Michael Jackson took Bubbles on tour in Japan. In the picture, the chimpanzee drinks from his own cup of tea during the singer’s visit to Osaka city hall in September 1987.
But the icing on the cake of Michael Jackson’s private residence (and leisure center) was the private amusement park that he had built by calling at midnight with some new idea for the Californian builder.
For several years, Urquidez spent time visiting conventions and amusement parks across the country to test the facilities in person and make Jacko’s requests come true. “Michael gave me an idea of what he wanted and I had creative freedom to execute it.
After several projects such as the magic road, the bridge to the tree house, the pirate ship, and the fort for water battles, we created a language of our own. I knew what I was imagining and I was making it happen, “he declared in an interview.
In 1991, a year after the launch of the amusement park, Michael Jackson signed a contract with Sony for 1 billion dollars , becoming the highest paid artist in history.
For almost a decade, money flowed in and out without putting any kind of limit on the artist’s imagination: a Ferris wheel almost 20 meters high, a merry-go-round with music, a roller coaster, an attraction with flying chairs, an octopus. Mechanic, bumper cars or a video arcade with arcade machines and candy stands were some of Jackson’s creations for his fantasy world.
All the distractions were few to carry out that mission that he claimed to seek: to give a better childhood to the children who visited him, many of them with terminal illnesses. The same one that he could not enjoy due to a childhood exploited on stage, he said.
“People wonder why I always have children around me. And the reason is that, through them, I find what I never had: Disneyland, amusement parks, video games. I love all those things because when I was little my thing was all work, work and work, ”Michael Jackson told Oprah Winfrey in an interview recorded at the ranch in 1993.