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Merlin breaks ground on US$1 billion Legoland Shenzhen Resort

Merlin breaks ground on US$1 billion Legoland Shenzhen Resort
August 28, 2021

Merlin Entertainments has started construction on what will be the world’s largest Legoland Resort near the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen.

The US$1 billion Legoland Shenzhen Resort will cover a 58 hectare site on the Dapeng Peninsula to the east of Shenzen in what is known as the Greater Bay Area.

The region’s first international IP-based theme park resort, Legoland Shenzhen will be operated by Merlin Entertainments, with Hazens Holdings as its local partner.

Merlin Entertainments Chief Executive, Nick Varney said Legoland Shenzhen Resort, due to launch in 2024, will be a “must-see destination for millions of families looking to experience the magic of Lego in China.

“We have already had great success with our immersive Legoland attractions around the world and look forward to working with our partners to make the Shenzhen resort a reality.”

Commencement of construction was marked by a launch ceremony with 20,000 Lego bricks alongside representatives from the Shenzhen Municipal People’s Government, Dapeng New District, the Lego Group and Hazens Holdings.

Varney went on to say “construction of the world’s largest Legoland Resort in Shenzhen marks a significant milestone for Merlin in China, reflecting the scale of opportunity in the country and our commitment to developing our business in China.

“This forms part of Merlin’s broader strategy, alongside developing exciting attractions in partnership with some of the world’s most popular brands.”

Merlin currently operates 13 Midway attractions in China, including Legoland Discovery Centres, Madame Tussauds, SEA LIFE Centres, The Dungeons, Peppa Pig World of Play and Little BIG City.

Siegfried Boerst, General Manager of Legoland Shenzhen, said the resort will have indoor and outdoor play areas, including an indoor Miniland that reflects “the beauty of Shenzhen and China through representative landmarks”, noting “in echoing local characteristics, we have also developed a live show exclusively for Chinese families, and the resort will feature the world’s largest Legoland theatre with more than 1,000 seats.”

Legoland Shenzhen Resort will feature nine themed areas and more than 100 interactive rides, shows and attractions. It will also include the world’s largest Legoland Water Park and three Lego-themed hotels.

Boerst added “while maintaining the authentic Legoland experience, there will be innovative designs, new themed areas, rides and immersive shows launched for the China market.

“The Legoland Shenzhen Resort will integrate the history, culture and ecology of Shenzhen and China. The park will also be a smart park, celebrating technological innovation, imagination and creativity in Shenzhen.”

Legoland Shanghai Resort and Legoland Sichuan Resort are also being developed in China, as is the world’s first standalone Peppa Pig Resort, opening in 2024.

Jorgen Vig Knudstorp, LEGO Group Executive Chairman, concluded “the Lego brand has emotionally bonded with Chinese families during the past decades and contributed to create a positive impact on the development of the Chinese society.”

Images: This week's ceremony marking the start of construction of the Legoland Shanghai Resort (top and below) and the concept for the entrance to the Legoland Shanghai Resort (middle).

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