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Dubai Parks & Resorts Discussion Thread! Motiongate, Lego...

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Has there been any news about IMG Worlds of Legends? That project sounded amazing, but I'll be happily surprised if it actually gets built.


The last news I could find was a news article on them restructuring their debt in 2018, so I'm guessing there hasn't been much going on...

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The official line in worlds of legends is that is still happening, just not yet.

The word on the street is that a lot of the rides for six flags are already in Dubai and they could be incorporated into a future expansion of motiongate.



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  • 1 year later...

Motiongate is getting two new coasters in 2021 themed to two Lionsgate film franchises, John Wick and Now You See Me! 


Lionsgate is turning its hit “John Wick” film franchise into a 10-story roller coaster ride at the Motiongate theme park in Dubai.

The “John Wick” ride, and another coaster based on the “Now You See Me” film series, are expected to open at Motiongate early next year. Variety has the exclusive first look at renderings of what the attractions will look like, below:


John Wick: Open Contract


Now You See Me: High Roller

The “John Wick: Open Contract” coaster will offer riders a choice as they board: They can help John Wick — the assassin played by Keanu Reeves in the 2014 movie and its two (so far) sequels — or they can hunt him.

“You’ll get two different experiences depending on which path through the queue you choose to get on the ride,” said Jenefer Brown, executive vice president and head of global live, interactive and location-based entertainment at Lionsgate.

Brown said the ride designers worked with the “John Wick” filmmakers and production designer in re-creating the world of the film. Specifically, guests will walk through a scaled version of the Continental — the setting in the movies where assassins gather.

“I think what’s going to be amazing for fans is to have the opportunity to walk through the lobby of the Continental and experience different key moments in the settings that took place in the films,” Brown said. “This attraction in particular is really about setting the story by putting people in this very immersive environment, and then you really get the action as you get on the coaster. It’s 10 stories high, so there’s definitely a level of intensity that’s befitting of the ‘John Wick franchise that guests will experience.”

As for “Now You See Me,” the “High Roller” attraction is also a roller coaster, but set in a casino location. (The 2013 film and its sequel are about “The Four Horsemen,” illusionists who pull off robberies during their performances.) “Guests will have the experience of walking through the casino and taking part in a heist that the Horsemen are in the midst of pulling off,” she said. “There will be a really great immersive story experience that leads guests on to this coaster.”

Brown said the Dubai location is the first step in Lionsgate’s ambitious long-term goal of expanding its global theme park presence and taking on established rivals like Disney and Universal. Besides its segment of Motiongate, Lionsgate owns a smaller indoor amusement center, Lionsgate Entertainment World, in China.

“”John Wick’ is definitely an intellectual property that we feel is perfect for location- based entertainment,” she said. “Because the world is so rich and the characters are so intriguing. There’s a lot of story that we can tell there in an experiential way. “Now You See Me” is the same way, as magic is incredibly popular and universal. Doing this first ride in Dubai I think will establish what we can do in other places around the world, and we’re interested in expanding our portfolio of film franchises and TV series, in outdoor theme parks.”

Lionsgate already has a coaster based on “The Hunger Games” and a live music/dance show based on “Step Up” at Motiongate, which also has themed rides based on DreamWorks and Columbia Pictures properties.

In the U.S., Lionsgate has launching touring shows based on “Now You See Me” and “La La Land,” and has a “Saw”-themed escape room attraction in Las Vegas. But Brown said it remains to be seen whether large-scale thrill rides like “John Wick” will find a home here.

“We would love to bring these types of experiences and attractions here,” she said. “I think that there has just been more opportunity to date internationally. But I think that that is changing and we’re certainly exploring possibilities in North America. Hopefully in the not too distant horizon, we’ll be able to bring some of these larger scale experiences here. In terms of these larger footprint outdoor theme park/ indoor theme park type of experiences, it’s something we’re incredibly interested in and focused on. It’s just really a matter of finding the right opportunity and in mature markets like North America or Europe, those aren’t as frequent as in other parts of the world.”

Brown noted that as the “John Wick” and “Now You See Me” coasters in 2021, the timing will likely coincide with the further loosening of COVID-19 restrictions. Motiongate Dubai has already re-opened at reduced capacity.

“Capacity, while it may be reduced to 50%, we are seeing guests that are coming out at that those numbers and levels so I think that’s really encouraging for the industry,” she said. “It’s going to take some time for guests to feel comfortable but I think, the good news is that a lot of the measures that are being taken at our parks and across the industry have really convinced guess that that the safety and health requirements that are needed right now are there.”

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  • jedimaster1227 changed the title to Dubai Parks & Resorts Discussion Thread! Motiongate, Lego...
On 10/20/2020 at 2:11 AM, SharkTums said:

Wait...is the “two different experiences based on queue path” riding forwards or backwards which on a ride like this is kind of the exact same?!? Lol. Good for them though, love to see the Dubai parks expanding. 

