Kids can meet Lego characters at the parks. // © 2016 Legoland
Feature image (above): A new hotel will come to Legoland California Resort in 2018. // © 2016 Legoland
It should come as no surprise that Legoland is constantly building something. This May, Legoland California Resort in Carlsbad, Calif., will unveil its latest addition: Ninjago Land. Based on the popular Cartoon Network show, Ninjago Land will allow children to become ninjas-in-training through interactive experiences that test their agility and physical skills. The new area will also debut at Legoland Florida Resort next year and feature international cuisine, such as a Vietnamese sandwich shop.
The main focus of this new land will be Ninjago The Ride, where guests wield the superpowers of main characters Kai, Jay, Cole and Zane through Triotech’s Maestro hand gesture technology. The attraction is the first in the world to utilize this technology, which registers kids’ hand movements via a panel on the lap bar as they blast animated shock waves and fireballs to collect points. The 4-D ride also employs heat, smoke and wind effects, in addition to 3-D imagery.
“It’s a ride that touches all ages,” said Jake Gonzales, media relations for Legoland California Resort. “It puts everyone on an even playing field. I have two daughters, and they love being able to control what’s going on, and it also lets us do something together.”
Last summer, Legoland California Resort debuted Heartlake City, based on the popular girl-friendly Lego Friends line of toys. The land features a live stage show, “Friends to the Rescue,” as well as Heartlake Ice Cream Parlor, kid-friendly ride Mia’s Riding Adventure and Heartlake Mall.
Changes were also made at the park’s existing Legoland Hotel. To correspond with the new Lego Friends Heartlake City area, the hotel will now sport suites bearing a Lego Friends theme in addition to the existing themes of adventure, pirate and kingdom. The Lego Friends motif will be in 10 rooms and one suite and will take over some of the existing kingdom-themed rooms.
One reason for the takeover is a new 250-room hotel that’s slated for potential debut in 2018. But Lego fans can also look forward to a new beach resort at the Florida park that will take advantage of the area’s lakeside location.
Additionally, changes have been made to Legoland’s Sea Life Aquarium at the California park. Touchscreens have been added in front of exhibits to provide younger visitors with a more interactive educational experience; Sea Life has instituted a new “Breed, Rescue and Protect” campaign; and the aquarium has already had success breeding seahorses and rehousing animals.
In response to the popularity and success of 2014’s “The Lego Movie,” Legoland Discovery Centers will also begin showing a new, exclusive film featuring characters from the movie. The storyline involves the main characters visiting the Legoland parks and battling villain Lord Business’ brother, Risky Business. Like Ninjago The Ride, the 4-D movie will feature heat, snow and rain effects.