Ferrari World lays off 100 workers

Theme park says cutbacks to positions, salaries and benefits, are part of effort to meet 'cost reduction' goals.

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ABU DHABI // Ferrari World has laid off more than 100 employees and certain top managers as timings have been changed.

The park's operating company, Farah Leisure Parks Management, issued official letters to employees informing them of a programme of cutbacks to "meet cost reduction targets."

In addition to the elimination of 100 positions, remaining staff also face salary and benefits adjustments, which will vary according to employees' salary grades.

One of the park's six restaurants is also expected to close.

Farah Leisure said the redundancies were a result of the park's shortened opening hours. Having previously opened from noon until 10pm on Sundays, Tuesdays and Wednesday and noon-midnight on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturday, it will now open from 11am until 8pm every day. It is closed on Mondays.

"In some areas there has been a reduction in staffing levels in line with the new timings," a spokesman said.

Visitors to the park have "demonstrated a preference for visiting the park during the afternoon and early evening hours", the spokesman said.

"Changes are required as the park moves into its second year, including new opening timings, refreshed food and beverage options and varied in-park entertainment among many other developments," Farah Leisure said.

Ferrari World, which is owned by the the Abu Dhabi government and developed by Aldar Properties, is billed as the world's largest indoor theme park with a 200,000sqm roof housing 20 rides, including Formula Rossa, the world's fastest roller coaster, reaching speeds of up to 240km/hour, and a G-Force attraction that reaches a maximum speed of 42km/hour with an acceleration rate of 3.8gs.

The park marked its first anniversary of operation this month.

This article has been amended since original publication. The Formula Rossa roller coaster reaches speeds of up to 240km/hour, not 140km/hour as originally stated.