19:31 27 February 2017
Japan's 1st outdoor Legoland theme park to open in Nagoya in April
NAGOYA, Feb. 27, Kyodo
Japan's first outdoor Legoland theme park, which will open in Nagoya in April, has been created with much effort devoted to making its buildings appear more Lego-like, the head of its operator said.
"We have put a huge effort in improving the park image, which is very much about...making it more authentic," Torben Jensen, president of Legoland Japan, said in a recent interview with Kyodo News.
He said most of the buildings and attractions at the park have been "scaled to Lego" as Lego blocks were used in the process of modeling them.
In addition to over 40 attractions, visitors will be able to see Lego recreations of Japanese scenery and animals, who took around 500,000 man-hours to produce.
Japan already has Legolands in Tokyo and Osaka, but they are indoor theme parks located in shopping malls. The Nagoya park, the first full-scale outdoor theme park of its kind in Japan, follows seven similar parks abroad.
Jensen said that unlike other theme parks in Japan, Lego's new park is entirely dedicated to families with children aged between 2 and 12.
He said Legoland has taken various measures to accommodate such young visitors, including offering smaller versions of roller coasters for children who cannot go on regular rides due to safety reasons.
The park is also training staff to interact with young children by stooping down and speaking accordingly, he added.
Referring to the recent surge in foreign visitors to Nagoya and Japan, Jensen said, "Obviously it is a big potential that we would be targeting moving forward."
He indicated hopes to attract overseas visitors, particularly from Asia, to Nagoya Legoland.
Looking ahead, Jensen said his company has already secured a plot of land to expand the park by 40 percent from the current 9.3 hectares and is planning to open a Lego-themed hotel in 2018 on adjacent the land as well as an aquarium inside the hotel.