Winstar Shanghai is predicted to have more annual visitors than Whistler.
Singapore-listed firm KOP has announced plans for the development of a $360 million ski resort in Shanghai’s Pudong district. The 227,000 sqm facility will be the largest in the world and is expected to attract 3.2 million visitors each year – more than Whistler, with an estimated 2.1 million annual visits.
In addition to the 90,000 sqm ski and snow park, the resort will have a water park and four hotels – some rooms with ski-in ski-out access to the slopes.
KOP plans to open the resort to the public in 2022 to coincide with the Beijing Winter Olympics. They will be hoping that Xi Jinping’s pledge to have 300 million skiers in the country by that stage will have come to fruition.
While the health of the domestic market will play a huge role in ensuring the success of the venture, KOP executive chairman Ong Chih Ching has suggested that the resort has been designed to attract international visitors as well.
“Our aim is not just to build a top-class resort for the Chinese market – this will be built to cater to international standards.”
“We hope to turn this area into something like Los Angeles or Orlando.”
This is not the first time ski resort developers have had Shanghai in their sights. The Yinqixing Indoor Skiing Center was once a popular indoor skiing venue in Shanghai (albeit much smaller than the park KOP is planning), but was closed in 2010 for renovations and never reopened. Plans to finally revive the park in 2017 appear not to have eventuated.
In 2015, two Shanghai developers signed an agreement with a Singaporean firm to build what would be the largest indoor ski resort in the world, to be named the “Frozen Project”. This venture – remarkably similar to the one now being proposed by KOP – also appears to have been put on ice.
Read about Asia’s top 5 indoor ski resorts.