Perak's key executives have finally confirmed that the Movie Animation Park Studios (MAPS) theme park is in its final stages of completion and will open in June 2017, a development that is met with anticipation from industry members as the new attraction is expected to be a key driver of visitation.
Featuring over 40 rides and shows within six themed zones, MAPS was initially slated for a 1H2016 opening but it was then postponed to 2017.
A rendering of Movie Animation Park Studios
The repeated delays in MAPS' opening has affected the Visit Perak Year 2017 campaign as the state government has been promoting the new theme park to international markets since 2016, Perak state executive counsellor for tourism, arts, culture, communications and multimedia, Nolee Ashilin Mohammed Radzi, said.
“It will have an impact on arrivals from Singapore, Indonesia and Thailand, especially the family travel segment,” she stated.
And despite the competition the new theme park will bring to the incumbents, Calvin Ho, senior general manager, Sunway Theme Parks, does not think that MAPS would cannibalise business at The Lost World of Tambun, a mere 20-minute drive away.
He explained: “With the opening of MAPS, Perak will have more tourism offerings and more marketing dollars to spend on marketing the destination. MAPS, with its international brands like DreamWorks, will be able to reach out to international markets.”
Ganneesh Ramaa, general manager at Luxury Tours Malaysia, agreed: “Both theme parks have different selling propositions. The opening of MAPS will allow us to create itineraries combining both parks, which would appeal to Asian markets. (Travellers might even) extend their stay in Perak from a day trip to an overnight stay.”