Monday, September 13, 2010

World's Biggest Tent Rises in Kazakhstan

Khan Shatyr

Image Credit: Will Webster

Billed as the world's largest tent by Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev and its designers, the Khan Shatyr opened on July 5 in Astana, Kazakhstan.

The leaning, needle-tipped leisure center is designed to evoke a yurt, which "has great resonance in Kazakh history as a traditional nomadic building form," said Nigel Dancey, a senior partner at Foster Partners, the London-based architecture firm behind the design.

"Khan Shatyr roughly translates as 'the tent of the khan, or king,'" Dancey added.

The Khan Shatyr's debut comes more than a dozen years after President Nazarbayev moved the Kazakh capital from Almaty to the relatively cold and isolated north-central city of Astana—then called Aqmola—in 1997 (Kazakhstan map).

Than, Ker. 2010. "World's Biggest Tent Rises in Kazakhstan". National Geographic Daily News. Posted: August 31, 2010. Available online:

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