4 Reasons You Ought to Buy a Holiday Home in Goa

To rent or not to rent? Rashmi argues in favour of buying one.

It’s vacay time and you want to hit your favourite destination—Goa. You don’t want to stay at a five star hotel, and even if you did, any longer than a week means a black hole where a wallet should be. You’re not the compromising type either—quality matters. So you’re thinking of a nice little villa in a scenic spot. Next hurdle: own it or rent it? How about owning a holiday home which you can rent out when you aren’t around? Why would I want to do that, you ask. Probably because…

#1: It means a great return on investment

You’re wondering if it’s worth the investment. Yeah, I’m chilling on Goa’s beaches often, but not every other week or month. If I’m not really there to look after it, or check if tenants aren’t breaking rules, what’s the point?  But here’s the thing—you don’t have to be there. There are many trustworthy organisations that would do this for you for a small fee. And in the long run, it’s a great return on investment. Goa’s popularity as a holiday destination is indisputable. It’s easy to plan a trip on a small budget, which means loads of people will be planning a trip. Trip Advisor lets you put up ads for renting out your property. Goa Rooms, Goa Holiday Homes, Travel Mob and Roomorama are other great websites worth checking out.

 

A lovely villa in Nagoa worth checking out

A lovely villa in Nagoa worth checking out

#2: Appreciating Value

Values appreciating definitely add returns to investment. Land values appreciating would also leave their impact on buying v/s renting decisions. Values appreciating means homes are expensive to buy. Renting would seem a much better option in this situation. Now here’s your leverage: own a home while prices are down. In addition to its value appreciating over time, there would be a line of potential tenants wanting to rent your home while you’re away.

A Luxury Villa with a River View in Kadamba Plateau

A Luxury Villa with a River View in Kadamba Plateau

#3: Inheritance

The most obvious, yet the least easily considered factor. Having property as an asset is a wonderful thing to add to your will. There are the obvious reasons mentioned above, and you’ll never have to spend your post-retirement time worrying about what to entrust to your family that would be of great value to them.

Candolim's the place to go for beautiful holiday homes

Candolim’s the place to go for beautiful holiday homes

#4: You’d Want to Plan the Ultimate Get-together

Now here’s one purely fun situation where buying a home clearly trumps renting one. Think nights of shenanigans with friends—pool parties, booze, loud music, dancing into the wee hours of the morning. Face it, that’s why you’re looking for a home in the first place. Hosting parties at leisure, going by your rules is mainly possible when you buy a home. Sure, so does renting, but don’t forget it comes with its own shackles. You don’t want to be evicted by a grumpy landlord, ever. Then there’s the more sober among you looking for some family time. Bring the whole jing-bang lot to a beautiful villa tucked in a quiet spot. It’s perfect for unwinding with your close ones. And there’s no limit on how long you’d want to stay.

And Anjuna Means Shenanigans

And Anjuna Means Shenanigans

Half-convinced? That’s good, ‘cos we’ve only won half the battle. Goa’s property laws are a tad bit unique—they differ from the property laws of other Indian states.  The old Portuguese laws they were based on were never changed, and title clearance requires contacting and approaching the right people who’d take you through all the legalities and paperwork. Don’t fret though—we’ve got a neat compilation of Q&As on our site on what you should know before taking the plunge.

What? Goa’s not your favourite destination? Better look elsewhere then.  

Mural Painting Gets a Makeover

Audrey Bounaix ponders on the evolution of the art form to its contemporary meaning

 

When one speaks of the ancient tradition of South Indian mural painting, one recalls the majestic murals adorning temple walls. But what about its more contemporary adaptation? The works of famed Modernist A. Ramachandran immediately come to mind. Born in 1935 in Kerala, he wrote his doctoral thesis on Kerala Mural Painting between 1961 and 1964. His paintings—besides showcasing a strong command over line, colour and form and creating an exciting visual drama—invoke the traditional mural paintings of Kerala in their scale. Ramachandran’s famous 1986 work titled Yayati revisited a tale from the Mahabharata and exploited the monumentality of the canvas to narrate this epic tale. Moving into the present, artist Manikandan Punnakkal takes this rich heritage forward with his reinterpretation of mural painting. His innovation lies in rendering two dimensional paintings in plaster, which creates a vibrant effect of light and shade.

