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Dreamworld reports growing slumps in attendance and revenue

49 posts in this topic

Great update as always thanks @Richard!

I think DW are doing the right thing by focusing on discounted tickets, extra in-park entertainment offerings and an obvious commitment to Customer Service. 2017 is perhaps not the right time for DW to build a new big ticket ride and it is great to see their efforts are being modestly made in other directions.

As part of their 'clean up' strategy I think the time has come to move ahead with plans to clear the Gold Rush and surrounding northern areas of the Park. Walling the area off has done it's job as a short term solution but now that time has passed. Leave things the way they are and all it does is place the Park in a perpetual state of uncertainty. Clear the land and make way for an exciting new 'World' that could open in stages from late 2018 and completed for Xmas 2019. Australiana fantasy like Blinky Bill, Gumnut fairies or even Dreamtime mythology such as the Rainbow Serpent among suitable themes to explore😀

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A little disheartening to read this article. I do believe that whilst the most dedicated of us locals are still visiting regardless, the lack of major new attractions (and as it has been pointed out, the loss of multiple current ones as well) is playing a part in the downturn in attendances. There's a lot less on offer than what there was originally, especially when rides are also experiencing unscheduled maintenance and extended delays in reopening. 

I mean we have five major rides down right now: TRR (which we know isn't coming back), Log Ride, Vintage Cars, Wipeout, and Tower of Terror II. That's a lot of rides for a park which is already suffering due to negative media attention and wavering faith by the public for their ride safety records. 

It's a rock and a hard place situation for Ardent, because whilst they have obviously lost a significant amount of money over the incident, they would also now be expected to invest a significant amount - similar to what VRTP are doing now) in order to draw crowds back. 

Ardent have never been ones to jump at the chance at expanding and improving in a major sense, they have always been cautious about spending their finances. This won't help the park now in this situation, and let's face it, they are only going to be even more reserved about it now that they have suffered a massive profit loss. 

I honestly am really starting to believe that a sale of the park would be in its best interests right now, so long as it's to the right investor who is willing to do the above at no additional financial loss to them other than purchase/development costs. I really think that this would be the easiest and best way for Dreamworld to make a full recovery and thrive in the future. 

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I agree with everything Theme Park Girl has said. However I really don't think Songcheng is the right company to take over, and if they're not already doing so, Ardent should be actively seeking a new owner which is a suitable and cashed-up experienced theme park operator.

I would add that once a new owner takes over, the first thing they should do in my opinion is to change the name from Dreamworld to something else. I don't have a specific new name in mind at this stage. I just think the current name is poisoned in the minds of the public now and a new owner giving the park a new name is a necessary first step in giving the park new life.

Obviously it would need to be followed up with major capital investment in new rides and other attractions.

Discounted tickets are not the way to go, especially when they're already so cheap!

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45 minutes ago, MickeyD said:

As part of their 'clean up' strategy I think the time has come to move ahead with plans to clear the Gold Rush and surrounding northern areas of the Park. Walling the area off has done it's job as a short term solution but now that time has passed. Leave things the way they are and all it does is place the Park in a perpetual state of uncertainty.

I agree with this @MickeyD  Ardent need to show their hand and I think by removing this would show a commitment to DW.

Having a fence up does nothing to stop me from thinking about when I walk past.  For now I would be happy for them to clear the site and lay some turf.

7 minutes ago, pushbutton said:

I would add that once a new owner takes over, the first thing they should do in my opinion is to change the name from Dreamworld to something else.

 

I don't agree with this.

Edited by Skeeta

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13 minutes ago, Skeeta said:

Having a fence up does nothing to stop me from thinking about when I walk past.  For now I would be happy for them to clear the site and lay some turf.

Ditto. That corner of the park is so depressing in its current state, and it sucks that to do a full lap of the park, you have no choice but to walk through/past it all. I agree that Ardent need to pick up the pace and remove it all asap, even if they don't develop it straight away.

At least that way they can also consider reopening the Log Ride again too, if its closure is indeed related to the fact that TRR is still standing. 

