Universal Studios Dubailand
|Location||Dubailand, Dubai, United Arab Emirates|
|Coordinates||25°3′33″N 55°23′0″E / 25.05917°N 55.38333°ECoordinates: 25°3′33″N 55°23′0″E / 25.05917°N 55.38333°E|
|Operated by||Universal Parks & Resorts|
|Area||20,000,000 square feet (1,900,000 m2)|
Universal Studios Dubailand was a proposed Universal theme park located in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Its plans called for it to be located within Dubailand, a planned entertainment mega-complex. The project broke ground in July 2008 but was put on hold shortly thereafter, and as of December 2012, no construction work has taken place on the project since early 2009.
Universal Studios Dubailand was a joint venture costing over 8 billion dirhams ($2.2 billion US) between Universal Studios and Tatweer, a subsidiary of Dubai Holdings. The theme park was announced on April 30, 2007 with a theme park plan that expected to attract 5 million visitors annually and was scheduled to be completed in 2010.
The project broke ground July 27, 2008, but the global financial crisis at the time prompted the developers to announce that they would delay further development, and push back the opening until at least the first quarter of 2012. However, no construction work on the project site has been reported since at least early 2009. As of mid-2012, the only public evidence of the project is a gate bearing the Universal Studios logo.
The identity of the Dubai joint venture partner is no longer clear, as Tatweer was dissolved in mid-2010, with most of its assets merged into TECOM or other members of Dubai Holdings.
In April 2011, Universal was once again in talks with Dubai officials about finishing the Universal park. However, as of late 2012, there had still not been any construction progress on the proposed site.
In late November 2012, Dubai's ruler, Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, announced Dubai's renewed intentions to invest in an array of development projects in the desert just outside central Dubai, including the world's largest mall and an attached Universal Studios branded "family entertainment centre".
The area was to be designed a lot like Universal Studios Florida's Hollywood area. It was expected to feature a Mel’s Diner building as seen at Universal's Florida and Singapore parks. Restaurant chain Planet Hollywood was thought to be planning on opening their largest restaurant in the area.
A boardwalk / beach themed area for kids expected to have feature Woody Woodpecker’s Nuthouse Coaster, a sand castle themed carousel and Frantic Freeway.
Legendary Heroes was expected to be the home of another incarnation of the Revenge of the Mummy indoor roller coaster. It was also set to be the home to the Eighth Voyage of Sinbad, a foam ball play area and King Tot's Oasis (a water play area).
- Theme Park Investigator. "In Memoriam: Universal Studios Dubailand". Theme Park Investigator.
- "Universal Studios Dubailand: A Case Study on the Rise and Fall of Dubai". Fast Company. 24 August 2009.
- "Dubai, buy, buy: Gulf state starts to build again". The Independent. 12 December 2012. Retrieved 11 January 2013.
In the desert outside the city stands the shell of the last large-scale leisure development – a 107-square-mile entertainment complex called Dubailand which was meant to house the world's largest array of theme parks. The signs for what would have been Universal Studios are whipped by the sand, and its gate leads nowhere.
- "Groundbreaking at Universal Studios Dubailand".
- Suzanne Fenton (2009-01-15). "Job cuts on the rise in Dubai". www.gulfnews.com. Retrieved 2009-01-19.
- Zachary Wilson (23 August 2009). "Universal Studios Dubailand: A Case Study on the Rise and Fall of Dubai". Associated Press. Retrieved 11 January 2013.
- "Dubai plans world's largest mall". New York Daily News. 28 November 2012. Retrieved 11 January 2013.
- Universal Studios Dubailand. Retrieved 19.06.10 from Screamscape.