backstage at the Arena on June 18, 1979. It was the ideal job for a young ice-skating enthusiast, providing David with the opportunity to tour the world with Hot Ice and even work as a magician’s assistant on Showtime on Ice.

David eventually became assistant manager at the Arena before going to the Globe in 2000.  It was David’s commitment to pushing the venue forward that saw the Arena be nominated for the Blackpool Tourism Awards, winning several prestigious accolades.

David Bailey commented on his 40 year at the Pleasure Beach’s Arena.

“Over the time I have been with the company I’ve worked in the Skate Shop, the cafe bar, looked after the ice and even worked as DJ for the Arena’s Beat Nights. You just adapt yourself to what is needed at the time”

Nominated as the UK’s favourite Ice Rink Manager and favourite ice surface, the Arena has certainly maintained its status as the home of The Hot Ice Show.

The venue’s new show, Utopian, which opens on July 4, has attracted some of the world’s best skaters.

“Looking after the skaters and ensuring that they have the right ice surface on which to perform and show off their fabulous tricks right in front of a live audience is a truly special part of the job,” David added.

Amanda Thompson OBE, managing director of Blackpool Pleasure Beach, spoke about the team’s appreciation of the Arena’s long-standing manager:

“We are really privileged to have such loyal staff, David’s passion and dedication has helped form a part of the company over the years and we would like to raise a special thanks to a gentleman who has dedicated forty years to working with us.”



Zamperla, Italian manufacturers of family rides, rollercoasters and other amusement park attractions, presented a raft of innovative new rides and projects during a press conference at this year’s IAAPA Asia.

During 2019, Zamperla Group will deliver more than 200 rides across the world, including four new rides, two of which, the Super Air Race and NubulaZ, are to be installed in Luna Park at Coney Island. Zamperla’s new Z-Max attraction is to be constructed in Finland and the Factory Coaster in China.

The Factory Coaster will propel passengers along a 611-metre track in large vehicles that can accommodate up to 16 guests, reaching maximum speeds of 12.5m/s. This exciting new ride is due to open at Wandu Waxi in the second half of 2019.

With loops, banks, dives and weightlessness, the Super Air Race replicates the sensations and experiences of an acrobatic aeroplane flight. The ride combines a 6rpm central rotation motion with a motor-driven arm rotation to create an exciting combination of acceleration.

The family ride NebulaZ features four arms which rotate in rapid intermeshing orbits. Eight gondolas are located at the end of each arm, flying riders over the top of the ride.

The Z-Max is a new tower ride and is the latest ride to be installed at Finland’s Särkänniemi Amusement Park. The ride features a full column rotation, providing passengers with an incredible vision of space, as they reach heights of 68 metres.

Another leading project Zamperla is involved in this year, is the construction of an indoor theme park known as the Family Entertainment Centre (FEC). The site will be built within FICO, the world’s largest agri-food park located in Bologna, Italy.

FEC is aimed at children and families, who will find themselves immersed in a typical Italian-style farmhouse, but which is occupied with a total of 12 rides instead of farming equipment.




Disneyland Resort has been given permission to build a Marvel-themed land expansion at California Adventure Park.

The approved expansion projects include the building of a 2,071 square-foot retail outlet with three attached canopies, a bathroom overhaul, a character meet-and-greet area, a microbrewery and improvements to behind-the-scenes buildings.

The building of the Marvel-themed extension is believed to be valued at over $14 million.

The new themed area is replacing Bug’s Land, which was closed a Disney California in September 2018.

The Marvel section of the adventure park will be based on Spiderman and other characters from the Avengers franchise.

Details about the attractions in the themed area have yet to be announced but it is expected that the first attraction will open in 2020.

Disneyland parks in France and Hong Kong are also developing Marvel attractions, with Ant-Man and The Wasp: Nano Battle! recently opening in the Hong Kong resort.