Merlin launches Thai Tussauds in events complex
19-Feb-10by Annie Byrne
UK-based Merlin Entertainments Group is planning to launch a Thai version of its Madame Tussauds’ wax museum in the capital. The tourist attraction and event space is to be built in the Bangkok’s Siam Discovery shopping centre, which is set to have a US$31m upgrade to include a multi-purpose exhibition hall and 2,000sqm Ice Planet ice rink. President and CEO of Siam Piwat, Chadatip Chutrakul, says: “We are preparing a major renovation of both the interior and exterior of Siam Discovery. We take pride in drawing large foreign investments to Thailand and contributing to the growth of the country’s economy and tourism.” Merlin will contribute US$15m to the investment project, which is due to start in March and be completed in October 2010, with a further US$10.6m from the centre’s owner Siam Piwat Company and US$5.5m from Ice Planet. As the second largest visitor attraction operator in the world only to Disney, Merlin currently has a portfolio of 60 attractions in 13 countries. The Thai destination will be the first wax museum for the group in Southeast Asia with closest locations in Hong Kong and Shanghai. According to Chutrakul, Madame Tussauds Bangkok should attract over 8,000 tourists per day.