Universal Parks & Resorts
|Founded||July 15, 1964|
|Headquarters||Orlando, Florida, United States|
|Thomas L. Williams
Number of employees
|Subsidiaries||Universal Orlando Resort
Universal Studios Hollywood
Universal Studios Japan
Universal Parks & Resorts, also known as Universal Studios Theme Parks or solely Universal Theme Parks, is the theme park subsidiary of NBCUniversal. The subsidiary, headquartered in Orlando, Florida, operates Universal theme parks and resort properties around the world. Universal Parks & Resorts is best known for attractions and lands based on famous classic and modern pop culture properties (movies, television, literature, cartoons, comics, video games, music, etc.) from not only NBCUniversal, but also third-party companies, for all of its parks.
It started as a touring attraction Universal Studios Hollywood in the 1910s, and in 1964 turned into a family amusement park destination, where guests can look behind the scenes of motion pictures and television programs, produced by Universal Studios and occasionally others, and ride the attraction based on the world's favorite feature films and television shows. The popularity of Universal Studios Hollywood had led Universal to build parks in Florida and overseas.
In 2014, approximately 40.1+million guests visited Universal Studios theme parks, making it the third-largest amusement park operator in the world. It is a major competitor of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, and SeaWorld Entertainment.
- 1 Current theme parks
- 2 Future theme parks
- 3 Former or cancelled parks
- 4 Theme park attractions and lands
- 5 See also
- 6 References
- 7 External links
Current theme parks
Universal Studios Hollywood
Universal Studios Hollywood became the first Universal Studios theme park when it opened its doors on July 15, 1964, long after it was originated as a studio tour in 1915, after the Universal original founder, Carl Laemmle, opened Universal City, California. In May 1993, Universal CityWalk opened outside the gates of the theme park, featuring 65 entertainment-themed restaurants, nightclubs, shops, and entertainment spots. It also contains the AMC Universal CityWalk Cinemas, offering 19 screens including an IMAX Theatre and stadium-style seating. Approximately 415 acres (1.7 km²) is within and around the surrounding area of Universal City, including its theme park and the film studio adjacent nearby.
Universal Orlando Resort
Universal Orlando Resort (formerly called Universal Studios Escape) opened to the public on June 7, 1990, in Orlando, Florida, starting at Universal Studios Florida. It features themed areas and attractions based on the film industry. On May 28, 1999, Universal Orlando had expanded into a vacation resort, with the opening of Islands of Adventure theme park, featuring various themed islands which emphasized adventures and characters embodied in the attractions. Simultaneously, Universal CityWalk was added to accommodate the guests within the resort leading to the two parks. Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando hotel opened at Universal Orlando Resort in September 1999, followed by Hard Rock Hotel in December 2000, Loews Royal Pacific Resort in February 2001, Cabana Bay Beach Resort on March 31, 2014, and Loews Sapphire Falls Resort on July 7, 2016.
In 1998, Universal Orlando acquired Wet 'n Wild water park (founded in 1977 by Seaworld founder George Millay) and was the company's main water park until it closed on December 31, 2016, where it was replaced by another water park Volcano Bay, which opened on May 25, 2017. The new water park consists of 18 attractions, including slides, 2 lazy rivers and raft rides. The park includes two volcano themed rides: the Ko'okiri Body Plunge, a 70-degree-angle, 125-foot water slide; and the Krakatau Aqua Coaster, a canoe ride traveling among the peaks and valleys of the central volcano in the park. The park also gives each visitor a wristband when they buy their ticket. The wristband allows guests to check in for rides and circumvents having to stand in line.
Universal Studios Japan
After almost three years of construction, Universal Studios Japan opened on March 31, 2001, in the Konohana-ku district of Osaka, Japan, and was the first Universal Studios theme park to open outside of the U.S. It was also the first theme park to operate within the Asian region. The park incorporates attractions from both Universal Orlando and Hollywood and features a CityWalk district, a shopping mall with multiple official Universal hotels and many restaurants and shops, including stores selling Universal Studios merchandise and Osaka souvenirs. The theme park occupies an area of 108 acres and is the most visited amusement park in Japan after its rival Tokyo Disney Resort.
Universal Studios Singapore
Construction of the Singapore park began within Resorts World Sentosa on Sentosa, Singapore on April 19, 2008. Universal Studios Singapore was given a soft opening on March 18, 2010 and later a wide opening on May 28, 2011. It was the second Universal Studios theme park to operate on Asia and also the first in Southeast Asia. Like other Universal theme parks, it features attractions from various Universal and other studio companies' properties, including Jurassic Park, Madagascar, Shrek, The Mummy, Waterworld, Tranformers, and others. It currently sits on is 20 hectares (49 acres) in size, which occupies the easternmost part of the 49-hectare (120-acre) Resorts World Sentosa, and is marketed as a "one-of-its-kind theme park in Asia". However, it has no Universal CityWalk District since it already has a resort shopping map and restaurants adjacent near the park. Unlike other Universal theme parks, Singapore is entirely run by Genting Group with the licensing approval from Universal Parks & Resorts.
