Dubai, United Arab Emirates (CNN) – You can spend your vacation visiting cultural sites or relaxing in a 5-star hotel .. But what if you could do both in the same place?
Earlier this year, a new luxury hotel opened in the Turkish city of Antioch, which is considered an engineering marvel, an architectural beauty and a world-class archaeological site.
Like other hotels around the world, the “Museum Hotel Antakya” has been temporarily closed due to the outbreak of the new Coruna virus. But he accepts reservations starting in June, and is definitely a good place for future travel plans.
10 years after its establishment, the 200-room modern hotel floats on steel columns above the “Necmi Asfuroğlu” Archeology Museum.
It is worth noting that the museum contains about 35 thousand artifacts, dating back to the third century BC, coming from 13 different civilizations.
The story started in 2009, when the “Asforoglu” family decided to build a luxury hotel, where they discovered the ruins of the historical city of Antioch, which is a few kilometers from modern Antakya.
Although the original plans of the site were not practically successful, the family worked with the municipality of Antakya, the Hatay Museum of Archeology and the Provincial Council in Adana for cultural and natural properties on the largest archaeological excavations in Turkey since the 1930s.
Over the course of the 10-year project, the world’s largest one-piece mosaic, about 1050 square meters, was discovered. In addition to the world’s first marble statue of the Greek god Eros.
How can you build on a valuable archaeological site that you cannot even stand on?
The Osvoroglu family has appointed the Emre Arolat award-winning Turkish architect for the design of the “floating” hotel.
20,000 tons of structural steel was welded by hand, at a specialized factory, near Istanbul. Construction costs amount to $ 120 million, more than four times the original estimate.
The building offers views of nearby Saint-Pierre, and is the world’s first cave church. Not only that, but it also provides guests with a view of 23 centuries of history.
It took over 3 million days and 6 million hours to create the hotel.
A museum spokesperson told CNN Travel that although the hotel opened in a “difficult and unprecedented time”, they kept all guests informed, while implementing the necessary procedures to prepare for the future.