All photos by Omar Chatriwala
The fifth annual Qatar International Food Festival (QIFF) at the Museum of Islamic Art park opened last night to a large crowd amid high hopes from officials that it would be the “biggest and best” edition yet.
In terms of offerings, there are 55 food stalls, several kiosks and a “Qatar/Brazil Year of Culture” zone, which serves cuisine from those countries.
Notably, cash is accepted at each booth this year, as organizers have done away with the voucher system. In previous years, visitors had to queue in long lines to purchase tickets before buy food from restaurant booths. This caused some confusion about what to do with leftover vouchers.
There is also a renewed emphasis on entertainment this year. Last night, Brazilian and Korean bands kicked off the performances, in an opening ceremony attended by the Minister of Culture and the heads of the Qatar Tourism Authority and Qatar Airways.
Residents expressed satisfaction with the food offerings and organization of the event last night, though there was some confusion over parking.
There is no parking onsite. Visitors to the festival must park at one of two lots near the MIA (Lot A at the Ministry of Interior building on the Corniche, and Lot B by Sharq Village), and take a shuttle to the venue.
The festival will be open from 2pm to 11pm tonight; and from 2pm to 10pm on Saturday and Sunday. Shuttles begin operating half an hour before the festival opens for the day.
Are you planning to go to QIFF this year? Thoughts?