Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Technomedia and ACE form strategic partnership to serve the attractions industry in China with AV and media development

Bingo Tso of ACE and John Miceli of Technomedia
celebrate after signing their strategic cooperative agreement
in February 2018. Photo: ACE.

ORLANDO and HONG KONG – Audiovisual and media development specialists ACE (Advanced Communication Equipment [Int’l] Co. Ltd.) and Technomedia Solutions LLC have formed a new strategic alliance to provide audiovisual and media production services to theme parks, museums, live shows, visitor attractions and other leisure and entertainment projects in China.

ACE provided engineering and technical services 
as well as audio and lighting systems for the 
Impression Putuo live outdoor spectacular 
in Zhoushan, China. Photo: ACE.
Technomedia Solutions has served the attractions industry for many years from Orlando and Los Angeles as a provider of AV and interactive media development as well as technology design and integration services.

ACE, headquartered in Hong Kong, is one of China’s largest system integration firms, and also the country’s sole distributor of Harman audio products. ACE maintains additional facilities in seven mainland China cities.

The alliance was formalized on February 2, 2018 in Beijing. Bingo Tso, Chief Technology Officer and Senior Vice President of ACE, and John Miceli, President and Chief Creative Officer of Technomedia, closed the deal in a formal signing ceremony. When the firms co-bid on projects in China, Technomedia will address the creative aspects, and ACE will address the build, install and maintenance.

Both companies are upbeat and confident about the new partnership and each other’s professionalism and skills. “I have seen ACE’s excellent work on the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, as well as on recently completed theme parks,” says Miceli. “I see ACE as operating in a similar way and with a similar culture to our own company – taking immense pride in our technical expertise, quality and attention to detail. I trust ACE to handle its responsibilities on our joint projects in China with the highest standards of quality.”

The projection mapped ceiling
of The Grand Hall Experience
at Union Station, a Technomedia project.
Photo: Technomedia.
“Technomedia is the ideal Western partner for our China products,” says Tso. “Technomedia’s executives have worked with American attractions creators for many years. They know the people and the production systems intimately. They’ll be able to communicate and handle the processes, leaving the actual construction to us. It’s a perfect balance.”

Technomedia and ACE came together with assistance from The Enigma Group, an Austin, TX (USA) based company with offices in Asia and the Middle East. Enigma specializes in matching up Eastern and Western companies and consultants. The resulting synergy and shared expertise benefits the industry, according to Enigma founder and CEO Brian Paiva. “I’ve been working with Bingo Tso for four years,” says Paiva. “He was seeking a Western partner so that ACE could work more productively on Chinese projects, especially those having Western ties. I recognized that he had a comparable vision and work ethic to John Miceli, whom I’ve also known for years. Now that they’ll be working together, they’ll be able to bid on more projects, and to meet clients’ needs with the benefit of savvy, seasoned professionals from both parts of the world.”

About ACE
ACE is a leading high-end audio-visual lighting system solutions provider creating products for theme parks, world’s fairs, convention centers, theaters and more. With more than 700 employees, ACE provides the conception, construction and maintenance for projects. Recent endeavors by the Hong Kong-based company have included Shanghai Disneyland, Wanda Theme Park and The Voice of China. Visit www.acehk.com.

About Technomedia
Technomedia Solutions LLC, based in Orlando and Los Angeles, is a premier provider of advanced audiovisual and interactive media development, technology design, and integration services to a variety of industries including retail, theme park, museum, restaurant, corporate, military, theatrical, special venue, corporate and educational markets. It is a subsidiary of Mood Media. Visit www.gotechnomedia.com.

About The Enigma Group
The Enigma Group is a global agency and consultant specializing in the attractions, entertainment, sports, hospitality, leisure, recreation, gaming and retail industries. Enigma is headquartered in Austin, Texas, with offices in China and the United Arab Emirates. Visit www.teamenigma.com.

Press inquiries - more information/photos/interviews

Contact: judith@ipmcm.com, InPark Content Marketing: www.ipmcm.com

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Rethink Leisure & Entertainment Named as Principal Designers & Master Planners for Major Nickelodeon Theme Park

FOSHAN, CHINA – Rethink Leisure & Entertainment, a Los Angeles-based design agency and international subsidiary of Al Ahli Holding Group, has been awarded the design and master planning contract for China-based Elite Global Group Limited’s (EGGL) Nickelodeon theme park, a major part of the Foshan Cultural and Ecological Coastal Park. The contract-signing ceremony in Foshan was attended by representatives of Rethink Leisure & Entertainment and Elite Global Group.

