The first SeaWorld outside of the United States is expected to open in Abu Dhabi in 2022, which will make it even easier for international visitors to enjoy themselves while learning about the important role of aquatic life.

Construction has already begun on the marine theme park on Yas Island. Plans call for one of the world’s largest indoor aquariums, a variety of rides and interactive exhibits, and all sorts of entertainment for all ages.

Making this location particularly unique is that, along with the family-friendly entertainment, SeaWorld will include a marine rescue center, rehabilitation facility, and return center, the first of its kind in Abu Dhabi. It’s also the first new SeaWorld in 30 years and will be considered one of the world’s largest indoor theme parks.

The project is being created in conjunction with SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment and Miral, an asset management company and Abu Dhabi’s leading curator of experiences. It’s part of a $12 billion investment project in the UAE.

Scott Ross, Founder and Managing Partner at Hill Path Capital and SeaWorld’s Chairman of the Board, said there’s a lot to love about this project, including an emphasis on marine conservation and education at a regional and a global level.

“Yas Island is a visionary and transformational project and is already becoming a landmark destination for global travelers,” he said. “We are thrilled SeaWorld will be part of this special place.”

The 183,000 square mile facility is being called the “next generation of marine life theme parks.” Plans include six unique areas, but all branded with the “One Ocean” theme, showing the interconnectivity of life and the planet and diversity present between the various oceans.

One planned attraction is a ride that will take guests on a global journey from the North Pole to the South Pole, showing all the beautiful things in between.

Planners are creating ‘purpose-built’ habitats and ecosystems that will allow many species to be together in the same area, just like they are in the wild.  

Outside of the tourist area, there’s an opportunity for researchers, scientists, and conservations to collaborate on ways to protect ecosystems. It will include opportunities to study indigenous marine animals, including sea turtles and dugongs.   

SeaWorld has been in existence for more than 50 years. It currently includes 12 destination and regional theme parks throughout the U.S. and collectively owns one of the world’s largest zoological collections.

Along with providing opportunities for tourists to learn and play, the organization has been proud to have rescued and rehabilitated more than 37,000 animals in need. Many animals have been returned to the wild; others have been given the opportunity to live at a SeaWorld community.

 The new park is expected to open to the public by the end of 2022. It is expected to be one of the final large attractions to Yas Island.

Since 2011, Miral has brought other attractions to Yas Island, including Warner Bros World, Yas Waterworld, Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, and Clymb, which includes the world’s most enormous climbing wall and the widest wind tunnel.  There are also seven hotels, a megamall, a golf course, a Grand Prix track, and more features.

Scott Ross is the Founder and Managing Partner of Hill Path Capital the majority owner of Seaworld, and the Chairman of the Board of Directors at SeaWorld Entertainment.

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