Away from stereotyped interior and exterior of city hotels, this ethnic village takes you to a different level of tourism in which all the rooms are made of wood and the whole complex hardly has any concrete work. This is Souly Lodge in Salalah, which is named after Khor Souly. It is a perfect combination of everything that soothe your senses and makes you comfortable amid natural surroundings.
“There cannot be a better setting than this. Keeping in mind the strong presence of heritage and culture in Salalah we decided to develop this concept. This has come up nicely and is exciting for the visitors due to its natural settings,” said Samih Sawiris, Chairman of Orascom Holding Development.
“And the most beautiful part is the source of energy which is coming directly from the sun,” said Sawiris while hugely endorsing the concept.
He was in Salalah to mark the 10th anniversary celebration of Muriya, which is a joint enterprise between two internationally acclaimed builders of fully-integrated towns — Orascom Development Holding and Omani master developer Omran.
Some 20 km away from Salalah, Souly Lodge is part of the integrated tourism complex (ITC) being developed by the Muriya. It has 15 beach bungalows, four twin beds and 11 king size bedrooms with private terraces.
The man behind the project is Mohammed Marzouk who has worked day and night to make this happen. A soft spoken but an aggressive worker, Mohammed saw to it that there should be bare minimum use of concrete, chemicals and accessories which have to play any role in affecting the environment adversely.
It was a daunting task for Mohammed to build this complex. It took three years for him to develop this area and today it is equipped with whatever a true nature loving tourist would like to have in the forms of authentic dining to ethnic sitting and sleeping experiences.
Wood constituted as major construction material in Dhofar and the Dhofaris still have special sense for wood. Mohammed seems to have studied this psychology of the local people and came out with an ethnic concept.
The Souly Lodge has footpaths which connect each of the beach bungalows and other facilities. The use of wood logs instead of ceramic tiles give the entire area a different look and reminds every walker his/her childhood days of using wood etc to cross a waterlogged area or so.
“It is a wonderful experience to be here amid nature and all possible modern amenities being offered by us. We have a Souly Restaurant, which offers oriental dishes, sea food and local fresh products,” said Mohammed.
The Souly is equipped with star gazing equipment and traditional Bedouin tents, a camp fire, camel ride and many more. ‘Seeing is believing’ is the right expression for this place.