FROM a raging sea to a submerged chasm, from a meandering river to water slides that make you feel twice the strength of Earth’s gravitational pull, Escape in Teluk Bahang becomes a wonder of Penang. Again.
Escape Waterplay is now open and with it comes a new benchmark to how much fun you can have with water.
Those who love the adrenalin rush and soothing connection with nature in Escape Adventureplay might know that the theme park designers are quite capable of doing wonders with swimming pools.
On entering the water park, you will see a beach-pool to your left with an enormous blue ball, bobbing perpetually in the water.
The nonstop movement of the wave ball is what creates the constant waves in the pool. Swim here and your bland, placid swimming pool will never be a delight again.
Now and then, primal screams cut through the park’s tranquillity as two water slides launch visitors into the air and send them flying into a 5m deep pool.
The screams peal out of those going through the yellow slides called the Banana Flip, and if you think you are a seasoned water slide user, hold that thought because these have trap doors.
“The initial drop is almost vertical. That’s why the trap doors are needed. It will launch you into the air with enough velocity to keep you flying for a couple of seconds.
“Do it many times, get used to it, and you can easily do aerial flips before you land,” Escape chief executive officer Sim Choo Kheng said with a smile. Sim, however, prefers everyone to think of him as the "Chief Escape Officer".
Sim, who has built dozens of theme parks around the world, is a Penangite and in 2012, opened Escape Adventureplay and thrilled visitors with zip lines through the woods and from hill to hill, rope obstacle courses and over 20 other attractions.
For Escape Waterplay, right across the street, Sim created another 20 attractions.
He even thought of toddlers and created the Tots Pool, a water playground with a docile water depth of 20cm.
Every day at 1pm, 3pm and 5pm, professional stunt divers of a team named Acapulco from Ukraine, will wow visitors with their comic tumbles from a dive platform and plunges from as high as 25m.
The entry tickets allow visitors to experience both Escape Adventureplay and Waterplay.
“Most go to Adventureplay to sweat it out first and enter Waterplay after lunch to chill out,” said Sim.
The walk-in rate is RM136 for ‘big kids’ (aged 13 to 60), but those who plan their visits ahead and buy advance tickets online can get them for as cheap of RM68 for adults to just RM45 for ‘junior kids’ (aged four to 12).
Sim stressed that Escape did not practise a different pricing for foreign tourists.
“We don’t believe in fleecing tourists or giving local visitors a lesser deal. Escape is an international-class theme park and all our visitors have a memorable time.
“Local visitors love to buy discounted advance tickets online while tourists never seem to mind paying the full walk-in rate so, with a bit of planning, visitors can get up to 50% discounts,” he said.
For details, visit www.escape.my.