Hotel Online  Special Report
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Hotel Waterpark Resorts
Construction Report 2006
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73 Are Under Construction, Another 108 are planned
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By Jeff Coy and Bill Haralson

July 6, 2006 --- Hotels with indoor waterparks will grow to a forecast of 144 by year end 2006, up 33% from 108 in 2005. Meanwhile, ordinary hotels add less than 1.0% growth to the overall hotel industry room supply.

Seventy-three (73) new hotel waterpark additions and expansion projects are under construction or will break ground during 2006. Thirteen have already opened during the first half of the year. A total of 36 hotel indoor waterparks with 6,004 rooms and 1,095,440 square feet of waterpark are expected to open before year end 2006. Another 37 are under construction and scheduled to open in 2007.
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Construction Project Growth
Hotel Waterpark Resorts USA
  2007F 2006 F 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000
Open at beginning of year
144
108
81
65
50
41
32
18
Openings during year
37
36
27
16
15
9
9
14
Total Open at end of year
181
144
108
81
65
50
41
32
Percent Change
25.7%
33.3%
33.3%
24.6%
30.0%
22.0%
28.1%
 
Under Construction
76
52
32
9
10
9
8
In Development
99
121
69
46
19
Source: Jeff Coy & Bill Haralson, Hotel Waterpark Resort Research & Consulting.

What’s behind the phenomenal growth?

  • Leisure travel patterns favor the drive-to regional resort or the urban hotel with a major indoor waterpark. Indoor waterparks and other recreation-entertainment concepts are a part of almost every new hotel and resort development today.
  • While indoor waterparks can be expensive to build, the positive impact on hotel revenues and profits is even more impressive. Hotels with indoor waterparks achieve higher occupancy, higher revenue per room (revpar) and higher net operating income than comparable hotels without indoor waterparks.
  • Almost every hotel waterpark resort project includes the condo-hotel concept.
  • Several new projects have opened with the new technology domed structures and enclosures that let in the light and keep out the weather --- extending peak season to year round. And while most hotel waterpark resorts focus on families with young children, a few new projects include surf-quality wave parks and whitewater river courses to add a little more adventure.
  • Hotel waterparks are here to stay.
Growth continues to accelerate

Hotel waterpark projects under construction have grown from 8 in 2000 to 52 in 2005 to 73 that are under construction or will break ground during 2006. Projects in the development phase grew from 19 in 2002 to 121 in 2005 and 108 in 2006.

The number of hotel rooms attached to indoor waterparks is expected to grow from 5,400 in 2000 to a forecast of over 36,000 in 2007, which is nearly a 7X increase over seven years.
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Room Supply Growth
Hotel Waterpark Resorts USA
  2007F 2006F 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000
Open at beginning of year
24,389
18,385
13,877
11,464
8,510
7,452
5,487
3,545
Openings during year
12,008
6,004
4,508
2,413
2,954
1,058
1,965
1,942
Total Open at end of year
36,397
24,389
18,385
13,877
11,464
8,510
7,452
5,487
Percent Change
49.2%
32.7%
32.5%
21.0%
34.7%
14.2%
35.8%
 
Under Construction
18,499
9,038
4,432
1,144
1,366
1,058
1,704
In Development
20,630
26,747
15,864
13,268
4,630
Source: Jeff Coy & Bill Haralson, Hotel Waterpark Resort Research & Consulting

The total square footage of indoor waterparks attached to hotels was 732,100 in Year 2000. That number will grow to more than 3.5 million square feet by year end 2006. The supply of hotel indoor waterpark space grew 24% in 2004, 40% in 2005 and is expected to grow 45% in 2006. The new projects tend to have more rooms and bigger indoor waterparks.
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Indoor Waterpark Square Footage Growth
Hotel Waterpark Resorts USA
  2007F 2006F 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000
Open at beginning of year
3,514,109
2,418,669
1,721,269
1,385,969
1,019,104
935,069
732,100
487,000
Openings during year
1,934,300
1,095,440
697,400
335,300
366,865
84,035
202,969
245,100
Total Open at end of year
5,448,409
3,514,109
2,418,669
1,721,269
1,385,969
1,019,104
935,069
732,100
Percent Change
55.0%
45.3%
40.5%
24.2%
36.0%
9.0%
27.7%
 
Under Construction
2,979,940
1,739,240
In Development
3,331,027
4,687,027
Source: Jeff Coy & Bill Haralson, Hotel Waterpark Resort Research & Consulting

Hotel waterpark resorts grew out of Wisconsin during the mid-1990s, and then spread to adjacent states in the Upper Midwest. The growth pattern is spreading across the northern tier of the USA, with new properties stretching to states in the Pacific Northwest and New England. Many seasonal hotels and resorts now have or will soon open indoor-outdoor waterparks to build revenues on a year round basis. New hotel waterpark resort developments are now occurring in the Sunbelt where developers are planning indoor-outdoor waterparks as part of mixed-use residential resort projects.

