Friday, 30 November 2012

The Butterfly Flight - a Water Slide fit for a princess!

Center Parcs is our favourite holiday destination as a family and we have been fortunate to go there each year since our first daughter was born. Even at just three she has wonderful memories of holidays at Whinfell Forest, so much so that she even calls it our 'other home'! Hopefully we will get to take our new baby daughter to experience the delights sometime soon.

Without a doubt the Subtropical Swimming Paradise is one of our favourite places to spend an afternoon but having been since V was 9 months old the one thing we couldn’t fully appreciate as a family has been the Water Slides. Although each time we return V is a bit bigger she still hasn’t been comfortable even with the slides in the children’s area. Part of this is due to the dislike of landing in the water and going under , and part due to not wanting to step foot into an enclosed tube ( I have to admit I’m with her on this one!)

So when we thought about what would be our dream ride at Center Parcs we wanted to come up with a solution to these problems and to create a ride more to the tastes of the Subtropical Swimming Paradises' younger guests. As a family we envisaged a full ride experience which starts from the moment you make your ascent so that there is none of that apprehension as you approach the top of the slide.

We called our ride ‘The Butterfly Flight’. As detailed in the (not very professional looking at all) sketch the journey starts with a ride through the forest in a toadstool carriage surrounded by twinkling lights and calming nature sounds. When you reach the platform you are greeted by the beautiful butterfly covered entrance. As you step onto the slide you don’t need to be afraid of that claustrophobic feeling as it is a large airy tube style which is clear so you can see all around, although your eyes are drawn to the sparkling butterfly canopy on the top. A gentle stream of water aids your journey down as you travel through the twinkling tube of butterflies.  And thanks to the gradual leveling off at the base there is no need to land heavily and end up with your head under the water. ‘Amagical’ as V called it, it really is a water slide fit for a Princess!

As I am (quite obviously) not the best artist in the world we decided to build a prototype to give you an idea of how it might look in action. (Ok so I'm not great at that either but it did give us the chance to play with fairy lights and water and V was thrilled to see our ideas taking shape) There was even a special guest passing by, and we were reminded of that famous saying in the industry as we tried to produce this vlog of our efforts;

Thanks to @Tots100 and @CentreParcsUK for setting this challenge. We have had such fun creating our dream water ride. Although I still can’t get into my bathroom which is now overrun with Happyland characters happily splashing around since the grand opening by Princess Kate!

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