I'd also like to see them do something with the Vintage Cars. I check on it every time I visit, and they are just literally sitting there collecting dust. It may be far from a major attraction, but it's still another one crossed off the list atm.

I'd love to see the park actively doing everything they can right now to get as many attractions open asap and as such, provide as many options as possible to guests.

Whether Ardent are willing to financially and physically commit to that (as per my previous post) I'm not entirely sure. 

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@Theme Park Girl One of the reasons for making less money in Ardent's update was-

"Increases in fixed operating expenditure primarily related to greater employee headcount to support attractions maintenance and development."

I think they have committed extra money to getting the rides open. I believe the incident has caused DW to be gun-shy or more reluctant to open rides unless they are running at 100%..

 

Edited by Skeeta

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2 hours ago, pushbutton said:

I would add that once a new owner takes over, the first thing they should do in my opinion is to change the name from Dreamworld to something else.

No, no, no. That's an awful idea.

The Dreamworld name gives the park its identity, the park has history under that name and changing it almost removes that history. If they change Dreamworld to something else, then it becomes "that park where the people were killed" to the GP - it's not the park name that they're associating with the accident, it's the park itself. Honestly changing the name probably would attract the attention of the media more than it would keeping it.

If Dreamworld want to get out of this tough spot they're in, they need to take a risk and start some major development in the park (I'm talking new areas and big coasters), as soon as they have the funds to do so.

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This is my opinion and my opinion only. You will probably disagree. I think Dreamworld has little to nothing going for it. Personally, I dislike most rides their. The buzzsaw, hwsw give headaches when they bump your head around. Wipeout, Tot, gd and claw are good. Mdmc is slow and uncomfortable. Tailspin is slowly paced unless you can spin which will make you sick. Pandemonium makes me nauseas and sick on hard mode. The park is quite dead at times and is a little disheartening. When you think of a theme park, you think of lots of people just enjoying themselves, not an empty park. This is obviously not in all areas but a reasonable amount. The staff are mostly nice but some of the dispatch times for rides like tot and gd are terrible. I've seen staff seem like their just talking while everyone is waiting 10 minutes and the staff are to busy talking. (Yes, the gd is connected at this point). The gold rush area is dead and with the rides having unique opening hours, it really adds inconvenience. When you go to movie world, it if more often than not busy and their is a good, lively atmosphere. The rides are always open and the dispatches are fast and effective. The staff are their to do their job and I like it like that. It is also odd when Dreamworld appear to have more staff or "characters" than customers. 

 That picture shows what the kids area looks like more often than not, dead. Movie worlds kids area has kids running around having fun. And we all can relate to when we want short ride times, and dream of getting on and off rides on demand. Well excluding tot and gd, this more often than not the case. I've had plenty of instances where I've had to wait on a ride so that their is enough people on it to justify a circuit, like a carnival ride. I'm not completely hating on Dreamworld, but with lacklustre attractions, no atmosphere and little to no customers at points of the park, Dreamworld is really going to have a hard time recovering. These are also reasons I won't be renewing after the free 6 months. And if you put your own perspective on the attendance, just know that once the 6 months are up, their will be a drastic drop in customers. 

Meanwhile Movie World are building the biggest attraction in the Southern Hemisphere, which will be a major draw card for later this year. Even on this forum, everyone is talking about it, meanwhile at dreamworld, someone might rarely mention tiger Island upgrades. What's going to get more customers coming to your park, a rollercoaster not upgrades to an area. I realise this was probably planned before the incident, but Dreamworld need to get our and everyone's attention. I also noticed that when the no limits movie World hypercoaster was released by Gold Coast theme parks on Facebook, their were a lot of comments about people having to go back to try it, which confirms that they are going to have a boost in attendance. Their was also 100k + views at the time I viewed it, which shows that the public is intrested/aware. 

