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Universal Studios to Develop Theme Park in Dubailand, Dubai UAE


DUBAI, United Arab Emirates-Universal Studios, USA, has announced that it will develop its fourth theme park. This one will be located in Dubai, its first in the Middle East.

It will be a a $2.2 billion project modeled after Universal's theme parks in Florida, California and Japan, offering Mideast vacationers rides, shows and attractions designed by creative consultant Steven Spielberg and based on blockbuster movies like King Kong and Jurassic Park.

Tatweer, a government-owned developer, said it would partner with the Hollywood-based film studio's resorts arm to develop the facility. "Universal Studios Dubailand will blur the line between fact and fiction and be the place where visitors can relive stories once reserved for the silver screen. Scenes from the biggest names in filmmaking history such as Jurassic Park and King Kong will be transformed into adventures."

The theme park will contain four zones including Hollywood zone, Metropolis zone, and Adventure zone.

Thomas Williams, Chairman and CEO of Universal Parks & Resorts, said, "The vision of the leadership of Dubai, the investor-supportive environment and the convenient geographic location of Dubailand, combined with other strategic and iconic offerings, all contribute in making Dubai our location of choice for our first branded theme park in this region."

The 6.5 million square-foot facility will be the centerpiece of a gargantuan vacation resort district called Dubailand, which is being built on the city's desert outskirts.

Dubailand itself is being developed as an Orlando-style entertainment zone with several immense theme parks; luxury office buildings; posh hotels, condo hotels and resorts; world-class malls and shopping centers; numerous restaurants, championship sports venues and upscale residential housing.
Universal City Dubai expects to lure visitors from Asia, Europe and elsewhere in the Middle East when its first phase is completed in 2010.

Because of the searing summer temperatures in Dubai, most of the resort will be indoors.

Tatweer also plans to develop a nearby resort hotel zone with nearly 30,000 rooms, as well as a gated community dubbed "The Tiger Woods Dubai," featuring the first-ever course designed by the champion golfer.

Tatweer is owned by Dubai leader and Emirates prime minister, Sheik Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, through his Dubai Holding development company.

Universal Parks & Resorts, a division of General Electric Co.'s NBC Universal, operates similar theme parks in Hollywood, California; Orlando, Florida; and Osaka, Japan. Its Dubai franchise will include 4,000 hotel rooms as well as restaurants, shops and offices, Tatweer said.

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