YB DATO’ SRI NANCY ANNOUNCED SOUTHEAST ASIA’S FIRST SKI PARK WORTH RM 100 MIL TO BE ESTABLISHED IN CAMERON HIGHLANDS BY 2023, AS THE COUNTRY RECOVERS FROM THE PANDEMIC

by Adam Ham
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International renowned theme park developer, Sim Leisure Group has just announced its latest grand plans to develop an European themed outdoor ski attractions in the heart of Cameron Highlands, Pahang. ESCAPE Cameron Highlands, worth RM 100 million will be carefully planned in the cool surroundings of the highlands with a set of five aesthetically different villages made to attract local tourists and people from the ASEAN region who are looking to escape the tropical heat in Southeast Asia. Escape Cameron Highlands is built in collaboration with the site’s landowner, Hektar Muda Sdn Bhd, led by Datuk Jimmy Doh.

Based in the naturally hilly landscape, the park would feature a ski lift that would take visitors up the top of a 1.2km dry ski track, without snow, and guide them through scenic routes down the hill. This theme park will also feature the company’s signature downhill rides and adventure-based attractions. It will also incorporate the brand’s Gravity-play and Adventure-play games to new heights, capitalizing on the site’s overall 220m height difference. The section will start with the Iberian village at the bottom, followed by the British, Balkan and Nordic villages moving up, before finally peaking at the Alpine village at the top. The themed villages will also be featuring accommodation and rental offerings, in addition to hosting traditional European pastimes and activities.

The first phase of the theme park, spanning across a 60-acre (24.28ha) valley at an elevation of 220m, is scheduled to open in the first half of 2023. This unique themed park is expected to be the first of its kind in the region to offer an outdoor ski attraction within an equatorial climate in 2023, assuring that the park will preserve the natural habitat of Cameron Highlands, setting the trend for sustainable theme park development.

At the official launch of ESCAPE Cameron Highlands, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture (MOTAC), Dato’ Sri Hajah Nancy Shukri was excited about the new attractions for Malaysia, who said, “ESCAPE Cameron Highlands will do so much more than revitalize Cameron Highlands as a major tourism hub. This timely development will kickstart the revival of Malaysia’s domestic tourism industry, as a whole, which has been greatly hit by the Covid-19 pandemic since last year.”

Sim Leisure Group which is popularly known within the theme park industry in the past 30 years, has been credited for more than 300 projects, including Laguna WaterPark Dubai, Mattel Play! Town Dubai, Escape Penang, Ski Dubai, Legoland Denmark & Malaysia, Lost Paradise of Dilum Bahrain, Universal Studios Singapore, Kidzania Malaysia, etc. CEO & Founder of Sim Leisure Group, Sim Choo Kheng also mentioned that his love for developing exciting family attractions would be his core, but at the same time developing an environmentally sustainable attraction in various green environment will be his priority.

Sim, who appreciates the nice weather, vegetables and strawberries of Cameron Highlands proudly said, “The upcoming theme park will be a zero-energy facility. We will rely 100% on renewable energy which will come mainly from our photovoltaic facility, some from wind turbines and mini hydropower. The Escape Cameron Highlands will adopt our signature minimalist approach to construction, minimal disturbance to nature, lots of tree planting, minimal use of energy, rainwater harvesting, and lots of recycling initiatives.”

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