All important theme parks are heading to Asia and the middle east

November 4, 2015, 9:32 AM

First of all, I will apologize for my grammar as english is my second language.

I´ve noticed a pattern these last 2 years, almost all theme parks giants are building their new properties in Asia or middle east countries, there is no longer an interest to invest in the west (U.S and Europe) anymore?

The only one I can think of right now is Six Flags Grand Texas, which is currently under construction or in stages of planning.

This is the list of the major new parks for the coming years:

Twentieth Century Fox World (Genting, Malaysia)

Universal Studios Beijing (Beijing, China)

IMG Worlds of Adventure (Dubai)

Red Sea Astrarium (Aqaba, Jordan)

Six Flags Dubai (Jebel Ali, Dubai)

Twentieth Century Fox World Korea

Adventure Island (Doha, Qatar)

Robot Land (Incheon, Korea)

Legoland Dubai (Jebel Ali, Dubai)

Cartoon Network Amazone (Bang Saray, Thailand)

Shanghai Disneyland (Shanghai, China)

Replies (6)

November 4, 2015, 12:13 PM

The U.S. And Europe are markets that are already well established, and there is no longer demand for new theme parks. The economy of the western world has stalled in recent years, so there's just not enough people to go more theme parks as well as the existing ones. Meanwhile economies of Asia' and the Middle East' are growing quickly, with a growing number of people that can now afford to visit theme parks.

That being said, I think the parks being built will either have to change in order to appeal to local tastes or they will fail. The parks being built are basically the same type of parks that are in the U.S. and Europe. In order for a theme park to be successful, it has to appeal to the people of the region, and not just be an import of a park that has been successful somewhere else. Disneyland Hong Kong is struggling for this reason, and I don't see anything different being done at any of the new parks to correct this problem except for Disneyland Shanghai.

November 4, 2015, 12:43 PM

Some of those theme parks have been cancelled such as Six Flags Dubai.

November 4, 2015, 12:55 PM

Dubai is an interesting market, their actual population is only approximately 8% Emirates, and 92% expat (largely cheap labour). As such their parks are being developed for investment in tourism and for the local expat community. The Emirates have had the foresight to realise that they need to invest in the future, because once the oil runs out it's basically a desert with some beaches.

Due to its proximity to Europe and Asia, it's weather (let's face it though, it's too hot) and its relatively "progressive" (for most Islamic states) culture, the huge development makes it an attractive holiday destination for many. If they ever finish anything they start building.

November 4, 2015, 2:28 PM

The US Parks have evolved. Some closed while others opened. Legoland opened a new park in Florida, but it used land from a previous park that closed. It is long rumored that Disney might open a third park at Disneyland Resort and a fifth park at Disney World. Universal Orlando could open a third park. The major markets in Southern California and Orlando Florida has reached capacity due to the successes of Disney and Universal. This leaves little room for competitors.

The parks in Asia and Middle East are immature. There is certainly room for expansion. I don't expect anything in Europe as that market is mature.

November 4, 2015, 3:57 PM

@Anon Mouse:

a third universal park in Orlando or a fifth disney park would be fascinating, even through I would love to see another busch garden in florida, maybe around Daytona Beach, or the introduction of a cedar fair park, oriented to kids but without forgetting the thrill seekers.

November 4, 2015, 6:44 PM

Universal Dubai's Hulk track (made by B&M in 2007-08) is now being used for IOA Hulk so I guess something good came out of that project.

This discussion has been archived and is no longer accepting responses.

Park tickets

Weekly newsletter

New attraction reviews

News archive