THE TOURNAMENT: ATP CHALLENGER Samarkand Challenger
From 05/15 to 05/20
Surface: Clay outdoor
Prize money: $ 75,000
Tournament location: Tennis Club Dinamo – 1A Sadovaya Street, 140100 Samarkand, Uzbekistan
Past champions: 2016 Karen Kachanov – 2015 Teymuraz Gabashvili – 2014 Farrukh Dustov – 2013 Teymuraz Gabashvili – 2012 Dusan Lajovic – 2011 Denis Istomin – 2010 Andrej Martin – 2009 Dustin Brown – 2008 Michail Elgin
Entry list: Sergyi Stakhovsky (Ukr) – Ruben Ramirez Hidalgo (Esp) – Teymuraz Gabashvili (Geo) – Jason Jung (Tpe) – Ilya Ivashka (Blr) – Adrian Menendez Maceiras (Esp) – Michael Mmoh (Usa) – Nikola Mijolevic (Srb) – Dmitry Popko (Ukr) – Joris De Loore (Bel)
THE TOWN: Samarkand is a city in modern-day Uzbekistan and is one of the oldest inhabited cities in Central Asia. There is evidence of human activity in the area of the city from the late Paleolithic era, though there is no direct evidence of when exactly Samarkand proper was founded; some theories are that it was founded between the 8th and 7th centuries BC. Prospering from its location on the Silk Road between China and the Mediterranean, at times Samarkand was one of the greatest cities of Central Asia. In 2001, UNESCO added the city to its World Heritage List as Samarkand – Crossroads of Cultures.
Lonely Planet writes: “Samarkand is a modern, well-groomed city, which has smartened itself up enormously in the past decade. This process has involved building walls around some of the less sightly parts of the old town, which many consider to have made the old city rather sterile, blocking off streets that have been linking quarters for centuries. While this ‘disneyfication’ of this once chaotic place is undeniable, it’s also true to say that Samarkand remains a breathtaking place to visit.”
TOP 3 ATTRACTIONS:
- Shah i Zinda
- Ulugh Beg Observatory
BEST PLACES TO STAY:
- Ideal Hotel. This *** hotel, rated 8.8 on Booking, enjoys a quiet location in Samarqand, a 5-minute walk from University Boulevard and 10 minutes from the historic Registan Square. Ideal Hotel offers free Wi-Fi and elegant interiors. Price for a budget twin room is 41€ per night with breakfast and free parking included.
- Hotel Bek Samarkand. Wonderful *** hotel rated 9.2 on Booking which a very good on-site restaurant, free private parking and WiFi. The daily rate for a 21 mq2 double room is very reasonable: 60€ per night with breakfast.
- Sultan Hotel Boutique. This wonderful **** hotel, rated 9.0 on Booking and located 5 minutes walking from Registan offers a restaurant, a rooftop terrace with stunning views of the surroundings, free WiFi access and rooms with air-conditioning and a flat-screen TV with satellite channels. A standard triple room costs 138€ per night with free parking and breakfast included.
Enjoy this exceptional and unique tennis trip!
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