I can't remember where, but wasn't there mention that S&S Free-Spins could have different experiences on each side depending on where the magnets are placed? I wonder if they could split the queue lines so the people on the right side of the track hit different magnets than the left side do to give different experiences. Perhaps even an intense side and a less spin heavy side?

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On 10/19/2020 at 2:29 PM, BigJoe123 said:

Looked through Forums, this is the apparent layout to the Maurer Spinner Coaster

Screenshot202020-04-2320at2012 (1).png

If that layout is correct, it looks like there's a non-inverting loop midway through the ride.  That would be really disorienting on a spinner.


On 10/23/2020 at 1:47 AM, Garet said:

I can't remember where, but wasn't there mention that S&S Free-Spins could have different experiences on each side depending on where the magnets are placed? I wonder if they could split the queue lines so the people on the right side of the track hit different magnets than the left side do to give different experiences. Perhaps even an intense side and a less spin heavy side?

Each side can be different.  I'm not sure if it was intentional or not, but the green side on Six Flags New England's Joker gives more flips than the purple side.  Meanwhile the purple side tends to give less flips, but you're more likely to get one on the raven turn.

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Meraas is looking to delist and take DXB Entertainments (the parent company that owns and operates LEGOLAND Dubai, Motiongate Dubai and Bollywood Park Dubai) private.


Dubai government-controlled Meraas Holding LLC is offering shareholders a 33% discount to take theme park operator DXB Entertainments private, six years after raising money from equity investors to build the amusement hub.

Meraas plans to acquire debt worth 4.26 billion dirhams ($1.16 billion) and convert it into new DXBE shares, boosting its ownership to more than 90%. It will then offer to buy out other shareholders at eight fils in cash for each DXB Entertainments share, below the 12 fils closing price on Sunday, when the statement was published.

DXBE shares dropped by the 5% daily limit on Monday. The company was listed to capitalize on Dubai’s booming tourism sector in 2014, but has struggled for years to hit targets for visitor numbers. Its troubles were exacerbated by lockdowns put in place to combat the coronavirus pandemic.

The company hasn’t posted a profit since listing and the stock has lost more than 90% of its value since a peak in 2016. DXBE’s initial public offering valued it at 5.75 billion dirhams, nearly nine times more than implied by Meraas’s offer.

In March, Emirates NBD PJSC and Dubai Islamic Bank PJSC acquired the company’s debt from mainly non-United Arab Emirates-based lenders at a discount to allow Meraas to restructure the park operator with a small group of Dubai banks, people familiar with the matter told Bloomberg.

DXBE’s IPO had attracted institutional investors such as sovereign wealth funds from Qatar and Kuwait and wealthy families, who made offers of about 100 billion dirhams, the company had said at the time.

Meraas holds a 52% stake in DXB Entertainments, which still counts Qatar’s sovereign fund and Kuwait Investment Authority as other shareholders.


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  • 10 months later...

Has anyone been to the parks in Dubai recently?

I'm trying to work out where in the world to go next and Dubai is on the shortlist, but I will be honest and say these parks have always sat a bit weird with me. I read that Riverland is like a ghost town now with closed shops and restaurants so the resort seems like it could be quite depressing.

I know the Emirates also has Warner Bros, Worlds of Adventure and Ferrari World, and of course the Expo, but would be interested to hear your thoughts.

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^Can't help you with a recent visit but I'd be curious to hear how they're all doing as well.  With so little tourism I can't imagine things are going great or anything.  Even before the pandemic some of parks and resorts stuff seemed on the way out. Hopefully they can get everything going again!

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  • 3 months later...

I’m going to drop this here. forgive me if there’s a more appropriate place:

I’m looking at an eight day UAE trip towards the end of the month February that splits three days Dubai/two Expo/two ABD and last day in Dubai.

My tentative theme park sketch would be part of one day at Ferrari and part of one day that stacks IMG/Motiongate and maybe Bollywood… (see below).

Plus two days at the Expo.  Any recs on-not-to-miss overall strategies for either the parks or the Expo? 

Considering I’ll be moving pretty quickly through the parks to concentrate on cultural things and keep it balanced.  I’m more interested in unique, interesting, then maxing out.  I’ve glanced at the other parks around they do not seem of interest…

Storm and Bombay Express are probably the two rides, I would be most excited about.

Any news on either?  Seems pretty silent out there.

-Doing some deep investigation in Dubai Hills community facebook groups it sounds like the new mall set to soft open 2/17.  Though that hasn’t been announced…  And who knows if that means the coaster is ready.. 

-When I was at GCI last summer, they basically implied Bombay Express is ready to go and waiting on the UAE approval.  At that time, the trains for the Vietnam coaster were still in Pennsylvania being built…  I was hoping that the Motiongate rides opening across the street would competitively push the GCI open. 

-Looks like Museum of the Future will be a miss too…

Any overall tips, insight on the parks or off the beaten path would be appreciated.

