Bahrain plans $5.2m Smurf village project
Manama, September 22, 2012
Bahrain is set to get its own Smurf village, based around the popular children's cartoon, after an ambitious project to build a BD2 million ($5.27 million) theme park was given the green light.
Mushroom Villaggio, which takes its name from the Smurfs' mushroom-style houses, will be built in West Riffa at the Prince Khalifa bin Salman Grand Garden.
It will be based around the popular children's cartoon and feature 30 Smurf houses, each measuring 50sqm and able to accommodate up to 20 children at a time.
There will also be a 250 sq m house belonging to Papa Smurf and a 220 sq m castle belonging to the Smurf's archenemy Gargamel, while Smurf characters will be on hand to interact with visitors.
Plans also include a cafe for parents, a small aquarium, horse stables, climbing area and a souvenir shop.
The "edutainment" facility is geared towards children aged four to 12 and will offer an array of activities, with special rewards for youngsters who complete different tasks.
It has secured initial approval from the Central Municipal Council and chairman Abdulrazzak Al Hattab welcomed the new investment in the area.
"We will provide investors with the utmost support and will work with them to get the park ready in a fast and efficient manner, which includes helping them get the required approvals from bodies concerned," he said.
"Similar projects exist in a number of other countries and the chance to bring it to Bahrain should make everyone proud, since such projects don't come along often."
Mushroom Villaggio will occupy 8,350 sq m of the Prince Khalifa bin Salman Grand Garden and parents will be given tracers telling them exactly where their children are at all times.
"Special safety equipment will be installed," said Al Hattab, who explained that the aim of the initiative was to make learning fun.
"There will be tasks given to the children and whenever they pass 30, they will be given a certificate and honoured by Papa Smurf, who will also present them with commemorative gifts," he added.-TradeArabia News Service