A new retro-eco attraction, ESCAPE Cameron Highlands is slated to open in Cameron Highlands in the first half of 2023! To be designed and built by the world-renowned Malaysia-born theme park developer Sim Leisure Group, ESCAPE Cameron Highlands will be a nature-based adventure park built into the natural landscape of Cameron Highlands that adopts a low impact development approach in design and execution. The project will also proliferate Cameron Highlands’ natural beauty by presenting a renewed tourism boost for one of the country’s most popular hill resorts.
Spanning across a 60-acre valley at an elevation of 220 metres, this will be the biggest ESCAPE park in Malaysia. The park will also be the first of its kind in the region to offer an outdoor ski attraction, set within an equatorial climate.
ESCAPE Cameron Highlands combines the essence of the brand’s proprietary ‘retro-eco’ genre of fun with Cameron Highlands’ natural topography and environment. The theme park will bring ESCAPE’s Gravityplay and Adventureplay games to new heights, capitalising on the site’s overall 220m height difference which was a prime selection factor of the project site.
In addition to ESCAPE’s signature downhill rides and adventure-based attractions, the park will showcase the world’s first outdoor ski facility in an equatorial setting, featuring a ski lift elevating visitors to the top and a 1.2km dry ski track, which will take skiers through scenic routes, including local themed villages.
With its temperate climate, ESCAPE Cameron Highlands will be themed into five different European villages at varying elevations – starting with the Iberian village at the bottom, followed by the British, Balkan and Nordic villages moving up, before finally peaking at the Alpine village at the top.
“The conception of these five themed villages leveraged on our expertise in designing and building themed facades across multiple theme parks around the world, including Europe. These themed villages will also feature accommodation and rental offerings, in addition to hosting traditional European pastimes and activities, which will complement the ‘fun factor’ of ESCAPE’s signature Gravityplay and Adventureplay attractions,” said Sim Choo Kheng, Founder of Sim Leisure Group and ESCAPE Theme Parks.
Sustainability and maintaining a low carbon footprint are at ESCAPE’s core. Unlike conventional amusement parks worldwide, ESCAPE Cameron Highlands will preserve the natural habitat, setting the trend for sustainable theme park development.
ESCAPE Cameron Highlands is poised to be an industry game-changer of international standards. Targeting domestic and ASEAN tourists looking to escape the tropical heat to experience something truly different, ESCAPE Cameron Highlands will elevate the themed attraction industry in the country to new heights, allowing visitors to reminisce sweet memories of childhood play in a natural environment, envisioned by Sim himself.
“The ESCAPE concept in a nutshell advocates the re-discovery of childhood and re-connection with nature. It reintroduces the benefits of play and enhancement of motor skills by introducing. the nostalgic activities of yesteryear in a contemporary but natural environment. We have been doing this with ESCAPE Penang and ESCAPE Petaling Jaya, but I can guarantee, it will be quite unlike anything in ESCAPE Cameron Highlands,” Sim adds.
The Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, YB Dato’ Sri Hajah Nancy Shukri was invited to commemorate the official announcement and signing ceremony of ESCAPE Cameron Highlands via a virtual event held on August 2, 2021. “ESCAPE Cameron Highlands stands to offer something truly unique: reconnecting us with nature. This timely development will kickstart the revival of Malaysia’s domestic tourism industry, as a whole, which has been greatly hit by the Covid-19 pandemic since last year,” said YB Dato’ Sri Hajah Nancy Shukri.
ESCAPE Cameron Highlands is built in collaboration with the site’s landowner, Hektar Muda Sdn. Bhd., led by Dato’ Jimmy Doh. Phase 1 of the project is estimated to take 15 – 18 months to complete with an initial investment of RM15 million. This investment is conservatively expected to exceed RM100 million over subsequent phases, spanning the next 10 years.