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​From Happyland to grazing land: the demise of Vietnam’s largest theme park

Wednesday, August 16, 2017, 13:59 GMT+7
​From Happyland to grazing land: the demise of Vietnam’s largest theme park
The entrance to the Happyland entertainment complex in Long An Province. Photo: Tuoi Tre

A massive entertainment complex in southern Vietnam’s Long An Province, once set to become Southeast Asia’s largest theme park, is now a feeding ground for local cattle.

Construction of the US$2.2 billion Happyland project, located in Thanh Duc Commune in Long An’s Ben Luc District, began in 2011.

Its developer Phu An JSC, a subsidiary of Khang Thong Group, had expected the park to be completed in just three years, opening in 2014 as the largest entertainment complex in Southeast Asia with a combined area of nearly 1,000 hectares.

The park stretches 3.7 kilometers along the Vam Co Dong River in Vietnam’s Mekong Delta region and had been poised to host a range of world-class attractions, among them Disneyland and Universal Studio, upon its completion.

Other notable features included a hot air balloon, a wine castle, Vietnamese-themed villages, film studios, an ancient town, a toy city, and a five-star hotel.

However, Happyland has yet to be opened to visitors as of 2017, with many unfinished facilities abandoned in the early stages of their construction.

With its heavily indebted developer having no money left in their account, the administration of Long An Province has ordered a distraint of the project.

An aerial panoramic view of the Happyland entertainment complex in Long An Province. Photo: Tuoi Tre
An aerial panoramic view of the Happyland entertainment complex in Long An Province. Photo: Tuoi Tre
An area inside Happyland that was planned to house a future Disneyland is still a field of grass. Photo: Tuoi Tre
An area inside Happyland that was planned to house a future Disneyland is still a field of grass. Photo: Tuoi Tre
Vietnamese-themed villages. Photo: Tuoi Tre
Vietnamese-themed villages. Photo: Tuoi Tre
A crescent lake has become a pond of mud water. Photo: Tuoi Tre
A crescent lake has become a pond of mud water. Photo: Tuoi Tre
An unfinished children’s playground inside Happyland. Photo: Tuoi Tre
An unfinished children’s playground inside Happyland. Photo: Tuoi Tre
This race track is the only construction item inside Happyland that has been completed and put to use. Photo: Tuoi Tre
This race track is the only construction item inside Happyland that has been completed and put to use. Photo: Tuoi Tre
The wine castle is left unfinished. Photo: Tuoi Tre
The wine castle is left unfinished. Photo: Tuoi Tre
A film studio inside Happyland. Photo: Tuoi Tre
A film studio inside Happyland. Photo: Tuoi Tre
Houses of residents who refused to be relocated due to compensation disputes with the project developer. Photo: Tuoi Tre
Houses of residents who refused to be relocated due to compensation disputes with the project developer. Photo: Tuoi Tre
Cattle are seen feeding inside Happyland. Photo: Tuoi Tre
Cattle are seen feeding inside Happyland. Photo: Tuoi Tre
An abandoned construction site inside Happyland. Photo: Tuoi Tre
An abandoned construction site inside Happyland. Photo: Tuoi Tre
The entrance to the Happyland entertainment complex in Long An Province. Photo: Tuoi Tre
The entrance to the Happyland entertainment complex in Long An Province. Photo: Tuoi Tre

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