Officially Karen Demirchyan Sports and Concerts Complex, also known as Demirchyan Arena, Sports & Music Complex, or simply Hamalir (for complex in Armenian), is a huge sports and concert complex located on Tsitsernakaberd hill which dominates over the western parts of Yerevan, near the Hrazdan River gorge.
The complex has a unique design, an outside view of the whole construction reminds the shape a big bird opening its wings. Its architectural concepts include a turning tribune seating 1200, which can rapidly connect the two big halls to reveal additional seating, a concept for which the architects were awarded the USSR State Prize -the highest of its kind- in 1987. The complex consists of two big halls; the concert hall and the sports hall, in addition to the Hayastan conferences hall designated for political summits with a huge space which gives the facility to organize fairs and exhibitions.
The complex was opened in 1983 but forced to close within a year and a half after a fire in 1985. A renovation process took place until the end of 1987 when it was ready again to host concerts and sport events. The complex was designed by a group of Armenian architects: A. Tarkhanian, S. Khachikyan, G. Pogosyan and G. Mushegyan. The construction process was supervised by engineers: Hamlet Badalyan (chief engineer) and I. Tsaturian, A. Azizian and M. Aharonian. In 1999, shortly after the assassination of the former speaker of the Armenian parliament Karen Demirchyan in the Armenian parliament shooting, the complex was renamed in honour of him, for his contribution in the construction and the renovation of the complex during the Soviet era. On October 9, 2005, the complex was sold for US$ 5.7 million. The contract was signed between the Armenian government and the Russian organization BAMO holding. The renovation process took almost 3 years and its cost grew up to 42 million US dollars, thus turning the complex to a modern and a high level sports and concerts arena.
The renovation process took almost 3 years and its cost grew up to 42 million US dollars, thus turning the complex to a modern and a high level sports and concerts arena. On October 31, 2008, exactly after 25 years of its first inauguration, the second opening ceremony of the Karen Demirchyan Sports and Concerts Complex took place. In August 2014, due to the accumulated debts of the owners, the Government of Armenia transferred the ownership of the complex to the Ministry of Defense. In August 2015, the government of the Republic of Armenia decided to sell the complex to NTAA Investment Group LLC, which planned to spend 4 years turning the complex into a "family-oriented center" that will include "hotels, [an] indoor waterpark, concert halls, meeting rooms, restaurants, shops and a casino."