The Avengers, Spiderman and X-Men are all set to take up permanent residence in the UAE next year when a Marvel Comics theme park opens in Dubai.Marvel Adventure, a new indoor family entertainment centre, is scheduled to open its doors to superheroes and comic book fanatics by the end of 2013 in the City of Arabia development on Emirates Road. It will include retail outlets, restaurants and a range of interactive experiences featuring Marvel characters.
The announcement comes in the middle of a blockbuster summer for superhero films at cinemas across the UAE.
Marvel's The Avengers had the biggest industry opening ever in the Middle East and the film is already one of the most successful of all time in terms of box office takings. It has made more than Dh10 million in the UAE since its launch in May, according to distributors, Italia Films.
The Amazing Spider-Man is also opening in cinemas this summer, followed by Marvel's Iron Man 3 in May next year and Thor 2 later in 2013. The much-anticipated Batman flick, The Dark Knight Rises, is also set to open this summer.
The 1.2 million square foot theme park is being built by Ilyas and Mustafa Galadari Group (IMG), the developers of City of Arabia, which is part of the sprawling Dubailand development on the edge of Dubai.
"We are pleased to collaborate with Marvel for our multi-faceted themed family entertainment destination," said Ilyas Galadari and Mustafa Galadari, of IMG Group, in a statement.
"This will be one part of the region's largest temperature controlled entertainment destinations that IMG is developing which is sure to be a strategic landmark in Dubai, appealing to the region as well as other parts of the world."
City of Arabia, which was put on hold for years, is planned to be an entertainment, commercial and residential development. It had originally planned to open in 2011 and include the world's largest shopping mall and a dinosaur theme park.
IMG did not disclose the cost of building the theme park, but announced last month that it had raised financing from Al Hilal Bank and Mashreq to fund the project.
"Following the outstanding global and local box office success of Marvel's The Avengers, and the strong affinity for Marvel in the UAE, we are thrilled to be working with the IMG Group to bring some of Marvel's most popular characters to kids and families across Dubai," said Simon Philips, president of Marvel Entertainment International.from the national.