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Friday, November 16, 2012 | This article is listed in the sections Magazine and Amusement parks.

Applause Award 2012: And the winner is...

 © Liseberg Foto: Stig Kälvelid
© Liseberg Foto: Stig Kälvelid
The Applause Award trophy
On Tuesday, 13th November 2012, the 16th Applause Award was conferred. The most prestigious price within the amusement and theme park industry gets awarded every two years by the Liseberg Group at the International Asssociation of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) Expo in Orlando, Florida, honouring a park whose management, operations and creative accomplishments have inspired the industry with foresight, originality and sound business development. This year's winner is the Ocean Park Hong Kong.

"Ocean Park is one of the strongest parks in Asia, offering a high-value product with a unique base in the local community. Ocean Park has implemented a very courageous strategy, which has paid off with a doubling of attendance over the last few years, and a sound financial development. Ocean Park operates with a strong vision, a high sense of quality and a dedicated leadership, setting a great example for the whole industry", says Andreas Andersen, President & CEO, Liseberg Group and Chairman of The Applause Award Board of Governors.

The Award is a honourable ending of the park's 35th season. Opened in 1977, it today houses besides several amusement park rides also an aquarium and other vivarium of marine mammals. Ocean Park was the first institution ever having success in artificial insemination of a specific species of oceanic dolphins and furthermore developed numerous new breeds of goldfish. Within the last years its amusement park section was widened out considerable.

Ocean Park's great location right at the seaside
The park is located at a hillside right at the sea and is separated in two areas, "The Summit" and "The Waterfront". These two parts can be reached by a 1.5 kilometres long cable car system, offering a great view over the park and the impressive landscape. Alternatively, there are a shuttle bus or the Ocean Express funicular railway transporting the visitors. The most remarkable attractions are the four roller coasters: All are outstanding throughout their location. It does not matter whether it is "Dragon", a Arrow Dynamics Looping Coaster, "Wild West Mine Train" manufactured by Zamperla, Mack Ride's Powered Coaster "Arctic Blast", or "Hair Raiser", a B&M Floorless Coaster – the view at the sea lets a trip on all these custom designed tracks become even more spectacular.

It is the mixture of these factors that makes Ocean Park so unique and lets the concept work out. In this year's Applause Award's finale the park outrun the other competing candidates Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk (USA) and Puy du Fou (France), so it now can officially call itself "World's best amusement park".

© parkscout/AM

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