IPOH, Aug 2 — The development of ESCAPE Cameron Highlands, a new world-class tourism destination in Malaysia, will kickstart the revival of the country’s domestic tourism industry which has been greatly hit by the COVID-19 pandemic since last year.
Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Nancy Shukri said this unique project introduces a world-class brand that is 100 per cent Malaysian, created by a Malaysian-born company, Sim Leisure Group that has built some of the greatest parks around the world.
“Not only will ESCAPE Cameron Highlands host their signature rides and attractions, I was informed that it will also feature European themed architecture and games, synergising with Cameron Highland’s European heritage and its cooler, temperate climate.
“As such, ESCAPE Cameron Highlands will literally and figuratively be a breath of fresh air, as far as the tourism industry is concerned. This novel destination stands to offer something truly unique, reconnecting us with nature,” she said in a statement today.
Earlier, Nancy witnessed the virtual signing ceremony between the Founder of Sim Leisure Group and ESCAPE Theme Parks, Sim Choo Kheng, and Director and shareholder of Hektar Muda Sdn Bhd (site’s landowner), Datuk Jimmy Doh.
Nancy said going by the success of existing ESCAPE parks in Penang and Petaling Jaya, Selangor the ministry was confident that ESCAPE Cameron Highlands would continue to receive praise and support from tourists.
“I was informed that the ESCAPE brand recently made its international debut in Sri Lanka, and will soon expand throughout the ASEAN region and China. ESCAPE will be the de-facto brand ambassador for Malaysian tourism abroad, just as Disney Park is to the USA or Legoland to Denmark.
“International tourists will naturally want to see the birthplace of ESCAPE brand – Malaysia,” she said.
Nancy said the opening of destinations such as ESCAPE Cameron Highlands would also directly support the ministry’s initiatives such as the Stimulus Recovery Plan, with three underlying main cores which are restoring confidence to travel, reviving domestic tourism and maximising resources.
The minister pointed out that ESCAPE’s business model was in line with the government’s agenda to boost Malaysian eco-tourism, whereby it serves a catalytic role in terms of new tourism investment while infusing renewed interest and vigour into Malaysia’s eco-tourism sector.
“Visitors want to travel and reconnect with nature for recreation and this will be the trend of tourism moving forward which has been caused by the pandemic. The future of global tourism will be about family fun in the form of wellness.
“I predict an exponential growth in demand for nature-based tourism worldwide. Malaysia will set itself apart from its regional neighbours by promoting clean, healthy, family-oriented tourism. We will capitalise on our abundant natural beauty heading towards this new direction,” she added.