Category Archives: Hotels

Paying service charge at restaurants is now optional

The Department of Consumer Affairs, Central Government has called for clarification from the Hotel Association of India, which have replied that the service charge is completely discretionary and should a customer be dissatisfied with the dining experience he/she can have it waived off. Therefore, it is deemed to be accepted voluntarily. The Department of Consumer Affairs has asked the State Governments to sensitize the companies, hotels and restaurants in the states regarding aforementioned provisions of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 and also to advise the hotels/restaurants to disseminate information through display at the appropriate place in the hotels/restaurants that the ‘service charges’ are discretionary/ voluntary and a consumer dissatisfied with the services can have it waived off. A number of complaints from consumers have been received that hotels and restaurants are following the practice of charging ‘service charge’ in the range of 5-20%, in lieu of tips, which a consumer is forced to pay irrespective of the kind of service provided to him. The Consumer Protection Act, 1986 provides that a trade practice which, for the purpose of promoting the sale, use or the supply of any goods or for the provision of any service, adopts any unfair method or deceptive practice, is to be treated as an unfair trade practice and that a consumer can make a complaint to the appropriate consumer forum established under the Act against such unfair trade practices.

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Shangri-La’s Eros Hotel, New Delhi to revamp its rooms & spa

Shangri-La’s Eros Hotel, New Delhi recently underwent a massive renovation of its F&B outlets. For 2017, the hotel has big plans of renovating its rooms along with its spa. Parmeet Singh Nayar, General Manager, Shangri-La’s-Eros Hotel, New Delhi, says, “In addition to growing our online presence and integrating technology at every step, we have been working on exciting developments to continuously delight our guests. After revamping our food and beverage offerings, the coming year will offer revamped accommodation facilities at the hotel along with Shangri-La’s signature CHI Spa. With these new developments in the pipeline we are sure that 2017 shall be a promising year for the hotel.”

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490-room ITC hotel to launch in Kolkata by 2017

ITC is all set to launch its new property in Kolkata by 2017. ITC Hotel, Kolkata adjacent to ITC Sonar, will be symbolic of the rich history of Bengal and Kolkata, being built with the colonial theme on the lines of the ‘British Raj’ and Calcutta as the ‘Imperial Capital of the British India’. The 490 key hotel would be among the tallest buildings of Kolkata with a commanding view of the entire city.

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Royal Orchid Hotels adds 2 more hotels to its portfolio

Royal Orchid Hotels announces the opening of two hotels under its brand Regenta Inn in Vadodara and Kolkata on Dec  15, expanding to 40 hotels by the end of 2016. Regenta Inn Vadodara is located at the newly constructed Ved Transcube Plaza adjacent to the Central Bus Terminal, walking distance to the Vadodara Railway Station and a short ride to the airport. The hotel offer 94 well-appointed room and is part of Ved Transcube Plaza that uniquely hosts various different shopping outlets, a flea Market, an Indian Heritage Lane, an Art Cafe, PVR Cinemas, a Thematic Food Court and Kids Game Zone. The hotel offers multiple banquet and conference facilities for upto 500 guests with state-of-the-art business facilities and Wi-fi services. Chander K. Baljee, MD of the Royal Orchid Hotels said, “We are glad to bring our brand of hotels in these cities. Kolkata has always been an important market for hoteliers in terms of both business and leisure segments. Whereas Gujarat tourism is already witnessing a boost and we intend to tap this segment with our existing portfolio along with our second property in Vadodara.” Regenta Inn, Kolkata is a budget friendly hotel consisting of 45 well-appointed rooms making it ideal for business & leisure travelers’ seeking accommodation next to the airport in new Kolkata city. The property offers choices between Executive rooms and premium rooms for a luxurious stay. The hotel offers optimum banquet spaces for small occasions, an all-day dining restaurant and a swimming pool.

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Kairali’s ‘The Ayurvedic Healing Village’ partners with Lux Hotels

Kairali Ayurvedic Group’s signature resort ‘The Ayurvedic Healing Village’ is the latest property to come under the Lux Hotels umbrella for marketing and promotion. Bhupesh Kumar, Director, Lux Hotels, spoke about the development, saying, “We are elated to have partnered with Kairali Ayurveda for their global and national brand awareness and developing incremental business. Also, we want to increase the visibility of the brand in the global and national market.” Kairali Ayurvedic group, came in to being in 1989 with the aim of propagating the ideologies of Ayurveda throughout the world and has been a name to reckon with in the wellness industry.

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Sheraton Grand Pune opens doors

Sheraton Hotels & Resorts announced the opening of Sheraton Grand Pune Bund Garden Hotel, a newly renovated property set to welcome business and leisure guests. The hotel recently completed an extensive rebranding and renovation, featuring a complete transformation of its 177 well-appointed guest rooms, lobby and public spaces as well as added meeting facilities. The new hotel joins a portfolio of 36 Sheraton Grand properties. Owned by BrahmaCorp, Sheraton Grand Pune Bund Garden Hotel is the second ‘Sheraton Grand’ hotel in India and the fourth Sheraton hotel in the country. Jaswinder Narang, Complex General Manager of Sheraton Grand Pune Bund Garden Hotel, said, “We are thrilled to expand the Sheraton Grand presence in India with the opening of our second premier-tier hotel in the country. As Pune continues to make it possible for business travelers to find success as the IT capital of India, Sheraton is committed to delivering luxury to guests through excellence in service. Through this renovation and opening, we have worked diligently to solidify Sheraton as a leading global hotel brand of choice.”

