- Global Village ran a spectacular season with 5.3 million guests in attendance over 159 days.
- Global Village has scored an impressive 9/10 on the Guests Happiness Index.
- Prizes worth AED 2,000,000 throughout the season.
- More than 550,000 soft toys won at Fantasy Island
- Business transactions worth AED 2.2 billion.
Global Village concluded its extremely successful 20th season with the highest ever guest attendance at 5.3 million and business transactions worth AED 2.2 billion, and closed to a packed house over its final weekend when more than90,000 guests attended the park while the Lebanese superstar Nancy Ajram took to the stage a spectacular concert to be the last Friday concert for this season before it concluded on April 9th.
The 20th season displayed many highlights as it celebrated two decades of pioneering one of the best outdoor cultural and retail experiences in the region along with exceptional entertainment offerings. Guests of Global Village were clearly delighted with the 20th edition, which was exhibited in the Guests Happiness Index that ranked the destination at 9 out of 10. The Guests Happiness Index is a survey that ranks guest experiences throughout the season, with a rating score that Global Village constantly strives to increase to meet the satisfaction of its guests across all touch points.
Ahmad Hussain Bin Essa, CEO of Global Village said, “We listen to our guests and their feedback is paramount for our growth. We were very committed to ensuring that the 20th anniversary season of Global Village would exceed expectations of all our guests, and now with the overall high score of 9 out of 10 on the Guests Happiness Index; we believe we have achieved our goal for this season. We were able to gather the cultures of more than 75 countries during this season while making our long and steady strides towards making Global Village among the top family entertainment destinations in the world.”
Bin Essa added: ”We are proud of being an Emirati brand that started two decades ago with a dream, and continued evolving until it has echoed the world over as one of the most significant tourist destinations in Dubai under the guidance of our wise leadership. After closing the curtains on our 20th season, we now begin a new chapter for the coming season where we prepare more surprises and unique experiences that will enrich and revamp the entertainment industry, which differentiates Global Village that follows the footsteps of Dubai’s vision in embracing hundreds of cultures and nationalities from all over the world.”
This season carried some special activations such as ‘Hakawati’ which was targeted to children and took place over 3 days as part of the Arab Reading Challenge initiative that was launched earlier this year by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai. This traditional Arab art of the story-telling culture of the Middle East region came alive at Global Village as it brought in a story-teller to read out stories to children in a comfy surrounding with special background music and lighting that brings the story characters to life. The story-telling included interactive sessions with the kids through an exciting medium of puppetry as part of its story-telling process. Global Village has also created a kids reading corner next to the amphitheatre where kids can enjoy reading from a variety of Arabic books, and also get to take the books with them free of charge to encourage them to continue reading at home. This initiative attracted nearly 5,000 children across Arab nationalities.
Bin Essa said: “The success of an event of this scale would not be possible without working in close partnership with a number of government authorities and we are thankful to all of them; as much as we are to all our partners, investors and employees who contributed to the success of the 20th season of Global Village. Each individual played a significant role in creating a fantastic environment for our guests, whose satisfaction and happiness is at the heart of every endeavour of Global Village”.
Global Village has provided special workshops for its employees in order to raise the bar of the service in the park and achieve the highest standards for its guests, which was prominent through providing happiness centres across the park to attend the guests questions and suggestions which helped keeping a close eye on the happiness index throughout the season.
Ahmad Hussain added, “Right from the entry to the shopping to the entertainment, we left no stones unturned in enhancing every touch point for the visiting guests and we believe that this has contributed to the positive impact we have seen this season.”
Global Village presented a fantastic line-up of entertainment with a ‘star’ performing virtually every weekend during the 159 days of the season, which included 34 concerts by international superstars.
The enhanced entertainment offering this season also included more than 13,000 shows across the spectrum of cultural performances, stunt shows, bespoke content, street shows as well as the pavilion shows that have brought in a fantastic array of more than 500 performers. Global Village has kept its guests entertained by offering more than 60 daily cultural and entertainment shows across the park, a number that increases over weekends, while the main cultural stage has witnessed an impressive number of 15 shows a day throughout the season.
Popular stars who performed at Global Village this season across the Arab and Asian entertainment world, included Nancy Ajram, Mohamed Assaf, Abdallah Al Ruwaished, Fares Karam, Hakim, Mammootty, Shreya Ghoshal, Sivamani, Salim and Suleman Merchant amongst many others.
Shopping offerings went up a notch further this season with the inclusion of new pavilions such as Japan and Russia that gave guests an opportunity to purchase interesting relics from each of these fascinating countries. With 3,500 retail shops and more than100 kiosks, visitors were spoiled for choice while other shopping extravaganzas continued across the 32 pavilions as guests clamoured to purchase beautiful, homegrown artifacts and other merchandise from various countries at competitive prices.
