30 December, 2006

More New Year entertainment in Suva

These are two more alternatives for entertainment as we welcome 2007:
  • Street Party along Victoria Parade next to Albert Park and the old Grand Pacific Hotel on Sunday, 31 December 2006. This is a "no-alcohol" street party where young and old alike dance, celebrate and welcome in the new Year. No entry fee required.
  • Pirates and Wenches Party, Sunday, 31 December 2006, The Point After, Queen Elizabeth Drive, on the seawall opposite Veiuto Primary School. Dress the part. Activities include : "Find the treasure", music, fireworks, best costume and more. F$50.00 per ticket. Call telephone +679 3305794 for reservations.

I would assume a lot of Fijians would also be attending their New Year church services as they reflect on 2006 and its events and pray for 2007.

Note from GV : For accommodation in Suva, check out our two bedroom rental home with seaviews through links at the right hand side of this blog. The home has a Personal Computer and Broadband Internet access provided complimentary for guests' use. After a 20% discount, the rate per night for the entire home is F$112.00. Local calls are free and included in the rate. To contact us, e-mail gilbert@connect.com.fj or call telephones +679 3396427 or +679 9921427.

29 December, 2006

New Year celebration packages

Some New Year celebration packages offered in or around Suva include :
  • Tiki Pool Bar New Years Eve, Sunday, 31 December 2006, 6pm till late, Arts Village, Pacific Harbour. The poolside party is to feature a huge sound system with an international DJ (one of Sydney’s best) and local DJs. Entertainment includes techno hula girls; Samoan and Indian drummers; Tongan dancers; fire dancers; and Arts Village warriors. Also featuring henna tattooing and face painting; party toys; chai lounge and fortune teller; and seven food stalls. When the poolside bar closes, the party will move down to the beach with a huge bon fire till the sun rises, where the recovery party will keep going with a beach bbq, games, music and another bonfire on new year’s night. Tickets are F$39.00 per person and include a party pack worth over F$30.00. For more information call telephone +679 3450065.
  • The Pearl’s ‘New Years Eve Celebration', Sunday, 31 December 2006, 6pm till late The Pearl, Pacific Harbour. Count down to 2007 in style at The Pearl. Two packages available and include a combination of sparkling wine on arrival, celebrations, food stalls, midnight munchies, fireworks, entertainment through the night, midnight toast. Package 1 F$40.00 per person pre-paid, F$45.00 per person at the door. Package 2 F$99.00 per person pre-paid, F$105.00 per person at the door. Free transfers courtesy of Coral Sun in the Pacific Harbour area, and transfers from Suva available at F$5.00 per person return. Reservations preferred. For more details on packages and reservations call telephone +679 3450022.
  • JJ's on the Park, 'A Night of the Stars', Sunday, 31 December 2006, from 8pm, JJ's on the Park, Suva. Choose your favourite actor or actress, siren, vamp, hero or villain. Your choice of costume. Band "Chill Out" will be playing. A feast of fun, food and fine wines is offered. Call telephone +679 3305005 for reservations.
  • Big bang on the lake, Sunday, 31 December 2006, from 8.30pm, The Raintree Lodge, Colo-i-Suva. Fireworks display, dj and live music and italian buffet dinner from F$18.50 per person. Contact telephone +679 3320562 for reservations.

Fiji teams continue training

The Fiji teams for 7s Rugby, Rugby League and Netball continue their training over the festive season to prepare for upcoming international tours. The rugby 7s and League teams are preparing for their 7s tournaments with the rugby league 7s held in January, Australia, while the 7s Rugby tournament's next IRB series to be held at Wellington, NZ in February. The Netball team is working towards warm-up matches that will take them right up to the World Netball Championships. The netball championship was to have been held in Fiji but has not been rescheduled for November 2007 in New Zealand.

Special Promotion on Accommodation

The hotel industry is now offering large discounts for accommodation packages in an attempt to attract tourists to come back to Fiji. Discounts of up to 40% are being offered for wholesale accommodation and travel rates. It has been reported that the take-up rate for the packages has been good. For our two bedroom Suva rental, we have been offering a 20% discount on the rate per night from November and will run it until 31 March 2007 after which we will have a review. The home is fully furnished and includes Sky TV, free local calls, a Personal Computer and Broadband Internet access with the two bedrooms each offering a double bed. The rate of F$112.00 per night covers a total number of 4 guests. A minor charge may be added for numbers more than 4. To check out photos and details of amenities provided, click on the appropriate links at the right hand side of this blog. To contact us, you can e-mail gilbert@connect.com.fj or call telephones +679 3396427 or +679 9921427.

24 December, 2006

Christmas Eve in Suva

Today is Christmas Eve and I have just noted that Suva is so quiet. There are just a few cars on the road with hardly anyone walking around. Perhaps it is a Sunday and Sunday's are always quiet. It may be that people are also recovering from all the partying from Friday and Saturday. Nightclubs in Suva have been full over the past two nights as people celebrated Christmas - perhaps too to get over the crisis that we have been facing. Tonight? I do not think that the clubs will be that full like it was the last two nights. As I said, it is Sunday. From me, let me just say that I wish you readers a very Merry Christmas and a Successful 2007. Let us rediscover for ourselves for real meaning of Christmas - a time to reflect on ourselves and our journey, a time to share with the less fortunate - a time that God gave us His son! Again to all of you out there, particularly, those in the cold countries who cannot venture out as much as they would like to at this time, Merry Christmas.

