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Health Club Management

Eva McDiarmid
Chief Executive,

Kurt Janson
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Ufi Ibrahim
Chief Executive,
British Hospitality Association

Aleatha Ezra
Director of park member development,
World Waterpark Association

Jennifer Fields
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Continium Discovery Center, NL

Maya Halevy
Bloomfield Science Museum, Jerusalem

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Andrew Wade
Lawrence Graham LLP

Duncan Wood-Allum
Sport, Leisure and Culture Consultancy

Optimistic outlook for 2012 season

20 Feb 2012
by Aleatha Ezra, Director of park member development, World Waterpark Association
Many waterparks are planning major expansion for the 2012 seasons following a strong 2011.

One of the hot topics at the World Waterpark Association's annual symposium last October was the forecast for the 2012 season and whether or not the economic downturn has finally started to shift back toward a more optimistic outlook for leisure facilities, both in the US and in key regions throughout the world.

To offer attendees some insight on this area, the WWA welcomed keynote speaker, Peter Ricchiuti, finance professor and assistant dean at the Freeman School of Business at Tulane University. Ricchiuti shed light and perspective on where the financial markets are currently and what forecasts look like for the next few years.

"We're not going into a double dip recession," he said. "The next 12-18 months show favorable indicators for the leisure industry. The leisure industry is in the sweet spot," he said.

According to Ricchiuti, the leisure market is in a unique position because "the amount of market growth and the price of gas is just where it needs to be to encourage discretionary spending on leisure activities and staycations."

Thanks in part to this economic shift and a strong 2011 season, many water leisure operators have announced plans for major expansion or attraction additions for the 2012 season. Reinvestment in parks shows that operators are feeling confident and that performance indicators show solid growth potential.

In addition, large new waterpark projects are scheduled to come online this year in China, Abu Dhabi, Thailand, the United States and many other regions.

Tags: Attractions Management  theme & waterparks  tourism  visitor attractions  property 

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