This season also saw Global Village take some of its cultural shows across 20 schools to showcase different cultures of countries hosted in Global Village, engaging with more than 10,000 students. As part of its community outreach initiative to promote student creativity and artistic talents, Global Village also launched the Project Dirham campaign which encouraged students across the UAE to paint and embellish metal plates engraved with one of the four national symbols inspired by the UAE Dirham coin.
This initiative was very well received with 1,500 artworks that were received from across 100 schools and 15,000 participating students. The finished plates were judged by a local artist and the top three students won AED 50,000, AED 30,000 and AED 20,000 respectively for their schools. All those plates have been gathered in Global Village to be part of the iconic structure of Dubai brand logo.
“Every year we try to bring new experiences to the park and this season we introduced a number of new features including a bigger and more grand entrance ‘The Gate of the World’ with 40 ticketing counters and a brand new Main Cultural Stage with LED screens and even better acoustics. To offer the guests a better experience in terms of parking facilities and entry, we introduced trains for the first time to take guests to and from the car park, with each train having a capacity of 60 passengers”, said Ahmad Hussain Bin Essa.
This service was provided to all visiting guests for free which proved to be extremely popular as it was used by more than 1 million guests by the end of the season.
The 20th season has also provided an enhanced experience offering the new ‘World Avenue’ that is located at the entrance of ‘Gate of the World’ structures representing a replica of 16 of the world’s most iconic landmarks including Burj Khalifa, Statue of Liberty, Big Ben, Sydney Opera House, Taj Mahal, Eiffel Tower, and the Pyramid. In addition to expanding the green areas around the park to from 22,000 square metres to become 32,000 square metres that are meant to add on the experience of guests and gives them more space to enjoy spending quality times with their families and rest while at Global Village.
A rewarding season in every sense, Global Village gave each and every guest a possibility to win AED 50,000 through a weekly raffle draw. The AED 15 entry ticket carried a barcode at the back of the ticket which gave every ticket holder a chance to enter the draw, with Global Village giving away AED 1 million in cash over the duration of its season to 20 lucky winners. And this was not all; another AED 1 million was given away through a series of multiple activations across the season along with 550,000 soft toys that were won at Fantasy Island.
The leading family destination also delighted its guests with 52 musical firework displays across the season, which were choreographed to music and fired with split second timing to provide one of the greatest performances through movement, colour and effects coupled with the tempo of the music thus producing the ultimate show in firework displays. In addition to that, the dancing musical fountain has also provided special shows to please the guests while taking their rides on the Abra up and down the canal.
One of the key highlights of Global Village was its first ever ‘Kids Fest’, a special festival created exclusively for children. This 22 day festival brought together children of all nationalities as they enjoyed meeting the Smurfs, face painting, jumping on the Globo bouncy castle, watching the ‘Globo’ shows as well as the stunning acrobatics show ‘Circus Circus!’. The Global Show Academy was another hit with the little ones as it gave them an opportunity to practice special dance moves at the Roman Amphitheatre and exhibit their talent and skills.
Global Village also saw large numbers visit its destination on special public holidays such as the UAE’s 44th National Day celebrations spreading over five days. This was largely due to the special events and entertainment shows created by Global Village to attract a large number of people across all age groups. Two of the most popular events during its National Day celebrations were spectacular concerts by leading Emirati stars – Adel Ibrahim and Harbi Al Amri, in addition to the multi-cultural parade of the world that combined more than 300 performers from all participating pavilions. Global Village has also partnered and played host for the blood donation campaign “My Blood, My Country” that was organised by Al Almeen under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
Global Village launched its mobile app last season to enable guests to enjoy multiple services with as much ease as possible. The app included the car locator at its 18,000 car parking spots, location of all its facilities including pavilions, special attractions, main stage, rest rooms, ATMs and much more. With the app also featuring daily entertainment schedules across its 13,000 shows during the season and an equally comprehensive and user friendly website, it came as no surprise that this season saw 800,000 users benefit from the app and website.
Moving ahead with the smart initiatives and active social media engagement, Global Village has also gained over 111,000 new followers to its current 300,000 fan base across its social media platforms.
Ahmad Hussain Bin Essa said, “We are very pleased with the outcome of this season which saw exponential growth in all areas of our offerings and operations. This was made possible through the support of more than 10,000 employees of more than 90 nationalities and our partners and investors, but most importantly due to our commitment to invest in new entertainment including bespoke shows with a dedicated in-house production and talent.”
Ahmed Hussain added, “We have much more to offer in the next season and cannot wait to open our doors for the 21st edition later this year with an even better experience when they come back to Global Village”.