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Universal Studios Beijing

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Universal Studios Beijing
Entrance to the theme park
LocationWenjing Subdistrict,[1] Tongzhou District, Beijing, China
Coordinates39°51′23″N 116°40′44″E / 39.85632°N 116.67886°E / 39.85632; 116.67886
StatusOperating
OpenedSeptember 1, 2021 (soft opening)[2]
September 20, 2021 (grand opening)[3][4]
OwnerBeijing Shouhuan Cultural Tourism Investment
NBCUniversal
(Comcast)
Operated byBeijing Shouhuan Cultural Tourism Investment
Universal Destinations & Experiences
General managerTom Mehrmann[5]
ThemeShow business
Universal works
Area130 acres (53 ha)
Attractions
Total21
Roller coasters4
Water rides1
WebsiteOfficial site
Universal Studios Beijing
Simplified Chinese北京环球影城
Traditional Chinese北京環球影城

Universal Studios Beijing (Chinese: 北京环球影城) is a Universal theme park in Beijing that opened on September 20, 2021[3][4] as part of Universal Beijing Resort. Invited-only test operation started on September 1, 2021.[2] The park would become the fifth Universal Studios-branded theme park in the world, the seventh Universal-built park overall, and the third in Asia, after Universal Studios Japan and Universal Studios Singapore.

The project was announced on October 13, 2014 with the plan to invest 20 billion RMB (US$3.3 billion) into the new theme park; a groundbreaking ceremony was held on October 31, 2016. It features attractions themed primarily to Universal-owned movies, TV shows, animation, and music, as well as licensed properties from other companies (e.g., Warner Bros. etc.)

History

It was reported in March 2012 that officials from Comcast and its subsidiary NBCUniversal were meeting with China's sixth-largest city, Tianjin, to discuss a possible Universal park in the port city. Previously, there are said to have been many on and off again discussions for building a possible Universal theme park in China over the years going back to when Hong Kong Disneyland was first announced. On January 7, 2014, Shanghai Securities News reported that an application to begin construction on a Universal Studios park in the Tongzhou District of Beijing was filed, with work to begin in late 2014 on this $2 billion project. Demolition of existing structures had already begun, with the goal of opening the park in 2018. Comcast CEO Brian L. Roberts predicted that they expected to take market share away from Disney Parks, Experiences and Products chains with their plans to invest in their Universal Studios theme parks. In regards to the competition, Roberts said "We're doubling down on theme parks. We think that there is a lot of 'there' there in the theme-park business for many years to come and that we have a low market share — and only one way to go."[6]

On October 13, 2014, Universal Parks & Resorts CEO Thomas L. Williams announced they signed a deal to build Universal Studios Beijing and is scheduled to open in 2019 instead. The overall investment in the theme park will be more than 20 billion RMB (US$3.3 billion). It will be jointly owned by Beijing Shouhuan Cultural Tourism Investment Co., Ltd. (BSH Investment), a consortium of four state-owned companies, and Universal Parks & Resorts. Estimated at 1,000 acres of Beijing property, it will include an assortment of attractions in the 300-acre theme park from other Universal theme parks as well as new attractions that reflects China's cultural heritage. Outside the theme park, there will be a Universal CityWalk retail/dining zone as well as a themed Universal resort hotel.[7] No attractions were officially revealed when the project was first announced, although many speculated that they would include popular attractions from Universal-owned franchises, as well as third party properties such as Harry Potter and Transformers.

Entrance to Universal Studios in Beijing, written in both English/Mandarin
Entrance to the park (2024)

On October 28, 2016, the park broke ground, while also announcing that the opening had been delayed from 2019 until 2020.[8][9] The construction will create approximately 40,000 new jobs. According to Duan Qiang, Chairman of Beijing Tourism Group, one of the shareholders of Beijing Shouhuan, the first phase of the park will provide between 8,000 and 10,000 jobs. Around 1/3 of the attractions at the $3.3 billion park will be themed on Chinese culture and the first phase will occupy an area of 1.59 square kilometers (0.61 sq mi) in Tongzhou, including two hotels offering 1,200 to 1,400 rooms. One hotel will reportedly be Universal-branded while the other will carry the NUO brand. More Chinese elements, such as fireworks and parades, are planned for phase two and three in the future.[10]

According to Comcast's CEO Brian L. Roberts, the Comcast-owned Universal Beijing Resort shall open "on time and on budget in 2021".[11] Construction of Phase 1 of Universal Beijing Resort (which includes the full Universal Studios Beijing) completed in April 2021,[12] and opened on September 20, 2021.[3]

On October 31, 2022, in accordance with the epidemic prevention and control requirements of Beijing, Universal Beijing Resort had completed in-depth cleaning and disinfection of the park, as well as related risk assessments, and will resume opening.[13]

