Countdown kicks off for Galataport Istanbul, Turkey’s naval gateway to the world
Galataport İstanbul -a global project providing access to the Karaköy coastline for the first time long time ago, while serving as a hub for the city from tourism to arts and culture- is preparing for its 2020 Second Quarter launch.
Hosted by Doğuş Group President and CEO Ferit F. Şahenk, with the participation of Bilgili Holding President Serdar Bilgili, the Galataport İstanbul introductory meeting’s opening speech was delivered by Doğuş Group’s Deputy Chairman Hüsnü Akhan. Akhan spoke as follows: “We are now at the countdown phase of this journey, which we kicked off in 2014. We are excited for the launch of our project, which is expected to happen in the Second Quarter of 2020.” In his speech during the meeting, Doğuş Group President and CEO Ferit F. Şahenk said: “Galataport İstanbul is a diamond for Turkey and İstanbul and marks an achievement of Doğuş Group’s mastery phase. Projected to host seven million foreign tourists, and 25 million visitors in total, per year, and with the two museums, as well as 14,000 square meters of recreational area, Galataport İstanbul will also become a new center of arts and culture.” Serdar Bilgili, President of Bilgili Holding, one of the project’s partners,- commented: “Galataport İstanbul will be an added value to the city in various ways and, furthermore, turn into a destination that will give all a chance to ‘experience İstanbul’.” The countdown for the Galataport İstanbul project, made possible by the partnership of Doğuş Group and Bilgili Holding, has started. Set to be a signature project that will touch all fields of life from tourism to culture, gastronomy and shopping, the project will launch during the Second Quarter of 2020. As one of the largest coastline projects on earth, Galataport İstanbul will turn into a brand-new destination. The opening speech of the meeting was delivered by Doğuş Group’s Deputy Chairman Hüsnü Akhan. Hosted by Doğuş Group President and CEO Ferit F. Şahenk, with the participation of Bilgili Holding President Serdar Bilgili, the meeting marked the first occasion where the project’s details were shared with the public. Doğuş Group President and CEO Ferit F. Şahenk, who spoke during the meeting said, “Galataport İstanbul is a diamond for Turkey and İstanbul and marks an achievement of Doğuş Group’s mastery phase,” and continued as follows: “I am certain that you have never viewed İstanbul from this perspective. One of the most captivating locations of our city had been off-limits to us for so many years. With Galataport, we are embracing beautiful İstanbul form a different angle. In 2013, when bidding for the Salıpazarı Cruise Port, as it was known back then, our main goal was to open up this unique coastal line, which is an extension of the historic peninsula, to the residents of İstanbul, as well as to all visitors. As a result, this coastline that had been closed to the general public for a long time is opening up to visitors. The doors of Galataport, which has a total investment value of $1.7 billion including the tender bid, is opening its doors in 2020. For the first time anywhere in the world, we have constructed a cruise port, where passengers will be received underground; the customs and customs-free areas can be flexibly adjusted and 1.5 million visitors, including crew members, can be hosted in the city’s culturally and historically richest area. Positioned as a major-hub-pier, Galataport İstanbul will kick cruise tourism into higher gear in a vast area ranging from the Mediterranean Basin to the Black Sea. We will host 25 million visitors, 7 million of whom will be international tourists. Hence, the new and modern face of İstanbul will be presented in a visual setting that is unparalleled anywhere on earth, yet without losing its ties to its past.” On the other hand, Bilgili Holding President Serdar Bilgili stressed how happy they were to be part of this project together with Doğuş Group and continued: “Galataport İstanbul is an investment that will transform the city’s social life with many new experiences it will offer to visitors. Once launched, our project will open up a part of the coastline that had been closed for two centuries and offer a sort of time travel experience to both domestic and international tourists. Therefore, Galataport İstanbul means so much more than a mere port project.” Doğuş Group’s Deputy Chairman Hüsnü Akhan added: “Located on 1.2 kilometers of coastline, Galataport will help Karaköy regain the old spirit it once possessed when it was the city’s center of commerce. It is an honor for us to be part of this project with the cooperation between the Doğuş and Bilgili groups. Galataport İstanbul will have various functions ranging from culture and arts to gastronomy and tourism.” A $1.7 billion investment The project, which has a total investment value of $1.7 billion including the tender bid, covers a length of 1.2 kilometers of coastline on the Bosporus. With Galataport İstanbul, the city will enjoy a new center of living. This center will not only be harmonious with the natural setting of the area, but also house institutions of arts and culture, a world-class cruise port, a distinguished hotel chain, various brands catering to several segments, cafes, restaurants and office space. Domestic as well as international tourists and residents of İstanbul will enjoy this living space together, while the new port terminal will have unmatched features and innovative technologies with its underground design. 25 million visitors every year The renewed historic port will be İstanbul’s naval gateway to the world. The port has been designed to serve 15,000 passengers and crew every day by joining three ships. Once the project is completed, projections call for 1.5 million cruise passengers and crew to visit İstanbul every year. Galataport İstanbul will host 25 million visitors, seven million of whom will be international guests. The economic contribution of this activity to Turkey’s tourism income is estimated at around one billion USD. The plans of the project include roughly 250 food retail points. The total area reserved for rent by food retailers is approximately 52,000 square meters, while total office space for rent is roughly 43,000 square meters. The Tophane Square, whose landscape design is part of the project, will once again become a major square of İstanbul. With its two museums and total recreational area of 14,000 square meters, Galataport İstanbul will turn into a new center for arts and cultural life in the city. This area will mark the first museum square of İstanbul and transform into a living center with the various activities planned to run throughout the year. A hotel with 177 rooms operated by one of the world’s major chains Established in 1928 and operating only out of ten major distinguished locations in the world, the Peninsula Group headquartered in Hong Kong will open its hotel in Istanbul right across the historic peninsula, befitting its name. The Peninsula Group will not only be the operator, but also the 50% owner of the Peninsula İstanbul project and thereby make a major contribution to both Galataport İstanbul and the country’s tourism industry. Employment for 5,000 individuals With the many operational fields and investments within, Galataport İstanbul will make major contributions to the Turkish economy as well as the tourism industry. During its busiest phase, Galataport will offer employment to 5,000 individuals including the jobs offered by the contractors. Once fully operational, upon the opening of the cruise port, the cafes and restaurants offering guests local as well as international tastes, the shops housing domestic as well international brands, the hotel, offices and the high capacity car park, the project is expected to offer employment to approximately 4,500 individuals. Note to the Editor: About Galataport İstanbul: Doğuş Group submitted a bid in the amount of $702 Million, during the tender held by the May 16, 2013 Privatization Administration tender for the Salıpazarı port and won the tender. In January of 2014, the Group established a partnership with Bilgili Holding’s BLG Capital, and this partnership set up the Salıpazarı Port Operation and Investment Corporation, whose mission was the development and management of the property. Following the handover contract of the property, signed with the Turkish Maritime Organization (Türkiye Denizcilik İşletmeleri A.Ş.), the port area was handed over in February of 2014 and operations commenced. The title of the corporation changed to Galataport Istanbul Port Management and Investments Inc. as of February 2014. The Galataport project houses two of the most prominent museums of modern art in Turkey: The İstanbul Modern and İstanbul State Art and Sculpture Museums. Upon completion, the port will become the new meeting point of İstanbul for culture, art and design. Galataport İstanbul houses a cruise pier built with advanced technology, a distinguished hotel chain, cafes and restaurants offering local as well as international tastes, and various domestic as well as international brands. Galataport will be a living space that is active 24/7 with culture, art, gastronomy, entertainment as well as rest and recreation.
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