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Greece's latest tourism industry news by Greek Travel Pages (gtp)

Full Speed Ahead For New Tourism Products

A theme park inspired by ancient Greek mythology opens in the Anavyssos area, south of Athens, in 2004 and by when all phases are fully completed, in 2006, the park is expected to attract up to 1.2 million visitors per year.

Preliminary plans for the 80-billion-drachma (235-million-euro) project have already been drawn.

Besides the theme park, they include two hotels, an  environmental education park that will include a botanical garden and an open-air natural history museum, as well as the development of athletic facilities by Anavyssos beach. The whole project is situated on a 167-hectare area.

The salt pans covering part of the area will be turned into a lagoon.

Fuji Bank, the financial advisor of Hellenic Tourism Properties, a subsidiary of the Hellenic Tourism Organization, will study the preliminary plans and draw up a final investment plan. The call for bids to build the theme park will be published on November 30. Three companies (from Italy, France and Denmark) are said to have submitted draft architectural studies.

The bulk of the investment will be provided by private capital but with the properties company as a partner.

Hellenic Tourism Properties last month also scheduled the tender foa a 180-hectare area concession to tourism entrepreneurs in Afantou, Rodos, in which the property company will also retain an interest. It will include an extension of the existing golf course (in 18 months) and two four – and five-star hotels (in three years). The investment is estimated to cost 35 billion drachmas.

As well, bidders are expected to submit offers for the extension and operation of the Zea, Alimos and Flisvos marinas near Piraeus. And auction bulletins will be forwarded to groups interested in the acquisition of a 51-percent stake in the Mont Parnes Casino.

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