People, Travel

Work Begins on Sirjan Tourist Complex

Work Begins on Sirjan Tourist ComplexWork Begins on Sirjan Tourist Complex

Construction of the largest tourism complex in Sirjan, Kerman Province, officially began on Thursday following a simple ceremony a day before, local media reported.

The 2- trillion-rial ($55.6-million) complex will include a shopping center, hypermarket, cinema, 800-seat conference hall, sport centers, restaurants, food courts, reception hall, lobby, cafés, and a 119-room hotel, news website Asriran reported.

Funded by Iran’s Financial Tourism Group and the Tourism Bank, the project covers an estimated 27,000 square meters.

The group manages two of France-based AccorHotels’ best known chains — Ibis and Novotel — at the Imam Khomeini International Airport, 35 km south of Tehran.

Sirjan’s strategic location — easy access to the Persian Gulf and central Iran — is said to be one of the candidates to help boost the local economy in the near future, making the development of tourism infrastructure a priority.

In addition, numerous mines, including coal, iron, copper, stone and gold, and a special economic zone are expected to help Sirjan emerge as one of Iran’s main industrial and commercial hubs.

Sirjan is well known for its pistachios and traditional rugs called geleem in Persian, and also for its unique pipe-like windcatchers, known as Badgir Chopoqi.

Kerman Province boasts three world heritage sites: the Arg-e Bam, which was the largest adobe building in the world prior to the 2003 killer quake that devastated more than 80% of the citadel; Meymand Village, Iran’s oldest surviving village, having been inhabited for nearly 3,000 years; and the Qajar-era Shazdeh Garden, one of nine gardens in Iran collectively inscribed as the Persian Gardens.

Furthermore, the Lut Desert could become Kerman’s third and Iran’s 20th World Heritage Site in 2016, making it the country’s first UNESCO-listed natural heritage site.