[Vision: View of The Great Stupa and walkway leading up to it - people being lifted by crane to unveil The Great Stupa]
Ian Green - Chairman, The Great Stupa of Universal Compassion
Today is a very special day because today we unveiled the whole top of The Great Stupa.
[Vision: The top of The Great Stupa being unveiled by people in crane - crowds of people applauding and taking photos of the unveiling]
It’s an incredible day to, in a sense, complete The Great Stupa.
[Vision: Ladies throwing rose petals over crowd - view of The Great Stupa close-up]
It was in 2003 we actually put the footings down and we’ve just been building bit by bit since then.
[Vision: Aerial view of the top of The Great Stupa]
It’s actually built on the shape, the design, and the size of the largest Stupa in Tibet, and that makes it the largest Buddhist stupa in the western world.
[Vision: Ian Green speaking]
This stupa has got many, many uses.
[Vision: Buddhist monks praying]
It is a pilgrimage place for Buddhists.
[Vision: Tourists taking photos of The Great Stupa - aerial view of The Great Stupa and the surrounding landscape]
It also is used by tour groups and tourists who want to come in here and see a truly unique building in a unique setting which is this Asian Stupa in the Australian bush.
[Vision: Ian Green speaking]
Last year we have 30,000 visitors come to the stupa.
[Vision: Tourists and others praying inside The Great Stupa]
This year I’m sure that figure’s going to be closer to 50,000.
[Vision: Outside view of tourists walking up to and from The Great Stupa - elephant statue holding guitar - prayer wheels - kangaroo statue]
What we have here is a major destination for visitation.
[Vision: Close-up of tree in the grounds of The Great Stupa - Buddha statue - singers at Illumin8 Festival - night view of The Great Stupa lit up]
Not only do we have the stupa, we have the gardens and we have various other attractions but we’re also catering for visitation.
[Vision: Dancers at night at Illumin8 Festival]
So definitely our aim is to have a restaurant here.
[Vision: Many figures lit up at night for Illumin8 Festival - man twirling batons which are alight]
The next step up from that will be a hotel.
[Vision: Elephant statue in grounds of The Great Stupa - people posing for photograph in front of The Great Stupa]
In a sense it will be a wellness retreat for a lot of people as well a Buddhist pilgrimage place, as well as a tourist destination.
[Vision: Various statues inside The Great Stupa - view of The Great Stupa outside]
So there are lots of different aspects which will make it a very popular place, a place that maintains this feeling of peace and this feeling of calmness throughout.
[The Victorian Connection, people, communities & the economy - For more news and stories go to connection.vic.gov.au]
[Victoria State Government - Authorised by the Victorian Government, Melbourne]
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