A souq (pronounced sook) is known as a commercial quarter in a city. The term is often used to designate the market in any Arab or Muslim city, but in modern times it appears in Western cities too. Historically, souqs were held outside of cities in the location where a caravan loaded with goods would stop and merchants would display their goods for sale. At that time, souqs were more than just a market to buy and sell goods; they were also the place of major festivals. Many cultural and social activities took place in them. Later, due to the importance of this concept, many towns created central marketplaces, or Souqs, where textiles, jewelry, wooden sculptures, and other valuable goods were arranged for display, trade or purchase.
Some of the most famous souqs that exist today can be found in the Grand Bazaar in Turkey, the Old City Souq in Tripoli, Libya and the Khartit Mustapha Bazaar in Marrakech Morocco. One of the things I love about the historical concept of the souq is the idea that neutrality from tribal conflicts was always declared in the souq to permit the exchange of goods.
In essence, the souq was always the one place throughout history where creativity, market services, trade and community could be found. Not only are your senses dazzled with the smells of exotic spices; your eyes are tickled by jewel colored textiles; your ears filled with stories and music of lands explored; and your heart brims with the spirit of life’s possibilities. That sounds like an excitingly wonderful place to be. In this same spirit I welcome you to my souq.
Kick your shoes off, grab a cup of tea and let your eyes and ears be inspired by the things I have to offer.