Attractions industry news

16 May 2019

Butlin’s opens 'revolutionary' £40m pool designed by FITCH

Family resort operator Butlin's has launched an art-deco style pool and water attraction at its Bognor Regis resort.

Called Splash, the huge £40m pool can accommodate up to 1,000 guests and features the world's first helter-skelter water ride.

The pool was designed by brand and retail consultancy FITCH, which was given the brief to create the most family friendly pool in Britain and to "bring the seaside inside".

For this, FITCH created slides that look like sticks of candy rock and a 328ft-long 'Seaside Garden Rapids' ride which starts inside then goes outside.

There is also a large wave pool, an adrenaline flume and a family-fun raft ride.

During the planning stage, FITCH developed bespoke VR technology to deliver a preview of the proposed work to the Butlin’s board.

This had such an impact that the content is now implemented at a consumer level – to display the pool in the Butlin’s resort holiday booking shop and inspire potential guests.

The VR visualisation was led by FITCH’s digital team. Butlin’s and FITCH also worked with parenting forum Mumsnet to gauge feedback on swimming pool dressing rooms to deliver a changing village that fulfils the needs of families.

“FITCH absolutely rose to the challenge set out in the brief, combining unique design with modern features to create a memorable, enjoyable experience for families," said Kika Dabbs, brand manager at Butlin’s.

"The beautiful contemporary art-deco theme strikes the perfect balance for what we are trying to achieve with our ‘bring the seaside inside’ concept.

"The innovative use of VR by the FITCH digital team during the planning stage was so impressive we rolled out the VR previews to our guests, so they could see exactly what the new pool has to offer.”

Jacquie Butlin, daughter of the brand’s founder Sir Billy Butlin, said: “I know my father would be immensely proud of the new pool and the Butlin’s resorts of 2019, because all his values, his dreams and his ambitions for the brand are still at the heart of everything they do."

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