Checking In: Beijing Water Cube Water Park Project

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After Beijing hosted the 2008 Olympic Games in the uniquely designed “Water Cube,” some of our readers wondered about the future of this mammoth National Aquatic Centre. As Contract magazine previously reported in February, the Water Cube is being re-designed as an entertainment destination, and the multi-feature construction is poised to open in August as "The Happy Magic Watercube Waterpark."

After some thorough follow-up digging, Contract discovered a few new tidbits to satisfy our readers’ design-hungry appetites:

The redesign is by Canadian firm Forrec, internationally known for theme parks, water parks, and other venues. Forrec is one of several top industry suppliers and consultants weighing in on the project, including Australian waterpark veteran Alan Mahony. The design features top-notch and even some "first-ever" attractions, notably the RideHouse play structure, by industry leader ProSlide Technology. This structure will accompany China’s first AquaLoop looping waterslide, by WhiteWater West; a water Tornado; tube slides, body slides; lazy river, wave pool, and other attractions. Additionally, more than one-third of the over 100,000-sq.-ft. Watercube was pre-planned for conversion into a recreational waterpark at the time of its original construction.

“The client has been wonderful to work with,” comments Forrec vice-president Anthony Van Dam in a statement. “They have very high expectations and are focused on quality and innovation. Although the company and its leadership are humble and have made an effort to remain anonymous, I expect you will be hearing much more of them in the coming years.”

Yet, despite all this, an aura of mystery surrounds the opening of the Happy Magic Watercube Waterpark. A representative at ProSlide Technology shared a possible reason: the language barrier. Although this exciting new design should hold international interest, few non-Chinese-speakers are hearing about it—until now. (Trying to track down additional plan details and facts proved to be quite the feat!)

Once the park operations are underway, I'm sure more English-speakers will hear about it and visit with rave reviews. “This promises to be one of the leading indoor waterparks in the world,” says Van Dam. “It will provide enjoyment for many families and, thanks to the unique design, offer two very different but memorable experiences by day and night.” He refers here to the unique bubble design on the building's exterior, which glows from within at night. But so far, Contract magazine seems to have the only scoop on this project.

Have you found any other reports? Share with us by commenting below.

–Lillian Civantos

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