21 December, 2006

Fiji to remain as hosts for the World Hobie championship 2007

Fiji will remain as hosts for the World’s Hobie 16 Championship in 2007. About 60 teams have already confirmed participation at the Championship with entries still being received. The organisers have welcomed the military's move to remove prisoners off the island of Nukulau which now could be included as a venue for the competition. The 18th Hobie Worlds will be held in Suva from 8 to 19 October, 2007. Note from GV : For those seeking accommodation during that period in Suva, check out our two bedroom rental home through links at the right hand side of this blog. To contact us, you can e-mail gilbert@connect.com.fj or call telephone +679 3396427.

Fiji Museum opening hours

The opening hours for the Fiji Museum are back to normal and are as follows :
  • Monday to Thursday, 9.30am to 4.30pm;
  • Friday, 9.30am to 4pm;
  • Saturday, 9.30am to 4.30pm;
  • Sunday, 1pm to 4.30pm.

The Museum will be closed on 25 and 26 December 2006 and 1 January 2007.

Note from GV : Check out our two bedroom rental home in Suva through links at the right hand side of this blog. To contact us, e-mail gilbert@connect.com.fj or call telephone +679 3396427.

20 December, 2006

Nukulau Island back as a picnic spot

Nukulau Island will be enjoyed again by Suva residents and visitors when it stops being used as a correction facility to accommodate George Speight and other men that were implicated in the 2000 coup. Nukulau Island is right across the waters from Laucala Bay and is one of the few places with white sandy beach near Suva. In past years, before it became an island prison, Suva residents would use the place for their parties and picnics after payment of a small fee to the authorities. Now that it has been given back as a picnic spot, it should be a more exciting place to go to given its most history as an island prison.

19 December, 2006

Our more accepting society

After the military took over government two weeks ago today, there are reports (and one can also observe themselves) that soldiers who man our roadblocks have been warmly greeted and received with drinks, food and garlands from members of the public. Although much has been said about the illegality of the takeover and the abuse of democracy in our system of government, it seems amusing that within two weeks, our soldiers are more-or-less accepted by society. This may be attributed to our very accepting attitude which is ingrained in our culture and traditions. Fijians do not usually harbour resentment and hatred. Once they have traditionally apologised, usually with a presentation of kava and a drink of what is presented, the ills are forgotten and things are again on a level footing. Another reason for the acceptance of the soldiers is that some members of our families and friends serve in the army, whether it be a father, mother, brother, sister, uncle, aunt or cousin. Therefore, one cannot go on hating them as there is bound to be a relative or friend or friend's friend there. One last reason is that the people of Fiji, particularly Suva, are now getting quite used to the phenomenon of a coup, having gone through 4 in the last 19 years. One can see that after each coup, people have gotten up and soldiered on. Whether they have been affected by lost jobs or pay cuts or any other disadvantageous situation arising as a result of a particular coup, the people of Fiji have moved on with their lives. With that resilience of attitude, one can only hope that it will happen again this time. Onward Fiji!

Consumers more confident

Business is booming again for Suva retailers after consumers regained confidence after the military take-over of government a fortnight ago. Some businesses said that they had to resort to extraordinary marketing techniques to improve sales. Morris Hedstroms, one of the largest supermarket chains in Fiji, said that consumer spending at their stores increased last week. The store said that people's confidence had returned and that they were buying items on hire purchase and gifts for their families and friends for Christmas. After the Christmas and New Year shopping spree, families start buying school items for their children for the new school year which starts late January 2007. While some families will be enjoying their Christmas and New Year, we should also say a prayer and, if possible, help those whose father, mother, brother and sister, lost jobs as a result of the political crisis.

18 December, 2006

New bank opens in Suva

A new bank, Bank South Pacific Limited (BSP), will open in Suva today. BSP, from Papua New Guinea, acquired the operations of Habib Bank Limited of Pakistan. The bank will operate from the same premises that was used by Habib Bank. BSP is the largest bank in PNG. Visitors to Suva can access ATMs at most parts of the city. Most of these ATMs accept international credit cards - you can see whether the machine will accept your card if the card symbol is displayed next to the ATM. The only bank that does not offer ATM services are Bank of Baroda. Plans by BSP to offer electronic banking services are yet to be seen. Banks have recently also extended their opening hours to 4pm daily. ANZ and Colonial have a few of their branches open until midday on Saturdays.

17 December, 2006

Hyundai Fitness Centre member wins Mr Fiji Bodybuilding Competition

Hyundai Fitness Centre member and my good friend, Ben Saqata, has again won the Mr Fiji Bodybuilding Championship held at Nadi yesterday. Ben who is currently studying again at the University of the South Pacific, has been winning the competition over the last few years. The competition was held as a buildup to the South Pacific Games to be held at Apia, 2007. Other men from Suva who got placed during the championships were : William Ubitau who won the Junior Mr Fiji title and under 85kg weight category; and Livai Nabaro who won the under 75kg category. We wish these men well in their training over the next few months as they build themselves up for the Apia Games.

New Marist Club opens

A newly refurbished club house, formerly the Marist Club, and now called Bosco's Bar, is now open. The Bar is located within the Marist Brothers High School buildings. With its new name, the club pays tribute to a former Fiji rugby representative and captain of the national rugby team. Pio Bosco Tikoisuva was a well known rugby player throughout the 1970s in Fiji. His most memorable moment was when he captained the national team who beat the visiting British Lions team in Fiji in 1977. Bosco when on to excel in his professional life and was the Government Printer before taking over the Chief Executive Officer role of the Fiji Rugby Union. He has since retired. The club management thought that he was a very good role model for players hence their choice for the bar to be named after Bosco. The club management is also working on other plans to further promote the club and its activities to attract families of former students.

