The 2021 Park World Excellence Awards closes for entries and nominations on Monday 30 September.

Reflecting the wide spectrum of organisations and skills within the industry, submissions are invited across 21 categories, with only one category ‘Best of the Best’ exempt (only the judges can nominate and vote on this one).

With entries and nominations invited from operators and manufacturers/suppliers, the ‘Project Categories’ include: Best Roller Coaster; Best Roller Coaster – Limited Budget; Best Ride(s) Best Ride(s) – Limited Budget; Best Dark Ride or Media-Based Experience; Best Water Park Experience; Best FEC Project; Best Use of Theming; Best Use of Technology; New! Best Use of Technologies (Guest Experience/Park Operations); Best Supplier; and Best Product Innovation.

Note, entrants to the project categories can come from companies outside the EMEA region, but to be eligible the ride, attraction, project or product must be located in the EMEA region. It must also have opened or become available in the EMEA region between 1 September 2020 and 30 June 2021.

Entrants to – and nominees for – the operator categories must be based in the EMEA region. they include: Best Large Park; Best Regional Park; Best FEC; Best Water Park and Best Live Entertainment.

From Unsung Hero to Industry Icon – Operator and Industry Icon – Supplier the Industry Categories are there to provide further opportunities for organisations and individuals to shine.

“New for this year is Best Green Initiative; open to operators and manufacturers/suppliers, it’s included within the ‘Industry Categories’ to reflect the important and far reaching effects of adopting more sustainable practices in our day-day-operations,” said Park World editor, Becci Knowles.

What it means if you win

The Mack family won in two major categories at the 2020 event: Best Large Park, for Europa-Park and Best Water Park for Rulantica. They said: “Winning these awards has been fantastic. It was a particularly difficult year for our industry and to win these awards just before Christmas has been great for our entire team. It’s like Christmas has come early.

“We believe in our product and the Mack family, along with the entire team are working tirelessly to make Europa-Park the best it can be. Our attention to detail and the theming of the park is something we are particularly proud of. We like working with people, we like seeing the smiles on their faces and guests can see and feel that. That’s why the vaat majority come back year after year.”

“We are particularly proud to see Rulantica bring home an award as well. Just over one year in and with all the closing periods due to the virus, this is proof for us that we are on the right track.”  

Puy du Fou, meanwhile, was crowned winner in three categories– Best use of Theming; Best Live Entertainment; and Best use of Technology. Speaking at the time, CEO Guillaume Gallaire told Park World: “It is a great honour for Puy du Fou to receive these Park World Excellence Awards. The international recognition represents a tremendous achievement for all our team and partners. For us, the most important word isn’t “Award” it’s “Excellence. This value is part of our DNA and has been our philosophy from the beginning.” 

The Family Zone at Ferrari World Abu Dhabi reigned victorious in the Best Ride(s) category, for The Family Zone, supplied by Zamperla. Bianca Sammut, acting head of Yas Theme Parks and general manager of Ferrari World Abu Dhabi said: “being recognised by the Park World Excellence Awards for the launch of the Family Zone is an honour and we are all very proud to have been part of this achievement. This award is testament to our commitment to elevating the guest experience and continuously diversifying our offerings. We also see this accolade as a new testament to our contribution in defining excellence across the themed entertainment industry.”

Also commenting on the win, now CEO Antonio Zamperla said: “We are a family-run business and for us the idea of FAMILY is at the root of all our existence. This prize is for sure the recognition of these values.”