Holi and holidays: Goa tourism cashes in on festive mood –


The four-day long weekend starting with the festival of Holi has brought a cheer to the tourism trade as domestic tourists are arriving in large numbers to Goa.


This is evident from the fact that a number of top five star hotels like Resort Rio, Grand Hyatt, Novotel and Goa Marriott Resort & Spa are booked to capacity from 24 to 27 March.

Atish Fernandes, director, business development, First Class Holidays, said, “The good demand that we are seeing during this long weekend is not only because of holiday-makers, but it is also because of people who have already reached Goa for Defexpo.”

Defexpo is happening in Quitol, Quepem from 28 to 31 March, which means immediately after this long weekend. A lot of officials from companies participating in Defexpo are reaching Goa before to take care of arrangements like stall and etc, which is also contributing to the demand during this weekend.

Naturally, the tariffs have skyrocketed too. For instance, Taj – Fort Aguada is charging Rs 32,388 per night if you check in on March 24th and check out on March 27th. The Leela Goa in Cavelossim is charging Rs 28,502 per night in the same time-frame. Taj Exotica in Benaulim is charging Rs 27,158 per night for this long weekend.

Even 3-star and 4-star properties are seeing good demand during this weekend. Shashi Kalro, owner, The Camelot Group Resorts in Calangute, said, “We are close to 90% booked during this weekend. But, this shows a spike because occupancy rates before this weekend and after this weekend are low.”

Karlo continued, “Because of this, when you look at your overall balance-sheet, you realise that you haven’t done all that well.”

Many hoteliers also say that last charter flights arrive in Goa in March itself thereby limiting the season, which indicates that occupancy rates fall sharply just after March.

So, in a way, this long weekend and the upcoming Defexpo have come as a blessing in disguise for tourism trade because they have brought demand in what would otherwise have been off-peak time.

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