Travel Travel

19/07/2017 - 15:06


Waiting for enthusiastic and experienced investors

"It is true that the service system and related products are not as good as expected despite full socialisation. This is also a weakness of the service tourism industry to try to overcome," said Phan Thanh Hai, PhD., director of Hue Monuments Conservation Center.

Phan Thanh Hai, PhD.

Thua Thien Hue is trying to build the trademark "One destination, five heritages", so what is the current stage of the strategy to attract tourists?

The strength of Hue is cultural heritage. The tourism development strategy is also aimed at attracting high demand markets for cultural and historical exploration, such as European, North American, Korean, Japanese and Thai tourists. In recent years, the number of visitors to the relics has increased at a very stable rate, averaging by 17-18% per year. In the near future, we continue to target these traditional visitors, especially Japanese tourists.

A scene in the "Guard Change Ceremony". Photo: Bao Minh

It is said that the Nguyen’s art of creating sculpture, glass paintings, porcelain and china mosaics...has been lost and that the current artisans apply new techniques without appropriate methods. Does this issue exist within the practice of restoration of Hue monuments?

In the work of restoring heritages in Hue, traditional technology and artisans who hold the know-how are always respected, and the process of restoration of monuments always adheres to the principles of preservation under the Convention of World Heritage and Vietnam Cultural Heritage Laws. The technologies applied are all traditional, from carving, sculpting, painting, bricking and tiling, etc. The artisans are mostly descendants who follow their father’s traditional crafting career, or have been trained properly. Hue heritages have been crystallized from the talents, wisdom and golden hands of the Vietnamese people from all over the country, and now we seek to continue this tradition. That is one of the decisive factors for the quality of restoration work in the complex of Hue Monuments. Up to now, Hue has been highly regarded by UNESCO, Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism for its preservation and restoration of cultural heritages.

The Citadel has been opened for visitors at night for over a month, but it looks like the initial effect was not as expected...?

It is true that the program has not achieved expected results. However, initial success should be recognized, especially in the first week open at night, the Hue Royal Citadel welcomed tens of thousands of local visitors. This is a good opportunity for us to bring our heritage to the community, so that people can understand and be proud of our ancestors' legacy. After more than a month of opening, we have completely evaluated the night program, analyzed shortcomings and adjusted in time. Hopefully, the Citadel Night will gradually affirm the trademark and will be chosen as an indispensable destination in the travel itinerary of visitors to Hue.

There are many opinions that tourism products in Truong Sanh Palace, Luc Bo, Tu Phuong Vo Su ... are not worth the value of the destination. What are your views on this matter and what are the directions for service development at Hue heritage sites?

This assessment is not wrong. We are actively working out a plan to renovate the centre's operational model in a streamlined, efficient manner which is closely linked to the full socialization of service activities. It is hoped that there will be more knowledgeable, devoted and experienced investors who will be able to fundamentally change service activities in the Hue heritage. Currently, we are working to improve the quality of service in the Hue monument areas.

Hue Monuments Conservation Center has had 35 years of construction and development, but the management and promotion of Hue heritage is still a matter of concern. In your opinion, for the Hue heritage sites, which model will be the most suitable?

Thua Thien Hue is determined to reform the operation model of Hue Monuments Conservation Center and socialization of heritage conservation activities. Currently, there are strategic investors working with provincial leaders on this issue and the provincial People's Committee assigned the centre to coordinate with that unit to develop a scheme for socialization of monument conservation. There is a project, in which we are coordinating the development of appropriate management model in the direction of streamlining and enhancing the operational capacity of the organization while maintaining the greatest goal, which is to preserve the heritages. If we are not careful in the socialization of preservation and promotion of traditional value, it will be very easy to damage our cultural heritages.

Thank you for the talk.

By Dong Van