Hangzhou, China, September 16, 2023: The Acting Director General of the Olympic Council of Asia, Vinod Kumar Tiwari, described the Hangzhou Asian Games Village as “beautiful and outstanding” during the opening ceremony of the village on Saturday morning.
In front of government leaders and officials of organising committee HAGOC, Mr Tiwari said he had been visiting Hangzhou for eight years and had always been impressed with the plans and preparations for the 19th Asian Games.
In particular he praised the “innovative” concept of the Asian Games Village, which will accommodate 20,000 people in three communities: Athletes’ Village, Media Village and Technical Officials’ Village.
“Now, just one week before the opening ceremony of the 19th Asian Games on September 23, I can see all your dreams have become reality – and we are standing here together in a truly magnificent Asian Games Village,” he said.
“I would like to thank and congratulate HAGOC for all their hard work and dedication, and I wish all success to the Chinese delegation competing here in the 19th Asian Games.”
He added that the Asian Games Village, by accommodating athletes, officials, technical officials and media, highlighted the solidarity and unity of the Olympic movement in Asia and said it was the first of its kind in the history of the Asian Games and even Olympic Games.
“The OCA is confident that all the guests will receive five-star treatment in terms of accommodation, dining, transportation and leisure activities,” he added.
“We believe the quality of life in the Asian Games Village can lay the foundations for a smooth and successful Hangzhou Asian Games.”
The VIP guests included Yao Gaoyuan, Mayor of Hangzhou and Vice President and Secretary General of HAGOC; Li Huolin, Director of the Standing Committee of Hangzhou Municipal People’s Congress and Mayor of the Asian Games Village; and Sun Xudong, Vice Mayor of Hangzhou and Executive Mayor of the Asian Games Village.
The second purpose of the ceremony was to welcome the Chinese delegation into the Asian Games Village in the first Team Welcome Ceremony of a series that will run until September 22. The ceremony included an exchange of gifts followed by a photo op with the athletes.
The ceremony programme included a children’s song and dance performance, drums and a lion dance, while the banging of gongs announced the village open.