The company – which owns a diverse NZ-based tourism, property and accommodation portfolio as well as international Luge operations in Canada, South Korea and Singapore – is currently exploring opportunities to develop Luge facilities in Swansea, Wales and Seoul, South Korea.
Although the proposed developments are still in the investigation stages, Skyline Enterprises Executive Chairman Mark Quickfall says it is hoped that Swansea will be Skyline’s first European destination. The facility would comprise a gondola system, Luge tracks, chairlift, zipline and restaurant on Kilvey Hill.
The proposed Seoul development would be the third South Korean operation for Skyline Enterprises. Its first facility – the $20 million Skyline Luge Tongyeong – opened earlier this year and the company has already announced plans to establish Skyline Luge Busan, a $22 million tourist attraction in South Korea’s second-largest city.
“We are always on the lookout for new opportunities and the local authorities and businesses in Swansea and Seoul have been very receptive to our ideas,” Quickfall says. “Our existing international Luge ventures have always exceeded our expectations and we’re pleased to be able to share this iconic Kiwi innovation with the rest of the world.”
Skyline Luge Tongyeong is believed to be the largest direct capital investment in South Korea by a New Zealand company. Queenstown-based Quickfall was recently made an honorary citizen of Tongyeong in recognition of Skyline’s support and investment in the coastal city, which has a population of approximately 140,000.
The Tongyeong Luge has hosted a total of 1.51 million rides since it opened in February 2017. Quickfall says the ride is popular with the Korean market as it is adventurous without being too extreme.
“The fact that everyone can ride the Luge no matter what their age or thrill boundaries means we’re targeting every demographic,” he says. “There is no other activity like our Luge in Korea so we have a very large captive audience.”
Skyline Enterprises’ 12-year-old Skyline Luge Sentosa has recently completed a significant $14 million upgrade as part of the company’s expansion strategy. Two new Luge tracks and a new Skyride four-seat chairlift were officially unveiled in a grand opening in October.
“Skyline Luge Sentosa is our first Luge in Southeast Asia and it now stands as one of the best-loved experiences in Singapore with 1.2 million people riding the Luge each year,” adds Quickfall. “The new facilities are looking great and the boost in infrastructure has already cut down guest waiting times by a third.”