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ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY OVERVIEW

The entertainment Industry in Georgia can be divided into four main categories: gambling, cultural entertainment, active entertainment, gastronomy & wine tourism. The main entertainment destinations are Tbilisi and Batumi, but several other locations throughout the country offer various entertainment activities.

The government is actively supporting the development of the gambling industry in the county, which gives Georgia a competitive advantage in the region. The gambling industry accounts for about 70% of the entertainment industry’s total turnover, which equalled 1.2 billion GEL in 2013. Several international hotel brands are going to open casinos during the next three years.

Georgia – country of ancient culture – offers visitors a wide variety of museums and theatres, concentrated mainly in Tbilisi (Georgian National Museum, Ethnographic Museum, Tbilisi Concert Hall, Rustaveli and Marjanishvili Theatres). The main cultural attractions in Batumi include Ilia Chavchavadze State Drama Theatre and the recently opened Art and Music Centre of Batumi. The Opera House of Kutaisi and the Lado Meskhishvili Drama Theatre are important cultural destinations in Kutaisi.

The only cinema operator in the county is the Georgian company Rustaveli Cinema JSC, which manages three cinemas (Rustaveli and Amirani in Tbilisi and Apolo in Batumi) and plans to expand further in 2015 by opening two new movie theatres in modern shopping centres in Tbilisi  totalling  15  screens.

During the next two years several new projects will be completed around the country. The Natanebi Concert Hall, Tbilisi Fine Art Museum and the refurbishment of the Tbilisi Opera house are the major planned projects.

The Government of Georgia is actively seeking to hold international sports tournaments in the country and some of them are already planned, such as The Youth Olympic Games 2015 and the UEFA Super Cup 2015. The country’s main stadiums and sports complexes are concentrated in the capital Tbilisi (Boris Paichadze Tbilisi Dinamo Arena, Mikheil Meskhi Stadium and Tbilisi Sports Palace) which will see the development of new sport facilities, such as the new rugby stadium and a new tennis complex. A new football stadium in Batumi and a rugby stadium in Kutaisi were recently announced.

The water entertainment industry (Aqua Park and swimming pools) is actively developing in Georgia. The recently opened Gino Paradise and the Euro Park are main players in the country. Completion of a new swimming pool for the Youth Olympic Games 2015 is planned next year. Health and well-being becomes more popular in Georgia, especially in Tbilisi. Aspria Fitness is actively expanding its chain.

The major amusement parks in Georgia are Tsitsinatela and Mtatsminda Park. The country also offers three botanical gardens (Tbilisi, Kutaisi and Batumi), two zoos (Tbilisi and Batumi) and several recreation parks. The relocation/expansion of the Tbilisi Zoo and renovation of Park Mziuri are the major planned projects in the near future.

The three main winter resorts – Bakuriani, Gudauri and Mestia – include 40 ski runs with a total length of 81 km. From the 2014-2015 winter season artificial snow machines have been installed in Gudauri and Bakuriani. This will significantly help to increase occupancy of Georgia’s winter resorts compared with the previous year. The Government of Georgia is actively promoting the development of the new ski runs on the mountain Tetnuldi in Svaneti and the territory of Goderdzi Pass on the border of Adjara and Samtskhe –Javakheti regions.

The restaurant market is the most developed sector of the Gastronomic industry in Georgia. The Modern Café-Bars and international cuisine market is growing fast, mainly in major tourism destinations – Tbilisi and Batumi. Night clubs are concentrated mainly in Tbilisi and Batumi.

Georgia is one of the oldest wine producing countries in the world. Up to 500 indigenous grape varieties are still cultivated in Georgia. UNESCO added the ancient traditional Georgian winemaking method using the Kvevri clay jars to the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage Lists. Kakheti – the main wine producing region of Georgia – is becoming more and more attractive for international visitors. Several recently developed high class hotels offer customer wine tours and the sector has further potential for development.