Is-Suq
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The Death of a Market
The historical Is-Suq tal-Belt market in the UNESCO world heritage site of Valletta sits practically lifeless but the beauty is there. It was the first building to be constructed entirely out of metal in Malta in the mid-1800’s, and it survived the bombings of WWII. It has a great location, situated behind the Grand Master’s Palace. While there was little market activity, the architecture is beautifully haunting. I hope it thrives again one day but in the meantime make it a stop on your Valletta travels—your presence may just help to keep it alive! The two-story covered market building stood practically empty. I shuffled through the market and stared at the empty market shops wondering if I had simply arrived too late, but something told me that timing wasn’t the problem. I was there at 9 a.m. and the rest of Valletta was buzzing. The Is-Suq tal-Belt market is filled with a few butcher shops, selling pork and rabbit as well as a few fruit and vegetable stands. For someone like me who adores markets and market culture, I can only hope that the city of Valletta will figure out how to breath some life back into the magnificent Is-Suq tal-Belt market (otherwise simply known as the covered market). I’m not advocating to fill it with tourists shops (that’s is the last thing it needs), I just imagine that it could be a real market destination full of the best Malta has to offer in gastronomy and in a historical building.
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