Thinkwell Group is an experience design and production agency, founded in 2001 and is headquartered in Los Angeles, California. Thinkwell specializes in the creation and master planning of theme parks, destination resorts, major branded and intellectual property attractions, events & spectaculars, museums & exhibits and live shows around the world. Since 2006, Thinkwell has gone from 35 employees to more than 180, though the exact number fluctuates depending on the company's workload. Thinkwell was named "Most Honored Theme Park Design Company" at the 2013 Theme Park and Attractions Summit & Awards in Beijing. Thinkwell Group's clients include Warner Bros. Universal, Paramount, Sesame Workshop, Ferrari World, House of Blues, The Pier Shops at Caesars and Cirque du Soleil, among others; some of Thinkwell's noteworthy projects include Warner Bros. Studio Tour London: The Making of Harry Potter, a behind-the-scenes tour of the sets where all eight Harry Potter films were made at Warner Bros. Studios, Leavesden.
In recent years, Thinkwell has been selected to design and produce various theme parks in China, experiencing a significant growth period in the themed entertainment industry. Thinkwell's current projects in China that are in development include Monkey Kingdom, based on the 16th century Journey to the West Chinese folk tale, Jurassic Dream, an indoor theme park in the Heilongjiang Province of China. Opened projects include Eontime World, a massive indoor theme park, SongSong Town, an "activity park" inside LeSong Plaza, both of which are located in Harbin, a province in northern China. Warner Bros. Fun Zone, another Thinkwell-designed and produced project in Macau, opened in October 2015 in the newly opened hotel and casino mega-resort, Studio City. Thinkwell continues to expand their foothold in the Middle East with new projects. Announced as the official Content Masterplanners and Designers for Expo 2020 Dubai, Thinkwell is responsible for translating the theme of “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future” on the Expo site that spans over 1,000 acres just outside of Dubai.
Thinkwell will interpret the Expo’s sub-themes of Opportunity and Sustainability that will converge at the central Al Wasl Plaza, the iconic center point of the six-month international event space for live performances and international pageantry. 2015 marked a significant year for Thinkwell with the opening of 14 projects around the world, a record number of openings in a single year for the company. In addition to three openings in China, Eontime World, SongSong Town, Warner Bros. Fun Zone, Thinkwell opened the first major expansion to the Warner Bros. Studio Tour London: The Making of Harry Potter, which includes a recreation of Platform 9 3/4 and the original Hogwarts Express train. For Warner Bros. Thinkwell designed and produced the interactive attraction, Stage 48: Script to Screen at the Warner Bros. Studio Tour Hollywood, which offers guests a hands-on introduction to the television and filmmaking process. Thinkwell opened two museum projects, Aquanaut Adventure: A Discovery Zone at the Georgia Aquarium and the Worlds of Puppetry Museum at the Center for Puppetry Arts, both in Atlanta, Georgia.
The summer of 2015 saw the opening of two projects for major entertainment studios. During a teleconference call to discuss this exhibition, Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer said, "Thinkwell … is spearheading an initiative for line extensions of The Hunger Games and all of our other brands." Thinkwell Group Official Website Why Theme Parks Need Movie Tentpoles Too – The Hollywood Reporter, Thinkwell CCO Craig Hanna quoted
A resort is a self-contained commercial establishment that tries to provide most of a vacationer's wants, such as food, lodging, sports and shopping, on the premises. The term resort may be used for a hotel property that provides an array of amenities including entertainment and recreational activities. A hotel is a central feature of a resort, such as the Grand Hotel at Mackinac Island, Michigan; some resorts are condominium complexes that are timeshares or owed fractionally or wholly owned condominium. A resort is not always a commercial establishment operated by a single company, but in the late 20th century, that sort of facility became more common. In British English "resort" means a town which people visit for holidays and days out which contains hotels at which such holidaymakers stay. Examples would include Brighton. A destination resort is a resort that itself contains the necessary guest attraction capabilities so it does not need to be near a destination to attract its patrons. A commercial establishment at a resort destination such as a recreational area, a scenic or historic site, a theme park, a gaming facility, or other tourist attraction may compete with other businesses at a destination.