Recent Openings First Half 2006: USA

Thirteen (13) hotel waterpark resorts opened in the first half of 2006:

In January 2006, Best Western Edgewater Resort in Duluth MN completed its renovation-expansion to include a 30,000 sf indoor waterpark consisting of 4 waterslides, 2 pools, hot tub and lazy river. You can reach Ken and John Goldfine at 218-723-8433.

Belatedly making our list, Paul Younes has a 163-room Holiday Inn in Kearney NE which sports a 4,000 sf indoor waterpark with 4 waterslides and 2 pools along with 12 meeting rooms and 20,000 sf of meeting space. Talk to Paul or Lori Roach at 308-237-5971.

Great Escapes Resort & Waterpark opened in February 2006 in Lake George NY with 200 rooms and a 38,000 sf indoor waterpark that includes a waterslide, 2 pools, lazy river and wave pool. The hotel waterpark resort is owned by a partnership involving Six Flags. For more info, contact Mark Shapiro, Six Flags Corporation CEO, at 518-581-8800.

In March 2006, Lake Lawn Resort completed its Phase 1 conversion of 284 hotel rooms into 222 condo units at Lake Delavan WI. In Phase 2, there’s a large indoor waterpark planned, according to co-owners Tom Quinn and Pat Nelson. For more, call 847-517-9090.

In April 2006, developer Ben Errez completed the conversion of Ramada Big Splash, a 150-unit condo hotel and 7,000 sf indoor waterpark in Auburn WA, and then he sold the facility to the Swinomish Tribe.

The 214-room Holiday Inn Elmhurst IL converted its holidome into a 25,000 sf indoor waterpark in April 2006. The waterpark features 4 waterslides, 2 pools and a lazy river, according to managing partner Mike Cohen. Reach him at 952-334-0784.

Great Wolf Lodge in Wisconsin Dells WI completed the final phase of a four-year, $46 million expansion with the opening of Bear Track Landing, a new 38,000 sf indoor waterpark addition. The massive expansion doubles the existing waterpark to 76,000 sf of soaking wet fun --- making Great Wolf Lodge one of the largest indoor waterpark resorts in North America. The waterpark features the nation’s first headfirst mat racers. Guests race down 4 side by side slides through a dark tunnel twisting into 180-degree turns. "The mat racers create family-friendly competition as a new thrill ride", according to Tim Black, general manager. The resort now has a total of 19 state of the art waterslides and a total of 6 pools including the new Slap Tail Pond wave pool, 2 kiddie slides, zero-depth entry toddler pool and simulators that shoot, squirt and spray water at the touch of a button. Visit www.greatwolf.com or call 1-800-559-9653.
 


Treasure Island Waterpark Resort
1701 Wisconsin Dells Parkway
Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin

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Grand Lodge And Water Park Of America
1700 American Blvd E
Bloomington, Minnesota

In May 2006, Jeff Wirth of the Wirth Companies opened his Grand Lodge & Waterpark of America near the Mall of America in Bloomington MN. With 403 rooms, 70,000 sf of indoor waterpark and a 10-story waterslide tower, the facility is quite impressive. The indoor waterpark consists of 11 waterslides, 8 pools, 2 hot tubs, a lazy river, a wave pool and an uphill water coaster. However, the hotel has only 2 meeting rooms totaling 1,500 sf of meeting space. Contact Jeff Wirth at 612-741-3824.

Holiday Inn East in Columbus OH opened its 60,000 sf Fort Rapids indoor waterpark in May 2006. The developers renovated the original 278 hotel rooms and built 60 new Family Villa Suites. Fort Rapids features 12 waterslides, 3 pools, a lazy river and a 5,000 sf arcade. For more details, call 614-764-9100 to reach Scott Somerville, CEO of Focus Lodging Group LLC, which owns and manages the hotel waterpark. Or visit www.focuslodging.com.

Mt Olympus Water & Theme Park in Wisconsin Dells WI is a megapark that resulted from a merger of Treasure Island Waterpark Resort and Family Land Waterpark, both owned by Jim Mattei, and Mt Olympus Theme Park, owned by Nick Laskaris. The merger was made possible following the acquisition of the 156-acre Playday Motel property. The motel was demolished to make room for four new amusement attractions, including 2 new outdoor water rides, a new go-kart track and a new wooden roller coaster. The Mt Olympus merger involves two lodging properties: Treasure Island Waterpark Resort with 331 rooms and suites and Pleasant View Motel, a budget property featuring 56 rooms, which is owned and operated by Treasure Island. Guests of both hotels receive admission to the new Mt Olympus Water & Theme Park included in the price of their room. For more info, go to www.mtolympusthemepark.com or call Jim Mattei at 608- 253-8560.

