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Huainan, China Claims the first Ping Pong Hotel in the World

Anhui Province is one of the less economically developed provinces of China but has huge ambition to place itself in the world map as the most original sports destination in the world. Last month the plans for the Olympic Park in Huainan city, a coal mining centre in this province with a population of 2.4 million inhabitants, were revealed and include, among other odd-shaped buildings, a 150-metre-tall hotel (tallest building in the province) designed in the shape of a ping pong (table tennis) bat.

The hotel, will cover an area of more than 67 hectares, and is estimated to cost 300 million yuan (approx. US $46 million). It will feature three sections: the top section is designed to host a restaurant and bar with an observation deck for the scenic view of the city, the middle will offer guest rooms, and the lower section will be used for conference facilities.

The plans also include a main stadium shaped like an American football, a volleyball-shaped natatorium (indoor swimming pool) plus smaller stadiums and gym facilities shaped like a football and a basketball. The buildings were all designed by Mei Jikui, a renowned architect for sports-related constructions.

The Olympic Park in Huainan represents an investment of 1.8 billion yuan (approx. US$275 million). The local government in Huainan is developing the hotel as an investment project, but will fund construction of all sports stadiums in the park. The construction of the park will start at the end of this year and is expected to be completed in three phases within five years.

However, the innovative architecture of the Olympic Park will not be a first for the city. Huainan is also known for its piano/violin-shaped Urban Planning Exhibition Hall.

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Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.

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