New initiatives to promote suq as tourist landmark

THREE new tourism initiatives will be held in Manama Suq this year as part of efforts to revive the traditional market as one of Bahrain’s most important commercial landmarks.

The move will also continue to implement ambitious infrastructure projects aimed at developing the suq and providing it with essential facilities.

Plans to hold a gold festival, outdoor cinema and design week were announced by the Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority (BTEA) yesterday.

“The BTEA places the development of the suq at the centre of its interest and we are co-operating with partners involved to overcome all obstacles,” said BTEA chief executive Dr Nasser Qaedi.

“Bahrain’s unprecedented tourism movement will undoubtedly benefit various facilities and tourist attractions – including Manama Suq.

“The current year will be exceptional for the tourism sector by all standards as we have organised a busy schedule of events.”

BTEA deputy chief executive Fatima Al Sairafi said the ‘Manama Gold’ festival will be held from March 20 to April 20, featuring shops selling gold, pearls and precious stones.

Accompanying events such as musical performances, prizes and activities for children will also be held.

“The authority also plans to host an outdoor cinema in the suq as well as tours for visitors and tourists within the market,” she added.

“The ‘Bahrain Design Week’ will be held in the second half of the year, in collaboration with art groups from the GCC.

“The BTEA aims to integrate the efforts of all government agencies involved in the project to develop the suq which will help speed up the completion of the scheduled work.”

Ms Al Sairafi also emphasised the use of innovative initiatives through modern technology to promote the market as an important part of Bahrain’s commercial and cultural history which is an essential destination for visitors and tourists.

The progress of the project was reviewed during a meeting yesterday, including the restoration of some houses and landmarks and the development of squares – such as Al Tawaweesh Square – a study of the allocation of parking spaces, public facilities and other services that meet the needs of visitors and tourists as well as traders in the market.

“We see the BTEA taking this project very seriously and working very hard to accomplish it,” said Capital Trustees Board chairman Saleh Tarradah.

“We, in the board, will spare no effort in providing all the required assistance for the project.”

Meanwhile, Manama Suq Development Committee member Hala Yateem highlighted the authority’s efforts to complete the suq development project and reaffirmed Manama Suq as an essential pillar in the entertainment and tourism events to be held throughout the year.

She said the project will promote Bahrain as an attraction for tourists from the GCC and the world.

The committee consists of representatives from the Works, Municipalities Affairs and Urban Planning Ministry, the Bahrain Authority for Culture and Antiquities, the Urban Planning and Development Authority, the Capital Governorate, the Economic Development Board, the Capital Trustees Board and traders from the suq.




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