15 December, 2006

Cycling Summer Critirium

The final Crit for the year will be held on Sunday, 21 December 2006 at Vuya Road, Veiuto. Registration at 5.30pm and race starts at 6pm. Contact Dom on telephone +679 9922123 for details.

Upcoming Activities, Events and Accommodation in Suva (Updated 15.12.06)

The following events are scheduled for Suva: One-off Events:
  • Pacific Arts Alliance, School Holiday Arts Programmes, classes begin Monday, 27 November, and runs until Monday, 22 January, 2007, The Playhouse, Selbourne Street, Suva;
  • Swimming lessons, from 4 to 15 December 2006, Olympic Pool, Suva;
  • Baseball Coaching Program for teens aged between 12 and 18 years, Tuesday, 5 December, to Friday, 15 December 2006, 9.30am to 12.30pm, Marist Brothers High School grounds, Flagstaff, Suva;
  • Sports Holiday Activities, classes run until Friday, 15 December 2006, Hyundai Fitness Centre, Laucala Bay, Suva;
  • Fancy Rubbish Art Exhibition, open until end December 2006, Fiji Museum , Thurston Gardens, Suva;
  • Multi-Ethnic Cultural Centre Saturday Summer Classes, starts Saturday, 9 December 2006 and runs until Saturday, 27 January 2007, Suva Multi-Ethnic Cultural Centre, 94 Waimanu Road, Suva;
  • Diploma in Rugby Coaching Course, from Monday, 11 December, to Friday, 15 December 2006, Fiji Institute of Technology, School of Maritime & Fisheries Studies, Laucala Bay, Suva;
  • Fiji Professionals President Cup 2006 Golf Tournament, Friday, 22 December, and Saturday, 23 December 2006, Fiji Golf Club, Vatuwaqa;
  • Cycling Summer Critirium, Sunday, 24 December 2006, starts 5.30pm, Vuya Road, Veiuto;
  • Oceania Hockey Qualifiers for Olympics, 2007 - time to be confirmed, Suva;
  • East Asia-Pacific Under 15 Cricket 8's tournament, 24 January to 29 January, 2007, Albert Park, Suva;
  • Art Display to coincide with the Double Dialogues conference, 4 to 10 July 2007, Suva;
  • Oceania Women's Hockey Qualifiers for 2008 Olympic Games, from 10 September 2007, Suva;
  • 18th Hobbie 16 World Championship, 10 to 20 October 2007, Suva & Pacific Harbour (venue to be confirmed);
  • Queen Victoria School's 100th Anniversary Celebrations, November 2007.
Recurring Events:
  • Masi Gallery – Contemporary masi costumes, including the wedding costume of Adi Litia Dugdale Mara, the daughter of Ratu Mara, display of bird paintings by William Belcher and exhibition for Westpac's 101st anniversary of services in Fiji, Fiji Museum, Suva;
  • Suva Orchid and Horticultural Group Meeting, from 5.30pm, every first Monday of the month, Wesley Church, Butt Street, Suva;
  • Stormy Monday Blues Night, Mondays, from 9pm, Golden Dragon Nightclub, Victoria Parade;
  • Latin Fitness Class, 6pm to 7pm, every Tuesdays, The Playhouse, Selbourne Street;
  • Pottery demonstrations, every Tuesday and Thursday, and daily every first week of the month, Fiji Museum;
  • Rasta Tuesday, from 9pm, Tuesdays, Golden Dragon Nightclub, Suva;
  • Stage Sevens, Wednesdays, 5.45pm to 7.30pm, Auditorium, FIT Arts, Culture & Design, Carpenter Street, Raiwai (Tickets at the door at F$3.00, students and scholars F$2.00);
  • Jazz at the Holiday Inn, every Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, 6pm to 10pm, Holiday Inn;
  • Rucksack Club Meeting, every second Wednesday of the month, from 6.45pm, St Andrew's Church Hall, Suva;
  • Alternate Rock, every Wednesdays, from 9pm, Golden Dragon Nightclub, Victoria Parade, Suva;
  • Socrates Café where people gather to discuss and debate the topic of the month, first Thursday of each month, 7pm to 8.30pm, IMDVD, Sports City Mall, Laucala Bay ();
  • Soul, funk, disco and classics DJ music, from 8pm, Fridays, Traps Lounge, Victoria Parade;
  • Velocity Cycling Ride, from 7am, every Saturday, leaves from The Roc, FNPF Dolphins Plaza;
  • SideStep, every last Saturday of the month, 9pm to close, Traps Upstairs Lounge, Victoria Parade;
  • Pacific arts in the sun : Family event, every Saturday, 7am to 11am, Holiday Inn; Arts Village Firewalking Show, starts 11am, every Saturday, Grandstand, Arts Village, Pacific Harbour;
  • The Roc Market, every third Sunday of the month, The Roc, Dolphins Plaza, Victoria Parade, Suva;
  • Wai Tui Cycles Ride, every Sundays, from 6am, start at Wai Tui Cycles, Garden City, Raiwai, Suva;
  • Sunday Church Services, 8am or 10.45am, Wesley Church, Butt Street;
  • Jazz by the Beach, Sundays, 1pm to 5pm, Pearl South Pacific, Pacific Harbour.
For accommodation for any events, please check out a two bedroom rental home with seaviews in Suva on links at the right hand side of this blog or contact telephone (679) 3396427, (679) 9921427 or e-mail gilbert@connect.com.fj directly. A 20% discount is offered for all bookings up to 31 March 2007. Those that wish to have their events included can contact me on the e-mail address provided above.

