Ocean Park Hong Kong (Photo Copyright © Marion Udall)
Thanks to my colleagues from the Association of Singapore Attractions (ASA), I had the privilege to learn how Hong Kong’s Ocean Park managed to hold its ground against HK Disneyland. Speaking at the Tourism Masterclass co-organised by ASA and the Workforce Development Agency (WDA), Tom Mehrmann, its Chief Executive, shared fascinating insights on their rags to riches story.
Attracting more than 5 million visitors a year (2010/11 is likely to be its best year ever with 5.8 million visitors), Ocean Park started way back in 1977 attracting only 1.3 million annual visitors. The sprawling attraction covering some 870,000 square metres was ranked the number one theme park in China, and the seventh most popular amusement park in the world by Forbes magazine.
Imagination, which is the act of dreaming and visualising a desired end-state;
What makes Disneyland theme parks so memorable? To find out, my family and I visited both Disneyland Park and its neighbouring Disney’s California Adventure Park at Anaheim, California.
Inaugurated more than 50 years ago in 1955, Disneyland at LA was the world’s second most visited theme park in 2007, attracting close to 15 million visitors (the first was Walt Disney World at Orlando). More than half a billion guests have paid homage to this icon of childhood wonder, and they included VVIPs like presidents, kings and queens.
Occupying a sprawling 55 acre, the newer California Adventure (opened in 2001) was opened to pay tribute to the Golden State of California. It provides a mini snapshot of the Sunshine State – from the golden gate bridge of San Francisco, Fisherman’s Wharf, Hollywood, to Santa Monica Pier and others.