Also, in terms of flat rides, Dreamworld has many more, with the highlights being wipeout, claw, gd and tot. Meanwhile the highlights of movie world are for me batwing and Doomsday, so clearly dw wins that one. But for rollercoasters, dw is completely knocked out. I have no interest nor like any of the coasters their. Meanwhile movie World have 5 brilliant coasters. And for water rides, movie world obviously win. The main thing about Dreamworld is that they have no obvious or no theming. Buzzsaw has an excellent story but it wouldn't be evident to anyone who hasn't read the bio on Dreamworld.com. Tot has decent theming, not that it's obvious your being launched into space or whatever's supposed to be happening. Hwsw has standard theming and so does mdmc. But claw, gd, buzzsaw, wipeout, tailspin, you really have no idea what the rides is supposed to be themed about. (From a customers persective) I have to mention though that pandamonium has good theming. Meanwhile movie World has doomsday which has amazing theming for one flat ride. Batwing has lacklustrer theming but is supported by the surrounding dc themed rides. Justice league has amazing theming. Wwf has terrific theming. Superman has amazing theming. Green lantern has standard theming. Arkham assylum has terrific theming as well. You also know what happening, whether your a patient on arkham assylum, or becoming a super villain  saved by superman. This stands out a lot. 

I hope you enjoyed this article 

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Claw, giant crab themed? Ok, I'll give you that one but however Drop is an oil rig. Wipeout being wiped out surfing a wave. Tailspin a sea plane. Not really that hard to join the dots. Hell Tailspin even has a plane in the themeing.

It's been said many times here before but now is the time to build something big to draw people back to the park. Just make sure they announce and market the shit out of whatever it is. A new attraction is something a park should be shouting from the rooftops about not remain silent about when things are obviously happening.

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4 minutes ago, pin142 said:

A new attraction is something a park should be shouting from the rooftops about not remain silent about when things are obviously happening.

*cough*movieworldhypercoaster*cough*

 

Edited by Cactus_Matt

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12 hours ago, Gold Coast Amusement Force said:

I hope you enjoyed this article 

I tried to - I really did... but I couldn't. Your thoughts are quite valid in many areas, but I struggled to read it as the grammar alarm in my head just wouldn't stop going off.

I don't want to derail this discussion into a grammar \ spelling discussion, but do yourself a favour:

there-their-theyre-difference.jpg

 

6 hours ago, pin142 said:

Claw, giant crab themed?

I was under the impression the claw was some sort of beast? Crab doesn't work as a crab claw looks very different to the themed posts of the ride (which are more like Talons). I remember the marketing campaign for the Claw back in 2004 - with bus shelters ripped open and slashed by 'the beast' that was the claw.

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Ummmm okay, so I disagree.

Yes the park is quieter. And we know these reasons. But there is definitely atmosphere. I went to the park for opening yesterday, and they have the opening dance party. There is music pumping, characters everywhere, dancers on the stage, and even general staff were happy and dancing. That doesn't happen at MW, they just keep you off the road during the parade and don't join in on the excitement (And that's one thing the parade is lacking lately, the characters are great, but don't think it is anywhere near as good as what it used to be).

And to say the theming isn't obvious to Wipeout, claw, tailspin and even GD, come on. Wipeout has a bloody massive wave there. How is it not obvious. Tailspin has a plane. GD, has a sign out the front saying it's the Great Oil Company, with oil pumps. And the Claw is a beast, it has giant claws on the arms, and is crushing cars.

I don't really think theming is lacking anywhere really. Could it be improved on for a number of rides, yes. But they've all got some. MDMC just has worn out theming, and could easily be replaced. The reason why we don't like it is because it is uncomfortable, and doesn't keep its sensation of speed. The Gold Rush county seems quiet because there is only the BuzzSaw and if you don't want to ride it you don't go to the area.

I get your opinion and perspective on this, but to say DW has nothing going for it. That's where you are wrong, it has plenty going for it 

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7 hours ago, AlexB said:

I tried to - I really did... but I couldn't. Your thoughts are quite valid in many areas, but I struggled to read it as the grammar alarm in my head just wouldn't stop going off.

