Coming soon to Universal

Universal Studios Orlando shared news of an upcoming expansion and new attractions at Visit Florida’s stand on the opening day of this month’s World Travel Market.


Dennis Quinn, Vice President of Destination Sales, Universal Orlando, detailed plans for the resort over the next couple of years and revealed the theme park’s marketing strategy to increase awareness across the UK, which includes being this season’s main sponsor of Fulham Football Club.

A new park will open in 2017, joining Universal Studios Florida and Universal’s Islands of Adventure as the destination’s third: Volcano Bay will be a water theme park.

There is also a Pony Express Ride ($35 a child) that lets children experience a safe and monitored horseback ride on a miniature pony where they learn about horses and how to care for them.

The site’s bed stock will expand over the next two years, with the Loews Sapphire Beach Resort adding 1,000 rooms to the Universal complex when it opens in 2016 and a further 400 rooms due to be added to Cabana Bay Beach Resort in 2017

Several new attractions are also due to open, including Skull Island: Reign of Kong, which will start welcoming guests to Universal’s Islands of Adventure in 2016; a new Fast and Furious-themed attraction; and Race Through New York starring Jimmy Fallon (both opening in Universal Studios in 2017).


Further expansion at Mall of America

A new $350 million expansion will open at the Mall of America next spring, adding 50 high-end stores and making it North America’s largest shopping mall.

Mall of America

Douglas Killian, Senior Director of International Tourism for Mall of America said: “After the expansion the mall will feature close to 600 stores, which is great for shoppers.

“The mall opens around 25 new stores a year and its indoor amusement park receives a new ride yearly. There is no sales tax in Minnesota.”

The theme park located in the mall will also receive an investment of $20 million, with the addition of a new attraction called FlyOver America.

A second on-site hotel will also be opened by GW Marriot, which will provide the same shopping amenities and services, including hotel delivery on purchases, as the current Radisson Blu.