Yucatan’s tourism industry is touting the proposed Palace of Music as a means to stimulate tourism, enrich the historic center of Merida and highlight the White City at national and international levels.
Tourism vice president of the National Chamber of Commerce, Services and Tourism of Merida (Canaco), Carol Kolozs Fischer, said the project comes at a good time “because for the first time in a long time we are seeing a focus on impact of the Historical Center creating better tourism products”.
On Friday Dec. 11, Governor Rolando Zapata Bello and President of National Council for Culture and Arts (CONACULTA), Rafael Tovar y de Teresa, presented the project of construction of the building, with an investment of $322 million pesos (USD$18.8 million). It will be located in the former headquarters of the Yucatan legislature, in the heart of downtown Merida.
Zapata Bello said that this project will be an icon of the cultural politics of Mexico and a symbol of the new vision of Merida’s Historical Center, and will present a cultural attraction and provide a competitive edge in the global tourism market.
In this regard, Kolozs said: “For the artistic sector, this is a key opportunity because you are giving much importance to the subject of music in general, this is a national product, this is the Palace of Music at the national level. I think we in Yucatan should take great pride that we have been chosen to make a project of this magnitude. I think this gives us the credibility we have always had as a state where music has been part of the DNA, with the great musicians and composers we have in Yucatan”.
For his part, Director of Holiday Inn Express Merida, Angel Melgarejo Castillo said that the Palace of Music will stimulate tourism in Yucatan, enrich the journey of visitors, and will be an international product with the recent agreements with travel agencies wholesalers for the arrival of tourists from China, Argentina, Colombia and Canada.
The $322 million peso Music Palace will replace former state legislative headquarters, which is a stone’s throw from some of the historic district’s most prized attractions, including the symphony hall and the Cathedral. In contrast, the building will be a modern, sleek structure, with clean lines.
Construction work is projected to begin in January 2016. The building will feature a concert hall with a capacity for 400 people, a museum, a recording studio and a high-tech music library. Academic programs are planned at the museum as well. It is billed as the only museum of its kind in Mexico.
The launch ceremony of the Music Palace was accompanied by Grammy Award winning Mexican singer Natalia Lafourcade, who performed several of her songs.
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