I don't want to derail this discussion into a grammar \ spelling discussion, but do yourself a favour:

there-their-theyre-difference.jpg

 

I was under the impression the claw was some sort of beast? Crab doesn't work as a crab claw looks very different to the themed posts of the ride (which are more like Talons). I remember the marketing campaign for the Claw back in 2004 - with bus shelters ripped open and slashed by 'the beast' that was the claw.

I believe claw is meant to be a Velociraptor attack. 

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Building on themagician's post above, the corroboree and animal enclosure area of DW is so terribly underrated. Every time we go there I drag my wife through to see Millie the tree kangaroo, the Tassie devils, curlews, wombat, dingoes, owls, bilby, gliders, wedge tail eagle and crocs/gators.

Last weekend the dingoes even out on a special show for us whilst fighting over the carcass of a pigeon dumb enough to roost in their enclosure.

With the vintage cars and log ride out of order it probably reduces foot traffic, but I think this is a great area of the park. I just wish they would do something with the lake and island again - bushranger show etc behind GD.

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20 hours ago, Gold Coast Amusement Force said:

 

 That picture shows what the kids area looks like more often than not, dead. 

 

I know you stated "more often than not", although I was just recently at the park last weekend, and the kids area was absolutely packed full. Big Red Car had a full line, and so did Dorothy's Teacups and the little octopus boat ride. I agree, most of the time it is dead now, but i'm sure they will bounce back soon. 

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9 hours ago, themagician said:

The Gold Rush county seems quiet because there is only the BuzzSaw and if you don't want to ride it you don't go to the area.

 

On 09/05/2017 at 4:01 PM, Skeeta said:

I agree with this @MickeyD  Ardent need to show their hand and I think by removing this would show a commitment to DW.

 

Everyone seems to have identified similar problems with Dreamworld, so I'm gonna hijack the conversation and suggest some ideas for what could be done with GoldRush.

Personally, I love GoldRush.  I think it it has a lot of wasted potential.  If I were to build a big new attraction at Dreamworld, I would build an RMC Hybrid Wooden coaster - with classic 'run away mine train' theming. 

Australia only has one woody and it is 106 years old.  As much as I would love to see TRR redeveloped to be safer, Ardent have already committed to demolishing it, so there is a massive amount of land that could be developed into a tight twisting wooden coaster. 

I'd also love to see the old Mine Cart coaster demolished and replaced with a new wild-mouse - even a new concept like a Eurofighter/wildmouse hybrid. I'd also reopen the Log ride with new boats/elements/theming.

In general, it would be nice to see DW just distribute their theming a little better.  I think the beach theming of Ocean Parade is nice (except shockwave), the Dreamworks theming is good, and GoldRush has potential.  Coroboree is really solid too.

But there is just a bunch of random crap that is completely out of place.  ToT, MDMC, V8 simulator, HotWheels and Kevil Hill all seem completely out of place in their respective areas.  The park just needs to stop dumping randomly themed rides in places.

But I think there is a lot of potential for GoldRush to become the 'coaster corner' of the park, with ocean parade being for flat rides.

I'd also re-theme MDMC to anything else - give it new trains and free VR.  It's a crappy ride, but being slow won't hurt it if it has a good VR story.  Slow and painful motorbikes don't really lend themselves to a great narrative.

Anyway, just my thoughts.  I'm interested to see what everyone else would like to see there.

 

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In regards to my post,

I still standby my thoughts on the theming of the rides.

Yeah, they have a barely evident or obvious theme, but they are completely irrelevant to each other. You go from riding a wave, to flying sea planes to riding in a hot wheels car. Not real collective theme anywhere. As an example, movie world has a decent theme which helps bring atmosphere, story telling and obvious theming to the majority of the rides. And if you want to know how to theme and individual ride, look at wwf. Gold rush is really the only consistent or substantial theme at dw. Although after the shut down of the trr, it really isn't as good as it once was, with the area being split in half.

I do however, realise that saying dw has nothing going for it was false and just a statement during rant. Although I still think what I said above can be used in rebuttal of magaicians post.

