The Potala Palace is a national key cultural relic protection unit and a world cultural heritage site; its creative products have become a kind of calling card for Lhasa in recent years, which covers a wide range including more than 300 products highly sought after by domestic and foreign tourists.
"I bought some prayer beads, bracelets, and keychains today for my family members and friends," Mr. Zhang, a tourist from Henan Province who had bought several souvenirs after visiting the Potala Palace, said. "For myself, I got a model of the Potala Palace, which I plan to put on my TV cabinet back home. The model is very realistic, and I think it's very meaningful as a tourist souvenir. Every time I look at it, I can remember the time I spent traveling around Tibet."
It is reported that the Potala Palace has collated 100,000 ancient texts, including 60,000 rare ancient books, and 40,000 Buddhist statues, thangka paintings, and dharma instruments. Such rich cultural resources provide a solid foundation for the creative development of the Potala Palace.
According to Yunden Phuntsok, general manager of the Tibet Potala Palace Creative Industry Co., Ltd., the Potala Palace creative products are created under the guidance of religious figures and cultural relic researchers.
"At present, the Potala Palace management office has been gradually forming a set of its own ideas for the development of creative products and is constantly improving them. We develop different creative products based on the resources from our collections and make replicas, models of buildings, or tourist souvenirs and handicrafts with ethnic characteristics. Also, local people, for example, like to buy creative products such as Tibetan incense, thangka paintings, and Buddha statues. Domestic tourists prefer portraits, architectural models, bracelets, keychains, bookmarks, etc. Data shows that foreign tourists favor artifacts with distinctive ethnic characteristics. We adjust developmental ideas for different groups of creative products, how well they are selling, and what kind of products are more popular, so that those cultural relics of the Potala Palace that many people are not able to see can 'come to life'," Yunden Phuntsok said.
The Potala Palace creative products also include the creation of animated films, documentaries, feature films, and other cultural exhibition events. "Potala Palace creative products have their own development characteristics. We aren't worried that we won't be able to sell our products; the focus is on the quality of development. Therefore, current product development is basically done by a dedicated team. We are also launching food and beverage products, and this year we expect to launch Potala Palace commemorative books and commemorative coins," Yunden Phuntsok told reporters.