Developer Ben Errez completed his conversion of the Ramada Casino Resort & Waterpark in Anacortes WA and then sold the 135-unit condo hotel with its 14,000 sf indoor waterpark to the Swinomish Tribe.

In June 2006, Schlitterbahn Galveston Island Waterpark opened Wasserfest, the world’s first indoor-outdoor convertible waterpark. Wasserfest is a 70,000 sf area that is covered by a retractable roof, which allows the park to remain open year-round and function as an indoor waterpark during the colder months --- and the inclement weather in warmer months. No more worries of a passing thunderstorm ruining your fun. The translucent roof keeps the rain out and lets the light in. Wasserfest includes 4 tube slides, 3 speed slides, 3 activity areas, children’s waterplay things, pint-sized slides, a secluded beach, a hot tub and the Torrent Tidal Wave River --- all under a retractable roof. It’s not attached to a hotel, but Moody Gardens Hotel, Spa & Convention Center are right next door with 428 rooms, 100,000 sf of meeting space, 242 acre botanical gardens, an aquarium and I-MAX theater. Surfenburg and Bastenhoof will open later this summer, which will add several attractions to the outdoor waterpark, including two uphill water coasters, a wave lagoon, beaches, body slides, a kid’s area, two family raft rides and the Boogie Bahn surf ride. Schlitterbahn will also construct an array of three tubing rivers that connect all sections of the 26-acre park together. Call Schlitterbahn at 830-625-2351 and Moody Gardens Hotel at 888-388-8484.
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   Schlitterbahn Galveston Island Waterpark
 2026 Lockheed Street
Galveston, Texas
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Under Construction & Opening in 2006: USA

As of July 1, 2006, we identified 37 properties that are still under construction which we expect to open before year end 2006.