Some entertainment to check tonight

Suva's nightlife is abuzz with parties and all the build-up to Christmas and New Year. There are a lot of pubs, nightclubs and hotels to check out which cater to different tastes as far as music and cost of drinks is concerned. Some entertainment to check tonight include :
  • Jazz at the Holiday Inn, Victoria Parade, from 6pm to 10pm where reknown Fijian musician, Tom Mawi, plays jazz. Singers, Debbie Kanaimawi and Lee-Ann Ah Sam, perform there;
  • Retrospect with DJ Tora from 8pm till late at Traps Lounge, Victoria Parade. DJ Tora plays soul, funk, disco and classics;
  • O'Reillys Nightclub for the much younger generation with more upbeat music catering to that generation;
  • Karaoke Bar at Bourbon & Blues Nightclub if you want to test your vocals.

For those who want to party on the early hours, some of the nightclubs in the city now have licences to operate to the early hours. Check out these two : Traps and Birdland Nightclub.

12 December, 2006

Interim President reassures tourists of safety

The Interim President, Commodore Frank Bainimarama, yesterday thanked tourists that had visited at this time despite the bad publicity and asked them to inform their families and friends overseas that there is no threat to them to visit Fiji. "Please do not miss this opportunity to grace our shores and experience our very unique multicultural way of life", he said. Business is slowly returning after a week of low customer turnout and low sales, according to the Fiji Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber said that business is slowly picking up not only in Suva but the other parts of Fiji as well. Tappoos Suva store said that the flow of shoppers and the resulting sales in the past few days had been encouraging. Shops continue to advertise their sales for Christmas. Some of the bargains are worth checking out.

11 December, 2006

World Fijian Fellowship Conference

The World Fijian Fellowship Conference will be held from 12 to 17 December 2006 at the Suva Civic Centre. The morning sessions will be from 9am to 3pm while the evening classes will start at 7pm. Note from GV : For accommodation in a two bedroom rental home in Suva, check out links at the right hand side of this blog then e-mail us on gilbert@connect.com.fj or call telephone +679 3396427 or +679 9921427.

2007 World Netball Championships taken away from Fiji

The International Federation of Netball Associations (IFNA) withdrew the 2007 World Netball Championships from Fiji last Saturday. The Championships was to have been held in Suva, July 2007. The withdrawal was attributed to the military takeover of government last week. As a result of the withdrawal, Fiji is expected to lose around F$6 million in revenue that would have been gained from the Championships.

07 December, 2006

New Blog : Your Views on Fiji

I have set up a new blog where readers can post their comments/views on what has happened in Fiji and, more particularly, what can be done as we move forward. Anyone is welcome to post comments on the blog, http://viewsonfiji.blogspot.com/. Also check out our other blog, http://investinfiji.blogspot.com/. Links are provided at the right hand side of this blog.

Fancy Rubbish Art Exhibition

The ‘Fancy Rubbish’ Art Exhibition is open now until end December 2006 at the Fiji Museum, Thurston Gardens, Suva. The temporary exhibition features the work of local artists Kishore Lal and Boogie Gibbons, who make art from waste materials. The pieces which include coffee tables and candelabras which are available for purchase. Opening hours are :
  • Mondays to Thursdays to 4.30pm;
  • Fridays, 8am to 4pm;
  • Saturdays, 9.30am to 4.30pm;
  • Sundays, 1pm to 4.30pm.

Entry fees is F$7.00 per adult and F$5.00 per students. For more information, contact Vika Koro on telephones +679 3315944 or +679 9940539.

Multi-ethnic Cultural Centre Summer Classes

The Multi-Ethnic Cultural Centre Saturday Summer Classes will start Saturday, 9 December 2006, and runs until Saturday, 27 January 2007, at the Suva Multi-Ethnic Cultural Centre, 94 Waimanu Road, Suva. Classes will include :
  • Tabla, 8am to 10am;
  • Kathak 1, 10am to 12pm;
  • Vocal/Harmonium, 10am to 12pm;
  • Kathak 2, 12pm to 2pm;
  • Vocal/ Harmonium, 12pm to 2pm.

Learn traditional Indian musical instruments and singing. Fees are F$20.00 per student per programme. For more information, contact Saras or Dharmendra on telephone +679 3300050.

Nausori 7s on this weekend

The last tournament on the Fiji Rugby Union 2006 calendar, the Nausori 7s Rugby tournament, will be held this weekend at Ratu Cakobau Park, Nausori. Drive over the new Rewa bridge as you make your way to the park. Nausori has a potential of becoming another major city with developments coming up including the upgrade of the airport there.

Upcoming Activities, Events and Accommodation in Suva (Updated 7.12.06)

