Inside an 800,000-square-foot indoor ski resort

Yeah, skiing indoors is quite different. It’s also my first time.
I do miss the sky and the wind and the scenery though.
I’m looking at one right now,
but it’s a painting.
The southern Chinese city of Guangzhou
is hot all year round.
Here, the temperature rarely falls below 70 degrees Fahrenheit.
But indoors, they’ve built a winter wonderland.
Apparently, this is the second-biggest indoor skiing resort,
but I need to fact-check that.
This place is huge. I mean, you can rent everything
from jackets to pants to boots.
Pretty sweet.
I’m gonna meet up with my friends JK and Ron.
I think I might be the fastest, but we’ll see, we’ll see.
Despite the hot weather,
there’s an appetite here for winter sports.
And this indoor ski resort, which opened in June,
is giving people a chance to hit the slopes
without going too far.
The resort is huge.
At 80,000 square feet,
it’s equal to the size of seven soccer fields
and can accomodate 3,000 visitors.
There are several ski slopes and amusement rides
like ice biking and even ice bumper cars.
Right now indoors, it’s like Celsius minus-5 degrees.
Yeah, it’s actually very cold in here,
because there are like 20 gigantic air-conditioners
right above us.
There are four different slopes with artificial snow,
and they’re catered to skiers and snowboarders
of different levels.
We were ambitious
and went straight for the advanced and intermediate slopes.
Both of them run over 200 feet.
You won’t run into too many people
because they’re all here.
The beginner slope is the longest,
and the busiest.
It’s 1,500 feet long and 160 feet wide.
For a lot of people here,
it’s their first time skiing.
Indoor skiing goes back almost a century.
In 1927, a Norwegian ski jumper named Dagfinn Carlsen
opened the world’s first ski dome
in an abandoned train station in Vienna.
It was built on a wooden ramp
and took up about 32,000 square feet.
Skiers had to walk all the way up
because there was no lift.
Since then, indoor ski resorts have popped up around the world.
And China owns a quarter of them,
with the largest in Harbin.
An even larger one is being built in Shanghai.
Despite the high number of resorts,
less than 1% of the Chinese population
has tried skiing at least once.
So why the obsession of indoor ski resorts?
The answer might be the Olympics.
The Chinese government unveiled a plan
to develop winter sports.
The aim is to build 650 skating rinks
and 800 ski resorts by 2022,
with the goal of getting 300 million people
involved in winter sports.
To check out more fun sports in China,
click this video here for dragon boating aunties.
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