10/17/09 – The anonymous resident of Anyang City in the Henan Province of China who last week cracked the biggest lottery prize in recent Chinese history has unwittingly caused a flood of betting pilgrims to come to the city, boosting local business.
The still unidentified winner collected a 360 million yuan windfall (about US$52.7 million) and triggered a stream of superstitious visitors "from far and wide" according to media reports; all keen to soak up some of the local luck and buy tickets in the area.
The shop where the winning billet was bought is at the epicentre of the tourist onslaught, with tour groups specifically including it in their itineraries.
Even those who did not have it on the program had to make detours. "The outlet was not on the schedule, yet the tourists insisted to have a share of the huge luck," one group's guide told the local newspaper Henan Business Daily.
Shop owner Chen Guixia said the number of people buying lottery tickets had nearly doubled every day after news of the huge win, with many customers coming from neighbouring provinces.
There is unsubstantiated speculation that the big winner may have connections with the Anyang Steel factory near the shop.
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