Category Archives: Hotels

ITC Grand Goa to soon open doors

ITC Hotels has acquired Park Hyatt Goa Resort & Spa in a public auction, and the property will now be known as ITC Grand Goa. The property will soon be formally open under the new owners. According to a mailer by ITC which owns and operates ITC Hotels, the sale of the property has been confirmed by Supreme Court of India, by judgement and order dated March 19, 2018. Under the judgement, ITC will be taking the possession of the property by September 19, 2018. The property is situated in Cansaulim, Goa.  

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OYO, Motherland partner to co-develop a series of new hotel formats

OYO has formed a strategic partnership with Motherland Joint Ventures, the group that has helped build India’s global brands, including Incredible India, Royal Enfield, Make in India and IndiGo. This partnership will enable OYO and Motherland to co-develop a series of exciting new hotel formats and enhance various aspects of customer experience – including key touch points such as Interiors and ergonomics – all of which will offer guests an unprecedented combination of style, efficiency and affordability. This category transformation process began in 2017 with the launch of OYO Townhouse, the ‘friendly neighbourhood  hotel’ that is receiving rave reviews as it rapidly expands across the country. This alliance will facilitate and strengthen OYO’s mission of creating beautiful living spaces via its innovative approach to brand strategy, product definition and customer experience design. As part of this strategic partnership, OYO and Motherland will be launching a massive new retail collaboration that will feature a mix of original products specially designed for new age brands such as OYO Townhouse. Initially available exclusively at OYO Townhouses, Motherland products will soon be available at other OYO spaces, including online channels. Commenting on the partnership, Ritesh Agarwal, Founder & CEO, OYO said, “In our pursuit of creating beautiful living spaces, the partnership with Motherland will enable us to co-develop new, exciting hotel formats and enhance guest experiences – including Interiors and ergonomics – offering guests an unprecedented mix of style, efficiency and affordability. We are confident the Motherland alliance will augment OYO’s overall value propositions through their skills in brand strategy, marketing and designing.”  

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Sterling Holiday Resorts launches first comprehensive holiday insurance

Sterling Holiday Resorts has launched India’s first comprehensive holiday insurance for all Sterling guests. The insurance provides cover for trip cancellation, personal accident, emergency accident related treatment, legal liability, misplaced luggage, delayed and missed flights and more. This comprehensive holiday insurance is powered by Digit Insurance, a Fairfax company. According to Ramesh Ramanathan, Managing Director, Sterling Holiday Resorts, “The comprehensive holiday insurance ensures a worry-free holiday experience. We want our guests to enjoy the unique experiences at our resorts and destinations without any travel-related stress. This is the first time when a holiday company is offering a door to door cover. The insurance offers a total of nine unique benefits, including coverage for flight delays, missed flights and misplaced luggage.” Kamesh Goyal, Chairman, Digit Insurance, said, “Our comprehensive insurance solutions have been developed by identifying the gaps in the market and keeping in mind the requirements of customers. The insurance is backed by a seamless & easy claim settlement process. We look forward to serve Sterling Holidays’ customers and help them have a worry-free holiday experience.” The insurance covers guests from 24 hours before check-in date to 24 hours after check-out date and would be complimentary for Sterling guests in the initial period.  The insurance is issued once the guests confirm to avail the free insurance, after booking with Sterling.  

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MakeMyTrip-OYO deal: Independent hoteliers raise concern

A group of independent hotel owners who have their properties listed on MakeMyTrip met with executives of the Nasdaq-listed company last month, raising concerns about its commercial agreement with hospitality company OYO. Tens of hoteliers, who are also members of Delhi Hotels and Restaurants Owners Association, met MakeMyTrip (MMT) officials individually and sought assurances that its arrangement with SoftBank-backed OYO would not affect bookings and revenues independent hotels earned from the MMT and Goibibo platforms. They have given us verbal assurances that there will be no disruptions and OYO will not favoured over independent hotels,” said Sandeep Khandelwal, president of the association that claims to represent about 400-500 small and mid-sized budget hotel establishments. “MakeMyTrip has over 40,000 hotels listed on its platform, a significant portion of which are small independent establishments. The arrangement with OYO should not affect us,” said Khandelwal who owns Hotel Shri Nanak Continental in Delhi. A second independent hotel owner who has met with MMT executives said that since the announcement of the MakeMyTrip and OYO agreement, ratings and reviews of the latter’s properties had improved substantially on the online travel platform. A MakeMyTrip spokesperson, however, said the company had not negotiated with any association, but has been in touch with its partner hotels as part of its regular business outreach.  “As part of our regular business, we have frequent direct meetings with our hotel partners. We have had no meeting with any such association, nor have we been approached by one,” the spokesperson said. Source: ET Online

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India’s tourism sector to attract capital investments of $95.3 billion by 2028

India’s tourism sector attracted capital investments of US$ 47.8 billion in 2017 and is expected to reach US$ 95.3 billion by 2028,  according to World Travel & Tourism Council’s (WTTC’s) Economic Impact 2018 report. International hotel chains are increasing their presence in the country, as it will account for around 47 per cent share in the tourism and hospitality sector of India by 2020 and 50 per cent by 2022, increasing from 44 per cent in 2016. Berggruen Hotels is planning to add around 20 properties under its mid-market segment ‘Keys Hotels’ brand across India by this year. Hilton plans to add 18 hotels pan India by 2021, along with 15 operational hotels under its brands namely, Hampton, Hilton Garden Inn, Conrad, Hilton Hotels & Resorts and DoubleTree by Hilton. Marriott International also plans to add 20 more properties to its existing portfolio of 98 hotels in India.

