Company wants to bring indoor skiing to Sawgrass Mills Mall

Pelion pitches Sunrise Environmental Sustainability Advisory Board on Wednesday

By Christina Vazquez - Reporter

SUNRISE, Fla. - The Sawgrass Mills Mall may soon become home to an indoor skiing facility.

Described as a "winter wonderland," Pelion Sunrise is pitching a massive entertainment facility in Sunrise that will let visitors ski indoors.

The proposed site for the winter-themed activity venue will be located off Northwest 136th Avenue on a parcel of land wedged between the BB&T Center, formerly known at the Bank Atlantic Center, and the Sawgrass Mills Mall.

No one from the company was available to speak on camera Tuesday but according to the proposal Pelion Sunrise submitted to city officials, the site will offer ice skating, "dynamic" downhill skiing, cross-country skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling, tubing and tobogganing.

READ: Sustainable design strategies | Pelion economic impact summary |

There are also plans for a 300-room hotel and the "first robotic car garage in South Florida".

In the "concept design report" the company stated it also plans to offer a skate park, paintball, laser tag, go-cart racing and rooftop dining.

The building's design will rise 300-feet into the air and will be shaped like an iceberg.

Company officials believe their concept will attract 2.5 million visitors a year and provide 2,000 permanent jobs.

Its report states an additional 3,000 people will be needed to construct the facility which they hope will begin late this year. The anticipated opening will be in 2014 if all goes according to plan.

David Eichhorn and Tony Saborio at the Ale House in Davie were excited to hear about this project in nearby Sunrise. They think it could be an economic boom to all of Broward County. Eichhorn imagines it could help South Florida ski shops and winter apparel stores that currently sell gear to people looking to go skiing up North or out West.

The CEO of Pelion Sunrise is the same man behind the failed attempt to launch a similar project in North Miami two years ago.

But a Pelion spokesman, Jose Boza, said Norman Canter has surrounded himself with a new team on this go around. He also confirmed that Pelion already owns the land it wants to build on.

Boza declined comment on camera Tuesday afternoon. He said company officials will speak about the project Wednesday night at 6 p.m. when they present their sustainable design report to the city's Environmental Advisory Board at City Hall, located at 10770 West Oakland Park Blvd.

Christine Pfeffer, a city spokeswoman, said she believed the project is privately funded.

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