OpenAire Brings Perfect Atmosphere to Pirate’s Cay Water Park All Year Long

Holiday Inn Resort acquires 20,000 square foot Pirate’s Cay Indoor Water Park with an attractive retractable glass enclosure designed by OpenAire

For over a year, visitors to Sheridan, Illinois have found an exciting pirate themed destination to enjoy fun in the sun any time of year, with the incredible Pirate’s Cay Indoor Water Park at Fox River, originally built by Silverleaf Resorts. Silver Leaf chose operable roof specialist OpenAire to build an enclosure for the Pirate’s Cay after the success of its OpenAire enclosure at The Villages Resort in Texas. Silverleaf was delighted that OpenAire’s retractable solution extended The Village’s peak season year-round and wanted to bring this all-weather design to Fox River. Now, after offering tropical aquatic fun since late 2014, Pirate’s Cay Indoor Water Park has been purchased by Holiday Inn’s Orange Lake Country Club, which will continue to operate this tropical getaway for families through all four seasons, thanks to the park’s soaring retractable glass enclosure designed and installed by OpenAire.

The freestanding, double-sloped enclosure includes two 24-foot-high glass sidewalls and spans 132 ft. by 148 ft., with two gable ends connecting seamlessly with the building’s 24-foot-wide cupola and 93-foot-wide entrance building. The modern-styled structure’s motorized panels open to the warm sunshine and breezes of summer days, but close in cold or inclement conditions, keeping the entire 20,000 square foot park in a warm, brightly lit environment in any weather.

Upon opening in 2014, Pirate’s Cay became the perfect retreat for guests looking to escape the cold Illinois winter and remained a hit all through the summer months. The park kept its popularity the following year as well. Guests can walk just steps from the main park to several restaurants, an arcade, event spaces and more, making the park a fully-featured destination that stays open in any weather. Even in heavy snowfall, the inch-thick insulated glazed polycarbonate and glass keeps the palm tree-lined park and its pools at a perfect 84°F (28°C). In warm weather, the opened roof eliminates the need for air conditioning and dehumidification, while the glazed panels remove the need for daytime lighting, creating a substantial savings for the park’s owners.

“Our work to build the enclosure for Pirate’s Cay was very rewarding,” says OpenAire’s President and CEO Mark Albertine, “We are proud to stand behind our work and continue supporting the resort under its new leadership. It was great to see the structure in the cold winter weather soon after it opened. The glazed, gently sloped roof directed accumulated snow down to the ground and gave guests a sunny, warm, outdoor atmosphere all season. We want to make sure that Orange Lake Country Club and Holiday Inn can continue operating Pirate’s Cay uninterrupted for many years to come.”

Maintaining the huge, soaring structure will not be a concern for Orange Lake Country Club or the Holiday Inn. The enclosure’s thermally broken, rust-proof, extruded aluminum truss system is enamel-finished and withstands chlorine and other chemicals from the park’s water systems. This cutting-edge technology ensures that humidity and condensation do not harm the structure at any time. All told, Pirate’s Cay Indoor Water Park has become one of Sheridan, Illinois’ great attractions and is sure to offer year-round tropical fun to guests for years to come.