In 1966, along a stretch of a tree-lined, spring-fed river on the edge of the Texas Hill Country, Bob and Billye Henry and their three children began creating what would eventually become the world’s first water resort and the nation’s most popular summertime waterpark. Since what they were building had never been attempted before, the Henry’s relied on their own vision of combining water fun and resort accommodations into a family destination.
Each year the Henrys reinvested in the resort, adding accommodations, attractions, and unique experiences until by the early 1990′s, Schlitterbahn Waterpark Resort stretched over 65 acres and featured hundred of resort rooms, dozens of water slides, kids’ water playgrounds and miles of inner tube chutes.
Setting Schlitterbahn apart from anything else is its unique combination of state-of-the-art water attractions with a family-friendly atmosphere. Schlitterbahn introduced the world’s first surfing ride, the world’s first uphill water coaster, the world’s first tidal wave river, plus inner tubing on a scale never seen before or since.
By 1996, Schlitterbahn had achieved national recognition when it was voted the nation’s number waterpark by the readers of Inside Track magazine. As word of the one-of-a-kind resort spread, guests from all over the nation, representing nearly every state in the union, flocked to the resort in numbers approaching one million during the park’s 110-day season.
Schlitterbahn has been featured in several Hollywood movies, dozens of national TV programs, and many international publications. Amusement Today magazine readers voted Schlitterbahn the world’s best waterpark in 1998, an honor the park has received annually ever since. In 2006 Schlitterbahn was named the world’s number one waterpark by the Travel Channel.
Schlitterbahn Beach also introduced the world’s first Transportainment® river system. Combining various river experiences from slow floats to whitewater rapids, Transportainment is part transportation, part sport and part entertainment. Guests can float from attraction to attraction without ever having to get out of the water. They spend more time immersed in the fun rather than standing in line. The immediate success earned Transportainment the industry’s highest innovation awards.
One great park leads to another…and another. As Schlitterbahn’s brand awareness grew, further opportunities presented themselves. The Schlitterbahn waterpark located on Galveston Island not only contains signature water features, it also is the world’s first convertible waterpark — one that can operate year-round. The Schlitterbahn Galveston Waterpark expands the Transportainment concept to cover the entire park, fully interconnecting three large rivers into one mile-long river system.
By putting families first and providing them with unique water entertainment found nowhere else, Schlitterbahn has become America’s First Family of Water Resorts!