Zoos & Aquariums

Zoos and aquariums have been an important part of how we explore and catalog our world for centuries. Once reserved for royalty, the first public zoo opened in Austria in 1765. Since then, much has changed in our perceptions of the environment and the natural world. Today, zoos and aquariums are much more than displays of interesting and exotic animals - they are also vessels for spreading the message about wildlife conservation. Aquariums, zoos and animal parks have had to balance their conservation goals with the needs of modern, tech-savvy audiences. Entertainment Designer showcases innovative aquariums, zoos, and wildlife exhibits that offer exciting experiences while staying true to the best interests of the animals presented.


Setting the Zoo Bar Higher: A Closer Look at the San Diego Zoo and Safari Park

Posted on March 11, 2016

With their wide eyes and long curling tails, lemurs danced their way into the American popular consciousness thanks to the animated film Madagascar. Today, guests at the San Diego Zoo ...

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Getting Kids to Play in Nature: A Closer Look at the AZA and Disney Conservation Fund Grants

Posted on December 6, 2015

There’s a lot of great work being done in entertainment design that’s exploring how to create environments that stimulate play. From Kidzania’s innovative centers that allow children to explore the ...

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Asking the Right Questions When You’re Developing Wildlife Encounters

Posted on April 20, 2015

  The movie Blackfish raised an important issue to the broader public consciousness: what’s right and ethical when you’re designing wildlife encounters focused on education and entertainment? From a design standpoint, ...

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The Association of Zoos & Aquariums Recognizes 2014’s Most Innovative Exhibits

Posted on October 21, 2014

The Association of Zoos & Aquariums is dedicated to global conservation and education. This unique organization has been a source of ongoing support for global animal sanctuaries and facilities since ...

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What’s Working Today in Aquarium Theming?

Posted on October 9, 2014

We spend a lot of time thinking about the integration of theming, storytelling, technology and design to create exciting experiences in the entertainment world. Theme parks and live shows are ...

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Bjarke Ingels Envisions Zootopia – Where There Are No Walls Between Human and Animal

Posted on August 27, 2014

Groundbreaking Danish architect Bjarke Ingels is at it again. His firm, BIG, is known for sustainable designs that flirt with the fantastical and defy convention. One of his latest designs, ...

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What Big Data Means for Animal Attractions

Posted on July 18, 2014

In many ways, animal-based attractions are some of the most complex venues to operate in the entertainment world. This is true for a wide variety of reasons. Complicated roller coasters ...

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Innovative Low Profile Design in World Class Fish Facility at Acuario Inbursa

Posted on June 16, 2014

Mexico City has welcomed a stunning new aquarium with the opening of Acuario Inbursa financed by Mexican mogul Carlos Slim. This new facility in the Nuevo Polanco district brings welcome ...

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Philadelphia Zoo Puts Tigers on the Catwalk for a Unique Up-Close Visitor Experience

Posted on May 15, 2014

Being stalked by a big cat isn't something you generally go looking for, but at the Philadelphia Zoo, guests pay for the privilege. The Phillie Zoo's new Big Cat Crossing ...

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Designing the Interactive Aquarium

Posted on May 5, 2014

When you envision an aquarium, if you’re anything like us, you think of large tanks where schools of fish and interesting aquatic specimens float by as you passively watch and ...

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