  • Wilderness Resort’s Glacier Canyon Lodge in Wisconsin Dells WI will open its 224-unit condo hotel in July 2006 along with its new 3-acre Lost World Adventure outdoor waterpark. The new park features a 1,600-foot long adventure river system that takes you back to the age of dinosaurs. The resort is expanding to include facilities for business meetings and conventions. A 25,000 sf banquet center will be completed in October 2006. "The banquet center will accommodate conferences of up to 500 people and dinner parties of more than 300," says Joe Eck, director of sales and marketing for the Wilderness. The banquet center, which will be inside Glacier Canyon Lodge, will include wireless internet access and state of the art audio-visual technology. One large room can be broken down into 12 different combinations, and companies can use eight smaller rooms for breakout sessions. A new 18-hole championship golf course will be completed in time for summer 2007. For more info, contact Joe Eck at 800-867-9453.
  • In addition to opening it new Glacier Canyon Lodge and Lost World Adventure outdoor waterpark at The Dells, Wilderness Resort also opened its new Wild Water Dome indoor waterpark in July 2006. The foiltek translucent dome, which covers 65,000 sf of indoor waterpark space, lets in the light but keeps out the weather. The park features Duelling Mammoths or 2-family raft rides, a wave pool and poolside cabanas with bar, TV, internet and VIP service.
  • Country Inn & Suites in Marquette MI is expected to open its 106 rooms and 3,000 sf indoor waterpark during July 2006. The hotel owner is Centrup. Moyle Construction of Houghton MI is building the hotel. For more info, contact Tom Helmanin at 906-226-2700.
  • Comfort Suites Thumper Pond in Ottertail MN opened its 12,000 sf indoor waterpark in July 2006 featuring a 3-story tower with 2 slides --- a 250-foot tube slide and 186-foot body slide. The waterpark also includes an activity pool with 2 basketball hoops and a log floatie and a beach entry pool with water geysers, toddler slide and water bucket. There’s also a lazy river. Thumper Pond is a golf resort with 78 rooms --- so now there’s fun for the whole family. Talk to owner Doug Balaha or general manager Tom Beaudry at 218-367-2008 or go to www.thumperpond.com.
  • Chula Vista Resort in Wisconsin Dells WI plans to open an 80,000 sf indoor waterpark in August 2006, which is part of the resort’s $200 million expansion plan. "When the four-year project is completed, the 300-room Chula Vista will be about triple its current size," said owner Mike Kaminski. Much of the resort’s expansion will include condominium units available for purchase or rent. Phase 1 completions include 166 condos, 80,000 sf indoor waterpark, and a new restaurant. More than 30,000 sf is being added to the existing 40,000 sf of convention facilities. When the expansion is completed in 2009, Chula Vista will have about 1000 condos and hotel rooms, 100,000 sf of waterpark and 200,000 sf of convention space. You can talk to Mike Kaminski at 608-254-8366.
  • A 100-room hotel with 30,000 sf indoor waterpark in Belvedere NY by Sty Blitz is scheduled to open in September 2006. No further information is available.
  • Mark Flaherty Jr, Ed Carow and Chuck Heath of WPH Hotels purchased the Sheraton Resort in Danvers MA last year and announced a $30 million plan to renovate the hotel and build an 85,000 sf indoor waterpark. The project, scheduled for completion in September 2006, will be the first indoor waterpark in New England. The resort’s existing facilities include 367 rooms, 18-hole golf course and 50,000 sf of meeting space. Flaherty, Carow and Heath are hotel investors who were involved in the Country Springs Hotel & Waterpark in Waukesha WI and the Lodge at Cedar Creek in Wausau WI prior to their current mission of acquiring and repositioning under-performing properties that can benefit from an indoor waterpark. The three investors also acquired the Sheraton Chicago Northwest and the Cherry Valley Resort in Newark OH near Columbus. They have an impressive strategy to become hotel waterpark resort owners in multiple markets. You can reach Mark Flaherty at 414-254-9861, Ed Carow at 414-254-9864 and Chuck Heath at 608-848-4500 ext 202.
  • Holiday Inn Express & Splash Universe in Dundee MI is scheduled to add another 100 rooms to its existing 76 rooms and open a 53,000 sf River Run indoor waterpark in September 2006. River Run will feature 3 waterslides, 3 pools and a lazy river. The hotel indoor waterpark is located adjacent to Cabela’s Outfitters on US Hwy 23 about 30 miles south of Detroit and 20 miles north of Toledo OH. Focus Hospitality Services of Valparaiso IN manages the hotel. You can talk to James Bell, GM, at 734-529-5100.
  • Ramada DFW & Big Splash Waterpark in Irving TX is converting 150 hotel rooms into 70 condo units that will be sold to private owners. "The renovation, scheduled for completion in September 2006, includes a Deseo Spa, Oceano Restaurant and Big Splash Waterpark," according to Bellevue WA-based Plan B Development LLC members Ben Errez and Bill Adams. For more info, call 425-748-5050.
  • Great Wolf Lodge at Paramount’s Kings Island in Mason (Cincinnati) OH is expected to open its 401 suites, 40,000 sf conference center and 78,000 sf indoor waterpark in October 2006. The waterpark sports 11 waterslides, 4 heated pools, 100 video games and an Aveda spa. "One of the things we love about the Mason project is our relationship with Kings Island," says Great Wolf Resort’s CEO John Emery. Great Wolf Lodge replaces a 39-acre campsite next to Kings Island, one of the nation’s busiest summertime attractions with 3.5 million visitors annually. Kings Island is expecting Great Wolf to make the theme park a year round tourist destination. In exchange for the land, Kings Island became a 15% owner of the resort. You can reach John Emery at 608-251-6400 or visit www.greatwolflodge.com.
  • Surfparks LLC, Ron Jon Surf Shop and Festival Bay Mall owner (Belz) broke ground in January 2006 on its $8.5 million Ron Jon Indoor Surfpark at Festival Bay Mall on International Drive in Orlando. The indoor surfpark, first of its kind in the world, is expected to open in October 2006. "Surfparks LLC was formed to develop and operate the world’s first and finest wave riding facilities utilizing new technology to create the perfect surf in a pool," says Jamie Meiselman, founder and ceo. Surfparks’ waves are designed by technology partners Aquatic Development Group of Cohoes NY using the pool’s shape and adjustable floor system to configure a variety of waves. The surf pool will generate up to 6 waves per minute and wave heights from 5 to 8 feet and ride lengths from 60 to 100 yards. Under a license agreement, the facility will be known as the Ron Jon Surfpark at Festival Bay Mall --- featuring a Ron Jon pro shop with surfing wear and equipment and a Ron Jon restaurant offering pool side service for spectators and drained wave riders, according to Ed Moriarty, president of Ron Jon Surf Shop. The surf pool will cater to all skill levels from beginner to the experienced surfer and bodyboarder. Funk Ventures Capital Partners is the lead institutional investor. For more info, go to www.surfparks.com, www.ronjons.com, www.aquaticgroup.com and www.belz.com.