The following events are scheduled for Suva: One-off Events:
  • Alliance Francaise organised photo contest with theme, "Smiles of Fiji", display of the best photos from the contest, Friday, 24 November 2006, until Friday, 8 December 2006, Alliance Francaise, 14 McGregor Road, Suva;
  • Pacific Arts Alliance, School Holiday Arts Programmes, classes begin Monday, 27 November, and runs until Monday, 22 January, 2007, The Playhouse, Selbourne Street, Suva;
  • Swimming lessons, from 4 to 15 December 2006, Olympic Pool, Suva;
  • Tourism Training segments for Suva, 4 to 9 December 2006, at various venues in Suva;
  • Baseball Coaching Program for teens aged between 12 and 18 years, Tuesday, 5 December, to Friday, 15 December 2006, 9.30am to 12.30pm, Marist Brothers High School grounds, Flagstaff, Suva;
  • National Boxing Championships, 6 to 8 December 2006, New Town Hall, Suva;
  • Air Pacific Tourism Training Week, Exhibition of training products and services, Thursday, 7 December 2006, 10am to 5pm, Suva Civic Centre;
  • Sports Holiday Activities, classes run until Friday, 15 December 2006, Hyundai Fitness Centre, Laucala Bay, Suva;
  • Fancy Rubbish Art Exhibition, open until end December 2006, Fiji Museum , Thurston Gardens, Suva;
  • Fiji Table Tennis Association Open Tournament, 8 to 10 December 2006, China Club, Nasese, Suva;
  • Multi-Ethnic Cultural Centre Saturday Summer Classes, starts Saturday, 9 December 2006 and runs until Saturday, 27 January 2007, Suva Multi-Ethnic Cultural Centre, 94 Waimanu Road, Suva;
  • LTA Fiji Fun Cycle 2006, Sunday, 10 December 2006 starts 7am, from Post Fiji Stadium, Laucala Bay, Suva;
  • Diploma in Rugby Coaching Course, from Monday, 11 December, to Friday, 15 December 2006, Fiji Institute of Technology, School of Maritime & Fisheries Studies, Laucala Bay, Suva;
  • Red Wave XXXIII Art Exhibition to start from Tuesday, 12 December 2006, Oceania Centre for Arts and Culture, University of the South Pacific, Laucala Bay, Suva;
  • Cine Nite- ‘Our Happy Lives’, Tuesday, 13 December 2006, from 7.30pm, Alliance Française, 14 McGregor Road, Suva;
  • Fiji Rugby Union IRB backed International 7s Rugby Tournament, January 2007, date and venue to be confirmed;
  • Oceania Hockey Qualifiers for Olympics, 2007 - time to be confirmed, Suva;
  • East Asia-Pacific Under 15 Cricket 8's tournament, 24 January to 29 January, 2007, Albert Park, Suva;
  • Art Display to coincide with the Double Dialogues conference, 4 to 10 July 2007, Suva;
  • Oceania Women's Hockey Qualifiers for 2008 Olympic Games, from 10 September 2007, Suva;
  • 18th Hobbie 16 World Championship, 10 to 20 October 2007, Suva & Pacific Harbour (venue to be confirmed);
  • Queen Victoria School's 100th Anniversary Celebrations, November 2007.
Recurring Events:
  • Masi Gallery – Contemporary masi costumes, including the wedding costume of Adi Litia Dugdale Mara, the daughter of Ratu Mara, display of bird paintings by William Belcher and exhibition for Westpac's 101st anniversary of services in Fiji, Fiji Museum, Suva;
  • Suva Orchid and Horticultural Group Meeting, from 5.30pm, every first Monday of the month, Wesley Church, Butt Street, Suva;
  • Stormy Monday Blues Night, Mondays, from 9pm, Golden Dragon Nightclub, Victoria Parade;
  • Latin Fitness Class, 6pm to 7pm, every Tuesdays, The Playhouse, Selbourne Street;
  • Pottery demonstrations, every Tuesday and Thursday, and daily every first week of the month, Fiji Museum;
  • Rasta Tuesday, from 9pm, Tuesdays, Golden Dragon Nightclub, Suva;
  • Stage Sevens, Wednesdays, 5.45pm to 7.30pm, Auditorium, FIT Arts, Culture & Design, Carpenter Street, Raiwai (Tickets at the door at F$3.00, students and scholars F$2.00);
  • Jazz at the Holiday Inn, every Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, 6pm to 10pm, Holiday Inn;
  • Rucksack Club Meeting, every second Wednesday of the month, from 6.45pm, St Andrew's Church Hall, Suva;
  • Alternate Rock, every Wednesdays, from 9pm, Golden Dragon Nightclub, Victoria Parade, Suva;
  • Socrates Café where people gather to discuss and debate the topic of the month, first Thursday of each month, 7pm to 8.30pm, IMDVD, Sports City Mall, Laucala Bay ();
  • Soul, funk, disco and classics DJ music, from 8pm, Fridays, Traps Lounge, Victoria Parade;
  • Velocity Cycling Ride, from 7am, every Saturday, leaves from The Roc, FNPF Dolphins Plaza;
  • SideStep, every last Saturday of the month, 9pm to close, Traps Upstairs Lounge, Victoria Parade;
  • Pacific arts in the sun : Family event, every Saturday, 7am to 11am, Holiday Inn;
  • Arts Village Firewalking Show, starts 11am, every Saturday, Grandstand, Arts Village, Pacific Harbour;
  • The Roc Market, every third Sunday of the month, The Roc, Dolphins Plaza, Victoria Parade, Suva;
  • Wai Tui Cycles Ride, every Sundays, from 6am, start at Wai Tui Cycles, Garden City, Raiwai, Suva;
  • Sunday Church Services, 8am or 10.45am, Wesley Church, Butt Street;
  • Jazz by the Beach, Sundays, 1pm to 5pm, Pearl South Pacific, Pacific Harbour.
For accommodation for any events, please check out a two bedroom rental home with seaviews in Suva on links at the right hand side of this blog or contact telephone (679) 3396427, (679) 9921427 or e-mail gilbert@connect.com.fj directly. A 20% discount is offered for all bookings up to 31 March 2007. Those that wish to have their events included can contact me on the e-mail address provided above.

