Tinapa Resort

Last updated
This lake is found at the tinapa resort in Calabar, Cross Rivers State in Nigeria. Tinapa Lake.jpg
This lake is found at the tinapa resort in Calabar, Cross Rivers State in Nigeria.

Tinapa Resort
Nigeria location map.svg
Red pog.svg
Location within Nigeria
General information
Locationnear Calabar, Cross River, Nigeria
Coordinates 5°03′00″N8°19′03″E / 5.049992°N 8.317423°E / 5.049992; 8.317423
Opening2 April 2007
OwnerCross River State

Tinapa is a business and leisure resort located North of Calabar municipality, Cross River State, Nigeria associated with the Calabar Free Trade Zone. It was developed in four phases under a Private Public Partnership (PPP) promoted by the Government of Cross River State. The resort is located by the Calabar River, contiguous with the Calabar Free Trade Zone. [1]



The Tinapa Free Zone & Resort has facilities for retail and wholesale activities as well as leisure and entertainment. For consumers, the resort sits on approximately 80,000 square metres (860,000 sq ft) of lettable space for retail and wholesale made up of four emporiums of 10,000 square metres (110,000 sq ft) each, smaller shops, and warehouses. An entertainment strip contains a casino, digital cinema, children's arcade, restaurants, a mini amphitheater, a night club and pubs. There is an artificial tidal lake that feeds from the Calabar River, a Water Park / Leisure Land and parking Space for 4,000 cars. [1]

Business facilities include an open exhibition area for trade exhibitions and other events, and a movie production studio commonly called Tinapa Studios. There is a 243-room international three star Hotel. The resort also has a truck terminal, and it is powered by an independent power plant. [1]

Project history

Tinapa was initiated by Governor Donald Duke as a way to boost business and tourism in the state. Over $350 million was spent on initial development. [2] The first phase of Tinapa Business Resort & Free Zone, Calabar, was commissioned on 2 April 2007. [1] Tinapa is a 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) drive from Calabar by a roundabout route, but the Federal government is building a more direct 2.5 kilometres (1.6 mi) access road to link it with the city. [3]

The legal status of the Tinapa Free Trade zone has been uncertain. It is owned by the Cross River state government, but only the Federal government can operate a free trade zone. Former governor Liyel Imoke appealed to the Federal Government to take a stake in the project, and to remove uncertainty about its status which is hindering investment. He suggested that one approach could be to decouple the leisure facilities from the trading zone. [3] A February 2008 report by ThisDay newspaper said the Federal Government had not yet approved the operating procedures and guidelines. The resort was almost deserted. The few shops that were staffed would not sell their goods out of concern that customs officials would then force them to close. [4] A CNN report in 2010 showed that the complex was still largely empty, while interest payments on the construction cost of the complex was rising. Governor Liyel Imoke told a CNN reporter that the state government was looking for private sector investors who would run the project more efficiently. [5]

A March 2010 report in the Daily Champion was optimistic. The report acknowledged that the project had suffered from bureaucratic delays, that there had been rumors of corruption and project abandonment, with key infrastructure incomplete. However, the report said that 90% of infrastructure and facilities was ready, and that shops are selling duty-free goods. It also claimed that the resort was increasingly used for business and government functions, as planned. [6] In September 2010, Imoke said the government was focusing on resuscitating the Tinapa Business and Leisure Resort. [7]

A May 2011 report from the Daily Trust was entitled "Tinapa is dying". It said most of the shops had closed, and the other facilities such as the exhibition space and movie studio had not been used for a long time. The hotel was open but hardly had any guests. Only the water park was busy, since the reporter had visited during a school holiday. [8]

In 2013 the Nigerian Custom Service claimed that the Free Trade Zone was not properly constituted and began charging duty on purchases as they were brought out of the zone. The resort was reported the resort was moribund and being repaired in 2020 after years of neglect. [9]


The resort is connected to the Calabar International Convention Centre by the 1.1 kilometres (0.68 mi) Calabar Monorail, built by Intamin, which opened in 2016. In 2017 it was reported the system was working but was not carrying any passengers. [10]

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Cross River State</span> State of Nigeria

Cross River State is a state in the South-South geopolitical zone of Nigeria. Named for the Cross River, the state was formed from the eastern part of the Eastern Region on 27 May 1967. Its capital is Calabar, it borders to the north through Benue state, to the west through Ebonyi state and Abia state, and to the southwest through Akwa Ibom state, while its eastern border forms part of the national border with Cameroon. Originally known as the South-Eastern State before being renamed in 1976, Cross River state formerly included the area that is now Akwa Ibom state, which became a distinct state in 1987.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Calabar</span> Capital city of Cross River State, Nigeria

Calabar is the capital city of Cross River State, Nigeria. It was originally named Akwa Akpa, in the Efik language. The city is adjacent to the Calabar and Great Kwa rivers and creeks of the Cross River.

Donald Duke is a Nigerian politician. He was the Governor of Cross River State, Nigeria from 29 May 1999 to 29 May 2007 and the 2019 Nigeria Presidential candidate for Social Democratic Party, SDP.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Nigerian Ports Authority</span> Nigerian government agency

The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) is a federal government agency that governs and operates the ports of Nigeria. The major ports controlled by the NPA include: the Lagos Port Complex and Tin Can Island Port in Lagos; Calabar Port, Delta Port, Rivers Port at Port Harcourt, and Onne Port. Operations of the NPA are carried out in affiliation with the Presidency of (Nigeria) and the Nigerian Shippers' Council. The Head office of the Nigerian Ports Authority is located in Marina, Lagos.

