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Kazakhs stay home as economy spikes holiday plans

ALMATY -- The curved open-air swimming pool at the Eight Lakes resort outside Kazakhstan's commercial capital Almaty is billed as the largest of its kind in the former Soviet Union, testifying to a penchant for grandeur in Central Asia's richest country.  

On a searing summer day, its chilly waters host three generations of middle-class Kazakhs, whose four-wheel drive vehicles pack the parking lot while they frolic with inflatable alligators and beach balls.

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