The Seychelles Minister for Environment, Natural Resources and Transport, Joel Morgan, has officially declared the long awaiting SUBIOS , the Seychelles Festival of the Sea, and Seychelles Roundtable, officially opened from a floating stage in the lovely bay of Beau Vallon.
Present at the opening ceremony, which took place at Beau Vallon, was Barry Faure, Secretary of State in The President’s Office and Chairman of the Seychelles Tourism Board; Alain St.Ange, Chief Executive of the Seychelles Tourism Board; and his Deputy, Elsia Grandcourt, along with the invited guests and crowds gathered to take part in the activities.
In his opening remarks, Minister Morgan said that since its creation in 1989, SUBIOS has played a vital role in sensitizing successive generations of Seychellois to the grandeur of their marine heritage and to the magnificence of the ocean that surrounds the islands. “This year, 2011 SUBIOS can be seen evolving to embrace the broader themes that have come into play since its launch and which are playing a more prominent role in guiding the national consciousness. Today’s SUBIOS is not only about the ocean, but also about the people who depend on it for their survival and who will do so for many a year to come,” said Minister Morgan.
Furthermore, he made known that SUBIOS will always have at its core and in its heart of hearts an overriding concern for the marine world, its inhabitants, and eco-systems.
“However, perhaps today more than ever, we are becoming locked into a defining relationship with the surrounding ocean, the ultimate nature of which may well decide our future on this planet,” noted Minister Morgan.
Minister Joel Morgan was followed by Alain St.Ange of the Seychelles Tourism Board, the organizer of SUBIOS, the Seychelles Festival of the Sea. Mr. St.Ange thanked the large crowd of Seychellois and tourists who had gathered on the beach of Beau Vallon to witness the opening ceremony of the 2011 edition of SUBIOS, the Seychelles Festival of the Sea. Mr. St.Ange said that Seychelles was blessed by having the best in sun, sea, and sand but that the island’s President Michel who holds the portfolio for tourism had said when he launched the “Seychelles Brand of Tourism” that Seychelles needed to enter the world of events. To meet that objective, the Festival of the Sea is being consolidated as a permanent event alongside the Seychelles Carnival International de Victoria, which is held in March.
Mr. St.Ange also thanked the international artists who had traveled to Seychelles to be part of the event and he also thanked the local artists who had volunteered to be associated with this annual event. He thanked Etihad Airways for becoming the Official Partner Airline for SUBIOS, the Seychelles Festival of the Sea, and Asia Geographic Group of Magazines for being the Official Publication Partner.
Mr. St.Ange congratulated Emirates Diving Association for being in Seychelles to explore the possibility of involving their association with the Seychelles Festival of the Sea and the world-reknowned underwater diver, Mr. Aaron Wong, and his underwater model, Ai Futaki ,for making time to be in Seychelles to take pictures of the splendors of the underwater world of Seychelles. Mr. Wong presented Alain St.Ange with a copy of his latest book entitled “Water and Colours.”
Alain St.Ange, was also presented with a limited edition of the Dievas Diving watch by Kenneth of Asia Geographic, who had earlier in the day also presented the President of the Republic, Mr. James Michel, with the first of these watches specially engraved with a crest of the Seychelles. Twenty five of these watches have been specially engraved for SUBIOS, the Seychelles Festival of the Sea.
The three-day activities,which kick started this evening since 4:00 pm will run until the evening of Sunday, November 6.
For the first time ever, Seychelles has a floating stage where the opening ceremony took place. The stage will also be used to host the prize giving and closing ceremonies, as well as the various performances from the Seychellois artists and the famous international DJ Juicy M together with Seychellois-born professional DJ Antonius and Trinidad and Tobago’s Soca artist, Lima Calbio.
With SUBIOS Festival of the Sea and Seychelles Roundtable having merged their respective events, a horde of activities are in store for the weekend.
Apart from the opening ceremony and the entertainment by the artists that will last till 11:00 pm, this evening’s program includes entertainment by the locals and internationalists and the SUBIOS Film Show. Tomorrow, the activities will take off at 10:00 am with the SUBIOS Treasure Hunt Competition. The day’s program includes the SUBIOS Man & Woman Competition, as well as various other sports tournaments and the opening of Children’s Village. Sunday, November 6, has been organized as a family fun beach extravaganza, with a slate of activities for the whole family, including a number of sports races until the events will officially come to a close at 6:00 pm. A range of food stalls are also available for the three days of festivities.
This year’s Seychelles’ Festival of the Sea and the Seychelles Round Table Seychelles’ Regatta is expected to be a real crowd-puller for Seychellois and visitors alike.