Menu at Athletes' Village proves to be a real winner with Games guests
Signature Hangzhou dishes Dongpo Pork and Sister Song's Fish Soup are proving to be the athletes' favorites on the Asian Games menu, according to Ding Jiong, spokesperson for the Food Safety Operations Centre.
"Food transcends the borders of countries. It is a common language spoken by all the world's people," Ding said.
To ensure that athletes enjoy their time at the Games, the operation team is committed to providing comprehensive services and, most importantly, serving up delicious fare.
The center selects the very best ingredients to produce dishes which meet the athletes' dietary preferences and nutritional needs. Seven cuisines are served, including Chinese, Middle Eastern, South Asian and Southeast Asian.
Arabic dishes such as lamb, hand-grab rice, and naan bread are available to order at the Tonglu athletes' village and more than 60 local delicacies, including fish cakes, are proving popular at the Wenzhou village.
Meanwhile, vegetarian and gluten-free options for people with wheat allergies are also available.
"We hope that our catering services can help athletes head into their competitions in the best physical and mental state possible," Ding said.
Thanks to these efforts, the food has earned a 98 percent satisfaction rating from the athletes, according to Ding.
Organizers are also keen to ensure that athletes have top-class accommodation, leisure facilities and medical services.
"We provide a 24-hour service to athletes and their accompanying officials ... and we do our best to create a cozy atmosphere that feels like home," said Dong Tianle, spokesperson for the Asian Games Village Operation Centre.
Dong said that about 37 buildings and 2,696 apartments are being used, with some beds over two meters long to cater for the taller athletes at the Games.
Hundreds of battery-operated carts serve the athletes' villages, connecting apartments, gyms, dining halls, commercial streets, and other venues, he added.
To meet the exercise needs of athletes, the village is equipped with an 8,000-square-meter fitness center, which features aerobic, strength, and stretching zones, as well as a swimming pool which can accommodate 400 athletes simultaneously.
"This is the largest and most fully equipped fitness center in the history of the Asian Games," Dong said.
"During the athletes' leisure time, they can also explore the scenic waterfront in the village. We also provide over 16 kinds of services along the commercial street, including banks, supermarkets, retail outlets, and beauty salons. And athletes can also order flowers," Dong added.
Medical services are equally comprehensive.
A total of 133 medical clinics, 127 medical points, 129 ambulances, and two emergency rescue helicopters are on call throughout the Asian Games, with 1,884 on-site medical staff with fluent English.
"We have established comprehensive outpatient departments and clinics in the athlete villages and sub-villages in Chun'an, providing 24-hour emergency services," said Jiang Huiquan, spokesperson for the Medical Operation Centre.
"The traditional Chinese medicine massages have been super popular with athletes as a way to relax their muscles and recover better and faster.
"So far, 242 athletes from 30 countries and regions have availed themselves of TCM services," Jiang added.
Indian shooting athlete Swapnil Suresh Kusale gave her stay a resounding thumbs-up.
"Staying at the athletes' village was a wonderful experience. I enjoyed it a lot," he said.
Eiya Hashimoto, a Japanese track cyclist who is staying at the Qiandao Lake athletes' village, has also been impressed by the accommodation.
"The village is very beautiful and so is the Qiandao Lake," he said."Actually, I have come to China for track cycling before, but mostly I visited cities. This time, the village has more countryside scenery, so I feel very relaxed."