Birmingham is to get a major tourist boost over the coming months thanks to the opening of a series of new attractions.
In 2008, a £100m development - The Cube - will be completed, while 2009 will see the opening in the city of VerTiPlex - a 656ft (200m) leisure and observation tower. The Cube features canalside apartments. Inside there is an atrium that twists and climbs the height of the 450,000 sq ft building. There will be a rooftop restaurant and a boutique hotel in the complex.
The £60m VerTiPlex, in the east part of Birmingham, will include a selection of theme park rides and a restaurant at the top of the viewing tower. Adventurous types will be able to indulge in freefall parachuting, bungee jumping and seesaw rides at the top of the tower, which will be illuminated with laser lighting.
Meanwhile, opposite the Test cricket ground at Edgbaston, a £100m retail and leisure development is being created, which will include a 190-room hotel.
Plans for 2008 and 2009 also include the transformation of Newman Brothers Coffin Works into a museum. Dating from 1892, the works are being restored in a £3.4m scheme.
There are also multi-million pound plans to refurbish the city's Marriott and Crowne Plaza hotels as well as the nearby Belfry Hotel.