Turkish ski resort’s investments rise with tourism boom

Hot spot for skiers or snowboarders, Erciyes Mountain to serve more tourists once investments of $70M completed

Investments in Erciyes Ski Resort in central Turkey, a hot spot for foreign and domestic tourists, accelerated thanks to the busy winter season despite the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaking to Anadolu Agency, Murat Cahid Cingi, the chairman of Erciyes Ski Resort, said the busy winter season in the region put the need for amenity spaces and accommodation facilities back on the agenda.

“Despite the pandemic, Erciyes had a very successful winter season,” Cingi underlined, so investments that started before the winter season still continue, he said.

“Construction for Turkey’s largest mountain hotels, the Xperia Hotel and Radisson Blu Hotel, continues in Erciyes,” besides the high altitude sports center by Kayseri Municipality, he said.

“We are talking about an investment of nearly 500 million Turkish Liras ($70 million),” Cingi said.

Noting that the number of foreign tourists visiting Erciyes rose significantly in the last four years thanks to charter flights, Cingi said the ski resort generated $100 million in income this ski season (December-March).

New hotel investment to be completed end-2021

Recep Arifoglu, the tourism investments coordinator at Artas Insaat, said investment in a four-star hotel on Erciyes Mountain is set to be completed on Dec. 20 and it will be ready for the winter season.

The total amount of investment in the hotel, which will have 60 luxury rooms and a spa area of 1,500 square meters, is $12 million, Arifoglu said.

“There will be an entertainment and sports area that will serve 2,000 people a day,” he noted, adding the brand name of Radisson Blu will make the facility a “center of attraction.”

Touching on the reasons for choosing Erciyes for the investment, Arifoglu said the ski resort stands out with its quality, size and technical facilities.

“Erciyes, which is among the most modern facilities in Europe, has become one of the favorites thanks to its 120 kilometers (74 miles) of ski track and 110 km (68 miles) of cable car line serving a wide range of ski lovers, from new learners to Olympic athletes.

The mountain also attracts snowboarding, snow kite and snowmobile sports lovers in the winter, along with hosting downhill bike races and sports camps in the summer, he stressed.

Underlying the ease of transportation to Erciyes, Arifoglu said: “It is one of the easiest ski resorts to travel, as being connected to Istanbul, Izmir and Antalya by direct domestic flights, by international flights to Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland and France, as well as by charter flights to Russia, Ukraine and Poland.”

“You can reach Erciyes Ski Resort by a 30-minute drive from the city center.”

He added that the boom in foreign tourist numbers forced the region to have a world-class facility, so the hotel group decided to invest in Erciyes.

“Besides, being located near Cappadocia, another touristic region in Turkey famous for its fairy chimneys, and the newly discovered touristic values of Kayseri are increasing the popularity of Erciyes both in domestic and foreign markets,” Arifoglu highlighted.

The resort in Kayseri province, which offered skiers or snowboarders a safe and healthy holiday this winter amid the pandemic, was among the top five destinations from the 30 entries from Turkey.

The Erciyes Ski Resort was also recently certified by Bureau Veritas, a company specialized in testing, inspection and certification, for having taken all preventive measures against the coronavirus’s spread.

Also, Erciyes is the first and only ski center so far in the world with the Safe Ski Resort certification, a statement from the management of the resort said.


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