Finnish author Tove Jansson created Moomin Valley in the 1940s to be the home of the Moomins, a family of Scandinavian trolls resembling hippopotamuses, as well as their many neighbors. The Moomins are so loved in Japan that the Lotte Group called on Lorenc+Yoo Design to create the vision for a Moomin-inspired world at its newest theme park concept in Tokyo.
Basing the concept on the Moomins’ many adventures, LYD designed Moomin Valley to engage visitors, making them a part of the fantasy world. As visitors hike through Moomin Valley, they are greeted by a variety of fascinating creatures. Strolling through the Enchanted Forest, visitors are surprised by Groke popping out of rocks as Hemulen directs them into the valley. Visitors can then choose to munch on Finnish-inspired meals at Moomin Mamma’s Pancake House, enjoy the Moomin Summer Stage Festival, or admire Hemulen’s Magical Garden. In the garden, exotic plants wave at guests, sing songs and even sprout flowers at the slightest touch.
On Moomin Pappa’s Adventure Boat Ride, visitors embark on a sailing adventure with Moomin and Snufkin, where they encounter an enchanted lighthouse, are swept underwater by a tidal wave and are trapped by a giant octopus. The group escapes, Moomin and Snufkin express their gratitude to their guests for helping them through, and they run off to play in the waterfall that sends the boat sailing back into Moomin Valley.
Hobgoblin’s Cloud Ride soars above Moomin Valley and takes visitors on a distant journey to hunt for Hobgoblin’s lost ruby. As visitors glide through the Finnish seasons, an interactive snow globe in each cloud provides hints to the ruby’s whereabouts. After flying through fall’s dropping leaves and enduring the cold of winter, visitors finally find Hobglobin’s ruby in the tranquil spring.
An accepting, yet exciting experience, Moomin Valley reflects the tone and themes of the original series. While still in the conception phases, Moomin Valley at Lotte World Tokyo is an undeniable example Lorenc+Yoo’s unbridled creativity and exquisite attention to detail.