In Sanya, a series of projects are being completed to transform the area into a booming tourist resort.

Haitang Bay was once a town of fishing villages but is now home to 22km of construction work. The area will soon boast over 30 high-end hotels with over 15,000 guest rooms.

But it’s not just the landscape that will change for the people that live here. The new infrastructure will alter the region’s economy, changing a way of life that people have held for generations.

Haitang Bay was completely a countryside area near the seaside before 2007, with 20 or more communities scattered around the area. Now, the local government is building 9 new villages for the residents.

The success of the development brings the opportunity for residents to adapt to a new way of life. For some of the fishermen in Haitang Bay, the transformation is bringing new opportunities.

Villager Li Zihao, 26, is positive about the change and has focused his attention towards the hostel business. Li also called for the villagers to integrate the local tourism resources to attract more visitors to the region. For him, the increasing number of visitors that tourism brings is a welcome benefit of the region’s recent upheaval.

In less than 4 years, there have been 10 high-end luxury hotels that have opened for business in Haitang Bay which are able to accommodate 1.5 million tourists annually.

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