Melbourne’s resident eyesore and perpetually unfinished elephant in the room, the Melbourne Star Observation wheel – has finally spun into action today, opening to the public at midday after a brief five years of delayed development, crushed hopes and its unbridled potential always twirling, twirling – figuratively, of course, the thing was stationary – toward failure.
Today, however, is a glorious day for the people of Melbourne and its swarms of tourists, as the self-proclaimed “only giant observation wheel in the Southern Hemisphere” has begun turning, allowing families of four aboard its submarine-like vessels/viewing pods for $84, to have the privilege of eyeing the reverse view to which they have been longingly gazing from during the past five years. A Christmas miracle, etc.
The seven pointed star boasts 21 cabins to house 400 people, and according to the Melbourne Star CEO, the observation wheel will be a “an important tourism landmark for the city.” However, some were quick to criticise the attraction value of the Melbourne Star, with the Sydney Morning Herald (jealous, perhaps?) describing the experience as relatively lacklustre, with most of Melbourne’s most iconic sites being hidden by a maze of high rise buildings and with foreground views boasting less than fascinating glimpses of Docklands’ industrial chic car parks, construction sites and shopping centres; writer Bridie Smith bluntly puts the experience, “only a fraction of the city’s best bits can be seen during the 30-minute rotation.”
Pitfalls aside, the Herald Sun has thankfully informed us on what truly matters of the tourist destination: its gift shop, which contains a 3 metre-high lego replica of the wheel, a marvellous sounding thing that was perhaps worthy of the five year wait.
Great to see Melbs has put on a spectacularly summery day for the occasion. :/
Via the Herald Sun.