or The Parks at Vidanta Nuevo Vallarta
Formerly Known as the:
CIRQUE DU SOLEIL PARK PROJECT
New Park / Resort Project
General Update - (9/19/2023) An awesome collection of images showing off the now open first phase of the Vidanta resort and theme park area can be found at ThemeparX.
(5/7/2023) You may have saw this clip on the Screamscape Facebook page the other day, but Vekoma has posted a sneak preview video of a crazy new roller coaster they are building for the new VidantaWorld project in Mexico. The project has been under construction for some time now, working at a slow pace throughout the pandemic, but according to the latest updates the park is expected to finally open later this year.
If the name isn’t familiar, you may recall several years ago that there were plans to build some kind of Cirque du Soleil branded park in Mexico, but after extended delays, Cirque opted out of having their brand used on the theme park. That didn’t stop the project which continued to be built, and it appears that at least one of the rides may have soft opened for some early preview riders according to the latest pictures posted at ThemeparX.
A construction video posted by ThrillGeek a couple of months ago shows off the resort in more detail, as seen from the aerial gondola that travels across the property and some footage on the ground. One interesting item is that sections of the project essentially look finished and ready to go, while other sections are are still all dirt and crews pouring footers, which gives me the feeling we may just see this project open in phases, or piecemeal as new attractions become ready to go. After the construction footage, the last video also features a great look at the resorts nighttime fountain show.
(10/27/22) It has been quite awhile since we’ve heard anything about the Vidanta World project in Mexico, but ThemeparX has posted a few awesome pictures of the project over the last few days. Follow the link and you’ll see that a number of attractions now appears to be fully installed, including the coaster wheel and a flower themed mini-parachute drop tower.
(11/27/19) While Vidanta’s new resort is no long Cirque du Soleil themed, it looks like they are still working together on at least one aspect of the new resort project in Vallarta. A new “water-themeed” Cirque show and dinner experience is set to open there by 2021 as part of a new world-class theater able to hold up to 600 guests per show.
(11/21/19) According to this press release, Grupo Vidanta has purchased three attractions from Intamin and Dopplemayr for their Vidanta World project at the Nuevo Vallarta beach resort, which I’m guessing is the latest name for the former Cirque Du Soleil themed resort project.
According to the release they have purchased The Vidanta SkyDream aerial gondola system from Doppelmayr that will offer five stations along a 4+ mile journey, offering standard as well as glass bottom gondolas. The purchases from Intamin include a 45m “Coaster Wheel” ride that will include special lighting to be used during a special night show, and a 40 meter tall “parachute drop” tower ride.
Before you get too surprised by the mention of a new Parachute Drop towers, this isn’t the old classic attraction from days long gone. Instead this is a new updated version of the concept, which appears to be something they cooked up for a park in China. These new cars are able to hold six seated riders per parachute held in place with an OTS style restraint system, as opposed to the old fashioned free standing riders system. You can see the new ride system in action in the video below, and Intamin’s website lists 40 meters are the maximum height for this new system.
(6/8/19) There is some strange stuff going on with the Cirque du Soleil Mexico project… starting off with the story that apparently Cirque du Soleil and the local developer, Vidanta, may have parted ways on the project, or at least significantly reduced Cirque’s presence at the resort to simply be used in an on-site performance venue of some kind only, and not as the theme for the whole park.
This would explain the information we found in our last update that mentioned that Vidanta and the original architects had parted ways and the park had been redesigned to move forward, along with the addition of new steel theme park rides to the mix and the waterpark being pushed into a Phase 2 status for the resort.
A new update from Theme Park University also adds to the confusion, as they’ve been trying to get official updates on the project from both Cirque and Vidanta. A statement they did get only called it, “The Parks at Vidanta Nuevo Vallarta”, and confirmed the design had been “shifting from a single theme park to a multi-tiered desgination”, “across several park concepts”. Only one of which will be in “partnership with Cirque du Soleil”.
One very interesting thing Theme Park University also pointed out is that for years now Vidanta had been pre-selling this resort as a timeshare resort with the promise of having a world-recognized Cirque du Soleil theme to it all. Now that this has been scaled back and changed… I have to imagine there are going to be a lot of very angry people who bought into this time share and have been patiently waiting for it to get built as proposed to them.
We do know it is under construction though from the photos we saw in the last update, but it is also clear the project has evolved into something other than what it was initially envisioned. We’ll just have to wait and see how this turns out.
(6/1/19) While news about the Cirque du Soleil resort/park projects in Mexico has been slow to come, we have found some great new images on the project posted to ThemeparX this week. Here you will see an actual aerial photograph of the site shot about three weeks ago, showing land clearing, a couple of artificial lakes created (with little islands) on the edge of the property and even some hotel buildings going up.
Scroll down from there and from the sound of the posts the first phase is now hoping to open sometime in mid to late 2020, but there is still a lot of work to do to reach that point. As you scroll down check out some new concept art released of the project, some of which looks quite different from the previous art, especially the look of the hotel buildings, and now seems to include a section of themed traditional rides as well, such as a giant wheel, roller coaster, wave swinger, mini parachute drop, a Disk’O and a few others.
There was also an interesting note from someone who visited the site in February and got an update on it from the Vidanta staff, claiming that the “original park architect” and Vidanta had parted ways and a new architect had been hired to finish the project. The Phase 1 rollout for 2020 is intended to the hotels, hard-rides and cirque performance areas, with the waterpark listed as Phase 2, but also currently under construction as well.
With actual construction well under way, we hope to see updates on the project come in more rapidly as things progress.
(11/13/14) Grupo Vidanta (a resort developer in Mexico) and Cirque du Soleil have announced an expanded partnership to create what they are calling the World’s First Entertainment Park Animated by Cirque du Soleil. This will be a “first-of-its-kind immersive theme park experience in Nuevo Vallarta. The entertainment experience, which is still in development, may include water park and nature park elements and will feature an outdoor evening show accommodating as many as 3,000 to 5,000 spectators. Each experience within the entertainment park will be animated by Cirque du Soleil artists and follow a common storyline.”
“Grupo Vidanta is offering us an amazing sandbox in which we can unleash our creativity,” said Guy Laliberté, founder of Cirque du Soleil. “Both our groups strive for perfection. Grupo Vidanta is passionate and cares for the environment. We set ourselves the challenge of creating something unlike anything the world has seen before.”
This announcement comes just ahead of the launch of JOYA, a “intimate and immersive theatrical and culinary experience” from Cirque du Soleil and Grupo Vidanta that will open in Riviera Maya on Nov. 21st.
My Thoughts: Very few actual details about the park experience itself were given, leaving room for much speculation about just what exactly this will be. Based on the few pieces of concept art I was able to find, the look of the park is stunning, but it also seems that this isn’t likely going to be your typical theme park experience, as the artwork also seems to be lacking any kind of traditional “rides” that you might expect to find in a theme park environment. Given that Cirque style experiences typically come at a premium price, I’m wondering if this park may also come with a “premium” ticket price and limited attendance numbers to allow for a higher quality experience for the guests, much like Discovery Cove in Orlando, where even your meal is included with admission. The location of Nuevo Vallarta is about a 15 minute drive north of Puerto Vallarta, a common and popular Port of Call for the many cruise ships running up and down the Pacific coast of Mexico. The area is already home to several all inclusive beach resorts, golf courses, the Aquaventuras Water Park and Dolphin Adventure where guests can swim with Dolphins, so you could easily see a Cirque themed park trying to fit into this mix of existing attractions.