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China Builds $165 Million Titanic Replica to Attract Tourists

Jan 15, 2014 11:30 am

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China is following Dubai’s lead in recreating iconic past and present sites to draw tourists to regions that lack their own historical or cultural attractions.

— Samantha Shankman

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A scale replica of the RMS Titanic will be completed in two years and put on permanent display in Daying county, Sichuan province.

Almost 1 billion yuan (US$165.5 million) will be invested in the project, part of a nearly 10 billion yuan tourism investment project in the county to be implemented by Qixing Energy Investment in Zhejiang province.

“With the intention of building a world-class tourism destination, the company will build the world’s largest artificial sky-and-sand beach with a constant temperature in four seasons, performance center and ‘6-D cinema’ in addition to the Titanic replica, which will be 270 meters long and 28 meters wide,” said Wang Song, an information officer in Suining, which administers Daying.

The model Titanic will be designed in the United States and made at Wuchang Shipyard by China State Shipbuilding Corp.

The interior and exterior will be reconstructed in line with the ocean liner’s original design.

Qixing Energy Investment Chairman Su Shaojun said the replica’s interior will include the original ship’s large banquet hall and first-class guesthouse.

“After the Titanic sank in 1912, nobody saw its complete blueprint,” he said. “Many fragmented blueprints found their way into the homes of collectors or remained missing.

“We started collecting the blueprints in many parts of the world many years ago and got most of them.”

At a news conference in Hong Kong on Sunday, the British actor Bernard Hill, who played the captain of the original ill-fated ship in James Cameron’s 1997 blockbuster film Titanic, was named the captain of the new Titanic.

Hill said he was honored to be the captain of the new Titanic, although it will not be in the sea.

But the model Titanic will have facilities such as a high-tech simulation cockpit where visitors can experience a simulation of the original Titanic hitting an iceberg and sinking, said Su Lina, deputy general manager of the Wuchang Shipyard.

County Party chief Xie Daiyin praised the project, saying, “The arrival of the model Titanic in Daying is expected to boost tourism in the hilly county.”

(c)2014 the Asia News Network (Hamburg, Germany). Distributed by MCT Information Services.

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