Tourist Resorts and the Capacity to Deliver

Tourist Resorts and the Capacity to DeliverTourist Resorts and the Capacity to Deliver

As Iran’s tourism industry continues to flourish, an increasing number of new services and facilities are being introduced to attract tourists. Rivals in the industry are left with little choice than to meet the tourists’ demands if they are to maintain their competitive edge, and they must do so creatively.

Natural and historical attractions apart, what tourists are drawn to plays a major role in determining their itinerary and route selection. Taking this into account, modern tourist complexes are emerging to meet the travelers’ needs – whatever they might be.

The competition in building recreational and touristic luxurious centers enriches the options menu set before travelers. But do these facilities realistically meet tourist expectations? Has all the ground been covered to attract them?

Centering a number of recreational facilities under one roof or as part of one complex is nothing new, but in Iran, this practice is in its infancy, and is desirable feature for  investment. Private sector participation in the tourism industry can help create numerous jobs, the Persian daily Forsat Emruz reports.

While Iran is privileged in its multitude of natural attractions and has potential to become one of major tourism hubs in the region and the world, the lack of modern recreational and tourist resorts is a major drawback.

  Advantages of Tourists Villages

For visitors, centralization of facilities and services is one major attraction of tourist villages. Successful centers seem to have identified the real needs of tourists, and have created an attractive, peaceful environment where visitors can have a pleasant stay, enjoy recreational and sports facilities, do lots of shopping, including handicrafts.

One key factor in travel-and-tourism projects is having an eye for a niche cultural context, something on which handicrafts sales depend greatly. Handicrafts, either locally produced or imported, can be an attractive feature in a modern tourist village. Other attractions are modern hotels, public halls, banks and money exchange centers, amusement parks, sports clubs and facilities, and movie theaters.

Touristic villages are designed to make visitors feel at home. Their managers should consider various details in meeting the needs of travelers, including childcare issues, services and facilities of children, as well as services and facilities for the elderly and disabled. Interaction with global brands and foreign travel-and-tourism centers can bring fame and popularity. Hence, marketing, international public relations, and interaction with credible institutions and companies are important.

The growing urban texture has given rise to an increasing thirst for recreation and refreshment. Here, such recreational centers create a win-win situation for tourists and investors, by providing a few days break in a peaceful environment.


Regardless of the costs for land and property, some $180 million is the minimum required for establishment of a tourist village. For such undertaking, one should attract investments, and look for new methods of financial support. Otherwise, projects would be usually divided into relatively short-term phases, and those with shorter timeframes will be given priority. The revenue earned from the operational phases is then injected into the phases of next priorities.

The facilities, equipments, and spaces, foreseen in the design, are surely important in defining the scale and scope of investment. Such facilities may include hotel, amusement park, water sports, shopping malls, handicrafts market, flower garden, and bird sanctuaries, etc.

Once a solid and original plan is in hand, the forest, range and watershed management organization may cede land for the project. Required permits are issued by Iran’s Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization (ICHHTO). Such plan can create 3,000 to 4,000 jobs. Some 40 to 50 percent return on investment could be expected.

  Best Places

Based on expert opinion, southern and northern coasts are favorable for tourism investments. Other recommended places are Tabriz, East Azerbaijan Province, and provinces of Semnan and Chaharmahal-Bakhtiari.

One should pay heed that location-finding is the most critical part of the job; after all, an attractive, peaceful environment is to be offered to tourists.

Next thing to reckon with is timing. This is important especially in large scale projects where various phases should be timed properly; otherwise a hard challenge would arise. The phases with quicker profits should be handled first. Customers’ tastes and demands should not be overlooked. Eye-catching advertisement is of equal importance. Proper means of marketing, including networking, play a key role in success.

Establishment of a tourist complex entails numerous concerns. It is an absolute priority to realize the sort of complex that sticks people’s minds. One should decide which features are to be highlighted and popular with the public.

  One Example

Niavaran handicrafts and tourist complex is one of the projects started in Sari, capital of Mazandaran Province. It is expected to become operational soon. It follows an ingenious plan based on commercial tourism.

Niavaran Complex covers an area of 25 hectares, including 72 spaces for different functions. The design addresses the requirements of regional and international tourism. The complex will be one of the most attractive tourist facilities in the country.

Handicrafts products have a special status in the complex. There are facilities for promotion of domestic and foreign handicrafts. So far, a total of $53.5 million has been expended on the complex.

Workshops in the complex have become operational. Shopping centers will open by mid May. Other phases will be operational in due course, and the entire project will be completed by March 2017.