Liyel Imoke is a Nigerian politician who served as the governor of Cross River State, Nigeria from 29 May 2007 till 29 may 2015. He is a member of the People's Democratic Party (PDP).

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Obudu Mountain Resort</span> Mountain resort in Nigeria

Obudu Mountain Resort is a ranch and resort on the Obudu Plateau in Cross River State, Nigeria.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Calabar River</span> Place in Cross River State, Nigeria

The Calabar River in Cross River State, Nigeria flows from the north past the city of Calabar, joining the larger Cross River about 8 kilometres (5.0 mi) to the south. The river at Calabar forms a natural harbor deep enough for vessels with a draft of 6 metres (20 ft).

The Calabar Free Trade Zone (CFTZ) is an area just north of the port of Calabar, Cross River State, Nigeria that is occupied by companies engaged in manufacturing, trading, provision of services and oil and gas related activities. These companies benefit from special taxation rules and duty-free imports.

Summit Hills is a 908-acre real estate development in Calabar, Cross River State, Nigeria that includes a convention centre, hotel, recreational facilities, and golf course with clubhouse, nature reserve, hospital and a variety of residential units.

The Calabar International Convention Centre is located in Calabar, Cross River, Nigeria. It opened in the third quarter of 2015. It was built by the state former governor Liyel Imoke.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Usani Uguru Usani</span> Nigerian politician

Usani Uguru Usani is a Nigerian pastor, lecturer and politician who served as Minister of Niger Delta Affairs in the Nigerian government.

Senator Chief Gershom Henry Bassey is a Nigerian politician and multi - millionaire businessman. He is the senator representing Cross River South Senatorial District in the Nigerian Senate. He is a senator of the 8th and 9th National Assembly in Nigeria respectively.

The 2012 Cross River State gubernatorial election occurred in Nigeria on February 25, 2012. The PDP nominee Liyel Imoke won the election, defeating Usani Uguru Usani of the ACN.

The 2003 Cross River State gubernatorial election occurred on April 19, 2003, in Nigeria. Incumbent Governor, PDP's Donald Duke won election for a second term, defeating his immediate past deputy John Oyom Okpa of the ANPP and three other candidates.

The 2008 Cross River State gubernatorial election occurred on August 23, 2008. Incumbent PDP Governor Liyel Imoke won re-election in the supplementary election, defeating ANPP candidate, Paul Ukpo, to emerge winner.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">2023 Cross River State gubernatorial election</span> 2023 gubernatorial election in Cross River State, Nigeria

The 2023 Cross River State gubernatorial election took place on 18 March 2023, to elect the Governor of Cross River State, concurrent with elections to the Cross River State House of Assembly as well as twenty-seven other gubernatorial elections and elections to all other state houses of assembly. The election—which was postponed from its original 11 March date—will be held three weeks after the presidential election and National Assembly elections. Incumbent APC Governor Benedict Ayade was term-limited and could not seek re-election to a third term.

Emem Inwang is a Nigerian actress and model. She was formerly Emem Udonquak. On October 18, 2014 she won the 2014 Nollywood Movies Awards for Best Actress in a Supporting Role in the movie Itoro. The event was held at the Intercontinental Hotel, Lagos.

The Calabar Monorail is a monorail system in Calabar, state capital of Cross River state, Nigeria. The single-track, 1.1 kilometres (0.68 mi) line runs from the Calabar International Convention Centre to the Tinapa Resort. The project was initiated by the former governor of Cross River state, Senator Liyel Imoke and completed by successor Benedict Ayade.

Alex Egbona is a Nigerian politician. He is a member of the Nigerian Federal House of Representatives representing the Yakurr/Abi constituency in Cross River state. He was appointed special assistant, Special Duties to the then Governor of Cross River State and later appointed Deputy Chief of Staff and a member of the Cross River State Executive Council.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Marina Resort</span> Tourist centre in Cross River State, Nigeria

Marina Resort is a recreational and historical destination in Calabar, the capital city of Cross River State, Nigeria. It was built on May 26, 2007, by former governor Donald Duke, to promote tourism in the state. The resort features a variety of attractions, such as a slave history museum, a cinema, a restaurant, a bar, and a waterfront area.


  1. 1 2 3 4 "Tinapa Free Zone & Resort". African Sun. 9 March 2009. Archived from the original on 9 September 2011. Retrieved 9 September 2011.
  2. "Nigeria: Tinapa, Africa's Premier Business-Tourism Resort Opens Monday April 2". Huluq. 1 April 2007. Retrieved 9 September 2011.
  3. 1 2 "Governor Imoke Urges Federal Government to Invest In Tinapa". Cross River State. Retrieved 9 September 2011.
  4. Ernest Chinwo (8 February 2008). "Country Loses N219b Yearly On Tinapa". ThisDay . Retrieved 9 September 2011.
  5. "CNN - Tinapa Failing? (Video)". CNN. Retrieved 9 September 2011.[ dead YouTube link ]
  6. Victor Nze (12 March 2010). "Tinapa - Cross River's Gift to Tourism". Daily Champion . Retrieved 9 September 2011.
  7. "From the Governor's Desk, October 2013". Cross River State. Retrieved 9 September 2011.
  8. Shehu Abubakar (4 May 2011). "Tinapa is dying". Daily Trust. Retrieved 9 September 2011.
  9. "Tinapa Resort: Cross River's N60bn moribund investment takes baby steps in journey back to life". business a.m. 26 June 2020. Retrieved 2 July 2021.
  10. "Calabar Monorail In Perfect Condition But No Patronage" . Retrieved 2 July 2021.