On November 18, 2022, the "Winter Holiday" themed event at Universal Beijing Resort officially started.[14]

Starting from October 7, 2023, to November 11, Universal Studios Beijing will operate until 10:00 PM every Thursday to the following Monday, and Universal CityWalk will extend its business hours until midnight.[15]

Lands and attractions

Universal Studios Beijing is approximately 54 hectares (130 acres) in area, occupying the northeastern most part of the 400-hectare (990-acre) Universal Beijing Resort.[16] Universal Beijing Resort encompasses seven themed scenic areas, 37 rides and attractions, 24 entertainment performances, 80 dining options, and 30 retail outlets. The first phase occupies 159.57 hectares; the second phase, which is planned to include a theme park with Chinese elements, will introduce Chinese culture and IPs such as the Monkey King, and occupies 165.83 hectares; the third phase is planned to build a water park. It is the third Universal Studios theme park in Asia and the fifth globally. [17]The park's seven themed zones surround a large central lagoon; each features meet-and-greet locations, restaurants, quick-service dining, food carts, and retail stores and carts.[18][19][20]

Hollywood Boulevard

Themed after the real Hollywood Boulevard, in Hollywood, CA, this area acts as the entryway to the park. The area also contains a music plaza, Mel's Diner, and Sunset Grille restaurant.[21] The park's daily "Universal on Parade" premiered alongside the park on September 20, 2021, and features themed floats, characters, and performers based on Universal's Despicable Me/Minions, Shrek, Madagascar, and Kung Fu Panda franchises.[22]

Name Opened Description
Lights, Camera, Action! 2021 Featuring directors Zhang Yimou and Steven Spielberg, it is Universal Beijing's version of the attraction from Universal Studios Singapore.
Untrainable 2021 A How to Train Your Dragon-themed stageshow.

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter - Hogsmeade

The park's "Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts Castle" projection show
Hogwarts Castle
Cast members of the Frog Acapella (2024)
Performers of the Frog Acapella (2024)

Themed after the Harry Potter franchise. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is filled with numerous innovative attractions, shops, restaurants, and entertainment projects. From magical spells to fantastic creatures, from dark villains to brave heroes, you can see it all here. Visitors can explore the Hogwarts Castle, shop at the stores on the streets of Hogsmeade, and taste delicious meals and desserts at some of the most famous restaurants in the magical world. Every detail in the scenic area recreates a magical world, taking visitors to the enchanting world they have experienced in novels or movies. Retail shops within the area include: Hogsmeade Station, Zonko's Joke Shop, Gladrags Wizardwear, Wiseacre's Wizarding Equipment, Owl Post & Owlery, Ollivanders Wand Shop in Hogsmeade, Dervish and Banges, Honeydukes, and Filch's Emporium of Confiscated Goods. Restaurants in this area include Hog's head and Three Broomsticks.[23][24]

Name Opened Description
Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey 2021 A motion simulator dark ride based on the Harry Potter film series that features real sets and screens.
Flight of the Hippogriff 2021 A Mack Rides Youngstar Coaster.
Ollivanders Experience in Hogsmeade 2021 A guest is chosen to test out various wands until they find a match, punctuated by music and special effects.
Frog Choir 2021 An a cappella stage show featuring amphibian hand puppets.

Minion Land

Signage for the park's Minion Land

Themed after Illumination's Minions, Despicable Me, and Sing franchises. This is the second Universal theme park to have a full-scale Despicable Me themed area, after Universal Studios Japan. The park brings to life many characters and classic scenes from the movies. In the streets, ports, and city centers, you can see Minions wandering around, and the first stop of the "Sing" tour is performed at the Illumination Theatre, where visitors can sing and dance with many star characters from "Sing." On Super Silly Island, the Silly Swirly ride and the Super Silly Fun ride are waiting for brave visitors to take on the challenge.This area includes The Lair - Villain Restaurant.[25][26]

Name Opened Description
Despicable Me Minion Mayhem 2021 A computer-animated motion simulator ride featuring characters from the Despicable Me franchise.
Sing on Tour 2021 An immersive musical stageshow attraction based on the Sing franchise.
Super Swirly 2021 A Dumbo-styled family attraction.
Loop-Dee Doop-Dee 2021 A steel indoor family roller coaster.