Future theme parks
Universal Studios Beijing
Universal Studios Beijing is the upcoming Universal theme park that will open around 2020 in Beijing, China. It will feature rides and attractions themed primarily to Universal-owned movies, TV shows, animation, and music, and as well as licensed properties from other companies (e.g. Warner Bros., 20th Century Fox, Paramount Pictures, etc.). The project was announced on October 13, 2014, with more than 20 billion RMB being invested into the project. It will be jointly owned by Beijing Shouhuan Cultural Tourism Investment Co., Ltd. (BSH Investment), a consortium of four state-owned companies, and Universal Parks & Resorts. As of 2017, the park is currently in construction.
Universal Studios Moscow
Universal Studios Moscow is an indoor theme-park and shopping complex that has been scheduled to open on 2022 in Moscow, Russia. It will home rides and attractions based on worldwide well-known pop-culture properties, like Universal-owned library and third-party properties. It is to be the first ever indoor Universal theme park, due to the fact that Russia is a country considered to be too cold during winter.
Former or cancelled parks
- Universal Studios Dubailand, Dubai, United Arab Emirates (Broke ground 2008, no construction since 2009)
- Universal Studios South Korea, Hwaseong, South Korea
- Costa Caribe Aquatic Park, Salou, Spain (2002–2004)
- Wet 'n Wild Orlando (Universal Orlando Resort, Orlando, Florida, United States; wholly owned) (1977–2016)
Theme park attractions and lands
Universal Studios incorporates replicas of attractions and lands in multiple parks around the world. The pages linked above contain comprehensive lists of the attractions and lands at Universal theme parks. Most of the attractions and lands are based on Universal licenses and other licensed properties.
- Halloween Horror Nights
- Incidents at Universal parks
- List of licensed properties at Universal Parks & Resorts
- Universal Creative
- Walt Disney Parks & Resorts
- "Congratulations Universal Studios Hollywood Tram Tour 50 Years Old Today". MiceChat. 2014-07-15. Retrieved 2016-03-29.
- Official website
- "Comcast to Buy Rest of Universal Studios Japan for $2.3 Billion". February 28, 2017 – via www.bloomberg.com.
- "Comcast 2011 Annual Report". Comcast.com. Retrieved March 17, 2013.
- Lieberman, David. "Comcast Completes Acquisition Of GE’s 49% Stake In NBCUniversal." Deadline.com (March 19, 2013)
- Rubin, Judith; Au, Tsz Yin (Gigi); Chang, Beth; Cheu, Linda; Elsea, Daniel; LaClair, Kathleen; Lock, Jodie; Linford, Sarah; Miller, Erik; Nevin, Jennie; Papamichael, Margreet; Pincus, Jeff; Robinett, John; Sands, Brian; Selby, Will; Timmins, Matt; Ventura, Feliz; Yoshii, Chris. "TEA/AECOM 2014 Theme Index & Museum Index: The Global Attractions Attendance Report" (PDF). aecom.com. Themed Entertainment Association (TEA). Retrieved 4 June 2015.
- Kelly, Jason (2017-05-25). "Volcano Bay: Universal Orlando opens new water park". WFTV. Retrieved 2017-05-25.
- Speck, Emilee (2017-05-25). "Volcano Bay water park opens". WKMG. Retrieved 2017-05-25.
- "Comcast Will Buy 51% Stake in Universal Studios Japan for $1.5 Billion". September 28, 2015 – via www.bloomberg.com.
- "Universal Studios Japan Corporate Information". Universal Studios Japan. Retrieved November 7, 2012.
- "Resorts World Sentosa – Universal Studios Singapore". Resorts World Sentosa. Retrieved August 21, 2010.
- Los Angeles Times (October 13, 2014). "Universal Studios to open Beijing theme park in 2019". latimes.com.
- "Universal Studios Breaks Ground on Beijing Park, Opening Postponed Yet Again". www.thebeijinger.com. 1 November 2016. Retrieved 31 January 2017.
- "Universal Theme Park and Resort Planned for Beijing".
- "Universal Studios Dubailand: A Case Study on the Rise and Fall of Dubai". Fast Company. 24 August 2009.
- 무단전재, Ⓒ 종합 경제정보 미디어 이데일리-상업적; 금지, 재배포 (16 January 2017). "수공 `화성 송산그린시티 유니버셜스튜디오 개발사업 무산`" [Waterworks `Hwaseong Songsan Green City Universal Studio Development Project`]. edaily (in Korean).