RIDING NEW WAVES
The past few months at Wonderla, have been hectic. We inaugurated the new resort at Wonderla, Bangalore and a new ride, XD MAX, at Kochi. We have stayed true to our philosophy of exceeding customer expectations, while also throwing in a few surprises.
The ‘Wonderla Resort’, located within Wonderla, Bangalore, is the first of its kind in India with an amusement park attached to it. It has 84 luxury rooms, a fine dining theme restaurant, swimming pools, recreation rooms and business or celebration halls. Our attempt has been at combining ‘leisure’ and ‘luxury’.
The XD MAX Ride, which opened to the public on 28th April , is a new theatrical ride with a lot of special effects. It combines a 3D film with tactile and environmental effects, in an air conditioned theatre, which can be enjoyed by about 180 people at a time.
It was in 1997-98 that my idea of an amusement park at Kochi, crystallized. I had always been fascinated by the wonderful parks that I visited while abroad and wanted to offer our people a similar experience. Initially, our auditors and advocates objected. They did not deem it viable. They had their own reasons; amusement parks required heavy investments and were highly labor intensive. Not to be dissuaded, I went with my gut feeling. I was quite sure that in the era of nuclear families, where families are cocooned in flats, people were just yearning for an alternative to unwind and be free; to feel the earth beneath their feet, to splash in the waters and to scream with joy.
I was proved right. The success at Kochi was repeated by the establishment of a park at Bangalore. Since their inception, both the parks have attracted more than 15 million customers, altogether. Hygiene, an eco-friendly attitude, good service, innovative rides and constant up-gradation continue to draw people to Wonderla, again and again. Our team of engineers and managers, constantly trying to innovate and improvise, deserve all the credit. Their indigenous adoptions make us cost effective and competitive. It is a matter of pride that we’ve won several awards for the most number of rides as well as the most innovative ones.
So far, it’s been an exhilarating ride. Rest assured, we will not be complacent. We look forward to better the standards. New parks at Chennai and Hyderabad are also in the offing. More than anything, I love it when I listen to the roar of laughter that fills the air, while I take an evening stroll in the park. It’s a ‘refreshing change’.