Number of Legoland visitors exceed expectation

JOHOR BAHRU, Oct 31 (Bernama) -- Legoland Malaysia has proven to be a huge success to have attracted 250,000 visitors since its opening one-and-a-half months ago on Sept 15.

Chief executive officer of IDR Resorts Sdn Bhd, Muhammad Zainal Ashikin Muhammad Rejab, told Bernama the number of visitors has "exceeded expectations."

He said despite the good response, the company will still maintain its target of attracting one million visitors to the RM750 million theme park in the first year.

"We are maintaining the target and confident it will be met," he said. Muhammad Zainal Ashikin said the visitors comprised 55 per cent Malaysians and 45 per cent foreigners.

IDR Resorts Sdn Bhd is a project holding company for Legoland Malaysia. Muhammad Zainal Ashikin is also chief development officer of Themed Attractions and Resorts Sdn Bhd (TAR), a wholly-owned unit of Khazanah Nasional Bhd.

Legoland Malaysia theme park is owned by TAR and Iskandar Investment Bhd through IDR Resorts and operated by Merlin Entertainments Group.

On TAR's future project, Muhammad Zainal Ashikin said, besides the Puteri Harbour Family Theme Park which had its soft launch last weekend, the company would also concentrate on the Legoland Hotel and the Legoland Water Theme Park.

"The Legoland Water Theme Park and the hotel, both located adjacent to the Legoland Malaysia theme park, are slated to open next year and 2014 respectively," he said.

The Puteri Harbour Family Theme Park located in Nusajaya consists of the first Sanrio Hello Kitty Town outside Japan and the Little Big Club characters such as Angelina Ballerina, Barney, Pingu, Bob the Builder, Thomas and Friends.

"Nusajaya has become a playtime destination for all," said Muhammad Zainal Ashikin.

Besides Nusajaya, he said TAR also has also big plans for Desaru with the planned opening of Ocean Quest marine park and Ocean Splash water theme park, in 2015/16, he said.

The Legoland Malaysia theme park was inspired by the Danish toy bricks and divided into seven themed areas, comprising more than 50 million Lego bricks.

The 30.7-hectare theme park, located within Johor's administrative capital of Nusajaya, is the sixth worldwide after Denmark, UK, California, Germany and Florida.