To celebrate its 40th Anniversary, Ocean Park officially launched a year-long celebration, featuring a host of exciting activities and special offers under the theme of “Making Memories”. The festivities kicked off with a limited-time offer for Hong Kong residents. From January 11 (4:00 p.m. onwards) to January 22 2017, local residents purchased admission tickets (both adult and child) for just HK$40 from the Park’s official website. Limited to 4,000 locals per day, these special tickets were valid for entry on any chosen day between 16 and 22 January 2017.
At the ceremony, the Park revealed a number of special programmes, including: a community-care initiative – a collaboration between Ocean Park, Chinachem Group and 18 District Councils; and the Park’s first-ever partnership with Modern Education Research Society Ltd. (Modern Education Research Society) to create exclusive, conservation-oriented educational materials for local kindergartens. The Park also unveiled the results of the popular “Making Memories” Photo Contest, and recognised current and retired long-serving staff.
Ocean Park has also launched an extensive series of merchandise in collaboration with well-known local and international brands, including Kee Wah Bakery, one of the city’s most classic brands; Chicks, an iconic Hong Kong garment company; Ten Ren Tea, a tea company adored by Hong Kong residents; LeSportsac, a renowned bags and accessories brand; and Wooderful Life, a popular wooden music box brand, so guests can bring home a memento and relive this momentous occasion year after year.
Guests could also reminisce about the good old days, as the Park offers classic Hong Kong street food from the seventies, but with a modern twist. Guests could indulge in contemporary fusion cuisine and tingle their taste buds with the “Rediscovering Classics” 40th Anniversary Set Menu as well as scrumptious à la carte items at selected Park restaurants. A limited-edition Whiskers & Friends 40th Anniversary Jumbo Goblet, which comes with a snack set, was a must-have keepsake and available at designated food kiosks.
The launch ceremony was officiated by: the Honourable C Y Leung, Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region; the Honourable Gregory So Kam-leung, Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development; Cathy Chu Man-ling, Commissioner for Tourism; Dr. Peter Lam, Chairman of Hong Kong Tourism Board; Payson Cha, Mr. Philip Chen and Dr. Allan Zeman, the Park’s past chairmen; Leo Kung, Chairman of Ocean Park; Lau Ming-wai, Deputy Chairman of Ocean Park; Judy Chen, Chair of Ocean Park Conservation Foundation Hong Kong and Matthias Li, Chief Executive of Ocean Park.
Leo Kung, Chairman of Ocean Park, said, “Ocean Park is Hong Kong’s home-grown and premier theme park. We are honoured to have helped create lasting memories for generations of the city’s residents over the past 40 years, as well as welcome over 140 million guests. From humble beginnings with just 12 attractions, the Park has evolved into a world-class theme park. Our hard work paid off in 2012 when we received the Applause Award, a global accolade that recognises theme park excellence. As we celebrate our 40th Anniversary, we will not rest on our laurels and are already getting set to unveil the next phase of Ocean Park’s development, including two new hotels and Water World. We recently appointed Parkland (Hong Kong) Limited to build the HK$3 billion, Hong Kong Ocean Park Fullerton Hotel, which is set for completion in mid-2020. Featuring two, 10-storey towers, 460 rooms and breathtaking views of The Waterfront and Brick Hill, this hotel will solidify our status as a leading theme park. In addition, the launch of the MTR South Island Line (East) has made visiting Ocean Park even more convenient. These projects will set new industry standards and will put Ocean Park in the global spotlight, as we enter the next phase of our evolution and continue our journey as the Hong Kong people’s park.”
Leo added, “All of our achievements would not have been possible without the entire Ocean Park family, and I would like thank our staff, past and present, for their hard work, dedication and contributions throughout the years, which helped Ocean Park achieve recognition as one of the world’s top 13 theme parks. On this momentous occasion, I would also like to give a special thanks to The Hong Kong Jockey Club for funding the Park’s construction and operation from 1977 to 1987, and helping to bring so much joy to our city.”
Payson Cha, former Ocean Park Chairman (1997 – 2000), said, “Among the many unforgettable memories of my time at Ocean Park, the most memorable no doubt was the arrival of the giant pandas An An and Jia Jia, and working with our unwavering staff to overcome the economic turmoil over my tenure. I congratulate the Park on its newest milestone, and wish you all the best in the years to come.”
Philip Chen, former Ocean Park Chairman (2000 – 2003), said, “It was an honour to serve
Ocean Park during my tenure and help raise this iconic attraction to the international arena, with the launch of signature offerings such as the annual Halloween Bash. With thePark poised to expand even further on its 40th Anniversary, I’m confident that
Hong Kong’s home-grown theme park will soon become a shining icon in entertainment and conservation excellence.”
Allan Zeman, former Ocean Park Chairman (2003 – 2014) and Honorary Advisor of Tai Shue Wan Steering Group of Ocean Park, said, “I had the exciting opportunity to spearhead and oversee Ocean Park’s Master Redevelopment Plan, which doubled the Park’s attractions from 35 to 80, and strengthened our unique positioning, which combines theme park entertainment with education and conservation advocacy. I am delighted and humbled to continue to contribute to the Park’s development in an advisory capacity.”
Ocean Park opened its gates on 10 January 1977 with a mission to serve the community, with a 100-hectare land grant from the Hong Kong Government and initial funding from The
Hong Kong Jockey Club for the construction and operation in the first decade. To date, the Club has funded over HK$736 million to the Park towards its development and operation. Continuing in this spirit, the Park announced collaboration with Chinachem Group and all 18 District Councils to bring over 10,000 people from low-income families to visit the Park for free. All meals and transportation are sponsored by the Chinachem Group.
To support local education outside of the Park, and train the next generation of conservation advocates, Ocean Park has partnered with Ocean Park Conservation Foundation (OPCFHK) and Modern Education Research Society to tailor-make, publish and distribute exclusive course materials related to nature conservation. The course material includes a storybook of conservation tales – featuring seven new Ocean Park mascots, and three “big books” (shared classroom resources) which come with a teacher’s guide. The programme targets over 130,000 kindergarten students and aims to educate them on a range of conservation topics.
Throughout the years, the Park has contributed to conservation in the wild through OPCFHK, which the Park founded in 1995 and continues to support through significant annual donations. In 2016 alone, Ocean Park donated a total of HK$12 million to OPCFHK. Lau Ming-wai, Deputy Chairman of Ocean Park presented a cheque to OPCFHK during the recent ceremony. It was received by Judy Chen, Chair of Ocean Park Conservation Foundation Hong Kong and celebrity Karena Lam.