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Valencia Opera House

The 70-metre high colossus cost the regional government more than €120m (about £82m) to build and, according to press reports, the operating budget could reach €60m a year. But like Frank Gehry's Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, it is an investment in prestige and a magnet for upmarket tourists, a regional government spokesman, Esteban Gonzalez Pons, said. "We hope it will become the symbol of the city, like the opera house of Sydney." The futuristic opera house, dubbed the Reina Sofía Palace of the Arts, completes Calatrava's City of Arts and Sciences, a €400m complex featuring a planetarium and a science museum.