Tourism Breaking News

Radisson Blu unveils ‘The Art Of Weddings’ across India

Radisson Blu launches ‘The Art of Weddings’, a campaign created exclusively for the India market. Building on the brand’s global ‘Something Blu, A Wedding of a Kind’ concept, the initiative will run across all of India’s 34 Radisson Blu hotels. ‘The Art of Weddings’ will roll out in the form of a two-day lavish experiential ‘Wedding Fair’ at Radisson Blu Hotel New Delhi Paschim Vihar on August 25 and 26 and Radisson Blu Hotel Indore on September 2 and 3. Aimed at establishing the upper-upscale brand as the venue of choice for weddings and bridal related events, ‘The Art of Weddings’ is targeted at new age Indian couples and brings together the finest names in wedding services for a truly elegant, stylish and sophisticated wedding experience. Special privileges such as food and beverage discounts and a bonus of 25,000 Club CarlsonSM Gold Points, will be extended to all wedding bookings made at Radisson Blu hotels across India during the campaign period. Partnering with the campaign are – India’s finest couture designer, Payal Singhal who will present ‘The Azure Collection’, an exclusive line designed for Radisson Blu; renowned celebrity chef from Radisson Blu, Rakesh Sethi and his specially curated signature dishes; Ramit Batra, acclaimed destination wedding photographer and storyteller, who ties together vibrant and colorful memories of weddings through his photography; Puneet Gupta and his fashionable, bespoke wedding invitation designs; Jewels D’Allure that will bring together personalized, high-end jewelry and Eclairs Cakes; a specialist in designer wedding cakes. Leading make-up artist Kangana Kochhar will also participate in the New Delhi Fair to help would-be brides look their best on their special day. Bespoke wedding packages include Silver and Gold Tier options …

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ITDC records Rs.109.60 cr turnover in Q1 2017-18

India Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC) has performed remarkably in the first quarter of the current financial year 2017-18. The total turnover in quarter ending June 2017 increased to Rs.109.60 cr as compared to Rs. Rs. 91.42 cr in the corresponding quarter last year. The PSU registered Net Profit Before Tax (PBT) at Rs. 25.19 cr as compared to Rs. 14.30 cr in the corresponding quarter last financial year i.e. 2016-17, which is an increase of 76.15% from last year. The details were announced at the Board of Directors’ meeting of the company held on August 14th, 2017 at The Ashok, New Delhi.

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Indonesia’s 6th largest tourist arrival source market is India

The latest data from January to May 2017 shows an increase of 20.72 per cent over the same period last year, with 183,558 Indian visits to Indonesia. India has now become the sixth largest source market with this growth displacing South Korea. Speaking about the new development, Vinsensius Jemadu, Director for Asia Pacific Tourism Promotions, Ministry of Tourism, Indonesia said, “India with the rise in aspiring middle class travellers and robust economic growth has become a potential contributor towards inbound tourism to Indonesia and Bali in particular. In Bali, the total number of India arrivals has increased over 35 per cent every year in the past six years. We are hopeful Indians will equally value Badung as their preferred destination in Indonesia.”

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PATA India Chapter launches upgraded website

PATA India Chapter has launched an upgraded website www.pataindia.org packed with dynamic features and graphics. The website was launched at the office of Ministry of Tourism by Joint Secretary Suman Billa in the presence of all Executive Committee members following the 235th EC meeting of PATA India. A presentation was given by Jatinder Taneja, Hon. Secretary, PATA India Chapter, where he informed that the website is CMS-based compatible with desktops, smartphones and tablets such as iPad, etc. He said, the website data is well aligned and informative with member information, and event catalogue. The upgraded website has a well-structured homepage with recent and upcoming ‘Events’ section. Ministry of Tourism website is hyperlinked on the homepage for relevant updates. The updated homepage, loaded with attractive graphics, will soon hyperlink member website to add value to membership and hasa new ‘Members’ section with brief profile

