Tourism plays an important role in the city’s service-driven economy. Many large worldwide hotel chains have a presence in the city. Kuala Lumpur is the sixth most visited city in the world, with 8.94 million tourist arrivals in 2008. Tourism here is driven by the city's cultural diversity, relatively low costs and wide gastronomic and shopping variety. MICE tourism which mainly encompasses conventions— has expanded in recent years to become a vital component of the industry. Another notable trend is the increased presence of budget hotels in the city.
The major tourist destinations in Kuala Lumpur include the Merdeka Square, the House of Parliament, the Petaling Street, the National Palace (Istana Negara), the Kuala Lumpur Tower, the National Museum, the Central Market, theNational Monument,and religious sites such as the Jamek Mosque and Batu Caves. Kuala Lumpur plays host to many cultural festivals such as the Thaipusam procession at the Sri Mahamariamman Temple.
The entertainment hub of the city is mainly centred in the Golden Triangle encompassing Jalan P. Ramlee, Jalan Sultan Ismail and Ampang Road. Trendy nightclubs, bars and lounges, such as the Beach Club, Espanda, the Hakka Republic Wine Bar & Restaurant, Hard Rock Cafe, the Luna Bar, Nuovo, Rum Jungle, the Thai Club, Zouk, and many others are located here.
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