Another quality of a destination resort is that it offers food, lodging, sports and shopping within the facility so that guests have no need to leave the facility throughout their stay. The facilities are of higher quality than would be expected if one were to stay at a hotel or eat in a town's restaurants; some examples are Atlantis in the Bahamas. Related to resorts are convention and large meeting sites, they occur in cities, where special meeting halls, together with ample accommodations and varied dining and entertainment, are provided. An all-inclusive resort charges a fixed price that includes all items. At a minimum, most inclusive resorts include lodging, unlimited food, sports activities, entertainment for the fixed price. In recent years, the number of resorts in the United States offering "all-inclusive" amenities has decreased dramatically. In 1961, over half offered such plans. All-inclusive resorts are found in the Caribbean in Dominican Republic. Notable examples are Club Med, Sandals Resorts, Beaches Resorts An all-inclusive resort includes three meals daily, soft drinks, most alcoholic drinks and other services in the price.
Many offer sports and other activities included in the price as well. They are located in warmer regions; the all-inclusive model originated in the Club Med resorts, which were founded by the Belgian Gérard Blitz. Some all-inclusive resorts are designed for specific vacation interests. For example, certain resorts cater to adults, more-specialized properties accept couples only. Other all-inclusive resorts are geared toward families, with facilities like craft centers, game rooms, water parks to keep children of all ages entertained. All-inclusive resorts are very popular locations for destination weddings. A spa resort is a short l-term residential/lodging facility with the primary purpose of providing individual services for spagoers to develop healthy habits. Many such spas were developed at the location of natural hot springs or sources of mineral waters. Over a seven-day stay, such facilities provide a comprehensive program that includes spa services, physical fitness activities, wellness education, healthy cuisine, special interest programming.
Golf resorts are resorts that cater to the sport of golf, they include access to one or more golfcourses and/or clubhouses. Golf resorts provide golf packages that provide visitors with all greens and cart fees, range balls and meals. In North America, a ski resort is a destination resort in a ski area; the term is less to refer to a town or village. A megaresort is a type of destination resort of an exceptionally-large size, such as those along the Las Vegas Strip. In Singapore, integrated resort is a euphemism for a casino-based destination resort. A holiday village is a type of self-contained resort in Europe whose accommodation is in villas. A holiday camp, in the United Kingdom, refers to a resort whose accommodation is in chalets or static caravans. There are more than 1500 timeshare resorts in the United States that are operated by major hospitality, timeshare-specific, or independent companies, they represent 198,000 residences and nearly 9 million owners, who pay an average $880 per year in maintenance fees.
A reported 16% of the residences became vacation rentals. Baiae, Italy, a famous historic resort of the ancient world, popular over 2000 years ago. Capri, an island near Naples, has attracted visitors since Roman times. Monte Ne, near Rogers, Arkansas, a famous historic resort, active in the early 20th century. At its peak, more than 10,000 people a year visited its hotels. Two of its hotels, Missouri Row and Oklahoma Row, were the largest log buildings in the world. Monte Ne closed in the 1930s and was submerged under Beaver Lake in the 1960s. Tawawa House known as Tawawa Springs or Xenia Springs, inspired Dolen Perkins-Valdez to write her debut novel, when she read about it in an autobiography of W. E. B. Dubois; the book mentioned in passing that t
Jon Adams Jerde, was an American architect based in Venice, Los Angeles, California and chairman of The Jerde Partnership, a design architecture and urban planning firm specializing in the design of shopping malls that has created a number of commercial developments around the globe. Jerde became well known as an innovator in the design of related spaces, his firm has grown into a multi-disciplinary firm with offices in Los Angeles, Orange County, CA, Hong Kong, Shanghai. Born in Alton, Jerde was a graduate of the School of Architecture at the University of Southern California. After early years working at Charles Kober Associates on multiple retail projects, including Plaza Pasadena, Jerde was commissioned by developer Ernie Hahn to design the Horton Plaza shopping center in downtown San Diego; the project was a five-story outdoor retail complex, with the main passage being diagonally oriented to the street grid and at the time anchored by Nordstrom, The Broadway, J. W. Robinson's department stores.
