MAPIC finalist: ADVENTICA - leisure concept of the year
The finalists for the prestigious MAPIC 2023 global awards were announced in Cannes, France in November 2023. Established in 1996, the MAPIC Awards honour players in the retail real estate market by assessing their excellence, innovation and creativity, and by celebrating the year's most beneficial, sustainable and visionary projects. Brands, creative ideas and real-life projects from around the world compete in 14 different categories. The jury for the 2023 Awards includes 13 members from different countries around the world (Portugal, France, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Sweden, Germany and Austria) and from different business sectors.
One of the four finalists for the MAPIC Award for Leisure Concept of the Year is ADVENTICA, a family entertainment center (FEC) chain originated from Lithuania. This is the first time in the history of the MAPIC event that representatives from the Baltic States have been shortlisted for the finals. This category rewards the best leisure concepts for originality and outstanding performance over the last 12 months.
The story of the family amusement park started in Lithuania in 2020. After almost a year of construction and installation work, the first ADVENTICA family entertainment center of almost 4,500 sqm was opened in Vilnius, in the OZAS shopping and entertainment centre. The beginning was far from easy, as both the opening and the operation were accompanied by the first and second waves of the Covid-19 epidemic.
The second ADVENTICA family amusement park (2100 sq. m.) was built in Riga (Latvia) in the OLIMPIA shopping centre. Its operations were also severely restricted during the pandemic. In October 2023, an ADVENTICA family entertainment center opened in Chisinau, the capital of Moldova. The leisure space of more than 2,500 square metres has already exceeded even the wildest plans and forecasts and has become a centre of attraction for the residents of Chisinau. ADVENTICA does not stop there! At the very beginning of 2024, another park will open in Bratislava, Slovakia's best shopping centre. And this is not the end.
November and December this year are particularly busy. As soon as we were ranked among the top four leisure concepts in the world at the MAPIC Awards, our work calendars were filled with meetings. Even during the three-day event, it will be hard to find time to see the show itself and listen to presentations from experienced entrepreneurs. The world's largest shopping centre operators, separate shopping centres, interested investors, existing and potential suppliers and trade partners are all eager to meet. In December, there will be many remote meetings and visits to various stakeholders.
We compare the fame that has come in entertainment to a Nobel Prize - "to realise that we are among the very best in the world is still a big challenge for us. Before the opening of the first park in Vilnius, we sat inside the completed park at night and whispered shyly that even if no one came to ADVENTICA, we had built a park for our children! We asked everyone and everything, because it was very difficult: suppliers for payment postponement, partners for understanding, the state for support during the covid closure. After the pandemic, when everything was back to normal, at some point we said to ourselves - "Our time for requests is over! Time to move on!"
Today, we are very optimistic about the future. We are expanding our contacts throughout Western Europe, looking for locations in Scandinavia and visiting the Far East. Almost every other day we receive enquiries and requests to open ADVENTICAs in different cities around the world. In the last few years we have visited hundreds of shopping centres. Today, our top priority is to maintain state-of-the-art quality, to choose new locations with precision and to implement perfectly what we have in the back of everyone's mind. After all, everything is a game! This is the slogan of our parks. And the game is just at it's beginning.
The winners of the MAPIC 2023 Global Awards will be announced on the evening of 29 November 2023.