My own encounter with Kerala’s heritage was not too long ago. When I visited Kerala for the first time in July 2011 with a couple of friends, I was struck by many things – primarily, the architecture with dramatic roof shapes that bore no comparison with other Indian regions, and secondly, the variety of food my friends and I could eat after three weeks of a Tamil vegetarian regime based on thali meals. In Cochin, we visited the Mattancheri palace built for the Raja of Cochin around 1555. Over there, I stumbled upon its mural paintings—48 earth tone paintings covering the king’s chamber greeted me warmly. The frieze illustrated the epic of the Ramayana. Though a common theme in Hindu temples, here it was painted, rather than carved. The extraordinary detail in these paintings bore a stark difference to those of the Rajasthani and Gujarati schools.

Detail of the Ramayana frieze, Mattancheri palace in Cochin, mid-16th century. Rama and Lakshmana on the battlefield. Source: http://world-citizen-trail.net/a-journey-through-a-palimpsest-part-i-dutch-palace-mattancherry-kerala/

Detail of the Ramayana frieze, Mattancheri palace in Cochin, mid-16th century. Rama and Lakshmana on the battlefield.
Source: http://world-citizen-trail.net/a-journey-through-a-palimpsest-part-i-dutch-palace-mattancherry-kerala/

This 16th century work is part of a greater tradition of mural paintings in Kerala. The earliest painting, found in Tiruandikkara (now in Tamil Nadu) is dated to the late 8th-9th century and already shows its attachment to Hindu themes. Royal patronage encouraged this art form in ancient temples, churches and palaces of the region, and these frescoes illustrated the ethereal world of divinities. The specificity of the wall preparation and the use of natural pigments are now being revived by a new genre of artists actively involved in researching and teaching mural art whose reference period corresponds with the Mattancheri palace development from the 16th – 19th centuries.

Indeed, the expressiveness of the face reached in modern paintings should classify them among the finest works in South Asia. They strictly followed sacred texts such as the Puranas and technical ones like the Silparatna written in the 16th century, whose iconographic prescriptions are still in use by practitioners nowadays. According to the tradition, painters should refer to the panchavarna principle by exclusively using five colours -white, yellow, red, green and black which are specific for each divinity. Traditional paintings are sacred in two ways: in their representation of deities and their placement in the inner chambers of the temple. The sacredness of the deity is transposed onto these paintings, lending the two dimensional deities as much spiritual power as the main murti, or  idol.

A stunning 4’ x 4’ acrylic on canvas of Nataraja by Manikandan Punnakkal, available on StoryLTD Source: https://www.storyltd.com/ItemV2.aspx?iid=39918

A stunning 4’ x 4’ acrylic on canvas of Nataraja by Manikandan Punnakkal, available on StoryLTD
Source: https://www.storyltd.com/ItemV2.aspx?iid=39918

But Indian Contemporary muralists do not stick to the limited palette imposed by tradition. Manikandan Punnakkal, now popular for his mural paintings, adds blue backgrounds to some of his compositions, giving them a touch of sophistication. His central gilded forms are as tantalising as jewellery. Apart from his cool-toned nuances, Punnakkal chooses to get rid of restrictions imposed by the fresco format. He opts for a large canvas size—a support which is more appropriate than frescoes to make a series of voluptuous musicians. He chooses to focus on a central figure, unlike the numerous figures that crowd traditional frescoes. What’s undeniable and evident in its closeness to tradition, is his preference for popular icons such as Ganesha and gopis playing various instruments.