Rethink will provide a full suite of design services to the multi-million dollar project, including master planning, park design, attraction development, and IP selection in coordination with Elite Global Group and Nickelodeon. Rethink will be working closely with its partners to create the most immersive and extensive Nickelodeon experience ever built, featuring such beloved characters as SpongeBob SquarePants, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Dora the Explorer and many more.

“Rethink is ready to bring its extensive themed entertainment experience and practical knowledge to this exciting, world-class development,” said Michael Sinks, Executive Producer, Rethink Leisure & Entertainment. “We’re excited to work with both Nickelodeon’s group of brand experts and the talented team at Elite Global Group to bring some of the world’s most unique characters to life.”

The US$1.85 billion, 250-acre Nickelodeon-themed project is a central feature of the 750-acre, Foshan Cultural and Ecological Coastal Park, a master-planned environment encompassing cultural, tourism, sports and science and technology components. Groundbreaking was held on January 4, 2017 and is anticipated to open between 2020 and 2021. The project is located in Foshan, a city in Southern China of more than seven million people, part of the affluent, greater Pearl River Delta mega metropolitan region. Including the large cities of Shenzhen and Guangzhou, more than 22 million people live in the Pearl River Delta, which is also adjacent to the Hong Kong and Macau Special Administrative Regions.

“We are excited to be working with Rethink Leisure & Entertainment,” said Michael Chang, Director, Board of Directors, Elite Global Group. “They have demonstrated a unique combination of creative and technical capability which makes them invaluable partners in the resort design process. The unique designs being developed for this resort project will undoubtedly delight the millions of Chinese guests which will visit the park.”

About Rethink Leisure & Entertainment
Rethink Leisure & Entertainment, a design agency founded in 2013, has rapidly grown into a world-class organization with a seasoned team of themed entertainment professionals. Rethink provides clients large and small with a suite of design services, including concept design, art direction, master planning, graphic design and project management. With offices in both Los Angeles and Orlando, Rethink is currently working on multiple international projects, including the $4.3 billion London Resort, located just 17 minutes outside of Central London. Rethink most recently designed the Lotte Undersea Kingdom Kids Park, now open in Seoul, South Korea. Past and current clients include Walt Disney Imagineering, Universal Creative, 20th Century Fox, Lotte, Merlin Entertainment, and Carnival Cruise Line, among others. For more information, visit www.rethinkle.com. Rethink is a subsidiary of Al Ahli Holding Group, a multi-billion dollar global conglomerate headquartered in Dubai, UAE.

About Elite Global Group
Based in Hong Kong and Mainland China, Elite Global Group boasts rich experiences in manufacturing and sales of commodities with US IPR and provision of series of high value-added services. The Group is mainly engaged in the manufacturing of licensed products and perimeter commodities, investment in mega-size development and business involving IPR. In addition to its merits in investment and production, the Group is Viacom Group’s exclusively authorized retailer of Nick brands in Hong Kong and Taiwan regions for expertise and profound experiences in retail operation of stores. It’s also awarded the rights for operation of the Nick brand cultural and tourist zones and hotels in China.

Elite Global Group is the authorized partner of Viacom Group in China. Basing on years of successful cooperation, Elite Global Group has been awarded licenses by contracts, for rights of construction and operation of Nick cultural and tourist zones, and promotion of the setup of a cartoon college in China.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

The equipment of Splash City waterpark is on offer via Pickles Auctions

Pickles Auctions offers buyers an opportunity to purchase a whole waterpark full of equipment, under instructions from Australian pop-up waterpark, Splash City - including the tallest inflatable waterslide in the world (per a Guinness World Record).
  • EOI (Expressions of Interest) closes Sunday, October 1 at 5:00 pm local time. 
  • Items can be bought individually or as a package.
  • Visit http://buy.pickles.com.au/waterpark to view listing, photographs and to find out how to participate in this EOI, run by Pickles. 
  • More information: Contact Tim Rogers at Pickles Auctions on 0423 756 184 or email timothy.rogers@pickles.com.au
According to Pickles, this EOI includes an assortment of inflatable super slides including The Drop, Trippo Waterfall and Cliff slides, inflatable dino pool, portable ticketing booth, complete set of 8 trampolines, various sized tents, plus a massive, 68m obstacle course and accessories, inflatable 25 x 25m maze, and much more.