Pacific Sun's ATR42 to begin flights on 17 December 2006

Pacific Sun, the subsidiary of Air Pacific, will commence its domestic flights from Suva-Nadi and Nadi-Suva from 17 December 2006. Suva-Nadi and Nadi-Suva flights will operate daily in the morning to provide connection to Air Pacific flights to Sydney, Auckland and Tokyo and further connections for the Los Angeles, Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney evening flights. Regional flights will also start every Sunday morning from 17 December 2006 when the airline's ATR42 will depart 7.15am from Suva to Nadi and then to Port Vila, Vanuatu. For more details, call Pacific Sun on telephone +679 6720888.

Suva residents live through another one

The Fiji Military Forces took over government on Tuesday, 5 December 2006, 6pm, Fiji time, after ousting Laisenia Qarase's government. As reported, this would be the 4th coup after the two of 1987 and one of 2000. Suva residents have lived through all of them and now, as in the past experiences, continue to go on with their daily lives. People are going to work, drive around, play their favourite sports and sit and "talanoa" (tell stories) with their friends and family. Somehow Suva residents have become all too used to having a coup or could not care less anymore. We have lived through past ones, through the grace of God, and He will make us live through this one. All in all, we pray that our leaders this time, take us through to a better footing minus all corruption and greed. Over the next few days, this blog will continue to bring you updates on what is happening in and around Suva.

05 December, 2006

Art Display July 2007

An art display is being organised by some Fijian artists living abroad. The display will be on from around 4 to 10 July 2007 and will coincide with the Double Dialogues conference which will be held at the University of the South Pacific, Laucala Bay, Suva. The conference will attract academics and artists from all over the world. The theme for the conference is 'Art and Lies'. The four artists exhibiting have international exhibition experience (Suva, Auckland, New York, San Francisco, Melbourne) and include :
  • Ema Tavola (Manukau, New Zealand);
  • Leilani Kake (Manukau, New Zealand);
  • Torika Bolatagici (Melbourne, Australia); and
  • Salote Tawale (Melbourne, Australia).

The 4 artists work across a range of mediums (painting, photography, sculpture/installation, video).

For more information, contact Torika Bolatagici on e-mail torika@netspace.net.au.

Note from GV : For accommodation, check out our two bedroom rental home through links at the right hand side of this blog and e-mail us on gilbert@connect.com.fj or call telephones +679 3396427 or +679 9921427.

Baseball coaching clinic for 12 to 18 year olds

A baseball coaching program for teens aged between 12 and 18 years will be held from 5 to 15 December 2006, 9.30am to 12.30pm, Marist Brothers High School grounds. Contact Inoke on telephone +679 9335068 for more details.

Business continues as usual in Suva

Business continues as usual in Suva despite developments on the political front. Businesses in the capital city are to remain open according to the Suva Retailers Association. Some of the businesses interviewed said that they will continue to operate as normal, with added security. These include Telecom Fiji Limited, McDonalds, Carpenters Fiji Limited and Flour Mills of Fiji Limited. Transport continues to run and people are going to work.

Lami to start reclamation project

The reclamation of Lami town's foreshore is to start as early as next year. The Lami Town Council is looking at concept plans before it embarks on securing funds for the project. The proposed reclamation of the 42 acre area on the foreshore is estimated to cost about F$6 million. Provisions for shopping malls, park reserve, mariners, buildings for light commercial use together with a hotel and convention centre are part of the project.

03 December, 2006

LTA Fiji Fun Cycle 2006

The LTA Fiji Fun Cycle 2006 will be held on Sunday, 10 December 2006. It starts from the Post Fiji Stadium carpark at 8am. Registration is at 7am. Entry fee is F$5.00 per person for children under 13 and F$10.00 per person for adults. For the fee, you get a free LTA Fiji Fun Cycle t-shirt, a special Aquasafe Drink Bottle and a Velocity bandana. Take your bike, helmet and your whole family to the Fun Cycle event. Proceeds from the event will go to the National Diabetes Centre.

Smiles of Fiji

If there is one thing that Fiji is famous for, it's the beautiful smiles of its people. The annual photo contest organised by the Alliance Francaise of Suva has ended with the winners announced. "The contest was organised because we thought it would be good to show an open, pleasant and opportunistic view of Fiji", said Eric Galmard of the Alliance Francaise. Mr Galmard said the photo contest has been held for the past four years and was a way for the communities of Fiji coming together. Training workshops were held to help people who did not have much experience in photography. Mr Galmard said that the quantity and quality of photos have improved from last year. Winners in the Amateur Category were :
  • Nicole McClenanahan's Bula Rain, 1st place;
  • Samu Savou's Bubbly Smile, 2nd place;
  • Mark Tedeschi's Togetherness, 3rd place.

In the Professional Category, the winners were :

  • Garret Garm's Fun in the Sand, 1st place;
  • Bill Campbell's Love is in the Air, 2nd place;
  • Isoa Tokalauvere's Exquisite, 3rd place.

To view these photos and more that were sent in for the competition, visit the Alliance Francaise at 14 McGregor Road, Suva or e-mail allifra@connect.com.fj.

Note from GV : For self-catering accommodation in Suva, check out our two bedroom rental home through links at the right hand side of this blog. The home is equipped with a Personal Computer and Broadband Internet access for guests' use. To contact us, e-mail gilbert@connect.com.fj or call +679 3396427.

Levuka Parish wins Bishop Foley Cup

Sacred Heart Parish from Levuka, Ovalau, won the Bishop Foley Cup after defeating Lami Parish 14-10 at the Suva Grammar School Grounds, Veiuto, Suva. The Bishop Foley tournament was put on again after being a non-feature for the last 20 years. The tournament has an objective of enabling Catholic communities in Fiji to get-together and build or renew their friendships.