  • Focus Hospitality Services is under construction with its Splash Universe Waterpark Resort in Shipshewana IN, a 154-room lodge with 25,000 sf indoor waterpark scheduled to open in October 2006. For more info, call Dean Morgan, president, or Mark Moore, marketing manager, at 219-617-1542.
  • Great Wolf Lodge in Williamsburg VA is constructing 100 additional suites that will open in October 2006 --- bringing the total to 401 rooms. Curtis Brown is GM and regional vice president. Reach him at 608-251-6400.
  • The former Regency Hotel in Omaha NE is under going an $11 million makeover, according to Scott Makinster, a member of the Grover Street Acquisition Group, the new owners. The 119 renovated hotel rooms and 50 two-room suites were ready in June 2006. The 25,000 sf indoor waterpark should be ready for families around October or November 2006. It will feature a 250-foot lazy river, 2 waterslides for adults, 3 slides designed for children, an activity pool and spa. Email scott@makinster.com or dial 402-399-9049.
  • Best Western Clock Tower Hotel in Rockford IL is under-going an indoor pool renovation to include waterpark play features, according to David Sweet, president of Ramkota of Sioux Falls SD, its new owner. The 252-room hotel will open its new 40,000 sf indoor waterpark in November 2006. Talk to David Sweet at 605-334-2371.
  • Jellystone RV & Outdoor Waterpark in Warrens-Tomah WI is under construction with a 48,000 sf indoor waterpark scheduled to open in November 2006, according to Ed Vandermolen and partners. Hotel rooms are planned in the future. For more, go to www.jellystonewarrens.com.
  • Sheraton Chicago Northwest in Arlington Heights IL was recently purchased by WPH Hotels. Its subsidiary, Wave Development LLC, is midway through the construction of a 46,240 sf indoor waterpark scheduled to open by December 2006. The 52-foot tall indoor waterpark addition will attach to the existing 429-room, 12-story hotel and conference center. This will be Chicago’s First Major Indoor Waterpark Resort. It will include a wave pool, river channel, slide tower with tube and body slides, activity pool, children’s pool, whirlpool, spray pad and party rooms. To expand the arcade from 1,000 to 3,000 square feet, the new owners converted three meeting rooms, according to managing partner Chuck Heath. Heath and partners Mark Flaherty and Ed Carow hope that Chicago Northwest will end Wisconsin’s domination as the waterpark capital of the world, especially with more waterpark resorts coming soon to Chicago. You can reach Chuck Heath at 608-848-4500.
  • Lakeview Resort in Canyon Lake TX is a small RV Resort owned by Debbie and Loren Drum. They are under construction with a renovated Lodge, three 3-bedroom cabins, a 19,000 sf conference center and a 7,200 sf indoor-outdoor waterpark called Texanaland. Portions of their project are expected to open by year end 2006. More condo units are planned for 2007. For details, call Debbie at 830-899-7007.
  • Arrowwood Resort at Lake Okoboji IA is under construction with a 100-room condo-hotel, 28,000 sf of conference space and an 18,000 sf indoor waterpark scheduled to open by December 2006, according to David Sweet, president of Sioux Falls SD-based Ramkota Companies and Regency Hotel Management, its owner and manager.
  • Bridges Bay Resort at Lake Okoboji IA is under construction with 48 three bedroom-three bath units in their Trestle Bridge resort condo-hotel --- that’s 144 rentable units and a 19,800 sf indoor waterpark, which should be ready by December 2006 or early 2007. The indoor waterpark will have waterslides for all ages, a lazy river, 500-gallon tipping bucket, lily-pad waterwalk, mushroom water sprays, basketball hoops and Lil’ Spirt waterplay things. The resort will also feature 72 three bedroom residential condos, some of which are available now. For more info, call Regency Hotel Management at 605-334-2371 or 605-323-0027.
  • Holiday Inn & Suites in Maumee OH is under construction with 106 rooms and a 22,000 sf domed indoor waterpark to be completed by the end of 2006. Dome Technology Inc of Idaho Falls ID is constructing a huge dome over the entire waterpark, the first of its kind, after years of building churches, schools and residences, using their thin-shell concrete system. The indoor waterpark won’t be large enough to entertain for a whole day or compete with Sandusky area resorts, according to Mike Patel, a member of the ownership group, Image Hospitality Group LLC of Pooler GA. "We’ll have the wave action pool, basketball hoops, one body slide, one tube slide and a superbowl, which is where you come down the ride, spin in a bowl and drop into a pool," Patel said. The average night stay, including four tickets to the waterpark, will cost about $100, less than what you will pay at some indoor waterparks in Ohio. Call 912-604-3617 or go to www.imagehotels.net for more information. Also, visit www.dometech.com.
  • A hotel waterpark resort in Ligonier PA is reportedly under construction with 97 rooms and a 28,000 sf indoor waterpark expected to open by late 2006 or early 2007. For more info, call Pam Wolff of Highland Development at 724-836-4582.
  • Mark Flaherty, Ed Carow and Chuck Heath of Milwaukee-based WPH Hotels LLC recently purchased the Cherry Valley Lodge in Newark OH, about 30 miles east of Columbus. Cherry Valley Lodge with its 200 rooms, meeting space for 500 people, 14-mile paved hiking & biking trail is the only hotel in the USA that is also an arboretum. In January 2006, the new owners unveiled a $28 million plan to renovate of the 18-acre property. A signature 45,000 sf indoor waterpark resort is slated to open by year end 2006. The waterpark will feature a 14,000 sf activity pool basketball hoops and water-rope walk, a 249-foot long, 9-foot wide River Channel with water flows of 60 to 120-feet per minute, a plunge pool, a children’s area with floor geysers and whitewater slides and indoor and outdoor whirlpools. Partners include Sage Hospitality of Denver who is now managing the property and Wave Development, a Wisconsin firm that develops hotel waterpark resorts. Horizon Construction Group Inc of Wisconsin is the contractor for the project. In addition to their Cherry Valley Lodge purchase, Flaherty, Carow and Heath recently acquired Sheraton Danvers MA and Sheraton Northwest Chicago IL and have indoor waterpark projects underway. You can reach Chuck Heath at 608-848-4500 or visit www.cherryvalleylodge.com.
  • Double JJ Ranch & New Frontier Indoor Waterpark at Rothbury MI will open its 50 condominiums in July 2006 and is expected to open its 50,000 sf New Frontier indoor waterpark by December 2006. The indoor waterpark features a 57-foot high waterslide, 3 other waterslides, wave pool, lazy river, activity pool, 2 kid slides and 2 hot tubs. The Double JJ Ranch is near Muskegon, intercepts travelers driving from Chicago to Traverse City and is one of west Michigan’s largest tourism investments ever, according owners Bob and Joan Lipsitz. A 50,000 sf Conference Center is scheduled to open in February 2007. You can reach Bob and Joan at 231-894-4444.
Under Construction & Opening in 2007: USA