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^I haven't been following the UAE stuff as much recently, but I can tell you from past visits that I wouldn't just race through the parks.  IMG really blew us all away as they had some really fun rides and attractions as well as amazing food.  Motiongate and Bollywood can probably be done in a day, but again, there are such bizarre attractions in Bollywood that you won't find anywhere else that it's worth taking some time. I mean, there's a ride where you're playing Cricket!!!??  The woodie has been testing for months, but this is also the country that has a giant coaster that's been sitting around for years so who knows.  Please let us know how your trip goes!

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  • 3 months later...

It's been a while since I posted a trip report on TPR! To be honest, while I still include amusement parks in my travel rotation, my travel priorities in recent years have been a bit broader, including driving tours of Route 66 and the Florida peninsula, as well as some international destinations. When I do go to Busch Gardens Williamsburg or HersheyPark or Knoebels, it doesn't make much sense to follow up on here because these are the same parks everyone goes to, and has been to, time after time, year after year.

So while I still use TPR as a travel planning tool, I don't stay as current on the message boards as I used to. So tell me... where did they finally end up relocating the Big Dipper? How's Freestyle Music Park doing these days? What are the big plans for Blue Streak's 85th anniversary?

Anyway, back in January, I had the privilege of knocking a long-held travel goal off my bucket list: attending a World's Fair. And I traveled halfway around the world to do it! I enjoyed eight days at Expo 2020 in Dubai. But I couldn't take this one-in-a-lifetime trip without checking out at least one theme park. Based on everything I could find, it seemed like Motiongate was the one that best fit my park philosophy, in that coasters (especially woodies) are great and all, but nothing beats a well-themed dark ride. I wasn't disappointed.

Since this isn't a park most Americans get to experience, I thought there might be some value in an in-depth trip report. I'll break it up into sections to make it easier to view, which was a thing back when I was a regular poster here. If it's not anymore, then... please forgive the dinosaur in the room!


Mr. Stay-Puft says: "This way to Motiongate!"



"Ready for my close-up, G.B.!"



There it is! Get excited!



We see you, giant old-timey camera building!



This park was a lot smaller than I thought it would be (I was expecting something on par with the size of Universal Orlando), but they packed a lot of quality AND quantity in such a compact space. The "Main Street" section, called Studio Central, provided a short but well themed segue way into the park's "hub."



Ring toss, anyone?



First stop: Columbia Pictures!



Time for a little "Green Hornet" action!



Fun fact: J. Jonah Jamison's dislike of super heroes began when he was a young lad, reading about the exploits of the abominable Green Hornet in the Daily Sentinel. Funner fact: I just made that up.



I approve of any cue that includes s car with machine guns!



Biggest takeaway from this picture? Motiongate is a Pepsi park. You've been warned!



Check out the Gerstlauer layout!


Hungry after all that crime fighting? Stop for a bite at Kato's Coffee! (Nearly every attraction at Motiongate is accompanied by its own restaurant or snack stand -- or both.)



With two exceptions, the first being "Green Hornet," the Columbia Pictures section is where Motiongate stashes all of its "ghost and monster" attractions. So next, we're on our way to the Ghostbusters' firehouse!



Who ya gonna call?



Wait, what's all this now?



So, it turns out that no one is calling the Ghostbusters anymore. Because they've all retired, and their New York firehouse has been turned into a museum/historical landmark overseen by the not-for-profit Ghostbusters Historical Society. Or something like that.






Larger-than-life portraits of the original Ghostbusters adorn the cue area.



Vigo the Carpathian!



And the painting that replaced him!



This suit was once worn by original Ghostbuster Dr. Peter Venkman. It even comes with a certificate of authenticity, which I just printed and certified myself!



I don't remember the proton packs looking quite like this.



And I definitely don't remember them being made of used sewing machine parts!



Though the original Ecto-1 isn't present at the "museum," its importance in "Ghostbusters" lore is evident -- and helps set up the ride!



Wait... the Ghostbusters "franchise"? Dude! You're breaking the fourth wall!



We're finally ready to start the ride!



Time to board our "Ecto Pod." These are miniature Ecto-1s that will take us through the "Ghostbusters Experience," a shooting dark ride inside the Ghostbusters Museum that allows visitors to participate in a recreation of the Ghostbusters' most famous battles (Gozer, the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man, etc.). It's literally a dark ride-themed dark ride!



No photos allowed on the ride (though they were on others), so here's a shot of the "safety instructions" area. Have fun blasting, everyone!



Every major attraction at Motiongate included an exit through the gift shop.



And many of them included a pressed "penny" machine.



Except pennies aren't really a thing in the UAE, so it was more of a "pressed metal blank" machine instead.



The final result!



Hungry? Grab a Stay-Puft milkshake or Slimer signature hot dog at Slimer's Diner... when it's open. Which it wasn't when I visited. In fact, most of the restaurants were closed, and nearly every ride was a walk-on. I suspect they weren't setting any attendance records that day.



Look out for that giant Stay-Puft hand! He's holding a giant "D"! What could it mean?



Turns out it's the symbol for Etisalat, an Abu Dhabi-based bank with ATM service at Studio Central. The random Stay-Puft connection near the "Ghostbusters: Battle for New York" ride is just that... random.

Up next: More Columbia Pictures!

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