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The Souk al-Markazi (Central Market), popularly known as the Blue Souk, is the main shopping hub and one of the most impressive landmarks of Sharjah. The building has been designed by the British architects Michael Lyle & Partners, based on the ideas and guidance of the Ruler of Sharjah, HH Sheikh Dr. Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, and was completed in 1978. The architecture captures the character of a traditional bazaar on a grand scale. Located on the shore of the Khalid Lagoon, it is most beautiful at sunset, seen across the water.
The Central Souk consists of two large buildings, interconnected by bridges, with exuberant vaults and a unique skyline of 20 windtowers. Because of the blue tiles on the outside walls, the market is called the Blue Souk. On a total aerea of aproximately 80,000sqm there are more than 600 shops, selling gold, jewelry, gems, perfumes, souvenirs and gifts, as well as electronics, clothes, cosmetics, household and other goods.
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