Thursday, February 29, 2024

At IAAPA EMEA 2022, joy meets experience

IAAPA reported great success for the annual IAAPA Expo Europe in London with 30% higher attendance than last year – a reported 11,474 registered attendees. The event took place in London, Sept 12-15, and was “everything we had hoped it would be as the global attractions industry continues to navigate new challenges that have arisen over the last several years,” said Peter van der Schans, executive director and vice president for IAAPA Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA).

IAAPA Expo Europe attendance included 7,510 qualified buyers representing 4,408 buying companies, and 530 exhibiting companies. Conference attendees were able to participate in 20 education sessions that featured more than 100 industry speakers and veterans. Attendees that missed a session have 30 days to see it online.

Expo sponsors included: accesso, Brogent Technologies Inc., Coca-Cola Freestyle, Cosm, DOF Robotik San. A.S, Gateway Ticketing Systems, Hologate, Interlink, JRA – Part of RWS Entertainment Group, NeumanAqua, Outdoor Factory, Polin Waterparks, ProSlide Technology, Pug2Play, QubicaAMF, Sacoa Cashless System, Simworx Limited, TAIT USA LLC, The Experience Department (TED), Vekoma Rides Manufacturing B.V., and Water Technology Inc.

The next IAAPA Expo Europe will be held in Vienna Sept. 25-28, 2023. IAAPA reports strong advance exhibit sales with 350 exhibitors reserving 12,452 sqm of contracted booth space so far.

Meanwhile, the organization is gearing up for its largest annual gathering, IAAPA Expo in Orlando, Nov 14-17, 2022.

InPark will be attending, reporting and exhibiting at IAAPA Expo 2022 – you can find us in booth 871 and you can pick up a copy of InPark at the booth or in the literature racks. To set up an appointment in advance with InPark at IAAPA Expo 2022, email Martin.

Notes from IAAPA Expo Europe 2022 via InPark publisher Martin Palicki

The enduring #experienceeconomy

The opening ceremony at IAAPA Expo Europe took place Sept 13, 2022 at the ExCel Center in London. IAAPA CEO Hal McEvoy, ICAE started festivities with a minute of silence for HM Queen Elizabeth II.

IAAPA VP EMEA Peter van der Schans welcomed audiences to his first Expo in his new role.

In her opening remarks, past Chair of the IAAPA Board and Managing Director at Blackpool Pleasure Beach, Amanda Thompson, acknowledged there are vital challenges facing the industry, notably the energy crisis in Europe. She was optimistic that the industry would lead the way in finding and implementing solutions, as well as in overall conservation efforts.

Ken Whiting, current Chairman of the IAAPA Board summed it up: the experience economy will endure.

Seemingly as proof, an impressive reel showcased new attractions recently opened in Europe. For more information on the EMEA markets, read our recent overview, courtesy of ECA.

Finally, the ribbon was cut, and the Expo opened for business!

Creating unique experiences
Ernest Yale, Triotech

Triotech’s Ernest Yale announced a partnership with Puy du Fou Asia on a new project in Shanghai. According to Yale, people understand that Triotech is strong on technology (which they are) but they also have great capabilities beyond that.

They will have an opportunity to show off those skills at the new 400,00 square feet SAGA attraction when it opens in 2023. The non-linear attraction offers guests 26 possible routes through a variety of experiences during a two-hour visit.

Housed in an Art Deco-style building, the experience will take guests back to 1930s Shanghai. Although details are limited at this time, Puy du Fou is well known for creating shows and attractions designed to bring guests into key moments in history.

Triotech’s role is in building seven dynamic platforms, functioning as a full-size train simulation. The motion platforms will function in the manner of a dark ride, with sounds, media (produced by a yet-to-be-named partner), special effects and more. Construction is about 80% complete, with work taking place during the difficult government restrictions in China regarding COVID-19.

As motivation for the attraction, Yale said, “I want guests to have very unique experiences.”

Surfing the #joyeconomy
Una deBoer, WhiteWater

WhiteWater held a press conference. Key points from the presser included:

ON SUSTAINABILITY – WhiteWater’s Una deBoer heads up the company’s sustainability efforts, and is focused on their sustainability scorecard. It measures how the company can change their manufacturing processes to have a reduced impact on the environment. Using RTM fiberglass and engineering to use less steel & concrete are paths forward.

They aim to use local teams as much as possible, meaning less flying. The company is also looking at end-of-life product upcycling.

On the water and energy conservation side – designing for smaller pump requirements, using less energy, water conservation, VFDs (variable frequency drives), all result in less consumption. AquaForms and Splash Pad at Aqualand Moravia were cited as prime examples. Instead of having water running constantly, guests can activate buttons to turn the water on and off. This results in less water usage and adds a new element of fun for guests.

ON EUROPE – Rainer Maelzer, President for the European region, talked about the company’s expansion of Dubai and Munich offices. Surftown MUC will open in Munich in 2024. And the world-record breaking slide tower themed to an oil rig will open in Qatar later this year. The complex will feature a new slide that will be introduced at IAAPA Expo in Orlando.

ON VANTAGE – Michael Jungen, President Vantage, unveiled a new brand campaign for Vantage.

“We believe the joy economy is the new wave and the element people talk about [after an attraction or experience.]” A new website to support the branding went live the same day:

ON SURFING – Doug Smith, global head of sales for Whitewater Group, showcased FlowCurl, which provides more of a breaking wave, and FlowSurf, based on a river environment, which allows for a deep flow surf. The technology and pumps are different than the traditional FlowRider system. This helps expand the company’s portfolio to provide surfing for a wide range of skill levels, from leisure guests to professional surfers.

Marty’s Selfie Slideshow
Martin Palicki
Martin Palicki
Martin Palicki owns and publishes InPark Magazine. Started in 2004, InPark Magazine provides owners and operators the perspective from "in"side the "park." Martin has also written for publications like Sound & Communications, Lighting & Sound America, Attractions Management and others. Martin has been featured in Time Magazine, and Folio. Martin lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA.

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