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Vinay Dube joins Jet Airways as Chief Executive Officer

Vinay Dube  joins Jet Airways as its Chief Executive Officer after receipt of all requisite Government and regulatory approvals. Dube’s appointment was approved by the Jet Airways Board of Directors at their last meeting held on May 30, 2017. An accomplished industry leader and an aviation professional with close to three decades of global business experience, Dube has an established track record of leadership and business expansion at large, complex, multi-national organisations including varied roles at Delta Airlines Inc., Sabre, Inc., and American Airlines in the USA, Europe and Asia. In his last role as SVP-Asia Pacific for Delta Airlines Inc., he headed the region as Business Head with P&L responsibility and was also a Board Observer at China Eastern. During his tenure in Asia, Dube successfully led the turnaround of the Airline in the Asia Pacific markets, restructured the network, established strategic partnerships, worked extensively on brand-building and successfully brought about a transformation in the work culture of his teams. He has also held various Board-level positions throughout his career. Commenting on that appointment and subsequent approval by the Government as the airline’s CEO, Naresh Goyal, Chairman, Jet Airways, said, “Vinay will lead the Executive Management Committee to deliver on our strategic objectives, at a time when the Indian Aviation market is poised to develop manifold going forward. In our recent past, we have made demonstrable progress towards achieving long-term goals. I am confident that under Vinay’s leadership, we will accelerate the momentum of turning around the company to higher growth and profits resulting in all-round benefits to our employees as well as to our shareholders, as well as deepen our relationship with our strategic partner Etihad Airways.”

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GPS 2017 to conclude in Pune today

In its last leg for the year, Global Panorama Showcase (GPS) hosted it’s first ever showcase in the city of Pune. The Pune edition of GPS witnessed a response of 900 plus registrations. The first day which included product presentations and GST session by CA Manish Gadia, Tax expert, GMJ &Co had a attendance of over 350 plus attendees. Apart from buyers from Pune the attendees include buyers coming from cities like Nashik, Satara, Sangli, Kohlapur, Ahmednagar, Baramati, Karad etc. Next year, GPS will continue to showcase at Nagpur, Ahmedabad, Chandigarh, Kolkata, Kochi and Pune. GPS will also be introducing Lucknow as a new city in 2018 and is also looking for other probable cities to host the exhibition.

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Sustainable Tourism to drive this years’ World Tourism Day celebrations in Qatar

This year’s World Tourism Day, to held on September 27, will focus on Sustainable Tourism – a Tool for Development. Celebrated in line with the 2017 International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, the Day will be dedicated to exploring the contribution of tourism to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The official celebrations of World Tourism Day 2017 will be held in Qatar, as decided by the UNWTO General Assembly. “Last year alone, 1.235 million travellers crossed international borders in one single year. By 2030, this 1.2 billion will become 1.8 billion. The question, as we celebrate World Tourism Day 2017, is how we can enable this powerful global transformative force, these 1.8 billion opportunities, to contribute to make this world a better place and to advance sustainable development in all its three pillars. This World Tourism Day, whenever you travel, wherever you travel, remember to respect nature, respect culture and respect your host,” said UNWTO Secretary-General Taleb Rifai. The event will be structured around two sessions, focused on ‘Tourism as a driver of economic growth’, and ‘Tourism and the Planet: committed to a greener future’. In addition, a high-level think tank will be conducted with the aim of opening the debate on the potential of the sector to enhance cultural preservation and mutual understanding. On the Agenda will also be the presentation of the Qatar National Tourism Sector Strategy, which advances sustainable approaches. The initiative is aligned with the Qatar National Vision 2030, which focuses on Economic, Social and Human Development and prioritizes tourism as a catalyst to progress towards a more diversified economy.

