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You're a winner, for a few yuan

BEING an Olympic gold-medal winner may cost a professional athlete years of sweat and tears, but it could cost you just 120 yuan (US$17.57).

The Bird's Nest, host stadium for the 2008 Beijing Olympics, is charging visitors 120 yuan to have photographs of themselves as Olympic champions.

The tourist promotion, revealed in an online posting on Netease, one of China's biggest Website portals, has sparked controversy.

Visitors can dress in the various sporting outfits and have their photographs taken on the official podium by staff photographers. Other Olympic elements such as the Olympic torch and medal girls are also available, according to the post.

The stadium operator confirmed the promotion yesterday but made no further comment.

In an online survey conducted by, more than 50 percent of respondents said the practice was unacceptable.

The Bird's Nest is managed by a body established by CITIC Group, the Beijing Urban Construction Group and Golden State Holding Group Corp.


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