Planned Diyarbakır hotel set to be star of Mid East

Planned Diyarbakır hotel set to be star of Mid East

DİYARBAKIR - Doğan News Agency
Planned Diyarbakır hotel set to be star of Mid East

Turkish businessperson Hamza Öner is set to establish a holiday resort in his hometown Çermik, Diyarbakır. DHA photo

A leading businessperson in the textile industry has announced plans to build a tourism complex in Diyarbakır for $200 million amid a surge of investments in the southeastern Turkey that has accompanied greater hopes for peace in the region.

A thermal holiday village that will include every kind of social facility will be built in the province’s Çermik district, providing substantial employment and contributing to the social and economic transformation in the region, according to the businessman behind the project, Hamza Öner.

The region, and particularly Diyarbakır, has become a favorite for investors after steps taken by the government and Kurdish political figures to end the three-decade-old conflict in the southeast.

Although the peace process is still continuing, businesspeople have already set their sights on the much-neglected region.

Öner said he was impressed by the political progress as well. “I [have always] seen the southeast as a center of attraction, but of course, the solution process has encouraged us, so we took action.”

The complex to be built on a 300,000 square meters of land will have 300 timeshares, a shopping mall, a five-star holiday with thermal center, a museum, a zoo and a religious center.

The project will consist of 10 stages, each valued at $20 million, while construction is expected to last until 2015.

The holiday village has been named “Helinamin,” referring to “my home” in Kurdish. “Because the Kurdish population lives here, and our investment will target them, we put this name,” Öner said.

In addition to residents of the region, visitors from neighboring Middle Eastern countries, especially Iraqis, are expected to show an interest in the facility.

“Çermik will be the new tourism center of the Middle East, not only the region,” Öner said, adding that Helinamin would be able to accommodate 400,000 visitors a year after it opens.