Chunnambar will no longer merely remain a tourist spot for boating as the government is planning to utilise the vast space available with the Puducherry Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) for multi-purpose activities through private participation, including renting out the lawn and beach for weddings.
For long, the Chunnambar Boat House had remained only as a place where tourists, especially weekend visitors, could catch a boat ride to the pristine Paradise Beach. Now, the government has decided to alter the character of the boat house by promoting the place as a wedding and partying destination.
Prior to renting out the place for weddings, parties and other events, the PTDC is looking to develop a well-manicured lawn with added features to make it a favoured destination to host outdoor events.
The boathouse has around 4 acres of land, of which 1.5 acre could be set aside for hosting events, said a PTDC staff. “Already a person has booked it for a wedding in August,” the staff added.
To add more value, the government has decided to outsource the management of the seven river-facing suites with the rooftop being used for dining. The PTDC has also planned to introduce a floating restaurant under the Ariankuppam bridge.
The government has plans to introduce a playpen for children in the waiting area for boating. A few days from now, the Corporation will roll out food trucks through private participation to cater to tourists visiting the boat house.
“All these value-added services are going to be introduced as a revenue earning mechanism for the PTDC, which is hitherto dependent on the earnings from the boating activity to provide salary to the staff. Obviously, when more people are going to throng the area for events, the earnings from boating will also go up,’’ Minister for Tourism K. Lakshminararayanan told The Hindu.
Booking for boating at Chunnambar will also go online shortly, he said, adding that more facilities, including at the children’s play area, would be provided through the public-private partnership mode.
According to PTDC officials, the boathouse had started receiving tourists in huge numbers after the lull in arrivals during the peak of the pandemic. On an average, during weekends, around 3,000 to 4,000 tourists visited the boathouse. The figure fell to around 500 during weekdays, the official said, adding that the PTDC was fully geared to meet the vacation crowd expected during May-June.