Of the 73 hotel waterpark resorts that were under construction or will break ground in 2006, thirty-seven (37) are expected to open in 2007 & beyond:
 

Name Location ST Rms Indoor
Waterpark
Sq Ft
Open
Interlaken Resort & Spa Room & IWP Add Lake Geneva WI
414
50,000 
200701
Grand Casino Resort's O-IWP Tunica MS
1,356
100,000 
200701
Indoor Waterpark & Recreation Center Waverly IN
0
300,000 
200701
Split Rock Galleria IWP Addition Lake Harmony PA
0
40,000 
200702
Holiday Inn & Suites Arbor Lakes Maple Grove MN
136
24,000 
200703
Surfpark at Randall's Island Aquatic Center New York City NY
0
182,000 
200703
Lodge at Storm Lake & IWP Storm Lake IA
100
20,000 
200703
Canad Inns Splashers at Alerus Center Grand Forks ND
192
40,000 
200704
Great Wolf Lodge Grand Mound-Centralia WA
317
65,000 
200704
Holiday Inn Eagle Ridge & Waterpark Grand Rapids MN
120
20,000 
200704
Days Inn Add Great Adventure IWP Bellevue-Omaha NE
129
35,000 
200705
Big Horn Resort (Wingate) & Waterpark Billings MT
250
35,000 
200706
Lodge & IWP at Northern Bay Golf Resort Castle Rock Lake WI
225
20,000 
200706
Greek Peak Ski Resort Expansion Syracuse South NY
106
22,000 
200706
Kelly Inn West Yellowstone MT
78
2,500 
200706
Best Western Aberdeen Convert IWP Aberdeen SD
154
200706
Deadwood Mtn Resort & IWP Deadwood SD
18,000 
200803
BW Ramkota Hotel Convert IWP Casper WY
229
200706
Bridges Bay Resort & IWP Spirit Lake IA
144
19,800 
200703
Hotel Condos & Indoor Waterpark Woodinville IN
150
200706
KeyLime Cove Resort IWP Gurnee IL
611
80,000 
200707
Wilderness Resort Phase 1 & Event Center Sevierville TN
264
200707
Wilderness Resort Phase 2 & I-OWP Sevierville TN
348
80,000 
200707
Radisson Resort & Waterpark Albuquerque NM
314
23,000 
200709
Grand Cambrian Resort & I-OWP Wisconsin Dells WI
308
35,000 
200709
Paradise Bay Resort & Waterpark Fishers IN
216
80,000 
200710
Great Wolf Lodge at Grapevine Grapevine TX
404
80,000 
200710
Executive Inn & IWP Add Owensboro KY
544
40,000 
200710
Great Wolf Resort Additions Traverse City MI
130
41,000 
200710
Upper Skagit Hotel & Waterpark Bow WA
240
47,000 
200712
Wyndham Garden Condo & IWP Kent WA
150
6,000 
200712
River Bluff Resort McGregor IA
345
49,000 
200712
Lake Lawn Resort Additions Phase 2 Delavan WI
800
130,000 
200803
Grand Sierra Resort & Casino Reno NV
2,000
150,000 
200803
Grizzly Falls Resort & Waterpark Rosemont IL
400
100,000 
200803
Lodge at Schlitterbahn Vacation Village Kansas City KS
300
200901
Chula Vista Exp Phase 2  Wisconsin Dells WI
534
200907