It featured long one-way ramps and sudden drop-offs, shadowy colonnades and cul-de-sacs. Its design broke many traditional mall-design rules such as lowering ambient arousal levels and protecting the maximal lines-of-sight to merchandise, its fragmented spaces were finished in a variety of bright colors. The project was completed in 1985. Jerde's Horton Plaza brought 25 million visitors in its first year, as of 2004 continued to generate San Diego's highest sales per unit area. Jerde claimed that the project sparked nearly $2.4 billion in redevelopment to the surrounding area and downtown core. The mall would lose business to centers in nearby Mission Valley as they renovated and to big box retailers, from a limited ability to capitalize on the resurgence of foot traffic on the adjacent Gaslamp District streets due to its physically being cut off behind parking garages, from the 2010s retail apocalypse, so that by 2019 it was set to close and be converted to a workplace for the tech industry.
The Jerde Partnership was involved in the planning of the Los Angeles 1984 Olympics. Based on the success of both Horton and the Olympics, the firm designed Fashion Island in Newport Beach, CA in 1989, the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota in 1992, the Urban Entertainment Center Universal CityWalk in Los Angeles, the pirate show and facade of the Treasure Island Casino in Vegas in 1993, the Las Vegas Fremont Street Experience in 1995 and the Bellagio in Las Vegas in 1998; the firm has developed into a major international company with key urban regeneration projects overseas, including Beursplein in Rotterdam and Canal City Hakata in Fukuoka, both in 1996, as well as other projects in Japan and Europe. Jerde is responsible for a string of landmark urban mixed-use developments, including: Namba Parks in Osaka, awarded the Urban Land Institute Awards of Excellence: Asia Pacific, 2009. More the firm has designed: The Vermont, a multifamily development in Los Angeles's Koreatown, the Grand Hyatt Sanya Haitang Bay Resort and Spa in Hainan, China.
Jerde was named the first recipient of the USC School of Architecture's Distinguished Alumnus award, in 1985, became a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects in 1990. Jerde died on February 2015 at his home in the Brentwood neighborhood of Los Angeles, he was 75. The Jerde Partnership
Gambling is the wagering of money or something of value on an event with an uncertain outcome, with the primary intent of winning money or material goods. Gambling thus requires three elements be present: consideration, a prize; the outcome of the wager is immediate, such as a single roll of dice, a spin of a roulette wheel, or a horse crossing the finish line, but longer time frames are common, allowing wagers on the outcome of a future sports contest or an entire sports season. The term "gaming" in this context refers to instances in which the activity has been permitted by law; the two words are not mutually exclusive. However, this distinction is not universally observed in the English-speaking world. For instance, in the United Kingdom, the regulator of gambling activities is called the Gambling Commission; the word gaming is used more since the rise of computer and video games to describe activities that do not involve wagering online gaming, with the new usage still not having displaced the old usage as the primary definition in common dictionaries.
Gambling is a major international commercial activity, with the legal gambling market totaling an estimated $335 billion in 2009. In other forms, gambling can be conducted with materials which are not real money. For example, players of marbles games might wager marbles, games of Pogs or Magic: The Gathering can be played with the collectible game pieces as stakes, resulting in a meta-game regarding the value of a player's collection of pieces. Gambling dates back before written history. In Mesopotamia the earliest six-sided dice date to about 3000 BC. However, they were based on astragali dating back thousands of years earlier. In China, gambling houses were widespread in the first millennium BC, betting on fighting animals was common. Lotto games and dominoes appeared in China as early as the 10th century. Playing cards appeared in the ninth century in China. Records trace gambling in Japan back at least as far as the 14th century. Poker, the most popular U. S. card game associated with gambling, derives from the Persian game As-Nas, dating back to the 17th century.
