David J. Sangree, MAI, CPA, ISHC and Nuresh Maredia, CHIA attended the World Waterpark Association annual conference in San Antonio, Texas in October 2021. After missing a year due to the COVID pandemic, it was great to see many familiar faces and meet new people at the conference as well. Here are some key highlights from the conference:
- David and Nuresh lead a session at the Waterpark Development and Design Workshop on how to perform a market feasibility study for a waterpark or waterpark resort. A copy of the presentation is available here. The workshop had good participation with about 40 participants learning about how to develop a waterpark related project.
- During meetings with various properties, everyone reported improved revenues in 2021 as compared to the COVID impacted revenues from 2020. Many properties reported revenues at or similar to what they achieved in 2019 despite a decline in attendance due to strong growth in the admissions price and per capita spending.
- The session on passive capacity in waterparks discussed how a waterpark should design areas for passive capacity with extensive landscaping and trees to provide an attractive area for guests to relax when other family members are utilizing the rides and attractions. When there are attractive areas for guests to relax, they tend to spend more money on food and beverage and retail and will want to come back to the waterpark more frequently
- The session on food and beverage indicated that there was a shortage of products for many parks during 2021 due to the supply chain disruptions that have affected all industries in the United States. Multiple waterparks had to substitute different products for their typical offerings and had to pay higher prices for various food and beverage. They were also able to raise prices for their offerings.
- Campground resorts with waterparks had banner years in 2020 and 2021 as many families chose to be at resorts that allowed them to be outside at locations that were more spread out. Properties with waterparks reported higher pricing in 2021 than in previous years.
Here are some photos of David and Nuresh in action at the conference. Many thanks to WWA for allowing David and Nuresh to participate in Waterpark Development and Design Workshop and for all the hard work they do on behalf of the industry!