Antalya on the Mediterranean coast of Turkey is looking to tap into the cruise ship travel industry on a massive scale with a new project to accommodate world class cruise liners.
The Antalya Cruise and Yacht Harbour Complex Project has received government approval to move to the next stage of tender. Mayor Menderes Turel has thrown his full weight behind the project saying it will raise income levels in the town while adding that it should have been built years ago.
The planned location is the Lara Birlik beach due to its ample amount of space and close location to the airport. As well as a docking port that will hold up to four cruise liners, the project will include a hotel, yacht club and space for 420 boats.
The mayor also emphasised the 300-acre project will be visibly appealing to tourists and locals but won’t damage the Lara coastline or its flora and fauna.
In May 2017, the mayor travelled to Miami in the USA to sign a sister city agreement and said he received a lot of inspiration and ideas from their cruise ship industry. During this time he met potential investors who will be invited to bid.
The project by Antalya is just one of many taking place with the aim of increasing tourism from cruise ships. It is also part of a larger ten-year travel plan by the Turkish government that will see a complete overhaul of the tourism industry by 2023.
The General Directorate of Maritime Commerce said 15 ports throughout Turkey received 131 cruise ships in the first six months of 2017. Alanya and Antalya accounted for 13 of these but most went to Kusadasi on the Aegean coast that is close to the ancient ruins of Ephesus city.
To further encourage cruise ship tourism, the government said they are offering financial incentives to travel agencies, and particularly targeting the America market which is well known for its love of cruises.
National newspapers of Turkey reported in June 2017 that permission had been granted to build an airport on the Mediterranean coast near the small town of Kas.
Stating that the Directorate General of Civil Aviation had signed off on the project, they were awaiting approval from the Ministry of Transport and other bodies before putting the project out to tender.
Contenders for the bid will include IC holding which is credited with Antalya’s airport and Limak who is constructing the Istanbul third airport.
Antalya’s mayor is also extremely excited about his plans to turn Antalya into the Turkish equivalent of Hollywood. The project will include a state-of-the-art film studio of which the architecture is being finalised by the same team who constructed Universal Studios in Los Angeles.
The complex will also include an entertainment zone and a film academy. If everything goes to plan, the studio will open in 2019.
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