Coming soon, a few projects are worth mentioning in more detail:

KeyLime Cove Resort & Waterpark in Gurnee IL could break ground on its 30 acres this summer, according to developer Famous Dave Anderson, owner of the nationwide barbecue restaurant chain. The $125 million hotel waterpark resort includes a 611-room hotel and 80,000 sf indoor waterpark, 3 restaurants, spa and a 12,000 sf conference center that could eventually expand to 50,000 sf. Gurnee is one of the top tourist destinations in Illiniois with Six Flags Great America theme park and Gurnee Mills mall. To get the project in Gurnee, rather than across the border in Wisconsin, village officials agreed to a 20-year 3.5% lodging tax rather the normal 5 percent.

Grizzly Falls Resort & Waterpark in Rosemont IL, near O’Hare International Airport, is expected to break ground later this year with a 400-room hotel, 100,000 sf indoor waterpark, spa, family entertainment center, food court, concierge and limo service, according to Chicago-based Landmark Resorts & Hotels. Landmark is a new company formed by former Great Wolf Resort executives Craig Stark and Eric Lund.

Soon, Chicagoland will have four major hotel waterpark resorts to keep families in Illinois rather than traveling to Wisconsin. KeyLime Cove Resort and Grizzly Falls Resort will become new competitors with the existing Sheraton Northwest & Waterpark in Arlington Heights and the recently announced Sun Island Resort & Waterpark in Hoffman Estates IL shown here.

Wilderness Resort is underway with its hotel waterpark resort in Sevierville TN, joining the ranks of Great Wolf Resorts and Kalahari Resorts who have constructed waterpark resort projects outside Wisconsin Dells. Owners Peter Helland and Tom Lucke plan to build a 264-room, six-story lodge and waterpark next to the city’s planned 200,000 sf Events Center. Both are expected to open in Summer 2007. Wilderness Resort also proposes building a second resort hotel on a separate 14-acre site southeast of the Event Center. The second project would have about 348 guest rooms and an 80,000 sf indoor waterpark. Reach Peter Helland at 608-253-9729.

The indoor Surfpark at Randall’s Island Aquatic Center in NYC broke ground in April 2006 and is expected to open in Spring 2007. At 182,000 sf, not only will this be the largest indoor waterpark in the USA, it will be the first indoor Surfpark in the nation. A Surfpark is more than just a wave pool with 2 to 4-foot waves; a Surfpark can generate surf-quality waves of 9-feet or higher. New York City Parks & Recreation Department selected Aquatic Development Group of Cohoes NY to design, develop and operate the park under a 35-year lease. ADG (Wavetek) partnered with ASR (Surftek) of New Zealand to develop the surf-quality wave technology. A wedge-shaped pool and adjustable floor configurations using a computer are used to create the surf-quality waves. ADG is involved in the construction of a second indoor Surfpark (Ron Jon) in Orlando, which may open before Randall’s Island. You can talk to Ken Ellis at ADG by dialing 518-783-0038 or going to www.aquaticgroup.com.

Grand Sierra Resort & Casino in Reno NV is expected start soon on its renovation and expansion of the 1995-room former Reno Hilton. The property sits on 148 acres with a 30-acre lake. Plans include converting 824 hotel rooms to condominiums, developing 2,000 residential condos and remodeling the entire hotel. New additions include a 50,000 sf outdoor waterpark and a 150,000 sf indoor waterpark, which will become one of the largest hotel waterpark resort in the USA. The Grand Sierra executive team includes Tom Schrade, Dodd Mitchell, Bob Pace, Scott Bayless and Terry Ramaker. For more info, call Bob Pace at 320-267-8549.

In Development 2006: USA

We have identified 108 hotel waterpark projects that are in the planning and development process --- anywhere from feasibility to preliminary design to financing to final approval on permits. However, not all of these projects are likely to break ground.
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Hotel Waterparks in Development 2006
State
Hotel
Waterpark
Resort
Projects
Number
of
Hotel
Rooms
Indoor
Waterpark
Square
Footage
Minnesota
13
2,754
428,000
Michigan
11
2,295
516,093
Wisconsin
10
2,112
364,000
Illinois
7
1,924
270,000
Pennsylvania
7
1,500
282000
Indiana
6
950
185,000
New York
5
2,522
283,000
Iowa
5
534
140,000
Washington
4
1,063
160,000
North Dakota
4
780
81,200
Colorado
3
1,050
180,000
Massachusetts
3
1,047
160,000
Texas
3
975
120,000
Arizona
3
880
113,000
California
3
850
140,000
Virginia
3
700
140,000
Missouri
3
380
90,000
New Hampshire
2
567
87,234
South Dakota
2
367
75,000
New Jersey
2
200
90,000
Mississippi
1
1200
60,000
Connecticut
1
350
40,000
Ohio
1
300
60,000
West Virginia
1
300
60,000
South Carolina
1
300
40,000
Idaho
1
200
40,000
Maryland
1
200
40,000
Montana
1
200
40,000
Oregon
1
200
30,000
Totals
108
26,099
4,109,527

Until hotel waterpark developers actually announce their projects to the public, we do not publish locations or project details. However, anyone wanting to discuss the competitive supply, hotel waterpark demand for particular markets and/or the feasibility of particular sites may call 480-488-3382 or email jeffcoy@jeffcoy.com.