02 December, 2006

Diploma in Rugby Coaching Course

A one week course towards a Diploma in Rugby Coaching will be held at the Fiji Institute of Technology, School of Maritime & Fisheries Studies, from Monday, 11 December, to Friday, 15 December 2006. Course content will include :
  • Player Contract;
  • Sports Psychology;
  • Media & Public Relations;
  • Special Topics

Lecturers and tutors will include Frank Boivert, Alifereti Cawanibuka, George Fonmoa, Albert Miller, Iosefo Bele Tabalala, first aid and sports nutritionist specialists.

The fee for the one-week course is F$260.00. For further details contact, Captain Tevita Robanakadavu on telephone +679 3315682 or +679 9968932 or Taitusi Bunawa on +679 3315979.

Note from GV : For accommodation in Suva, check out our two bedroom rental home with seaviews through links at the right hand side of this blog. The home is equipped with a Personal Computer and Broadband Internet access useful for those visiting Suva for business or to attending training courses. To contact us, e-mail gilbert@connect.com.fj or call +679 3396427.

Red Wave XXXIII Art Exhibition

The Oceania Centre for Arts and Culture, University of the South Pacific, presents the Red Wave XXXIII Art Exhibition from Tuesday, 5 December 2006, 5.30pm, at the Oceania Centre, USP. The exhibitions continues daily from 10am to 4pm from Wednesday, 6 December 2006 to Friday, 8 December 2006.

01 December, 2006

Upcoming Activities, Events and Accommodation in Suva (Updated 1.12.06)

