The popular destination of Cardiff turns 25 and celebrates fifty million visitors

The iconic Red Dragon Center in Cardiff Bay is celebrating two incredible milestones this year, its 25and anniversary and its 50 millionth visitor through the door.

To commemorate this milestone year, the Center is asking visitors to tell their stories about the flagship entertainment venue.

Officially opened in 1997, the former Atlantic Wharf Leisure Village invites visitors to share their special stories about the resort. Whether it’s a first date, engagement, anniversary, happy memory, or favorite restaurant, Red Dragon Center wants to hear about it.

The Red Dragon Center. Credit: Roger Donovan, media photos

After navigating two difficult years due to the pandemic, the Center has exciting plans to return to its usual dynamic schedule of events while celebrating the historic year ahead. This will include welcoming their very own Snoopy as part of the Dog’s Trail with Snoopy by the Dog’s Trust from April, as well as planning a series of special activities for 2022.

Cardiff Bay’s premier entertainment venue is home to a host of interactive, lifestyle and dining venues including the Odeon Cinema, Wales’ only IMAX screen, and the Hollywood Bowl, both of which are key attractions in the center from the start.

And since then a host of additional brands have joined the Center family to become an integral part of the entertainment and dining experience, including Grosvenor Casino, Simply Gym, Bella Italia, Five Guys, Spice Route, Volcano, Cardiff Bay Tavern, Cadwaladers. and Zaika.

The Red Dragon Centre, Cardiff Bay

The Center is the site of studio Capital FM South Wales, formerly Red Dragon FM, as well as Heart FM. Today, Josh and Kally live stream their Capital Drive Show every day of the week.

Emma Constantinou, Marketing Manager of Red Dragon Center, who joined the company in 2006, said: “We may have been open for 25 years, but in a quarter of a century we’ve never had two like 2020. /21. For us, as for so many Welsh businesses, the challenges we have faced have been enormous, but thanks to their determination and resilience, I am delighted that our brands are emerging on the other side of the pandemic while continuing to deliver great customer experiences.

“The Center prides itself on having something for everyone and that’s as true today as it was 25 years ago. We may have seen a few changes along the way, but what hasn’t changed is our commitment to providing a warm welcome and a fantastic time to everyone who enters our grand interior.

“Our customers are an important part of our story and that’s why we look forward to hearing from everyone who has celebrated special moments with us. I really hope that over the next few weeks and months our customers will come forward and share their stories so that together we can celebrate some of our most impactful customers of the past 25 years. If you have a story to share, do not hesitate to contact us.

“People can reach out to us on social media or email us their story at [email protected] .”

For the past twenty-five years, the Centre, which was opened by Sporty Spice, Mel C, has hosted such iconic attractions as the Doctor Who Experience and popular 90s and early 2000s nightclub Evolution. It has also not been unusual to spot well-known faces there with celebrity guests who have made their way to radio stations and more recently Amanda Holden and Jamie Theakston hosted their popular breakfast show at the Center in October.

The Red Dragon Center prides itself on creating unique, fun, and family-friendly events.

Emma said: “In 2011 we hosted the first Balloon Art Festival in the UK, which was so popular that we then held additional exhibitions with Dr Bob Balloons in 2013 and 2019. The New Year celebrations Lunar Years of the Center are a well-known sight, starting in 2007 and celebrated annually until Covid restrictions prevented recent activity. We look forward to working with the Confucius Institute Cardiff to plan our 2023 celebrations.

“Christmas is also important to us and we have tried not to let Covid get in the way of our festive celebrations. In 2020 we had an augmented reality dragon, Blizzard, that people could download and enjoy at home, and in 2021 we had a giant treehouse on site. We’re constantly thinking of new ways to spark joy in our visitors – we’ve even had a Star Wars Santa in the past.

“Additionally, we’ve also forged great community relationships, such as with Mount Stuart Elementary School (which recently participated in a hope-themed Red Dragon Center artwork challenge), Waterfront Partners and many local charities.”

In recent years, the Red Dragon Center has hosted various Eisteddfod activities, including hosting preliminary rounds which saw 110,000 visitors pass through the gate in 2005, 133,000 in 2009 and 100,000 in 2019.

Freeda S. Scott