Under Construction 2006: Canada

Great Wolf Lodge in Niagara Falls, Ontario, opened its 404 rooms and 103,000 sf Bear Track Landing indoor waterpark in April 2006. Ripley Entertainment Inc, a Jim Pattison Company, spent about $200 million on the family resort destination that includes a Ripley-owned Great Wolf Lodge on a 25-acre parcel along the Niagara River, just north of downtown Niagara Falls, Canada. Ripley’s is the first license ever granted for a Great Wolf Lodge.

There were also plans for a state of the art 115,000 sf Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada; however owner Jim Pattison has put the new aquarium on hold due to the triple whammy --- (1) outlandish gas prices, (2) the strong Canadian dollar and most importantly (3) the Bush government’s new program that will require all travelers, including US citizens, to have a passport or "other accepted (ID) document" to cross the border into the US, most likely by June 2009. Causing fear on many levels in Ontario, no one here knows for certain yet what "other accepted document" means, or what it will cost.

What Canadians do know is that few US citizens own passports, and that it would be ridiculously expensive for a family to get the documents for a trip to Niagara Falls, Ontario. Typically, about 14 million people, almost half of them Americans, flock to this city. Some say that many Americans think the passport requirement is already in effect.

Last year, Niagara Falls Ontario saw a 15% drop in visitors from the US. Attraction owners think, when the border control go into effect, one million fewer Americans will visit here. You can talk to Bob Masterson at 615-646-7465.

The Fallsview Indoor Waterpark in Niagara Falls, Ontario opened its 125,000 sf of indoor waterpark space in April 2006.

Best Western Hotel & Indoor Waterpark in Stettler AB will open in July 2007.

Under Construction & In Development 2006: Rest of World

  • Kerzner’s Atlantis Resort Expansion, Nasaau, Bahamas
  • Baha Mar & Eco Waterpark, Nassau, Bahamas
  • Kerzner’s Atlantis Resort, Dubai, UAE
  • Al Areen Desert Spa & Resort, Manama, Bahrain
  • Centre Parc, Paris, France
  • Vilnius Waterpark, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • Ogmio Astra Pramogu Centras Indoor Waterpark, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • Wodny Indoor Waterpark, Lodz, Poland
  • Wodny Indoor Waterpark, Warschau, Poland
  • Murphy’s Wave Pool, Bagdad, Iraq
  • Aqua Dunya & Jumeirah Resort at Dubailand, Dubai, UEA
  • Sands Resort & Kinderland Waterpark, Yorkshire, UK
  • Marina Bay Family Resort with Indoor-Outdoor Waterpark, Singapore, SG
Hotel Waterpark Resort Research & Consulting is a collaboration of Jeff Coy & Bill Haralson. Coy heads JLC Hospitality Consulting and is certified by the International Society of Hospitality Consultants. Haralson heads William L. Haralson & Associates and is a Hall of Fame member of the World Waterpark Association. For more info, contact Jeff at 480-488-3382 or email jeffcoy@jeffcoy.com. Website is www.jeffcoy.com. Reach Bill at 972-231-7444 or email wharalson@aol.com. Website is www.wlha-inc.com.
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Contact:

Jeff Coy
 HOTEL WATERPARK RESORT
Research & Consulting
JLC Hospitality Consulting
PO Box 4090 / 39401 N 67th Place
Cave Creek, AZ 85327-4090
480-488-3382 tel
480-488-3382 fax
Email is jeffcoy@aol.com or jeffcoy@jeffcoy.com
Website is www.jeffcoy.com

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Also See: What Are the Risk Factors of a Hotel Waterpark Investment? / Jeff Coy & Bill Haralson / January 2006
Hotel Waterpark Resort Industry Report 2005 23 New Hotel Waterparks Open, 52 Under Construction / Jeff Coy and Bill Haralson / October 2005
Hotel Waterpark Resorts Construction Report 2005 / Jeff Coy and Bill Haralson / October 2005
Hotel Waterpark Resort Industry Report 2004; 14 New Hotel Waterparks Open, 32 Under Construction / October 2004
Hotel Waterpark Resorts - Construction Report 2004; 32 Are Under Construction or Breaking Ground in 2004 / Aug 2004

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