The following events are scheduled for Suva: One-off Events:
  • Alliance Francaise organised photo contest with theme, "Smiles of Fiji", display of the best photos from the contest, Friday, 24 November 2006, Alliance Francaise, 14 McGregor Road, Suva;
  • Pacific Arts Alliance, School Holiday Arts Programmes, classes begin Monday, 27 November, and runs until Monday, 22 January, 2007, The Playhouse, Selbourne Street, Suva;
  • ‘Lire en Fête’ Reading Festival, Thursday, 30 November 2006, from 7pm, Alliance Française, 14 McGregor Road;
  • Annual Sukuna Bowl Competition between the Fiji Military Forces and the Fiji Police Force, Friday, 1 December 2006, from 9am, at the Post Fiji Stadium, Laucala Bay, Suva;
  • Bishop Foley Rugby Tournament, 1 to 2 December 2006, from 9am, Suva Grammar School grounds, Veiuto, Suva;
  • Fiji Performing Rights Association Limited 2006 Young Musso's Acclaim - Fiji Secondary Schools Original Song Competition, Friday, 1 December 2006, from 7pm, at the Suva Civic Centre;
  • Fiji Golf Club Stableford Event, Saturday, 2 December 2006, from 7.50am, at the Fiji Golf Club, Vatuwaqa;
  • Suva Cricket weekly league competition, Saturday, 2 December 2006, from 9.30am, at Albert Park;
  • Suva Touch Rugby games, Saturday, 2 December 2006, from 11am, Veiuto Grounds;
  • Fiji Rugby Union Annual Awards Night, Saturday, 2 December 2006, Tattersalls Leisure Centre, Laucala Bay, Suva;
  • Tosh Meets Marley World Tour 2006 Performance, Monday, 4 December 2006, FMF Dome, Laucala Bay, Suva;
  • Swimming lessons, from 4 to 15 December 2006, Olympic Pool, Suva;
  • Tourism Training segments for Suva, 4 to 9 December 2006, at various venues in Suva;
  • Baseball Coaching Program for teens aged between 12 and 18 years, Tuesday, 5 December, to Friday, 15 December 2006, 9.30am to 12.30pm, Marist Brothers High School grounds, Flagstaff, Suva;
  • Red Wave XXXIII Art Exhibition opens Tuesday, 5 December 2006, 5.30pm, Oceania Centre for Arts and Culture, University of the South Pacific, Laucala Bay, Suva;
  • Red Wave XXXIII Art Exhibition continues daily, Wednesday, 6 December, to Friday, 8 December 2006, from 10am to 4pm, Oceania Centre for Arts and Culture, University of the South Pacific, Laucala Bay, Suva;
  • Public Lecture - Topic : "A Tikina Model for Socioeconomic Growth Locally and Nationally", Speaker : Dr Ropate Qalo, Tuesday, 5 December 2006, from 7.15pm, Marine Lecture Theatre, Lower Campus, University of the South Pacific, Laucala Bay, Suva;
  • Fiji School of Medicine Graduation Ceremony, Wednesday, 6 December 2006, from 9am, Tattersall Leisure Centre (former National Gymnasium), Laucala Bay, Suva;
  • National Boxing Championships, 6 to 8 December 2006, New Town Hall, Suva;
  • Air Pacific Tourism Training Week, Exhibition of training products and services, Thursday, 7 December 2006, 10am to 5pm, Suva Civic Centre;
  • Fiji Table Tennis Association Open Tournament, 8 to 10 December 2006, China Club, Nasese, Suva;
  • LTA Fiji Fun Cycle 2006, Sunday, 10 December 2006 starts 7am, from Post Fiji Stadium, Laucala Bay, Suva;
  • Diploma in Rugby Coaching Course, from Monday, 11 December, to Friday, 15 December 2006, Fiji Institute of Technology, School of Maritime & Fisheries Studies, Laucala Bay, Suva;
  • Fiji Rugby Union IRB backed International 7s Rugby Tournament, January 2007, date and venue to be confirmed;
  • Oceania Hockey Qualifiers for Olympics, 2007 - time to be confirmed, Suva;
  • East Asia-Pacific Under 15 Cricket 8's tournament, 24 January to 29 January, 2007, Albert Park, Suva;
  • Art Display to coincide with the Double Dialogues conference, 4 to 10 July 2007, Suva;
  • World Netball Championships, 10 to 21 July 2007, Suva;
  • Oceania Women's Hockey Qualifiers for 2008 Olympic Games, from 10 September 2007, Suva;
  • 18th Hobbie 16 World Championship, 10 to 20 October 2007, Suva & Pacific Harbour (venue to be confirmed);
  • Queen Victoria School's 100th Anniversary Celebrations, November 2007.
Recurring Events:
  • Masi Gallery – Contemporary masi costumes, including the wedding costume of Adi Litia Dugdale Mara, the daughter of Ratu Mara, display of bird paintings by William Belcher and exhibition for Westpac's 101st anniversary of services in Fiji, Fiji Museum, Suva;
  • Suva Orchid and Horticultural Group Meeting, from 5.30pm, every first Monday of the month, Wesley Church, Butt Street, Suva;
  • Stormy Monday Blues Night, Mondays, from 9pm, Golden Dragon Nightclub, Victoria Parade;
  • Latin Fitness Class, 6pm to 7pm, every Tuesdays, The Playhouse, Selbourne Street;
  • Pottery demonstrations, every Tuesday and Thursday, and daily every first week of the month, Fiji Museum;
  • Rasta Tuesday, from 9pm, Tuesdays, Golden Dragon Nightclub, Suva;
  • Stage Sevens, Wednesdays, 5.45pm to 7.30pm, Auditorium, FIT Arts, Culture & Design, Carpenter Street, Raiwai (Tickets at the door at F$3.00, students and scholars F$2.00);
  • Jazz at the Holiday Inn, every Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, 6pm to 10pm, Holiday Inn;
  • Rucksack Club Meeting, every second Wednesday of the month, from 6.45pm, St Andrew's Church Hall, Suva;
  • Alternate Rock, every Wednesdays, from 9pm, Golden Dragon Nightclub, Victoria Parade, Suva;
  • Socrates Café where people gather to discuss and debate the topic of the month, first Thursday of each month, 7pm to 8.30pm, IMDVD, Sports City Mall, Laucala Bay (Topic this month : 'Your Personality and Character: Born or Developed?');
  • Soul, funk, disco and classics DJ music, from 8pm, Fridays, Traps Lounge, Victoria Parade;
  • Velocity Cycling Ride, from 7am, every Saturday, leaves from The Roc, FNPF Dolphins Plaza;
  • SideStep, every last Saturday of the month, 9pm to close, Traps Upstairs Lounge, Victoria Parade;
  • Pacific arts in the sun : Family event, every Saturday, 7am to 11am, Holiday Inn;
  • Arts Village Firewalking Show, starts 11am, every Saturday, Grandstand, Arts Village, Pacific Harbour;
  • The Roc Market, every third Sunday of the month, The Roc, Dolphins Plaza, Victoria Parade, Suva;
  • Wai Tui Cycles Ride, every Sundays, from 6am, start at Wai Tui Cycles, Garden City, Raiwai, Suva;
  • Sunday Church Services, 8am or 10.45am, Wesley Church, Butt Street;
  • Jazz by the Beach, Sundays, 1pm to 5pm, Pearl South Pacific, Pacific Harbour.
For accommodation for any events, please check out a two bedroom rental home with seaviews in Suva on links at the right hand side of this blog or contact telephone (679) 3396427, (679) 9921427 or e-mail gilbert@connect.com.fj directly. A 20% discount is offered for all bookings up to 31 March 2007. Those that wish to have their events included can contact me on the e-mail address provided above.

An end will soon be here

Many ordinary residents of Fiji are speaking up and asking both the Prime Minister and the Commander of the Fiji Military Forces to resolve their differences. As leaders they owe it to the people of this country to be able to solve their differences in an amicable way. The ordinary citizens are beginning to feel the pinch from what is going on: people are out of jobs; businesses are beginning to feel the negative impact; while foreclosures will rise as interest rates hikes and the loss of jobs and business take their toll. Let us pray and hope that things will be resolved as we just cannot afford the alternative. Let us look on the brighter side as we focus on putting this country on a better footing for our children and our children's children. God bless Fiji!

A host of sporting tournaments continues over the weekend

A host of sporting tournaments continues over the weekend in Suva. Some are :
  • a Stableford event, from 7.50am, at the Fiji Golf Club, Vatuwaqa;
  • the Bishop Foley Rugby competition, Suva Grammar School grounds, Veiuto (Also held on Friday, 1 December 2006, from 9am);
  • the Suva Cricket weekly league competition, from 9.30am, at Albert Park;
  • Suva Touch Rugby games, from 11am, Veiuto Grounds.

Go down and watch any of these tournaments.

Sukuna Bowl program

The Sukuna Bowl competition will be on today, Friday, 1 December 2006, at the Post Fiji Stadium, Laucala Bay, Suva. The program for the day is as follows :
  • 9am to 12pm, Wives Netball at the Post Fiji Stadium carpark;
  • 11.30am, Soccer competition;
  • 1.30pm, Over-40 Rugby competition;
  • 3pm, Tug-of-war;
  • 3.30pm, March;
  • 4pm, Army vs Police Rugby match.