Though a peripheral part of folklore, some of Punnakkal’s characters are in the midst of the narrative. Available on StoryLTD Source: https://www.storyltd.com/ItemV2.aspx?iid=39925

Though a peripheral part of folklore, some of Punnakkal’s characters are in the midst of the narrative. Available on StoryLTD
Source: https://www.storyltd.com/ItemV2.aspx?iid=39925

Lord Ganesha is rendered in curvilinear, fluid lines and is seen here with his vahana—the mouse. Available on StoryLTD Source: https://www.storyltd.com/ItemV2.aspx?iid=39927

Lord Ganesha is rendered in curvilinear, fluid lines and is seen here with his vahana—the mouse. Available on StoryLTD
Source: https://www.storyltd.com/ItemV2.aspx?iid=39927

Both A. Ramachandran and Manikandan Punnakkal have adapted traditional Kerala mural paintings to their style, and they sure know how to appeal to their audiences! Besides these works which are a part of StoryLTD’s “Kerala Lyricism”collection, Punnakkal has accomplished much more: he undertook the giant task of painting 80 murals at the Vaikom Mahadeva temple in Kerala—proof to the artist’s talent and perseverance. Punnakkal’s isolated figures in these paintings actually speak to me more than my encounter with those mural paintings from Cochin did. Indeed, it is the lone figure that draws our attention, the one we attach ourselves to and identify with.

Punnakkal’s women tread a thin line between spirituality and sensuality. Available on StoryLTD Source: https://www.storyltd.com/ItemV2.aspx?iid=39921

Punnakkal’s women tread a thin line between spirituality and sensuality. Available on StoryLTD
Source: https://www.storyltd.com/ItemV2.aspx?iid=39921

FRIEZE.STOP.LOOK

Kanika Pruthi of Saffronart talks of her favorites from the recently held Frieze Art Fair in NYC

The past weekend witnessed the culmination of the much anticipated and copiously attended Frieze Art Fair in New York City. The city hosted eleven art fairs and related events in the month of may-turning it into a connoisseur’s delight. The Frieze Art Fair was held at the scenic Randall’s Island. The pristine white tents and spacious booths meandered between the green habitats of the water facing landscape, presenting the attendees with art from all over the world. Much has been said and written about Frieze-a sure sign of the fair’s standing in the international art calendar. Here are just a few of the highlights that not only caught my eye but also received attention from critics and art aficionados alike.

Frieze Projects features artist commissioned works that are conceptualized and realized for Frieze and is curated by Cecilia Alemani. This year Allen Rupersberg’s ‘Al’s Grand Hotel’ received noted acclaim. This project took off from a prior venture from 1971 where the artist turned a two storey house into a hotel and performance space. This year he recreated the legendary project inside Frieze in collaboration with Los Angeles project space Public Fiction. The entrance to the extended booth features a swanky lobby and one is greeted at the bar and welcome desk where reservations can be made for a room starting at $350. Rupersberg has designed a set of rooms that include one designed as a bridal suite featuring the typical frills- flowers scattered on the bed and a welcome present to greet you.

Another interesting project that received much fanfare this year is artist Marie Lorenz’s Tide and Current Taxi. Since 2005 the artist has ‘performed’ this project every summer.  She has herself built a compact rowboat which is powered by the artist and other participants’ efforts, as the group rows together while they explore the waters around Randall’s Island. Working out of a wooden shed that acts like a dispatch’s spot, visitors can reserve a spot to be part of this project. There is also live streaming which allows people to watch the rides in progress.

Frieze’s Frame section allows galleries that were established fewer than eight years ago to display artists at the Fair. Based on a solo –presentation format, there were some noteworthy entrants this year. Ariel Reichman’s work pleasantly caught my attention. The artist has constructed personal garden inside the white interiors that serve as PSM gallery’s booth. Placed in this oasis are found objects like a stuffed soft toy and a bird sculpture.

Finally, Frieze Talks featured interesting conversations. My favorite was the talk between David Remnick, a writer and editor at The New Yorker and Nadya Tolokonnikova and Masha Alekhina of the Pussy Riot. They talked about their art collective Pussy Riot, their feminist leanings and the recently launched venture- Zona Prava, an NGO advocating for prison reform. For those who missed it, don’t despair.

Until next year!

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