Some people build businesses for business? sake, some for money, for success, for notoriety. Other people build their businesses based on a passion, a personal motivation and a desire to provide the best product or service no matter what. This business ethos can usually be seen in the product: the Innocent smoothies, the Howies, the ones who go that extra mile to try and offer us something we love.
That?s the feeling I got when we were invited by David Seymour to a presentation on the new designs for the Watersplash. There have been rumours milling around about the future of the Splash ever since Seymour Hotels aquired the site in 2004. Speculation was rife over when the building would be flattened to make way for a big hotel, a fancy venue or something else that would lose the memories we all have associated with the Splash of old. It was a huge challenge therefore, in the face of public opinion, to undertake a plan to create a new Splash that would provide everything St Ouen?s regulars want to maintain whilst creating something that extra bit special, something that has the potential to get our new generation of tourists excited.
The Seymour Group investigated other beach front entertainment venues and took inspiration from Quay Four in Cape Town and The Extreme Academy in Watergate Bay, Newquay. They enlisted the help of local architect Tim Skudder at Nigel Biggar and Partners to create a solution what would be in harmony both with the natural landscape of the Five Mile Road and its location beachside. As a surfer, Tim was brought up in his family?s beachside inn and is well placed to empathise with the needs of a project like the Watersplash redevelopment.
The development team is further assisted by the appointment of Dominic Cole as land use consultant. Dominic?s experience includes being lead designer and planner for The Eden Project and current Chairman of the agardens and Parks Advisory Panel of The National Trust.
You can see therefore, how the new proposed building will morph into the St Ouen?s landscape perfectly with sympathetic development and planting, assisted by Sedum roofs, allowing the building to sit comfortably with its surroundings.
This isn?t a development for the sake of a development. This is the desire to create a truly world class destination attraction whilst maintaining everything Islanders want from the Splash as we know it and have known it.
One of the features of the Splash redevelopment will be the creation of a Channel Islands chapter of the Surfrider Foundation.
For those of you that have never heard of it, the Surfrider Foundation is a non-profit grassroots organization dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of our world?s oceans, waves and beaches.
The organisation was founded in 1984 by a handful of surfers in Malibu, California and now maintains over 50,000 members and 80 chapters worldwide doing good for the surfers? habitat. They have chapters in Australia, Japan, France, and Brazil (and maybe Jersey soon).
WaveHouse at the Watersplash
Established in Durban, South Africa in 2001., Wave House and Wave Loch are owned by inventor and entrepreneur Tom Lochtefeld. Tom was co-founder of Raging Waters theme parks, Lochtefeld invented 30 global patents for water rides and attractions, and built rides and theme parks across the world.
In 2002, Lochtefeld acquired the lease for Belmont Park in San Diego, a failed beachfront retail specialty center, and proceeded to revitalize the seven-acre facility by blending the original historic family-oriented amusement centre with state-of-the-art boardsport entertainment and beach recreational amenities.
A lifestyle centre for California surf culture, it?s on real sand, overlooking the Pacific Ocean with a real boardwalk and shade palm trees. It is an outdoor restaurant with surfboard tables and plenty of bars, one of which was built from plans of the original Windansea Shack. It has live music and a beach volleyball court, and of course, ?the Wave? a.k.a. Bruticus Maximus.
If this all goes to plan the Splash will be the world?s fourth Wavehouse after San Diego, Durban and Chile. Plans include a retractable roof. True surfers and boardriders globally can therefore travel to our little island to check out not only our waves but also our Wavehouse. Think pro-tour style events and parties….bring it on!