The facility will be located in Hasselt and is set to welcome its first visitors this spring
The area around Piatra Neamț is one of the oldest inhabited regions in Romania. The oldest traces of human civilisation in this part of the country date back to the higher Paleolithic era, around 100,000 years B.C. The Cucuteni culture, the development of which lasted approximately one thousand years is exemplified by around 150 settlements in the territory of Neamţ county. Archaeological diggings unearthing important items and artefacts of the Aeneolithic as well as objects dating back to the Neolithic Period and the Bronze Age make up many modern museum collections.
Excavations made outside the city reveal the ruins of a large Dacian city named Petrodava. Historians believe this to be the location of the Kingdom of Dicomes - in the very political centre at Petrodava. The complex of strongholds is unmatched in neither Moldavia nor Wallachia and are evidence of a powerful political and military centre both in Burebista’s time and in the period that preceded the reign of Decebalus.
The first urban settlements, which emerged under Petru I Musat during the period between 1375 and 1391, were Piatra lui Craciun, Roman and Neamț. The Neamț citadel, first mentioned in written documents dating back to February 1395, was also erected during the same consolidation period of the Moldovian principality east of the Carpathians. The Princely Court of Piatra Neamț is mentioned for the first time in a document dated on 20 April 1491, under Stephen the Great. The Princely Cathedral was built in 1497-1498, and the 20 m tall Bell Tower in 1499.
Piatra Neamț, the capital city of Neamț County, can be found in the region of Moldavia, in eastern Romania, 350 km to the north of Bucharest. and 60 km away from the nearest airport in Bacau.
The city lies in the Bistrita River Valley and is surrounded by several mountains - among them are Pietricica, Cozla, Cernegura, Bâtca Doamnei and Cârloman.
The city is the 24th largest one in Romania in terms of population, with 85,055 living in the area.
The industries of Piatra Neamț include a fertilizer plant, paper mill and a pulp, and several food-processing plants, an agricultural machinery plant (Mecanica Ceahlău), a pharmaceutical plant (Plantavorel) and two paper manufacturers.
The main industrial park of Piatra Neamț is located 11 km to the south, in the Săvinești area. During the socialist era, it was one of the most important chemical plants in the country. Nowadays, the industrial facility is part of an Italian company and it operates at low capacity.
The most important Romanian commercial brands originating from Piatra Neamț are Rifil (synthetic fibres manufacturer), Altex (TV, hi-fi, home appliances national dealer), Amicii-Kubo Ice Cream and Dasimpex (mobile phones dealer).
There are 4 local TV stations, 3 FM radio stations and several newspapers, including online newspapers.
The main attraction of Piatra Neamț is its natural environment - the local mountains and the lakes as well as the historical buildings, the museums and the festivals. There are several programs in progress with the goal of transforming Piatra Neamț into a top tourist destination in Romania.