New Member Spotlight | The Park Playground
The Park Playground is a virtual reality (VR) experience that can send guests on an adventure or a perilous mission, all within its 13 different locations. Players can choose their story, gear up with VR headsets, and immerse themselves in a variety of storylines.
“At The Park Playground you go on a virtual adventure with your friends, family, or colleagues. Here you can write your own story in a group, and you are in charge of your own adventure,” says Thomas Roozen, head of business development at The Park Playground. “From hunting zombies, dismantling a bomb in the year 2121, and freeing hos-tages in a bank to visiting pyramids in Egypt or traveling to New Zealand to solve puzzles and challenges together—everything is possible at The Park.”
There are currently five different group-oriented VR experiences offered at The Park, each accessible for all ages. Players can interact in their teams freely, without cables or backpacks, and play on fields of 1,076 square feet. Each venue is a stand-alone unit designed with soft colors, natural light, wood and plants, and a low-tech presence; other forms of entertainment are incorporated—even a cozy bar area.
“The Park doesn’t emphasize technology; we focus on the experience,” Roozen says. “This opens us up to a larger demographic audience, interested in location-based social entertainment, not just virtual reality.”
The Park Playground got its initial start in Belgium but has expanded to 10 individually managed locations and two franchise locations since its launch in June 2018. Currently, every venue offers the same experiences across the board. But, with plans to move beyond Europe, to places like China and the U.S., there has been a focus on developing new content based on relevant international TV series, movies, and games.
While The Park Playground is still a young company in an emerging market, it has already gained the trust of major brands like Vodafone, Kinepolis, and Liberty Global. The company plans to keep expanding internationally in the future and expects its first U.S. locations to open in 2022. This move was a big factor in why The Park decided to join IAAPA.
“For us, IAAPA Expo in Orlando was our first physical stage to get in touch with interested partners with whom we can realize a rapid rollout of franchise locations in 2022,” Roozen explains. “For us, it has been a successful mission, and we will certainly look at how we can be even more present next year.”