Grosvenor Fund Management (GFM) is pleased to announce that Merlin Entertainments Plc (Merlin) will open their first LEGOLAND® Discovery Center in China at Parkside Plaza, Shanghai, in 2016. Parkside Plaza was acquired by GFM on behalf of the Grosvenor Vega China Retail Fund in 2010.
A LEGOLAND® Discovery Center is a unique indoor attraction offering a fun, highly interactive and educational 2-3 hour experience specifically designed for families with children 3-10 years old. It consists of a range of exciting LEGO® play areas including brick pool, LEGO® Factory Tour, LEGO® model car racing area, master classes from the LEGO® Master Model Builder; Party Rooms, a fun LEGO® ride; a 4D cinema, and MINILAND exhibit which features replicas of Shanghai landmarks out of LEGO® bricks.
Parkside Plaza is a 126,000 sqm family-oriented community mall. Anchor tenants include a Tesco supermarket, a 1,600 seat cinema and retailers such as H&M, C&A, Uniqlo, Esprit and Mango. Parkside Plaza’s restaurant offering includes a variety of international and local Chinese cuisines.
Commenting on the announcement, James Raynor, CEO of Grosvenor Fund Management said:
“We are delighted that the first LEGOLAND® Discovery Center in China will open at Parkside Plaza in 2016. We acquired Parkside Plaza as a development project in 2010 and, since its opening in December 2011 our strategy has been to ensure it is one of the region’s best family-orientated shopping destinations. LEGOLAND® Discovery Center is a globally recognized family entertainment brand that will deliver a fantastic leisure experience for our visitors and add to the appeal of Parkside Plaza.”
Glenn Earlam, Managing Director of Merlin’s Midway Attractions Operating Group said:
“The LEGOLAND® Discovery Center concept has been a huge success across the globe, particularly as part of a family day out which may also include shopping and eating out together. Given the popularity of the Center in Tokyo which opened last year, we are confident people will also love the attraction in Shanghai. We are also absolutely delighted to be opening in the exciting Shanghai Parkside Plaza at Changfeng development, and to be working with Grosvenor Fund Management on this project. What's more, due to the perfect location of Parkside Plaza at Changfeng, adjacent to Changfeng Ocean World, the opening of LEGOLAND® Discovery Center will bring a much more integrated experience to family who are seeking for a perfect day out.”
Plans and designs are already in place for the 3,000 sqm attraction, and construction will be underway shortly. LEGO models for the Shanghai attraction will be made in Merlin’s specialist studios around the world and shipped in during construction, ready for the opening in 2016.
GFM currently has £3.2bn of assets under management across Asia, North America and Europe. The retail sector is a strategic focus across these regions and 73% of the international portfolio is retail assets. This includes Liverpool ONE in the UK, a portfolio of 31 historical buildings in the heart of Lyon, France and the recently acquired Skarholmen shopping centre in Stockholm, Sweden.
GFM’s focus is on adding value for investors through active asset management, with funds outperforming their INREV Index peer benchmarks.
For more information contact:
Sorrel Basher, Press Office
020 7312 6101
Notes to Editors
Grosvenor Fund Management
Grosvenor Fund Management offers a range of sector and region-specific property investment vehicles, with a focus on European urban retail and London offices, which aim to deliver attractive, risk-adjusted returns and a high level of client service. Operating from 12 offices in North America, Europe and Asia, we employ 102 professionals with local knowledge and skills to execute our strategic investment decisions and create value for our investors. As at 31 December 2013, assets under management were £3.2bn with 66 investor partners in 26 property funds, club deals and separate account mandates. For further details, please see our Annual Review available at www.grosvenor.com
MERLIN ENTERTAINMENTS plc
MERLIN ENTERTAINMENTS plc is the leading name in location-based, family entertainment. Europe’s Number 1 and the world’s second-largest visitor attraction operator, Merlin now operates 104 attractions, 10 hotels and three holiday villages in 22 countries, across four continents. The company aims to deliver memorable and rewarding experiences to its almost 60 million visitors worldwide, through its iconic global and local brands, and the commitment and passion of its managers and more than 20,000+ employees.
Merlin currently has 11 attractions in Asia including Madame Tussauds in Bangkok, Shanghai, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Beijing and Wuhan, China; the fantastic LEGOLAND® Malaysia Resort with its theme park, hotel and water park; world leading aquaria in Busan, Bangkok and Shanghai - underlining the company’s position as the world’s biggest global aquarium operator; and a LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre in Tokyo. Visit www.merlinentertainments.biz for more information.
Perfectly located at the scenic Suzhou Riverbank and adjacent to the Changfeng Park, Parkside Plaza is a landmark shopping mall within Changfeng Ecological Business Development Area. Featuring a total retail GFA of 89,000 sqm, the scheme offers a one-stop shopping experience with international fast fashion brands such as H&M, Uniqlo and C&A; a varieties of leisure entertainments of HB Cinema, Vigor-100 KTV and Hani rock climbing space as well as an excellent selection of popular eateries and venues.