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HollandWorld secures developer and expands proposal to include hotels district

CLADnews

The Delta Development Group has signed an initial agreement to drive forward plans for a Dutch-inspired theme park and leisure destination near Amsterdam in the Netherlands.

The scope of the project has also widened to include plans for on-site hotels providing up to 4,000 rooms.

Delta signed the deal with the City of Haarlemmermeer, a large suburb south of Amsterdam and the municipality where Schiphol Airport is located.

Concept drawings have also been drawn up for HollandWorld, which will consist of themed edutainment zones reflecting the culture and history of the Netherlands. The 60-hectare themed attraction will be located inside a 1,000-hectare recreational parkland close to Schiphol Airport, about 20 minutes from downtown Amsterdam.

The decision to earmark HollandWorld for future hospitality development is related to the growing problem of overcrowding in Amsterdam. The project, first tabled by International Destination Strategies (IDS) and M2Leisure in 2014, would provide a second gate to the city, taking the pressure off the historic destination and creating more space for both tourists and locals.

In December, the Municipality of Amsterdam put a freeze on all new hotel construction in the city, meaning planning applications for hotels are automatically turned down.

“The Municipality of Amsterdam is preparing regulations similar to those taken in Barcelona, Venice and elsewhere,” Hans van Driem of development consultant IDS told CLAD. “The strategy is to block further hotel developments in the downtown area and to stimulate developments outside the centre.”

As tourist numbers are forecast to keep on rising, the municipality was keen to introduce integrated accommodation to the HollandWorld project.

“This decision has led to a major change in the design and layout – and the business case of HollandWorld,” said Van Driem. “As a result we have to re-design parts of the project and integrate the themes with the hotels, retail, F&B and spa and leisure elements.”

“The concept is comparable with the Wyndham Hotels project in Copenhagen,” he added.

The themed attraction itself will include areas like HollandWaterWorld, HollandFlowerWorld and HollandHistoryWorld – and now HollandWinterWorld, which is being developed in association with UnlimitedSnow.

In 2016, 16 million domestic and international tourists visited Amsterdam – and the number is expected to rise to 23 million by 2025.

Delta Development Group is a Dutch real-estate development and investment company with an €800m portfolio.

The project is looking for partners.