Hyprop Investments-owned Canal Walk Shopping Centre is set to undergo a multi-million-rand renovation, which will see a revamp of its food court and the inclusion of a new attraction, The Ratanga Family Entertainment Centre. According to the centre, the renovation is driven by global trends, an increased demand for food experiences and a focus on family entertainment.
The Ratanga Junction theme park closed in 2018 after operating for nearly 20 years. “Being very much family oriented, Canal Walk Shopping Centre saw the long-term value in investing in this development with Ratanga World Ltd, as this will enhance the overall shopping experience, and speaks to shopping centres in South Africa remaining key destinations for retail and family entertainment activities.
“We will see a number of the amusement exhibits find a new home with us, while at the same time, our food court will undergo a significant upgrade to provide a world-class food experience for all palates. Combined, we hope to be entertaining children of all ages (mums, dads and grandparents too) for many years to come,” said Gavin Wood, CEO at Canal Walk.
The Ratanga Family Entertainment Centre is expected to open before the end of 2019, while the food court refurbishment will commence in the first quarter of 2020. The anticipated cost of the project is in the region of R57.6 million – R24.3 million for Ratanga and R33.3 million for the food court renovation.
While the focus of the activities will be on the under 12s, Canal Walk says there will still be plenty of active options for teenagers and for those adults with an adventurous spirit.
"The rides will re-energise the Half Moon Bay area (adjacent to the current food court) and the Grand Canal, it will include world-class manufactured international rides such as White Water Slides, the famous Peter Petz carousel, Lady Bugz kids Ferris Wheel, Convoys Trucks, Maasai Swings, My Citi Bus ride, the Zip Line, Bubble Boats (kiddie paddle boats), adult paddle boats (on canal), Canal Boat tours, the Temperance Flyer train (locomotive touring from Canal Walk to Central Park), and the Stargazer water tube ride," said the company.
Other internal amusements that can be expected are Midi Bumper Cars, climbing walls and international redemption games. The centre will also include a restaurant section.
A cashless system will be used via a Ratanga card on a pay-per-ride model, for individuals, group and party bookings. The card will hold cash deposits as well as accrued coupons/tickets won by the cardholder.
Pricing will be R20 and under for rides, R16 and under for redemption games.
"The works have been outsourced to qualified partners, TDC & Co. (designers) and KMH Architects, so as to provide a seamless, unified, balanced and well-designed facility, while the team who will oversee the rides are internationally certified with first class service skills," said Canal Walk.