The set features The Drop! - tallest inflatable waterslide in the world, holding the 2016 Guinness World Record at 22.4m tall (7 stories high) - a breathtaking, daredevil dual super slide that cruises over a 100m long runway. The selection also includes The Waterfall, billed as the world’s tallest 4-lane inflatable slide. This thriller stands at 15.8m tall, with straight and curved slides.

Currently located in Perth WA, this inflatable waterpark comes with a diverse mix of wet and dry attractions. Pickles advises that it is already packaged in containers and is ready to be transported within the country or internationally, to the desired location. 

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Faster Than Light, new Spitz fulldome title, explores longstanding quest to develop spacecraft to reach the stars

Narrated by Sean Bean of “Lord of the Rings” fame, “Faster Than Light” asks: What will it take to reach a newly discovered planet circling our Sun’s nearest neighbor, Proxima Centauri?

Thomas Lucas,
director, "Faster Than Light"
“Faster than Light: the Dream of Interstellar Flight,” is a new, 25-minute documentary created for digital dome cinema (fulldome) exhibition in planetariums, museums and educational institutions. It is distributed by Spitz Creative Media, Mirage3D and Thomas Lucas Productions, Inc. and available for general release in all fulldome formats. The project was supported by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania Film Office. 

Previews and additional information here: http://fasterthanlight.spitzcreativemedia.com/

Based on real science and engineering, “Faster Than Light” takes audiences on a thrilling journey into the future, aboard laser-driven space sails, antimatter engines, and even warp drive - right out of science fiction. “Who can say how far, and how fast, our technology will one day take us?” said director Thomas Lucas. 

Combining matter and anti-matter inside a spacecraft’s engine
would create a beam of almost pure energy that could propel
the craft to 50% the speed of light. Photo: Spitz Creative Media.

Jiří Dušek at Fulldome Festival Brno

Honored at Brno
In June 2017, “Faster Than Light” received industry acclaim and the Directors Award from the prestigious Fulldome Festival Brno (Czech Republic), where it was seen by some 125 planetarium professionals and competed against more than 40 productions from six different countries. The honor includes a one-year license at the host facility, where it will open in the fall. “I am proud that we are one of the first to present ‘Faster Than Light,’” said Jiří Dušek, Director of Brno Observatory and Planetarium and Program Director of Fulldome Festival Brno. He praised the show for “an attractive theme, beautiful animations, and fresh storyline.” Said Dušek, “On the wings of the imagination but still within the limits of scientific correctness, you can set out on a journey across the entire universe. I have no doubt that ‘Faster than Light’ will be an incredible experience for our visitors.”

“Faster Than Light” has also been licensed by the Eugenides Foundation (Athens). “We have worked with Spitz before and been very happy with their visual capabilities,” said Dionysious P. Simopoulos, Director Emeritus, Eugenides Planetarium. “We committed to lease “Faster Than Light” immediately after they announced the title and subject matter, knowing it would work for us.” A number of other planetariums throughout the U.S. will be opening the show this summer and fall.

The story behind the story
Three years in the making, “Faster Than Light” was produced by Robin Sip (Mirage 3D), Mike Bruno (Spitz Creative Media) and Thomas Lucas (Thomas Lucas Productions). Brad Thompson (Spitz) and Leon Verschoor (Mirage3D) directed the visual production.

Robin Sip of Mirage 3D and Brad Thompson of Spitz
at Fulldome Festival Brno
“We chose the grand story of interstellar flight because it’s richly thematic and the human quest resonates with people,” said Lucas. “Scientists are discovering that the galaxy is filled with planets. Telescopes are coming online that are going to be able to look at some of these worlds and determine whether there are atmospheres and possible signs of life.”

