MERLIN Entertainments PLC Announces Australia’s First LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre To Open Autumn 2017
Global leisure giant Merlin Entertainments plc (Merlin) and Federation Centres are thrilled to announce plans to open Australia’s first LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre in Melbourne, within the iconic Chadstone Shopping Centre.
Scheduled to open in Autumn 2017, the attraction in Melbourne will be Merlin’s first LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre to open in Australia and reflects the success of the concept and the huge and enduring appeal of the LEGO® brick.
LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre is a unique indoor attraction, based on the popular LEGO® brick. Specifically designed for families with children 3-10 years old, LEGOLAND® Discovery Centres offer a fun, highly interactive and educational two to three hour experience consisting of a range of exciting LEGO® play areas including two LEGO® rides, five themed build and play zones, build classes from the LEGOLAND® Master Model Builder, special party rooms for birthdays and other celebrations, a 4D cinema, and of course, the popular MINILAND exhibit found in everyLEGOLAND® Park and attraction. MINILAND is designed to reflect the iconic buildings of each individual attraction’s location – at LEGOLAND®Discovery Centre Melbourne this will include both buildings from the city’s impressive skyline and landmarks from the surrounding area, nominated by the local community.
“The LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre concept has been a huge success across the globe, particularly as part of a family day out of shopping and dining. We have no doubt that the Centre will be popular in Melbourne, and we are delighted to be working with Federation Centres on this exciting new project,” said John Jakobsen, Merlin’s Chief New Openings Officer.
“Australia and Asia are very important development areas for Merlin. We already have a cluster of exciting attractions in Sydney and now we want to build our business here in Melbourne which is a vibrant, exciting city, with a high proportion of families with young children, all looking for high quality leisure options. Chadstone Shopping Centre is not only the most popular shopping centre in Melbourne but the number one retail destination in Australia, attracting both local and international visitors with its exciting mix of retail, dining and entertainment, making it the ideal location for LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre Melbourne,” Mr Jakobsen continued.
This significant addition is part of a $600 million evolution of Chadstone Shopping Centre, with the cornerstone of the development to be a new retail, entertainment and dining precinct.
“Chadstone Shopping Centre is delighted to be home to Australia’s first LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre, which is sure to delight local and international shoppers of all ages,” said Chadstone Shopping Centre General Manager, Anthony Rafaniello.
“This exciting announcement is the first of many for this major redevelopment at Chadstone, which will deliver an even better customer experience, ensuring Chadstone remains Australia’s preeminent Shopping Centre, and further cementing Chadstone as a world leading retail and leisure destination,” Mr Rafaniello continued.
Plans and designs are already in place for the 2,800m2 attraction and construction is expected to begin in June 2016.
Troy Taylor, LEGO Director of Marketing for Australia & New Zealand, said Melbourne’s all-new LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre will be the first of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere, and remarked: “Merlin has been a valued long-time partner of the LEGO Group. It is fantastic that Australian children and families will get the opportunity to have a deeper engagement with the LEGO® brand through the LEGOLAND® Discover Centre.”
The all-new LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre will join Merlin’s award-winning SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium in forming a new “cluster” of attractions in close proximity, offering a fun, interactive and educational experience for the whole family.
Since expanding into the Australia and New Zealand market in 2012, Merlin currently operates 11 visitor attractions and two ski resorts in Australia and New Zealand in the states of New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland, as well as Auckland in New Zealand.