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82-room Narendra Bhawan Bikaner opens doors

MRS Group has launched its newest property- Narendra Bhawan Bikaner. It is the third property by the Group and the second in Bikaner, where it also operates Laxmi Niwas Palace. With a full inventory of 82 rooms, the hotel opens with 58 guest rooms and suites. Speaking on the launch, Manvendra Singh Shekhawat, Managing Director, MRS Group, said, “With the opening of Narendra Bhawan, we endeavour to put Bikaner on a traveller’s map. The hotel aims to offer discerning travellers, an oasis of tranquillity with service that is personalised. The experiences curated by the hotel will bring alive the vignettes of Narendra Singh Ji’s lifestyle and history of Bikaner.” The Hotel is a retelling of the legend of the last reigning Maharaja of Bikaner-Narendra Singhji (1948-2003). The facilities include outdoor areas like the Gaushala and the Verandah; indoor dining venues like the Mad Hatter Bake House and P&C; infinity swimming pool; Clinic Spa; large meeting spaces with banquet rooms and a courtyard for business and social events. A Reveille breakfast, Sundowners at the pastures, Royal Ascot and White Nights of the Rajputs are a few experiences for the guests at the new hotel.

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Stayzilla partners with Andhra Pradesh Tourism

After strategic tie ups with six state tourism departments across India, Stayzilla now gets on board with Andhra Pradesh Tourism for the joint promotion and development of homestays in the state. The MoU was signed in the presence of Ankit Rastogi, Vice President Marketplace, Stayzilla and Himanshu Shukla, IAS, Director Tourism of APT at Vijayawada. With this association, APTDC becomes the first Tourism Board to associate with a homestay aggregator in South India. Under this agreement, Stayzilla will lend its expertise to APT to conduct verification procedures and jointly boost homestays and unique stay experiences within Andhra Pradesh. This partnership will also enable verification and training of these new Homestays being developed right from the start. Stayzilla’s team in the South, headed by Stayzilla headquarters of Bangalore, will be part of the Service and Quality Assurance Committee under APT for Inspection, which includes property verification and screening. .

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Sarovar enters Ethiopia with a new hotel in Addis Ababa

Sarovar Hotels forayed into yet another international market as it signed a hotel in the Ethiopian capital city, Addis Ababa. The hotel in Ethiopia marks Sarovar’s presence in the fifth country in Africa after Tanzania, Kenya, South Sudan and Zambia. This move comes after the group recently took over the management of a hotel in Lusaka, Zambia. The 101-rooms hotel will be called Sarovar Premiere Addis Ababa. This will be Sarovar Hotels’ seventh hotel in Africa. The group currently manages New Africa Hotel in Dar Es Salaam (Tanzania), The Heron Portico in Nairobi, The Zehneria Portico in Nairobi and Panorama Sarovar Portico in South Sudan. The Lazizi Premiere opens in Nairobi in February 2017 and Sarovar Premiere Lusaka is expected to be opened in 2018. Commenting on the new endeavor, Ajay K. Bakaya, Executive Director, Sarovar Hotels, said, “We are very excited to be expanding to another new destination in the African region. With Sarovar Premiere Addis Ababa, we exceed a total of 1000 rooms in Africa. Being Ethiopia’s biggest commercial hub and the host location of the African Union headquarters, Addis Ababa has become a major destination for many travellers to the continent, business as well as leisure. We see great growth potential in this market with high demand and this development makes a momentous step in our growth and expansion strategy in the overseas market.”

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Preferred Hotels adds 24 member hotels

Preferred Hotels & Resorts has added 24 member hotels over the past three months, which mark the company’s debut in key regions, signal the expansion of existing partnerships, and represent enhanced presence in key markets. Highlights of the new hotel additions include: The Hari London in United Kingdom, Lancaster Bangkok in Thailand, Vivienda Granada & Vivienda Residences in Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Tarrytown House Estate & Conference Center in Tarrytown, New York. Additional properties that joined the Preferred Hotels & Resorts brand portfolio from August through early November 2016 include: Rosen Centre (Orlando, Florida, United States), Rosen Plaza (Orlando, Florida, United States), Rosen Shingle Creek (Orlando, Florida, United States), AT Six (Stockholm, Sweden), Hotel Monville Montreal (Montreal, Canada), The Domain Hotel & Spa (Manama, Bahrain), Pendry San Diego (San Diego, California, United States), Hotel Royal Palm Tower Indaiatuba (Indaiatuba, Brazil), Mukul Residences (Rivas, Nicaragua), Dukes Dubai (Dubai, United Arab Emirates), Nordic Light Hotel (Stockholm, Sweden), AKA University City (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States), Edgewood Tahoe (South Lake Tahoe/Reno, Nevada, United States), Zota Beach Resort (Longboat Key, Florida, United States), Hyde Resort & Residences (Hollywood, Florida, United States), among others.

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