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KTM urges government to address tax anomalies

The Kerala Travel Mart (KTM) Society has expressed serious concern over high rates of taxation under the new GST regime, saying it would stifle the tourism business in the country by making it unsustainable and drive away the foreign tourists to destinations other than India. A KTM delegation, led by President Abraham George along with Prof KV Thomas, MP, held meetings with Union Tourism Minister Dr. Mahesh Sharma, Tourism Secretary Rashmi Sharma, the GST Council Chairperson and officials of the Union Finance Ministry and GST Council, drawing their attention to the serious anomalies in the GST, which would throw the tourism industry into a major crisis. The delegation included Riaz Ahmed, past president of KTM and Jobin Jose, who represented the houseboat industry. “The high incidences of taxes will make India uncompetitive when it comes to tourism as international tourists will skip the country as a destination. There is almost a 19 per cent tax hike for an Indian product after the implementation of GST. The Centre should address the issue urgently,” said KTM president Abraham George. The industry has already been reeling under the impact of demonetisation and liquor ban on highways, he said, adding that implementation of GST has also started adversely impacting the business. KTM has also shot off a memorandum to Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, pointing out that that ‘the new GST structure is the highest in the world’ and is ‘seriously affecting the sustainability of tourism business.’ In the memorandum, the KTM president appealed to the Centre to reduce the tax for hotels from 28 per cent to 18 per cent, substantially bring down the tax on houseboats and declare tax holiday for inbound …

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Online travel agents liable to deduct TCS under GST: CBEC

Travel agents providing online ticketing and other services will be liable to deduct one per cent tax at source under the GST regime as they have been classified as e-commerce operators, the CBEC said. Under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime, an e- commerce operator is required to collect 1 per cent of the net value of taxable supplies made through it. The amount so collected is called tax collected at source or TCS but this provision has been kept in abeyance for the time being. Online travel agents have been classified as e-commerce operators (ECO) and so they have to deduct TCS. The Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC), in a fresh set of frequently asked questions (FAQs), said the TCS requirement would not apply to someone selling own products through a website. Only applicable GST for the goods would be levied in that case. Electronic commerce or e-commerce means supply of goods or services, including digital products, over elect .. electronic network and an e-commerce operator is a person who owns operates or manages the electronic platform for e-commerce, it said. “Online travel agents providing services through digital or electronic platform will fall under the category of ECO (e- commerce operator) liable to deduct TCS under Section 52 of the CGST Act, 2017,” the CBEC said.

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Dwarka gets its first Mercure with 99 rooms

Mercure makes its debut in the holy city of Dwarka with the opening of Mercure Dwarka. Strategically located in the Devbhumi Dwarka district of Gujarat, the hotel is a short drive from the Dwarkadhish temple, popularly known as Jagat Mandir. The hotel is conveniently located at a five minute drive from the railway station, an hour’s drive from Porbandar Airport and a little over two hours from the Jamnagar Airport. The hotel is also in close proximity to Nageshwar Temple, Gopi Talav Theertham, Rukmani Devi Temple and Hanuman Mandir. The opening of Mercure Dwarka marks AccorHotels’ fourth property in the land of legends, Gujarat. Featuring 99 guest rooms, including one suite, the hotel offers spacious interiors and modern design; the rooms are equipped with in-room amenities and high speed Wi-Fi access. Fitness enthusiasts can also enjoy a refreshing work out at the state-of-the-art fitness centre. Rishabh Gupta, Co-founder & Director, Blue Rock Hospitality Ventures, said, “Mercure Dwarka is the first hotel of Blue Rock’s portfolio, set in the holy city of Dwarka. It marks a commitment to develop branded upper midscale hotels in holy cities, industrial hubs, emerging destinations & undersupplied pockets of developed cities, across the country. The development of Mercure Dwarka aims to bring emphasis on design with a commitment on service offerings to our guests staying at the property.” Aadil Muscatwala, Co-founder & Director, Blue Rock Hospitality Ventures said, “The opening of Mercure Dwarka is our first step in realizing Blue Rock’s vision of becoming a leading asset ownership company as India’s vibrant hotelier industry. We will continue to invest in high yielding operational assets to create new supply of hotel rooms through our green field developments …

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