The first known casino, the Ridotto, started operating in 1638 in Italy. Many jurisdictions, local as well as national, either ban gambling or control it by licensing the vendors; such regulation leads to gambling tourism and illegal gambling in the areas where it is not allowed. The involvement of governments, through regulation and taxation, has led to a close connection between many governments and gaming organizations, where legal gambling provides significant government revenue, such as in Monaco or Macau, China. There is legislation requiring that the odds in gaming devices be statistically random, to prevent manufacturers from making some high-payoff results impossible. Since these high-payoffs have low probability, a house bias can quite be missed unless the odds are checked carefully. Most jurisdictions that allow gambling require participants to be above a certain age. In some jurisdictions, the gambling age differs depending on the type of gambling. For example, in many American states one must be over 21 to enter a casino, but may buy a lottery ticket after turning 18.
Because contracts of insurance have many features in common with wagers, insurance contracts are distinguished under law as agreements in which either party has an interest in the "bet-upon" outcome beyond the specific financial terms. E.g.: a "bet" with an insurer on whether one's house will burn down is not gambling, but rather insurance – as the homeowner has an obvious interest in the continued existence of his/her home independent of the purely financial aspects of the "bet". Nonetheless, both insurance and gambling contracts are considered aleatory contracts under most legal systems, though they are subject to different types of regulation. Under common law English Law, a gambling contract may not give a casino bona fide purchaser status, permitting the recovery of stolen funds in some situations. In Lipkin Gorman v Karpnale Ltd, where a solicitor used stolen funds to gamble at a casino, the House of Lords overruled the High Court's previous verdict, adjudicating that the casino return the stolen funds less those subject to any change of position defence.
U. S. Law precedents are somewhat similar. For case law on recovery of gambling losses where the loser had stolen the funds see "Rights of owner of stolen money as against one who won it in gambling transaction from thief". An interesting wrinkle to these fact pattern is to ask what happens when the person trying to make recovery is the gambler's spouse, the money or property lost was either the spouse's, or was community property; this was a minor plot point in a Perry Mason novel, The Case of the Singing Skirt, it cites an actual case Novo v. Hotel Del Rio. Ancient Hindu poems like the Gambler's Lament and the Mahabharata testify to the popularity of gambling among ancient Indians. However, the text Arthashastra recommends control of gambling. Ancient Jewish authorities frowned on gambling disqualifying professional gamblers from testifying in court; the Catholic Church holds the position that there is no moral impediment to gambling, so long as it is fair, all bettors have a reasonable chance of winni
DFS is a Hong Kong-based travel retailer of luxury products. Established in 1960, its network consists of duty-free stores located in 11 major airports and 20 downtown Galleria stores, as well as resort locations worldwide, it is held and majority owned by the luxury conglomerate Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, alongside DFS co-founder and shareholder Robert Miller. As of January 11, 1997, DFS Group operates as a subsidiary of LVMH. DFS is headquartered in Hong Kong and has offices in Australia, China, Indonesia, Japan, New Zealand, United Arab Emirates, United States of America and Vietnam. DFS Group employs over 9,000 people, operating in 14 countries worldwide. In 2017, nearly 160 million travelers visited DFS stores. In 1960, American entrepreneurs Charles Feeney and Robert Miller founded Tourists International, which became Duty Free Shoppers, in Hong Kong; the entrepreneurs anticipated the growing spending power of military servicemen as well as the rise of international travelers from Asia, following vast improvements in international air travel after World War II.