The grandness of the themes explored by “Faster Than Light” resonated with audiences in extensive pre-release testing at the Houston Museum of Natural Science’s Burke Baker planetarium (Digistar True8K™system), and the Planetarium at the State Museum of Pennsylvania (Spitz ScidomeXD) in Harrisburg.

The test audiences included members of the general public as well as school groups and their teachers, and museum staff. According to Harrisburg Planetarium director Linda Powell, “Students focused on the beautiful animations of the spacecraft and propulsion systems. Adults were intrigued to find that their childhood science fiction is becoming science reality, specifically when it came to antimatter engines. Teachers were excited to think about the different ways they can connect the show to curriculum. I’m looking forward to screening the final product to Museum visitors in the near future.”

Mike Bruno,
Spitz Creative Media
“‘Faster Than Light’” offers a compelling and credible story for our time with broad audience appeal, speaking to a wide range of ages, interests and educational topics,” said Mike Bruno of Spitz Creative Media. “We think our planetarium clients will find it an enduring and versatile title for public and educational programming. We’re very proud of what the team has accomplished and pleased to add ‘Faster Than Light’ to the Spitz fulldome library.”

“Faster Than Light” is distributed by Spitz Creative Media, Mirage3D and Evans & Sutherland. 


Thursday, January 12, 2017

Main Street Design helps Zoo Miami tell the Florida Everglades story with new $33M zone

“This is museum-quality, interpretive content within a fun, themed environment,” said Michael Mercadante, President of Main Street Design. “As museums and zoos embrace themed entertainment, we are able to leverage our experience in all these markets for our clients.”

Michael Mercadante,
Main Street Design
Main Street Design provided interpretive planning and design throughout the 4.5-acre, $33 million Florida: Mission Everglades zone that opened in December 2016 at Zoo Miami.

Florida: Mission Everglades features multiple touchstone experiences and up-close access to native plants and animals, including:
  • Lostman’s River Boat Ride: Guests float through Everglades habitats
  • Panther Tracking Experience: Utilizing GPS tracking and “gamification” technology 
  • River Otter and Crocodile Play Zones: Clear acrylic tunnels let guests crawl alongside real crocodiles and slide through an otter sanctuary
  • Thunderstorm Wet Play Area: Features a simulated thunderstorm 
Click for full story, image library and contact information.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016


Executives will be in Orlando for meetings 
during the IAAPA Attractions Expo

Peanuts Worldwide - licensor of the Peanuts brand based on the beloved comic strip created by Charles Schulz – has retained Bay Laurel Advisors to strategically plan and execute the expansion of the Peanuts IP (intellectual property) for the creation of high-quality, guest experiences for multi-generational, visitor attractions in theme parks, family entertainment centers and other location based entertainment venues. Peanuts is well-established as a powerful IP with proven international appeal, and seen as a top brand for Millennials. The Peanuts family has enjoyed tremendous popularity at the Cedar Fair Theme Parks and Universal Studios Japan. Through broader exposure in themed entertainment markets, Peanuts Worldwide will reach more consumers around the world with engaging new guest experiences.

Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Woodstock, Lucy, Schroeder and other familiar Peanuts characters and themes have been readily adapted over the decades in movies, stage shows, social media, merchandise, product endorsements, animated cartoons, games and e-books. In 2015 Peanuts celebrated its 50th anniversary of “A Charlie Brown Christmas” and The Peanuts Movie (2015) brought in $250 M in worldwide box office. Short form programming airs daily on Boomerang, as well as Cartoon Network.

“Peanuts Worldwide is strategically looking to expand its location based entertainment presence for the Peanuts brand to other territories around the globe beyond what already successfully exists in the U.S. and Japan.  Partnering with a category expert like Bay Laurel sets us on a clear path to achieve this goal,” said Rosalind Nowicki, Executive Vice President Peanuts Worldwide and Iconix Entertainment.

George Wade, President,
Bay Laurel Advisors
“Peanuts is a refreshing alternative to action/thrill-oriented IPs. There are very few brands that reach the family demographic with such complete delight and humor.  Peanuts is an enduring, highly respected brand that we are proud to represent, and we look forward to introducing it to designers, producers and developers.” said George Wade, President and Founder of Bay Laurel Advisors. “This brand has incredible worldwide appeal.”

