Breaking new grounds in sports recreation and family entertainment!
- The Group’s water slide at its ESCAPE theme park in Penang sets a Guinness World Record for the longest tube water slide measuring 1,111 metres, smashing the previous record of 356 metres
- Rated the number one theme park in Malaysia and number one thing to do in Penang by TripAdvisor, the ESCAPE theme park in Penang is expected to see rising numbers of visitors with the opening of the new slide along with ESCAPE Gravityplay, the third of the ESCAPE series of theme parks
Penang, 25 September 2019 – Sim Leisure Group Ltd. (“Sim Leisure” or the “Company”, together with its subsidiaries, the “Group”), a theme park developer and operator based in Penang, Malaysia, announced today that it has officially set a new Guinness World Record for the world’s longest tube water slide measuring 1,111 meters. At an official presentation ceremony held today, the media witnessed CEO of Sim Leisure Group Mr Sim Choo Kheng receiving the Guinness World Record certificate from the official adjudicator.
Pictured: Aerial view of the world’s longest water slide as it meanders through the forest
This new water slide smashes the previous record of 356 metres held by Galaxy Erding in Germany. ESCAPE’s slide is a permanent structure attached to steel poles which extends to the ground, using fibre reinforced polymer. To provide some context on its sheer length, the typical length of a water park slide is less than 200 metres while existing water slides at ESCAPE range between 250 metres to 300 metres long.
“Breaking the world record was never the intention. The idea of this water slide came about over frustration that most fun rides and water slides last merely a few seconds, and having the water slide start on a hilltop at a 70-metre elevation would make this ride last a good few minutes. ESCAPE embraces the philosophy of promoting eco-literacy through fun, this water slide would ride guests through the jungle down the hill and all the way to the other side at the water park. Given the gradient required of the water slide, we suddenly realised this has to be in excess of 1km, which turns out to be a record-breaking feat!” – Sim Choo Kheng, CEO of Sim Leisure Group
This unprecedented water slide sits atop the highest point of ESCAPE’s forested land area with an elevation of 70 metres at the start. The slide is a four-minute downhill joyride which zigzags and criss-crosses through natural forest and tree canopies before eventually crossing the main Teluk Bahang Road and into ESCAPE Waterplay on the opposite track of land. As part of the development, a cable car chairlift, the only chairlift of its kind in Malaysia, is being built to transport customers from the foot of the hill to the top. This chairlift will also carry the slide rafts as well as other equipment for Hill Rider and Tubby Racer, two additional attractions next to the world’s longest water slide as part of Gravityplay, the third phase of ESCAPE.
First of its kind in the region, the Hill Rider spans across two tracks measuring 580 metres and 700 metres while the Tubby Racer track measures 450 metres. The entire water slide is made of 488 pieces of fibre-reinforced polymer (FRP) slides and 326 side guard components, connected by 10248 sets of bolts, nuts, washers, and spring washers as well as 500 litres of silicon adhesive. The water slide is supported by 1,206 metres of 1-foot diameter round steel poles weighing a total of 44.6 tonnes, 1,215 metres of rectangular hollow section (RHS) as support arms weighing 21 tonnes in total, and 224 pieces of steel plates of 0.738 tonnes connecting the water slide to the support arms and steel poles. This brings to a grand total of 66.338 tonnes of steel supporting the world’s longest water slide.
The entire process from designing the longest water slide to installing it took 24 months, with the installation taking 8 whole months. The group did not deploy any heavy machinery to the terrain for construction works, instead performing most o the installation manually such as lifting the water slide components by erecting scaffolds and using chain hoists. This is because of accessible issues given the terrain, as well to preserve the environment. Installing the water slide in harsh conditions of the rainforest came with challenges such as constantly having to overcome mosquitoes and predators.
The Group’s ESCAPE theme park in Penang, already rated the number one theme park in Malaysia and number one thing to do in Penang by TripAdvisor, continues to see rising number of visitors with approximately 185,000 visitors in 2018. As a bedrock for tourism in Penang, Industry veteran and CEO of Sim Leisure Group Mr Sim Choo Kheng who has 29 years of experience in the theme park industry, said, “Our approach to the theme park and leisure industry is new as we see things from a different lens. We are breaking records through our own unique way of doing things, not by throwing money away for the sake of record-breaking achievements. This new Guinness World Record breaking slide is testament to our ingenuity. The idea of placing fun inside nature provides a new perspective to visitors of loving nature. Meandering through nature and the elements, this record was achieved by chance as we want to build rides that last a good few minutes, with non-stop smiles and giggles as visitors fly through the rain forest. We are not stopping here as we have international growth aspirations in new markets where we intend to revolutionize the theme park industry. We will generate more smiles per hour across the region where people are eagerly awaiting a new genre of affordable & healthy family entertainment.”
About Sim Leisure Group Ltd.
The Group is a well-established developer and operator of theme parks based in Penang, Malaysia. The Group’s founder, Sim Choo Kheng, has more than 29 years of experience in the theming industry. The Group presently operates ESCAPE theme parks (http://www.escape.my/), in Penang, Malaysia and caters to both local and foreign visitors. ESCAPE Adventureplay is an outdoor adventure theme park which contains eco-friendly features and design elements reminiscent of traditional villages and pastimes in Malaysia. ESCAPE Waterplay is the first water park in Penang and also features the same eco-friendly and traditional design elements as ESCAPE Adventureplay. ESCAPE Gravityplay, which will feature a chairlift and two downhill karting tracks, is the third in the ESCAPE series of theme parks and is targeted to be launched in the first half of 2019. The ESCAPE theme parks welcomed approximately 112,000 visitors in 2017 and approximately 185,000 visitors in 2018.
ESCAPE is the answer to the Penang state government’s vision of a world-class leisure destination when Sim Leisure won a development tender in 2009 over the 60-acre land ESCAPE currently inhabits. This Guinness World Record will place Penang on the world map and draw large tourism crowds domestically and internationally. ESCAPE has been awarded the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence every year from 2014 to 2019, the Certificate of Merit and Winner in the category of Best Tourist Attraction (Man-Made Attraction/Theme Park) at the 19th Malaysia Tourism Awards for 2014/2015 and 20th Malaysia Tourism Awards for 2016/2017, respectively.
The Group’s business model disrupts the typical mainstream business model from the West which pays hefty royalties and requires costly investments in themed structures and mechanical rides. More importantly, ESCAPE theme parks address the original pursuit of fun which comes from childhood, mischievous play with friends, and not strap-on mechanical rides. ESCAPE theme parks re-introduce the forgotten childhood play of yesteryear to today’s generation, showing that fun can be affordable.
ESCAPE re-connects visitors with the nature we once lived in, co- existed with, and depended on by embracing green ideas. Currently, the ESCAPE theme parks in Penang featuring various play-centric attractions which include climbing zones, obstacle courses, vertical leap, zip lines, high dive platform and waterslides have guests re-discover their innate balance, agility, physical strength, courage, and play instincts. These are part of Sim Choo Kheng’s vision of fun, environmentally- friendly, and economically viable theme parks. These also explain ESCAPE theme parks’ success with corporate team building programmes and school field trips.