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IFFI, Thinkfest, Sunburn & other special properties…

7 years 4 months ago

Goa having been endowed with is natural beauty and attitude has become home to some of the finest international properties & events, that not just bring in visitors by the numbers but also act as a brand building exercise for the state..
Thinkfest, probably the best intellectual meet ever, was held at one of Goa’s leadomg five stars last month, bringing in some of the best minds from around the country & around the world to share thoughts on the changes & happenings on our planet.
Sunburn brings in music lovers from around the globe to converge at Candolim beach for three days of listening to a mix of international music played by some of the finest DJ’s from India & abroad..
IFFI (International Film Festival of India), an opportunity to make Goa the Cannes of India unfortunately has been going downhill by the year, not just by judging from the numbers and quality of participants but by the general poor hype and mainly (if not only) critical reports in the local press..
Whilst Thinkfest  & Sunburn are planned, owned and operated by the private sector, the IFFI is implemented through the Government and has never been able to upscale the product even after 7 years of existence !
Though large promises and forecasts of growth in tourism have been made well before the season, the ground realities are dismal and tourism growth right now, is probably at its lowest ebb over the years! Even with this noticeable downfall, no one in the right places seem to be taking any noticeable corrective action whatsoever, to a point that makes one wonder if the authorities and the relevant departments are even aware of the ground realities and a failure of our tourism machinery..
Take for example Thailand, which had its worst floods in history and the efforts made by the resilient Thais to bounce back to normal. The Thai tourism authorities have used every tool possible to bring back the numbers, from Facebook to roadshows and coordinated discount offers for almost anything & everything to do with tourism! Whilst we seem to be sleeping over the present drop that cannot be justified to any reason, other than negligence from the tourism industry.
Instead of the government trying to arrange badly managed events like the IFFI, it would make more sense to hand over such properties to the private sector and utilize our investments of time, effort & money in promotion of the state across borders. Unfortunately our elected representatives are embroiled in their self created problems from the Medium of Education, an indecisive Regional Plan, to the destruction of our landscape through unregulated illegal mining ..
Great properties like the Thinkfest, Sunburn, Fashion weeks and so on, will keep finding Goa as a beautiful base, our authorities need to take advantage of such opportunities for the betterment of our tourism share, international branding and other benefits that filter down to one and all who live here!