Peanuts remains an icon in the public consciousness, with beloved characters and seasonality, tied into universal interests and values. 

Peanuts Worldwide and Bay Laurel Advisors will attend the 2016 IAAPA Attractions Expo, the largest international trade show in the world for the amusement park and attractions industry, to meet with potential partners.

About Peanuts Worldwide:
The PEANUTS characters and related intellectual property are owned by Peanuts Worldwide LLC, a joint venture owned by Iconix Brand Group, Inc. and by members of the Charles M. Schulz family. Iconix Brand Group, Inc. owns, licenses and markets a growing portfolio of consumer brands including: CANDIE'S (R), BONGO (R), JOE BOXER (R), RAMPAGE (R), MUDD (R), MOSSIMO (R), LONDON FOG (R), OCEAN PACIFIC (R), DANSKIN (R), ROCAWEAR (R), CANNON (R), ROYAL VELVET (R), FIELDCREST (R), CHARISMA (R), STARTER (R), WAVERLY (R), ZOO YORK (R), SHARPER IMAGE (R), UMBRO (R), LEE COOPER (R), ECKO UNLTD. (R), MARC ECKO (R), ARTFUL DODGER and STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE (R). In addition, Iconix owns interests in the MATERIAL GIRL (R), PEANUTS (R), ED HARDY (R), TRUTH OR DARE (R), MODERN AMUSEMENT (R), BUFFALO (R), NICK GRAHAM (R) and PONY (R) brands. The Company licenses its brands to a network of leading retailers and manufacturers that touch every major segment of retail distribution from the luxury market to the mass market in both the U.S. and worldwide. Through its in-house business development, merchandising, advertising and public relations departments, Iconix manages its brands to drive greater consumer awareness and equity.

About Bay Laurel Advisors:
Bay Laurel Advisors is a leading consultant to developers and IP holders in the world of Location Based Entertainment. Located in Los Angeles California, Bay Laurel is led by its founder and President, George Wade, an executive with decades of experience representing as well as advising major entertainment brands including MGM Studios, Paramount Studios. and Cartoon Network. Most recently, Bay Laurel helped translate another iconic family brand into a blockbuster destination developing and delivering The Crayola Experience destinations in Easton PA, Orlando, FL and Minneapolis MN.

·         Media relations                 Judith Rubin For Bay Laurel Advisors
(314) 853-5210
·         Project Initiatives             Lisa Welch

(818) 606-7478

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

BIG & Digital title 'Space Next' lands at Seattle Museum of Flight - director Luke Ployhar attends premiere

The Museum of Flight, a Smithsonian affiliate, dedicated its entire June 18 film schedule to premiere 'Space Next' in 4K stereoscopic 3D CGI, and the opening was timed to coincide with the NewSpace conference of entrepreneurs, scientists, engineers and policy leaders, held by the Space Frontier Foundation. At the premiere, 'Space Next' director Luke Ployhar – a Hollywood-trained filmmaker and effects artist whose credits include 'Minority Report' - will introduce the film.
“We are thrilled that 'Space Next' will be available to NewSpace 2016 conference delegates - because the movie’s message is that space research, industry and exploration are alive and well in the 21st Century global community,” said Ployhar, who founded Afterglow Studios in Minneapolis.
Museum of Flight CEO Doug King said, “'Space Next' fits the Museum’s commitment to be the foremost educational air and space museum in the world.”
Luke Ployhar
“These deep space missions, robotics, satellites, space tourism, life changing science breakthroughs and data visualization may seem like science fiction, but are part of modern-day reality,” said Tina Ratterman of BIG & Digital, Las Vegas-based distributor of 'Space Next.' “'Space Next' was designed to engage and inform the public and serve STEAM education with a realistic picture of our present and future in space.”
Cutting edge digital cinema 
'Space Next' is a movie on the frontiers of cinema as well as space. It was produced in realistic, digital animation to screen on the world’s IMAX® and Giant Screen Theaters and most advanced cinema systems - ultra-high resolution and custom immersive theaters most often found in science museums and state-of-the-art planetariums. It was formatted to accommodate multiple digital platforms in 2D, 3D, flat-screen and Fulldome, and resolutions up to 8K. (In comparison, high-end commercial cinema has not yet surpassed 4K resolution.)