Luna Farm: FICO Eataly World broadens its tourist offer

Luna Farm, Italy's first leisure park with a “farming” theme, will open in Bologna by the end of 2019. Based on an original concept developed for FICO Eataly World, Luna Farm will offer families an experience of pure indoor fun, in a surprising “farm” setting. This is the most important Italian project of the Zamperla Group, a world player in the entertainment industry for more than 50 years, which runs attractions such as the Coney Island Luna Park and the Victorian Gardens in Central Park, icons of the city of New York.

Through the PAI Fund, established in 2014, Prelios SGR has managed the implementation in Bologna of the FICO Eataly World project, the world’s largest agri-food park. Until now Prelios Integra has been the Project Manager for the conversion of Bologna’s CAAB flower and plant market, and will continue to oversee the future development of FICO, including the construction of an innovative new hotel inspired by advanced sustainability criteria, on the site of the old flower market.

Luna Farm was presented on Thursday September 12, 2019, at FICO, by Bologna deputy mayor Marilena Pillati, Alberto Zamperla of the eponymous group, Eataly founder Oscar Farinetti, FICO Eataly World CEO Tiziana Primori, Prelios SGR chief operating officer Andrea Cornetti, Andrea Segrè, president of CAAB and the FICO Foundation, Alessandro Bonfiglioli, chief operating officer of CAAB and secretary general of the FICO Foundation, and Andrea Caldonazzi, CEO of Team Park Project and Luna Farm.

“With the new theme park at FICO, created in collaboration with the Zamperla group and Eataly World, the PAI Fund continues the investment project for the development and enhancement of the agri-food park,” said Andrea Cornetti at the press conference. “This is a new addition to the entertainment on offer for the park's visitors, in line with the spirit and vocation of FICO. The offer also includes the new four-star hotel run by Starhotels, scheduled to open by the end of 2020: a new development to support the tourism-hospitality offer for park visitors and the FICO congress center for business clients."

“When we were designing FICO, we imagined a huge fun-filled place for children and their families,” said Eataly founder Oscar Farinetti. “Luna Farm is the natural continuation of the initial project. A great attraction for children, starting with the games reconnecting us with our roots and traditions. Our collaboration with Zamperla, an Italian player of excellence that builds leisure parks all over the world, is further confirmation of FICO's intention to develop inclusive, accessible tourism.”

“We take pride in our partnership with FICO Eataly World because we share their mission to enhance Italian excellence around the world,” observed Zamperla group president Alberto Zamperla. “Their standing as a leading-edge project led us to make a firm investment in this collaboration. Luna Farm comes in FICO’s second year of activity, as a natural continuation of a forward-looking project: FICO offers innovative answers to consumer requirements, and entertainment plays a key role in this.”

Luna Farm will occupy an indoor surface area of approximately 6,500 square meters at the CAAB agri-food center in Bologna where FICO is located. It involved investments totaling 11 million euro and, once fully operational, will provide jobs for 70 people, including 50 ride operators and reception staff to be recruited immediately. The development and creation of a theme park which in many ways is unique in Italy took 12 months of work.

“Prelios SGR confirms its position as a trusted manager among international and Italian institutional investors, primarily pension funds and bank foundations,” said Andrea Cornetti on the margins of the press conference held at FICO Eataly World in Bologna. “In the first half of 2019 alone, we finalized new acquisitions for more than 1 billion euro, increased assets under management in existing funds by more than 300 million euro, and expanded the base of investors who choose us as managers of existing funds and to promote new investments. After the closing in May of the acquisition of the assets of the Porta Vittoria insolvency through the Niche Fund, with the aim of completing the development project in central Milan on an area totaling 139,000 square meters, we recently closed an important new transaction in Rome. This involves the management of a real estate portfolio owned by the personnel pension fund of the former Banca di Roma, with a value of approximately 200 million euro. The portfolio includes the iconic building in Viale Tupini in the EUR district, the historic headquarters of Banca di Roma and then of Unicredit.”

Cornetti also mentioned the acquisition of a property portfolio through the Cristoforo Fund, an “alternative real-estate investment fund in which Goldman Sachs is an indirect investor. The portfolio is worth more than 250 million Euro and comprises three office buildings in Rome and Milan. Also in the last 12 months, in partnership with a leading international institutional investor, we promoted the creation of the first independently managed fixed-capital umbrella fund authorized by the Bank of Italy, which has already completed its first transaction, the acquisition of an office building near the center of Milan, for more than 20 million euro; this followed the formation of one of the first Italian independently managed SICAFs. Simultaneously our support continues for the worldwide growth of investments sustaining the real economy, with the formation of the Social Infrastructure Fund, to bring new resources to the weakest sections of the community and to the territory.”