Hawar island to get facelift
Manama, June 12, 2008
Bahrain's Hawar Island is to undergo a comprehensive development plan to turn it into a major tourist attraction, according to officials.
Located south of Bahrain's mainland, it is already a popular weekend destination for families and regularly hosts wedding parties and corporate events.
The island is home to more than 250,000 birds and boasts of many rare marine species and wildlife.
The island also offers a variety of activities from beach buggy rides to water sports.
It is an internationally-recognised biodiversity protected area and is considered to have the potential to become a World Heritage Site.
Officials said that the development will feature the setting up of hotels and villas.
Southern Governor Shaikh Abdulla bin Hamad Al Khalifa said that all the projects would be built in line with international environmental standards.
"Bahrain Mumtalakat Holding Company will be supporting and implementing the development project," he said during a meeting with the company executive chairman Talal Alzain, to showcase the Hawar Development scheme.
"The company will rehabilitate and develop Hawar Islands, put forward construction development programmes, tourist promotions and enrich the national economy as it will be a unique tourist attraction," he said.
Shaikh Abdulla said the development was also in line with the national reforms launched by His Majesty King Hamad.
The island's tourism facilities underwent a BD200,000 ($530,560) expansion in 2000.
Southern Governorate representative Salah Shehab said a timeframe for the latest plan had yet to be drawn up. He said it was too early to say how much the development work would cost.
"There are a lot of projects for hotels and villas but none of these have been submitted because they have to take it to His Majesty for approval," he told the Gulf Daily News, our sister publication.
"His Majesty will meet officials to decide when it will go ahead," he said.-TradeArabia News Service