Las Vegas is no stranger to over-the-top attractions, hosting a variety of them over the years. In a single day, travelers can see a volcano explode, ride a roller coaster in “New York,” race cars, jump off the top of a hotel and more – in the middle of the desert. Coming up in 2014, construction will begin on a new project, designed to be largest, most engaging experience in the world.
Eurasia Vegas will feature indoor/outdoor theme parks, an 800-foot Ferris wheel (bigger than the 683-foot Dubai Eye), multiple golf courses and 15 million square feet of retail space. Anchored by six hotels, 39 casinos and a world-class convention center, Eurasia Vegas looks to have something for everyone, including “nation pavilions” featuring native food, products and entertainment from around the world.
The 1200-acre project is being put together by Eurasia Resorts International, Ltd. Of Nassau, Bahamas, and will be built on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land located not far from the Las Vegas Strip.
Believing that Las Vegas is “no longer the gaming location of choice for many of the world’s top professional gamblers and high-rolling tourists,” Eurasia Las Vegas looks to change all that by making the desert resort “the most compelling, must go and see and shop experience in the world,” says the project’s developer in an 83-page proposal.
As amusement park rides go, there are roller coasters and then there is the Gatekeeper, where riders sit as if on the wings of a plane 170 feet above ground. Experiencing sharp turns, inversions and rolls, Gatekeeper creates the feeling of weightlessness, sending riders turning and twisting at speeds of nearly 70 miles per hour.
Gatekeeper is the latest ride at Ohio’s Cedar Point amusement park, voted the Best Amusement Park in the World for 15 consecutive years by the readers of Amusement Today. Taking more than 12 million pounds of concrete to build, the Gatekeeper is the park’s premiere attraction but not the only coaster making up nearly 10 miles of track. Cedar Point boasts a whopping 16 different roller coasters with names like Wicked Twister, Raptor, Magnum XL-200 and the Corkscrew. But Gatekeeper is unique.
“GateKeeper is unlike anything our guests have experienced before,” said John Hildebrandt, Cedar Point’s Vice President and General Manager in a NorthwestOhio.com article.
Manufactured by Bolliger & Mabillard of Switzerland, GateKeeper breaks seven world records, including the longest track (4,164 feet), tallest drop (164 feet) and most inversions of any wing roller coaster in the world.
Space Shuttle Atlantis has a new home in Florida that is nearing completion. As the latest Space Coast attraction, the new $100-million home of the historic spacecraft will launch June 29 at Kennedy Space Center. Far more than a place to store the used orbiter, the new facility will offer visitors unprecedented access to what was once highly classified hardware, uniquely displayed.
This unique experience delivers extraordinary access to Space Shuttle Atlantis, positioned as if it were in space as only astronauts have seen it before. Suspended 30 feet above ground and rotated at slightly less than a 45-degree angle, Atlantis will have her payload bay doors open and robotic arm (Canadarm) extended. Visitors will be able to view the orbiter from below or via a raised surrounding platform.
With 33 missions in space to the credit of Space Shuttle Atlantis, the exterior has been left as-is for visitors to see the wear on its protective external tiles. Over 60 supporting and interactive exhibits plus high-tech simulators tell the story of NASA’s 30-year Space Shuttle Program and the amazing engineering that transformed the way humans explore space. Prominently featured is the shuttle program’s role in building the International Space Station as well as the launch and maintenance of the Hubble Space Telescope.While the newest attraction at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor’s Complex, Atlantis is just one feature to be enjoyed by visitors. The Shuttle Launch Experience simulates what it is like to blast off into space. The Rocket Garden features Redstone, Atlas and Titan rockets that first put NASA astronauts in space, alongside Mercury, Gemini and Apollo capsules. The Astronaut Training Experience brings visitors realistic astronaut training.
Other exhibits trace the history of America’s space program from its beginning and get into the future of space exploration. Far from a relic of another time and a different NASA focus, the Atlantis exhibit promises to complete an experience that fans of space travel may have only dreamed of until now.
Better yet, the Kennedy Space Center website has a rich array of interactive content including a “countdown until the next launch” timer and an Ask An Astronaut feature that invites visitors to pose questions to those who have actually been there and done that.
About the only part of the space shuttle program that visitors won’t see is an actual launch, but we have one of those for you here in this video:
With the Space Shuttle program coming to an end and commercial space flight organizations providing service to the International Space Station, one might wonder what the people at NASA are doing these days. While we’re not sure about other NASA facilities, Kennedy Space Center is keeping busy with a variety of activities.
The Kennedy Space Center (KSC) has been the launch site used for every NASA human space travel flight since 1968. KSC is also a major Florida tourist attraction hosting attractions that include the Shuttle Launch Experience, a simulated journey of launching into space and orbiting Earth, as well as the Astronaut Training Experience, Rocket Garden, two IMAX theaters, the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame and more. Now, KSC is adding yet another attraction, Angry Birds.
The new Angry Birds Space Encounter will be the first comprehensive, interactive Angry Birds attraction in the United States. Designed for people of all ages, the new attraction promises to “brings to life the space adventures of the Angry Birds as they follow their kidnapped eggs into an inter-galactic wormhole, come face to face with Space Pigs and gear up with heroic superpowers,” said KSC in a press release.Set to open at the KSC Visitor Complex on March 22, NASA has a serious reason behind the Angry Birds fun. Collaborating with Angry Birds creator Rovio Entertainment, the idea is to teach players about physics and space exploration, energizing young people regarding future careers in science and technology.
The last time we talked about the “world’s largest Ferris wheel,” it was in reference to New York’s proposal to build the tallest wheel along the waterfront in Staten Island. At 625 feet tall, the New York Wheel promises to carry 1,400 passengers at a time, be taller than the High Roller wheel planned for the Las Vegas strip and 84 feet taller the Singapore flyer. Now, Dubai has thrown its hat in the ring with a wheel even bigger and taller.
At a planned height of just over 688 feet, the Dubai Eye will be the tallest in the world and part of the $1.5 billion Bluewaters Island entertainment project.
To be built in stages starting this April, the Bluewaters development will include a variety of venues to be built over the next two years. Boasting panoramic views of Dubai’s coastline, the man-made island will also include retail, residential and entertainment zones in a continuing effort by the emirate to promote Dubai tourism.
”The Dubai Eye will serve as yet another iconic structure and will distinctively dominate the Dubai skyline,” said Abdullah Al Habbai, Chairman of Dubai’s Meraas Holding, a Dubai-based development company in a statement. “We are confident ‘Bluewaters’ will develop into a key attraction for the UAE, further enhancing Dubai’s status as the preferred global entertainment and retail hub.”
Bluewaters will feature an open-air marketplace circled by dining venues, connected to the mainland by a Disney-like monorail system. Where did the name “Blue Waters” come from? Check this quick video to see: