ExplorOcean, the Newport Harbor Nautical Museum's ambitious interactive exhibit, could be completed in as little as five years, the organization's president said this week.
President Rita Redaelli Stenlund led a presentation hosted by Speak Up Newport at the Newport Yacht Club on Wednesday night as part of the museum's efforts for the 34,000-square-foot attraction next to the Balboa Fun Zone.
"Once we moved here, we not only felt a commitment to the mission of the museum, but we also realized the responsibility we have to the community for residing in this spot," Stenlund said of museum, which bought property on the Balboa Peninsula in 2006. "This project exudes the 'fun' that is so much a part of the Fun Zone, as well as containing the enrichment and the educational components."
Plans for ExplorOcean include a 360-degree theater with "4-D" effects — the fourth dimension being scents — that's intended to simulate a real ocean voyage, a massive ship playground, an 8,000-square-foot upper-level deck, "living" wall landscaping elements and LEED certification with a solar panel roof.