If you’re looking to catch the debut of SpongeBob SquarePants: The Great Jelly Rescue! 4D movie later this month, it won’t be at any of the major theme parks in the Orlando area. Instead, this eagerly anticipated interactive experience created by Super 78 Studios and SimEx-Iwerks will headline the 4D theater at a hotel, Nickelodeon Suites Resort. The award-winning “Nick Hotel” is the only Nickelodeon-themed resort of its kind in the world. A unique family destination, Nick Hotel also has two water parks on-site, a traditional arcade, and nightly opportunities to watch or participate in the Double Dare LIVE! game show and obstacle course. But don’t say we didn’t warn you about the slime.
While it is certainly unusual for a new 4D experience to open at a hotel rather than at an amusement park, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Great Jelly Rescue! will be very much at home at Nick Hotel. The popular children’s show ran on the Nickelodeon network, and the resort has been showing an older SpongeBob movie since it opened eight years ago. SpongeBob is one of many costumed characters who greet guests to the facilities, and he and his seafaring friends are visible in the hotel’s existing décor. For Super 78 Studios, the new 4D film was an opportunity to once again collaborate with SimEx-Iwerks and Nickelodeon to bring a beloved 2D character alive in three dimensions. “We needed to go the extra 10 miles to show [SpongeBob] can be dimensionalized,” said director and producer Brent Young of Super 78. “Stephen Hillenburg, SpongeBob’s creator, has the ultimate authority, and we were thrilled by his approval.” Audiences will no doubt also love the extensive list of special in-theater effects that correspond to the 3D story. The Great Jelly Rescue! promises bubbles, wind and snow as well as seat buzzers and leg ticklers. And because some of the movie’s scenes and effects will actually change from showing to showing, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Great Jelly Rescue! will likely have a greater instance of repeat viewings amongst visitors than other similar 4D movies.
The 4D Experience at Nick Hotel is open to the general public, but the rest of the theme park attractions are reserved for guests staying at the resort. Families with older children flock to the Lagoon Pool where a four-story interactive water tower features water slides, climbing nets and a 400-gallon dump tank. But not just any kind of dump tank: while most of the time the tank releases water, once a day guests gather for a Nickelodeon tradition, the Mass Sliming. Gooey green slime is also available for poolside games, and if that’s not enough slime for you, make a reservation for the Ultimate Slime Experience to be slimed on stage just like a celebrity.
Nick Hotel has a separate, slime-free water park called Oasis Pool with a multi-tiered tower, water slides and flumes. Oasis has a splash pool and wet/dry play area for families with younger children wishing to avoid the high energy of the Lagoon. It’s a smart idea to couple the chaotic fun of the Nickelodeon brand with the more docile Nick Jr., and it’s no wonder Nick Hotel has been a top family resort destination since it opened. But adults worried that a trip to Nickelodeon Suites Resort will be dominated by activities only for kids shouldn’t be too concerned. The hotel also offers parent-friendly spa services and activities for children in the evening, giving grown ups the opportunity to explore other Orlando destinations for nighttime entertainment. And with the introduction of a new day camp this summer, Nick Hotel is taking strides to offer more specialized programming for visitors of all ages.
SpongeBob SquarePants: The Great Jelly Rescue! 4D experience will eventually make its way to aquariums and amusement parks around the country. But for those wishing to check out the newest Nickelodeon character to hit the 3D screens this spring, we can’t think of a more fitting place to do so than amongst the water and slime-filled fun of Nickelodeon Studios Resort.