Kung Fu Panda Land of Awesomeness

A sculpture of Po inside Universal Park's first fully-indoor area

Themed after DreamWorks Animation's Kung Fu Panda movie series. The first entirely-indoor land for a Universal theme-park. The world of Kung Fu Panda is brought to life for visitors, who will embark on a dream journey with Po to become a master of martial arts. Here, guests can experience the rich aroma at Mr. Ping's Noodle House and feel the charm of Kung Fu on the journey with the Dragon Warrior. The entire scenic area is designed around a "Chinese legendary experience," creating an all-weather indoor attraction that will be the world's first themed area based on "Kung Fu Panda." Here, visitors will be surrounded by numerous attractions that embody authentic Chinese elements, including the Jade Palace, Panda Village, and the Tree of Heavenly Wisdom, beloved by Kung Fu Panda fans.[27][28]

Name Opened Description
Kung Fu Panda: Journey of the Dragon Warrior 2021 A multimedia indoor boat ride themed to "The Valley of Peace."
Carousel of Kung Fu Heroes 2021 A family carousel attraction, with seats themed to the franchise's characters.
Lanterns of Legendary Legends 2021 A Balloon Race-styled family attraction.
Po's Kung Fu Training Camp 2021 An interactive play area.

Transformers: Metrobase

Themed after the Transformers media franchise. The area's rides and layout are similar to Universal Islands of Adventure's Marvel Super Hero Island. It will become the world's first theme park area themed around "Transformers." The park features an exclusive, extended story background, with the giant Titan "Metroplex" as the central character. Here, "Metroplex" collaborates with outstanding Chinese scientists to select a site rich in energy crystals in the suburbs of Beijing as the Beijing headquarters of the Autobot base N.E.S.T. In this top-secret, ultra-high-tech area, humans and Autobots form an alliance to protect the Earth together.The area includes the Energon Power Station counter-service restaurant.[29][30]

Tall Statue of Optimus Prime next to Transformers: Battle of AllSpark, Beijing
Statue of Optimus Prime next to Transformers: Battle of AllSpark
Name Opened Description
Transformers: Battle for the AllSpark 2021 An installation of Universal's Transformers motion-based 3D simulator ride.
Decepticoaster 2021 A rollercoaster, similar to Islands of Adventure's The Incredible Hulk Coaster.
Bumblebee Boogie 2021 A spinner ride, similar to Islands of Adventure's Storm Force Accelatron.

Jurassic World Isla Nublar

Themed after the Jurassic World movie franchise. At this location, visitors will embark on an adventure on Isla Nublar, where dinosaurs once again roam, encountering the unknown of the tropical rainforest, waterfalls, and mysterious lagoons. They can come face-to-face with the mighty and powerful Tyrannosaurus Rex, Velociraptors, Triceratops, and the awe-inspiring Indominus Rex. This area includes the Hammond's restaurant, named after the John Hammond character from the franchise.[31][32]

The Aviary at Isla Nublar, which contains both Camp Jurassic and Jurassic Flyers.
Name Opened Description
Jurassic World Adventure 2021 A new motion-base ride, featuring an animatronic Tyrannosaurus rex, Indominus Rex and Velociraptors.
Jurassic Flyers 2021 A steel inverted powered coaster.
Camp Jurassic 2021 A children's play area, located in an indoor aviary.

Waterworld

Themed after the Waterworld film. This is the first Universal theme park to have a dedicated Waterworld themed area, In the Waterworld, visitors can watch a thrilling Universal Studios water stunt show featuring high-speed water motorcycle dives and heart-stopping plane crashes. The performance immerses guests in an exciting "water battle" through realistic acting and daring stunts, offering a unique themed dining and entertainment experience beyond the stunt show. and includes the Drifter's Cantina restaurant.[33][34]

Name Opened Description
Waterworld Stunt Show 2021 A live water stunt show showcasing many special effects.

Cultural activities

Universal Beijing Resort features 14 shows: "Triwizard Spirit Rally,"[35] "Wandering Rhythm,"[36] "Wand Magic,"[37] "Hogwarts Express Conductor,"[38] "Lights, Camera, Action!,"[39] "Water World Stunt Show,"[40] "Frog Choir,"[41] "Sing! Tour,"[42] "Ollivanders,"[43] "The Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts Castle,"[44] "Minions Meet and Greet,"[45] "Universal CityWalk Cinema,"[46] "Tree of Prosperity and Wisdom,"[47] and "Transformers: Legend of the Fallen."[48]

From January 22 to February 20, 2022, Universal Beijing Resort launched its first "Chinese New Year" seasonal theme event. [49]During the "Winter Holiday" theme event from November 18, 2022, to January 1, 2023, the resort introduced upgraded festive decorations throughout the park and debuted a new entertainment show called "Winter Wonderland."[50]

Transportation

Subway

The Universal Resort station of Beijing Subway on Batong line and Line 7 opened on August 26, 2021.[51]

Visitors to Beijing Universal Resort can take the subway to the train station, from exits B, C, D about 7 minutes walk to Beijing Universal Avenue entrance security room.

Bus

Tongzhou, Beijing's 589 and T116 busses were extended to Universal Beijing Resort on August 26, 2021.[51]

See also

References

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