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Mihama Ferris wheel rolling strong again

Date Posted: 2012-05-25

An iconic central Okinawa landmark, the Mihama Ferris wheel, is back in business after disappointing thousands by shutting down due to repairs issues.

The longtime symbol of Mihama was plunged out of business several months ago after SkyMax 60, the company that operated it for 11 years, called it quits due to difficult and expensive mechanical repairs. The building owners responded quickly, stepping in with solutions that included a new Ferris wheel operator and a dynamic revitalization plan for the Mihama Carnival Park.

The Ferris wheel, which reaches 60 meters into the air, provides riders a panoramic view of the East China Sea, along with spectacular views of Camp Foster and parts of northern Naha City. With the reopening of the Ferris wheel, seven new tenants signed on to serve customers at the popular Carnival Park.

Daikoku Drug, a huge drugs and 100 Yen Store chain from Osaka has opened on the first floor of the Ferris wheel building. Another new tenant is Flava Premium, the largest hat specialty store in Okinawa with more than 30,000 items in stock, featuring head gear from new style to their own original sure to cover cranium of any size and shape.

Sundry store Spica, and Azul, a shop for watches and jewelry, all are located on the ground floor. Another new store in the park is TISCO, a shop for currency exchange and language translation services. It, along with the tsg, a cigarettes special store from Australia, and the Charley Bear grill restaurant, are now open on the second floor.

The newcomers join with a variety of longtime building occupants, including culinary specialties that include on the second floor a Thai restaurant Jai Tai, famous for its many vegetarian dishes on the menu, Asian ethnic Indian curry restaurant Alibaba, Mexican Ca-Boo, Okinawan Anma-tei, and an old Japanese style Okonomiyaki Ichigenya. There is also a ramen shop, A&W and Party Land, 31 Ice Cream parlor and Johnnyís yakitori and beverage kiosk outside on the terrace.

There are also clothes shops for men and ladies, sundry and souvenir shops. Indies Square on the first floor is a section that houses small shops like Sakuraya that sells Macís cosmetics, Spiritual Stone, live calligraphy, nail salon, tiny clothing stores that sell summer dresses starting from •1,000. This is a place to find the latest Japanese fashion trend items.

Still to come this summer will be additional new stores. The Mihama Carnival Park owners say there will also be events and performances starting up during the summer months in front of the building.

With its facelift Mihama Carnival Park aims to become a destination not only for young people, but also for families and adults who want to find a place to spend leisurely time in.

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