In 1962, two DFS stores were opened at the international airports in Hong Kong and Honolulu, the first duty-free shop in the United States. In the 1960s and 1970s DFS Group expanded their operation in Eurasia and North America. DFS capitalized on the rising wave of Asian tourists who began to travel further overseas, opening stores in international airports and in downtown locations where travelers could shop and have their purchases delivered before departure. In 1968, DFS opened its first downtown duty-free store in Kowloon, Hong Kong, followed shortly thereafter by Honolulu and expanding to 14 locations all over the world. In 2005, branded halls opened in Okinawa, Japan launching a new shop-in-shop concept for DFS Gallerias. In 2010, DFS University was established for enhancing the expertise of its sales associates. In 2013 DFS reached 420 locations worldwide and undertook a major branding initiative setting the stage for the next generation of expansion, it re-branded its downtown Galleria Stores “T Galleria” and moved to a strategy of localization for airports, working with local suppliers to increase its mix of “destination” products.
In 2015 DFS opened its first transformational wines and spirits duplex store at Singapore Changi Airport, including a Long Bar by Raffles. In the same year, It launched T Galleria Beauty by DFS, a standalone beauty concept store in Hong Kong and Macau. In 2016 DFS expanded its operations, opening T Galleria Angkor in Siem Reap, Cambodia, a extended space at T Galleria by DFS, City of Dreams in Macau, its first European store, T Fondaco dei Tedeschi in Venice, Italy. In 2017 it announced plans to open in Paris in 2020 within the renovated La Samaritaine complex. In late 2017, Ed Brennan returned to DFS as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of DFS Group, a member of the LVMH Executive Committee, he succeeded Philippe Schaus who became Chief Executive Officer of Moët Hennessy, the Wines and Spirits Division of LVMH. In 1996, LVMH acquired the majority share of DFS Group, buying out partners Feeney and Pilaro and setting a new focus on the combined elements of travel and luxury, it developed a merchandising strategy based around five core "pillars" - Fragrances.
It created an annual “Masters Series”, showcasing the best products across all its categories and convening leading brand representatives, top customers and industry analysts in a celebration of luxury. In 2004, the company moved its headquarters to Hong Kong from San Francisco, California as part of a corporate restructure. DFS Group operates around 420 duty-free boutiques at 11 international airports, 20 downtown Galleria stores, as well as resort locations around the world; the DFS stores locations are as follows. In 2015 DFS Group was awarded "Best Technology Platform" under the Best Treasury and Finance Strategies in Asia Pacific category at The Corporate Treasurer Awards. In 2017 it received the 19th Duty-Free News International Asia/Pacific Awards for Travel-Retail Excellence. List of duty-free shops Official website
Pei Partnership Architects
Pei Partnership Architects is an architecture firm founded in 1992 by Chien Chung Pei and Li Chung Pei, sons of I. M. Pei and for many years members of his firm, I. M. Pei & Partners; the 30-person firm is led by two Partners, three Principals, two Senior Associates and three Associates. Headquartered in New York City with a representative office in Beijing, the practice is engaged in a spectrum of building types and has received numerous awards. Bank of China Head Office Building, China Qingdao Taisan Real Estate Development, China Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Headquarters, China Zhengzhou Commodity Exchange Center, China Shanghai Commercial Bank, Hong Kong Shenyang International Finance Center, China The Galleries at Downtown Jebel Ali, Dubai, UAE Alturki Plaza, Saudi Arabia Faria Lima, São Paulo, Brazil Forum Cultural Guanajuato Masterplan, León, Mexico Jian Fu Palace Garden, China Guanajuato State Library, León, Mexico Suzhou Museum, China Macao Science Center, Macao City of Dreams'Dancing Water Theatre', Macao U.
S. National Slavery Museum, Fredericksburg, VA Instituto São Fernando, São Fernando, Brazil Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Islamic Exhibition Gallery, Brunei Darussalam Martha Stewart Center for Living at Mount Sinai,New York, NY Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA Greenwich Village Townhouse renovation, New York, NY The Centurion, New York, NY, The Americana, Philadelphia, PA Embassy of People's Republic of China in Washington, D. C. Pei Partnership Architects website