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Eataly planning mega food theme park

High-end market wants world to experience Italian magic

24 June, 17:07
Eataly planning mega food theme park (ANSA) - Bologna, June 24 - High-end Italian food market chain Eataly is planning to open an 80,000-square-meter theme park in Bologna to be called Eatalyworld, the company said Monday.

''This is a feasible miracle'', said company founder and CEO Oscar Farinetti. Due to open November 1, 2015, Eatalyworld could draw up to 10 million tourists a year.

Eataly is seeking investors willing to put up 50 million euros by the end of 2013. Farinetti has his eye on Italian financial services company Unipol, among others.

''I can't imagine that they wouldn't be interested'', he explained. ''We want people from around the world to play with this magical thing, Italian food''.

The theme park would include 120 restaurants, labs and retailers, and would work closely with local universities. Founded in 2007, Eataly is sponsored by Slow Food. It is 60% owned by Farinetti and his associates and by some members from the COOP Group, which is the main Italian retailer.