Old Misfat village in Al Hamra gets a facelift

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Misfat Al Abriyeen, one of Oman’s picturesque heritage tourism sights located at the foot of Jebel Shams in the wilayat of Al Hamra, is getting a facelift, thanks to Bank Muscat’s Imprints CSR programme.

The Misfat Al Abriyeen tourism project, jointly launched by Bank Muscat in partnership with the Ministry of Tourism and Al Misfat Al Ahlia company, will give a significant boost to heritage tourism as well as sustainable development in Al Hamra.

The Ministry of Tourism had conducted a comprehensive study in 2015 on the cultural heritage of the village and investment potential to develop a sustainable tourism project in cooperation with stakeholders in the private sector and the local community. The ministry and the bank commissioned a study by the University of Liverpool, UK, based on which the project has been launched. More than 40 per cent of the project has now completed, according to a review by bank officials and external consultants.

The project will create a unique tourism experience centred on the old Misfat village, highlighting Omani tourism strategy based on a sustainable development model that benefits local communities with preservation of the environment and cultural heritage.

The main components of the project include restoration of the main gate of Misfat Al Abriyeen, preserving its original features. Restoration of some old mud houses will be done to set up a restaurant and bakery serving authentic Omani cuisine for tourists and visitors. Vehicle parking facility, tourist information centre and office, souvenir shop and signage leading to the tourist spot will be developed. The project is expected to be completed by the last quarter of this year.

Al Misfat Al Ahlia company which has been set up by Omani entrepreneurs has been entrusted with the project, which will serve as a long-term investment benefit, creating new employment opportunities for local youth and business opportunities for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the area.

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