THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Kerala Tourism's vigorous efforts to get back on track in the wake of recent devastating floods got a shot in the arm as it walked away with two prestigious gold awards of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) for its innovative marketing campaigns.
The awards were presented at a glittering function in Langkawi, Malaysia on Friday during PATA Travel Mart 2018, a release said here.
Ms Sudeshna Ramkumar, Assistant Director, India Tourism, Singapore received the award on behalf of Kerala tourism.
Kerala Tourism got the first gold for its 'Yalla Kerala' travel advertisement print media campaign in the Gulf countries.
It showcased the state's greenery and backwaters, a different world from the Gulf, just four hours away.
With the punch line, 'Yalla Kerala', the campaign triggered a lot of interest for God's Own Country as a tourism destination in the Gulf countries.
We struck gold TWICE at PATA. Our Yalla Kerala print campaign for DoT and Live Inspired Posters won gold awards under Travel Advertisement Print and Travel Poster categories respectively. pic.twitter.com/JU2leHa767— STARK. (@StarkTVM) September 15, 2018
The second gold award came for an innovative poster Kerala Tourism had developed for the third edition of the Kochi-Muziris Biennale (KMB), the biggest contemporary art show in South Asia.
The live-inspired poster featured a colourful boat and fishermen, and could be put up straight as well as upside down.
"This is a huge honour for Kerala Tourism. Winning two much sought after gold medals of PATA will give a fillip to our ongoing efforts for a robust rejuvenation of tourism in the state," said Kerala Tourism Minister Mr Kadakampally Surendran.
"Our efforts have already started paying off. Most of our tourist destinations are ready to welcome the visitors from India and abroad.
In fact, the first chartered flight of tourists from Australia in this season has arrived in Kochi on September 15," he said, adding that "the state government has accorded top priority to restore roads leading to tourist places."
Kerala Tourism Secretary Ms Rani George said the prestigious gold awards are a testament to the undiminished charm of tourist destinations in the state, which attract visitors in droves.
"Our tourism campaigns are specimens of creative brilliance and have always evoked international attention and admiration.
The latest awards will once again turn the spotlight on the state's destinations," she added.
Kerala Tourism Director Mr P Bala Kiran said the award-winning marketing campaigns showcase Kerala as a destination for families to relax, rejuvenate and reconnect.
"The awards show that our strategies have struck a right cord with the target audiences," he noted.
The Campaign and Posters were developed and designed by Stark Communications, the Advertising Agency of Kerala Tourism.
This year's winners included PEAK DMC, India Amadeus Asia Limited, Thailand; AirAsia, Malaysia; Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi, UAE; Hong Kong Tourism Board; Jetwing Hotels Limited, Sri Lanka; Local Alike, Thailand; Marianas Visitors Authority; Melco Resorts and Entertainment, Macao; and Tourism Authority of Thailand.
The PATA Awards are presented to outstanding entries in four principal categories: Marketing; Education and Training; Environment, and Heritage and Culture.