2 new attractions, aquarium and Legoland Discovery, open at American Dream
Sharks, seahorses, an Imagination Express train, and replica New Jersey landmarks in Legos – all are now at American Dream.
Merlin Entertainment has officially opened its long-awaited Sea Life Aquarium and Legoland Discovery Center in the Meadowlands mega-mall.
The aquarium was originally scheduled to open in April 2020. Workers began filling the tanks in February 2020, but the coronavirus pandemic shut down American Dream and caused construction and transportation delays for sea creatures. Then Merlin announced in March that both attractions would open on May 4. But in April, it delayed opening until early summer.
The Sea Life Aquarium and Legoland Discovery Center officially opened on Tuesday.
“We have been waiting for a long time to welcome you to our space,” said Nicole Mozeliak, COO of American Dream. The interactive and educational exhibits at both venues “really enhance our experiences here at American Dream,” she said before a ribbon cut.
Both sites are aimed at children aged 3 to 10 and take around an hour to visit.
Sea Life features over 3,000 creatures of 100 different species in 10 City Under the Sea-themed exhibits. Native fish, such as the hybrid striped bass, can be seen in the freshwater exhibit, before visitors do head to more exotic exhibits such as sea anemones that they can touch, jellyfish that glow under black light, a boa constrictor with a secure portal where children can lift their heads to the inside the screen, a stingray pool where live meals can be seen twice a day, and an ocean tunnel that you can walk through to see sharks and other creatures.
The Legoland Discovery Center, right next to the aquarium, offers a train ride called the Imagination Express that children and adults can embark on for an interactive experience that allows them to use a wand to virtually pop bubbles and explode. lego sharks and spaceships to compete for high score. A workshop room offers instructor-led classes in construction with Legos, there is a Lego “Friends” area, a 4D movie theater with 13-15 minute shows every 30 minutes where viewers wear sunglasses. 3D glasses and get air and even mist over them, according to the movie. At the center of the venue are huge models of New Jersey and New York landmarks made from Legos. The lighting in the room changes from day to night and fireworks go off on the wall.
It was the favorite attraction of 11-year-old Enrique Aviles of Connecticut. “They are really, really big,” he said of the buildings. When I make buildings with Legos, they are small.
His little brother, Isaac Aviles, 5, was impressed with a car he could sit in that was made of Legos. “It’s cool,” he said.
Among those who visited the newly opened attractions at American Dream on Tuesday was Jim Kirkos, president of the Meadowlands Chamber of Commerce, who is a longtime supporter of American Dream.
“We had so much expectation from American Dream and to see it open and what we all hoped it would be is encouraging,” he said.
American Dream currently has over 130 open retail locations and 10 attractions.
Tickets for all attractions are available at americandream.com or in person. Sea Life tickets cost $ 28.99 for adults and $ 23.99 for children when purchased online. Admission to Legoland Discovery Center is $ 28.99 per person, when purchased online.
A combined ticket for the two experiences costs $ 43.99 for adults and $ 38.99 for children, when purchased online.
Subscribe now and support the local journalism you rely on and trust.
Allison Pries can be reached at [email protected].