The Sunday Times reports today that WA Premier Colin Barnett, who is also the new Minister for Tourism, has indicated the promotions for WA should be focussing on Perth and not on the natural beauty of our state.
The Premier told the ST that Brand Perth should be our selling point focus, not beaches and the rugged Kimberley. The Premier believes that is what Asian tourists want.
Strange then that the national tourist body only recently said that Chinese tourists want a country/outback experience, and 95 per cent of visitors to the Fremantle Roundhouse I talk to have expressed that they find Perth dull and much like other big cities but that they love the heritage of Fremantle, Ningaloo Reef, the outback, Margaret River, Albany and the rugged coastline.
On that note I wonder if/what the City of Fremantle is doing in regard to offering package deals for the Street Art Festival to attract interstate and overseas visitors. This is a great free three day festival that deserves package deals with tourism operators and airlines. We could for example have a night performance in the Fremantle Arts Centre only for those who arrive here on a package deal for the SAF.
Reading the number of visitors the VIVID light festival in Sydney attracts, I believe Freo could step up a little in that regard as well and not just rely on large numbers of visitors from the suburbs on the long Easter weekend.
Fremantle Federal MP Melissa Parke got married to arts patron Warwick Hemsley at the Freshwater Bay Yacht Club on Saturday.
Melissa did not invite this top bloke blogger so unfortunately I did not take any photos I can show you and the article in the Sunday Times today will have to do.
Sunday Times journalist Joe Spagnolo reports the couple left by boat from Point Walter for the wedding event at FWBYC.
Melissa is a gorgeous, genuine and sincere person whom I respect so I wish her and new hubby a great and long life together!
It will be interesting to see where Mrs Hemsley will reside and if she will move away from Fremantle or if Warwick will make the move to Freo.
It is good to see that experts are calling for better design of buildings in the Perth region. I am pretty disappointed what modern architecture represents in our area, as it is mainly cheap and fast box-like concrete highrise that has little or no visual quality and does not enhance the amenity and streetscape.
W.A. Government Architect Geoff Warn, who is also on the Perth Design Advisory Panel, believes new strategies are needed to improve the architectural quality of projects, the Sunday Times reports today, and I could not agree more.
Heritage Perth CEO Richard Offen told ST that Perth has incredibly boring architecture that leaves a poor heritage legacy for future generations.
I believe that one of the reasons Fremantle Council signs off on mediocre architecture is because the City of Fremantle is so desperate to get new development going in Freo that it compromises too easily and gives in to pressure from developers. It is not helpful either that the State’s Development Assessment Panel often overrules local council decisions and allows inappropriate buildings to be erected which destroy the ambience of place in established older suburbs.
Excellent modern architecture can greatly improve the visual impact of a city, and it does not matter if that is a heritage city like Fremantle. In the right location and with restraint and consideration for the history and existing built environment a great new building will create a new focus point and attraction. Height does not necessarily have to mean that it is unsuitable for our inner city, but for Fremantle to accept extra height only the very best and outstanding architectural design and building quality would have to apply. Mediocre and boring concrete boxes have no place anywhere in the vicinity of our outstanding heritage architecture and we should take heed of what Government Architect Geoff Warn has to say about it.
With all the rubbish around about not enough or too expensive parking in Fremantle, it is nice to read the story in the Sunday Times today about the Australia Day fireworks. The City of Perth and South Perth collected thousands of dollars in fines from hundreds of motorists, while the City of Fremantle did not issues a single parking ticket during the fireworks this year and last year. I reckon that is embracing the spirit of the day and letting everyone have a good time, instead of seeing such a big crowd-pulling event and a revenue raiser. Well done Freo!!
The Sunday Times reports today that Flow House has applied to Fremantle council to install a wave simulator on the former Ampol fuel depot site at Port Beach about fifty-metres north of Salt on the Beach. Flow House already runs wave simulators in countries like the UK and USA. WA has only one wave simulator in Kalgoorlie.
Whilst I have been asking for years for more tourist attractions for Fremantle I am not sure that creating artificial waves at a beach with natural waves is something I would get excited about. Wave simulators are great in cities that are not near an ocean. For me it’s a bit like the gimmick of making a beach at Forrest Place in Perth. That might be a good idea for places like Berlin, that are hundreds of kilometres away from the ocean, but for a city like Perth that is built along the coast it is rather silly to have an artificial beach in the CBD.