This thread will be more relevant when the free time is up on people's passes and renewed passes is scarce. You can already see that Movie World has reasons for people to rejoin. The rides are obviously great, but with a new flat ride and massive hypercoaster, people are most often going to renew or join.

In regards to grammar, I'm not concerned, but I know it's not a conversation on Parkz without someone complaining about gramma.

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44 minutes ago, wikiverse said:

 

 

Everyone seems to have identified similar problems with Dreamworld, so I'm gonna hijack the conversation and suggest some ideas for what could be done with GoldRush.

Personally, I love GoldRush.  I think it it has a lot of wasted potential.  If I were to build a big new attraction at Dreamworld, I would build an RMC Hybrid Wooden coaster - with classic 'run away mine train' theming. 

Australia only has one woody and it is 106 years old.  As much as I would love to see TRR redeveloped to be safer, Ardent have already committed to demolishing it, so there is a massive amount of land that could be developed into a tight twisting wooden coaster. 

I'd also love to see the old Mine Cart coaster demolished and replaced with a new wild-mouse - even a new concept like a Eurofighter/wildmouse hybrid. I'd also reopen the Log ride with new boats/elements/theming.

In general, it would be nice to see DW just distribute their theming a little better.  I think the beach theming of Ocean Parade is nice (except shockwave), the Dreamworks theming is good, and GoldRush has potential.  Coroboree is really solid too.

But there is just a bunch of random crap that is completely out of place.  ToT, MDMC, V8 simulator, HotWheels and Kevil Hill all seem completely out of place in their respective areas.  The park just needs to stop dumping randomly themed rides in places.

But I think there is a lot of potential for GoldRush to become the 'coaster corner' of the park, with ocean parade being for flat rides.

I'd also re-theme MDMC to anything else - give it new trains and free VR.  It's a crappy ride, but being slow won't hurt it if it has a good VR story.  Slow and painful motorbikes don't really lend themselves to a great narrative.

Anyway, just my thoughts.  I'm interested to see what everyone else would like to see there.

 

Excellent ideas there.

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1 hour ago, Gold Coast Amusement Force said:

Yeah, they have a barely evident or obvious theme, but they are completely irrelevant to each other. You go from riding a wave, to flying sea planes to riding in a hot wheels car. Not real collective theme anywhere. As an example, movie world has a decent theme which helps bring atmosphere, story telling and obvious theming to the majority of the rides.

The areas are seperate and are Ocean Parade and Motorsport Experience. The planes in TailSpin are sea planes (and I'm not making that up for the argument, the large plane for theming is a sea plane). And then HWSW is next to Brocks Garage, which creates another themed area. When you think about DW is really on the only park on the coast that has themed areas, with multiple attractions to that theme. Yes MW has WWF and the villains area, but they are just the one ride with surrounding theming. They do have the Looney Tunes area, and the DC area, but the DC isn't a set themed area, just a corner of the park which has themed attractions. When you go to the Gold rush country, the music suited it, and you felt like you'd gone back in time. And then you go to Ocean Parade, and it's up to date music. And then to the kids areas, and they have appropriate music, theming, etc and you feel like you are in a whole new zone. Yes there are a couple of rides out of place, like TOT and MDMC, but there is only so much planning and room to put rides in appropriate areas.

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2 hours ago, wikiverse said:

 

Personally, I love GoldRush.  I think it it has a lot of wasted potential.  If I were to build a big new attraction at Dreamworld, I would build an RMC Hybrid Wooden coaster - with classic 'run away mine train' theming. 

Australia only has one woody and it is 106 years old.  As much as I would love to see TRR redeveloped to be safer, Ardent have already committed to demolishing it, so there is a massive amount of land that could be developed into a tight twisting wooden coaster. 

 

 

Agreed. An RMC or even a GCI woody with heavy theming would be perfect 

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Call me pessimistic all you like, but unless there is a change of ownership, I don't think we'll be seeing any large scale new attraction at DW in the next 3 years. We might get more cosmetic upgrades and entertainment offerings, maybe another flat, but I'm not expecting more than that 

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