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Kashmir’s first-ever igloo restaurant turns selfie spot for tourists

With the minimum temperature plummeting to minus 18 degree Celsius in north Kashmir’s tourist hotspot Gulmarg, a spherical 22-feet-wide and 15-feet-high igloo restaurant has become a major attraction among the tourists, more for selfies than food served inside.

“We threw the igloo restaurant open to the public two days ago. It’s the country’s biggest igloo ever made. It took 15 days to construct it with the help of 20 workers,” Waseem Shah, managing director of the Kolahoi Resorts, told The Hindu.

The all-snow covered restaurant has eight tables, serving lunch and dinner inside it, and can accommodate 18 people simultaneously. The novel idea has been picked from the cold places of Europe.

“I have travelled to Switzerland, Norway and Finland and saw similar snow sculptures. We too have snow in abundance and can experiment on such projects,” Mr. Shah said.

He said the cafe shall make it to the Limca book of records as Asia’s biggest igloo. “So far tourists come more for selfies than food. But I am happy they are leaving with cherishable memories,” he said.

Sonia Kapoor, a tourist from Delhi, said the restaurant is a must for a selfie. “The sight of igloo is amazing. The fact that it’s well furnished inside, leaves one wondering in awe,” Ms. Kapoor said.

The idea has come as a shot in the arm of tourism, which was struggling in Kashmir, first due to the abrogation of special status in 2019 and then by the pandemic.

Director, Tourism, Kashmir, G.N. Itoo said Kashmir is fast emerging as “an all season destination”.

“Kashmir is offering visitors not only mesmerising beauty of its natural landscape, its perennial rivers and lakes, gardens and meadows, mountains and valleys, forests and wildlife but also diversity of tourism products with its adventure potential, cuisine, heritage, pilgrimage circuits and plenty of leisure tourism,” Mr. Itoo said.

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Printable version | Feb 28, 2021 10:13:23 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/kashmirs-first-ever-igloo-restaurant-turns-selfie-spot-for-tourists/article33679489.ece

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