Embodying the spirit of Prime Minister’s localization vision ‘Vocal for Local’ and ‘Local for Global’ to fulfill the dream of an Aatmanirbhar Bharat or self-reliant India, Talenmark unveils India’s biggest and first of its kind souk at the nation’s biggest cultural centre within Markaz Knowledge City, at Kaithapoyil on Calicut-Wayanad National Highway.
The souk is modeled on the Arabic souks of yore. Built in Arabic marketplace architecture style, it comprises of a labyrinth of 150 shops assigned for more than 50 categories of trade, giving visitors a glimpse into different cultures. With commercial space spread across 1,23,000 sq.ft in a single trade floor, it has a commercial corridor of 710 metres. Once operational, the souk anticipates a daily footfall of 10,000 people.
Souk, with its distinct circular architecture, is a market that is the cradle of traditional urban culture popular in Arab societies. Unlike shopping malls that cater to middle and upper middle classes, the souk, with international and local businesses, is open and multifunctional in character, which makes it endearing to people from all walks of life. The souk at Markaz Knowledge City draws inspiration from history where the Malabar Coast had business ties with seafarers from the Arab world and developed a system of interlinked trading networks.
The construction of the souk and the cultural center has been carried out by Talenmark Developers, pioneers in building iconic structures. The company is steered by the trio Habeeburahman, Hibathulla, and Muhammed Shakeel.
A Launchpad for local and national products
The souk, with its steady stream of local, national and international visitors, would aid the country's farmers, artisans, weavers, engineers, small entrepreneurs and MSMEs who struggle to reach new markets in every nook and corner of the world. Besides, it plays a vital role in the development of the region as a commercial center of trade. Local artisans and craftsmen would widely benefit from these bustling spaces. It also gives visitors an opportunity to connect themselves to the deep rooted culture that existed. It is also expected to throw a lifeline to the small and marginal domestic industries which are struggling to survive in the wake of the pandemic.
Replete with authentic street food, artisan handicrafts, fine collectibles, unique gifts, fine art and sculptures, spices, herbs, dried fruits, candied nuts, locally blended teas, perfumes, essential oils, incense sticks, jewelry, fabrics, furnishings, souvenirs and many others that showcase local craftsmanship and Indian heritage, the vibrating trade floor and passageways of the souk are expected to brim with the hustle of tradesmen and artists.
The Cultural Centre
The souk is built as a part of the Cultural Centre, an amalgam of business, art, culture, shopping, and entertainment within Markaz Knowledge City at Kaithapoyil in Calicut. Besides the souk, the cultural centre has elements that allow one to leaf through the civilization such as spiritual enclave, research and development centre, international heritage museum, world library, International event centre etc. It houses a rooftop garden with more than 100 trees. The project merits a place on the world tourism map for all its salient aesthetic features resembling a Mughal monument and for its proximity to Wayanad, one of India's finest hill stations.