The Malaysian Reserve

No SST impact expected for theme parks

Sunway Malls and Theme Parks CEO HC Chan said both Sunway Lagoon and Lost World of Tambun recorded an incremental growth in visitor-ship in 2017, with 1.6 million visitors and 1.1 million visitors respectively (Pic: TMR)

by NUR HAZIQAH A MALEK / TMR file pix

The themed attractions and parks operators are expecting clear skies ahead as the Sales and Services Tax (SST) will not affect the industry.

Themed Attractions Resorts and Hotels Sdn Bhd public relations agency Edelman Malaysia marketing communications manager Amanda Christi said the body is not experiencing any impact with regard to SST.

“We are not affected and promotions, as well as ticket sales will be status quo,” she told The Malaysian Reserve (TMR).

The industry is also expected to grow as urbanisation leads to more families crowding theme parks amid heavy investments into the sector.

Theme parks in the region have increased, but trends suggest standalone theme parks are now becoming less attractive compared to resort set-ups, with several new attractions lined up for launches by Themed Attractions Resorts & Hotels.

However, some locals on Twitter agree to disagree.

Twitter user @dhirahnazar told TMR that she was not impressed by the local water park in Gambang, Pahang.

“I’ve been to Gambang Water Park all the way back in 2008 or 2009, and I wasn’t impressed,” she said.

The water park is a part of the Bukit Gambang Resort City, an integrated resort city developed with the concept of “One Location, Multiple Attractions”.

It is managed by Sentoria Themeparks and Resorts Sdn Bhd, the leisure arm of Sentoria Group Bhd.

On the other hand, Twitter user @atykh_s, or Nur ‘Aqilah Nafeesa said local theme parks can be worth it even if there are expensive, though it depends on their reputation.

“(The) Sunway Lagoon entrance ticket is also affordable when bought online, and better when buying the Quack Express for weekends. It may be RM180, but it’s worth it,” she said.

Throughout the weekend at the Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents Fair at Putra World Trade Centre, theme park deals were made available with annual passes at the price of a one-day theme park ticket.

The first Malaysian Attractions Benchmark Report was published last year by the Park Database and Malaysian Association of Amusement Theme Park and Family Attraction (MAAFTA).

The report noted Malaysia to count three world-class internationally branded theme parks along its North-South corridor by 2018, from Johor Baru to Ipoh, namely the Legoland Malaysia Resort and the Movie Animation Park Studios.

MAATFA member Thibault Paquin said the association needs to look at a new generation of indoor attractions.

“We can move towards new trends such as active play, edutainment and intellectual property-based concepts, which will offer new indoor entertainment concepts,” he said in the report.