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VITS Luxury Hotels unveils VITS Mango Blossom, Gurugram

VITS Luxury Hotels has unveiled ‘VITS Mango Blossom, Gurugram’, a luxury corporate hotel located near Udyog Vihar Industrial Hub. Well-connected through railways, road and air to all major cities, the hotel offers ease of travel and transit to all the corporate travellers. Announcing the launch, Chandrakant Shetty, CEO, VITS Luxury Business Hotels says, “We are extremely upbeat on the exponential growth prospects in Gurugram that has fuelled demand of upscale mid- market hotels in this region. The city has seen steady growth in inflow of business travelers in the last two decades but there is still acute shortage of upscale mid-market hotel rooms. We are extremely delighted to bridge this gap with the launch of our first property in Gurugram. We believe VITS Mango Blossom with its strategic location, imposing décor, banqueting and host of hospitality will appeal to both leisure and business tourists”. The well-furnished accommodation blends contemporary design with unmatched comfort. The 37 guest rooms comprising Deluxe and Superior rooms present a corporate sojourn with impeccable amenities. Mirroring the aura of elite class living, each of the rooms boats of tastefully adorned décor, upscale comfort, luxury ambience and exclusive facilities.

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IHG expands presence in Kolkata with Holiday Inn Resort Kolkata NH6

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has announced a partnership with SDB Developers to bring a second Holiday Inn hotel to Kolkata. As part of the agreement, the 110-room Holiday Inn Resort Kolkata NH6 will have 90 rooms operational by the end of 2018, with 20 additional rooms expected to be operational by 2020. Sprawling across 12 acres of land in Uluberia, a city that comes under the Kolkata Metropolitan Area, Holiday Inn Resort Kolkata NH6 is strategically located to offer excellent connectivity to central Kolkata. Well suited to cater to leisure, business and MiCE guests, the resort will be an hour’s drive from the City Centre and Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport. The resort will also be well connected to the National Highway and the Orissa Trunk Road. Commenting on the announcement, Sudeep Jain, Vice President – Development, South West Asia, IHG said, “The signing of Holiday Inn Resort Kolkata NH6 is in line with our strategy to grow our portfolio of midscale hotels in the country, comprising the Holiday Inn brand family. Given the location, facilities and best in class amenities that will be available at the resort, we expect strong demand from various guests’ segments including, leisure, MiCE, social events and weddings.” Pawan Bhimsaria, Director, SDB Developers said, “With IHG’s strong global and domestic track record, robust distribution systems and an excellent loyalty programme, we are confident Holiday Inn Resort Kolkata NH6 will be a popular choice amongst guests visiting and residing in the city.”

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AccorHotels launches Novotel Chennai Chamiers Road

Chennai welcomes its seventh AccorHotels property with the opening of Novotel Chennai Chamiers Road. The property is conveniently situated in the heart of the city within walking distance of many clubs like Madras Club and elite neighbourhoods like Boat Club. It is a mere 10-minute drive from popular locations like the T Nagar shopping district, Marina Beach and the business districts of Nungambakkam, Egmore, Adyar, Mylapore and Alwarpet. The hotel is less than a 30-minute drive from both the Chennai International Airport and the Chennai Central Railway Station. “We are excited to partner with AG Hospitality to launch Novotel Chennai Chamiers Road and look forward to a fruitful partnership. The opening of this hotel marks our seventh hotel in Chennai and eighth property in the state of Tamil Nadu. Chennai is fast becoming a key market fuelled by both strong business and leisure traveller growth in an improving economic climate.” said Jean-Michel Cassé, Chief Operating Officer – India & South Asia, AccorHotels. Novotel Chennai Chamiers Road is the first Novotel with a contemporary design and interiors. The hotel has been conceptualised by SODA, an international design firm known for creating fresh, innovative yet sustainable spaces. The hotel features around 100 well-appointed rooms including four suites, as well as rooms designed for the specially-abled.

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Sterling Holidays to offer full travel cover; ties up with Digit Insurance

Sterling Holidays plans to come out with a travel insurance scheme for its customers from June 4. The scheme will cover door-to-door holiday insurance from departure to arrival. “Companies in India do not offer comprehensive insurance to customers. So, this scheme will cover for mishap as also for lost or missed baggage. The aim is to cover the customer for the entire trip,” said Ramesh Ramanathan, Managing Director, Sterling Holidays. The launch got delayed due to backend work and testing, he said. Now, members as well as non-members can get the benefit of this plan. The firm has tied up with Digit Insurance, a part of the Fairfax group. The hospitality firm plans to expand to Rajasthan, Coorg, and Port Blair. The company is keen on Varanasi too. “One of the oldest cities in the world, it (Varanasi) has heritage, history and is also attracting lot of visitors both Indians as well as foreigners. Also, in the last three years, a lot of focus is being given on its cleaning up,” said Ramanathan. The company plans to double its inventory from 2,200 to 4,500 rooms in three-four years and aims to increase the number of resorts to over 50. Source: The Hindu Business Line

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Treebo acquires events company Events High to enrich overall travel experience

Treebo has announced its acquisition of Events High, a marketplace for experiential events and activities for an undisclosed amount. Events High’s acquisition is strategically aligned with Treebo’s mission to become India’s most loved travel network by delivering delightful experiences to every traveller. Events High offers customers information on, and ability to book activities like treks and hikes, cooking classes, dance classes, concerts, heritage walks, nightlife, etc. in eight cities – Bengaluru, Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Hyderabad, Pune, Kolkata and Goa. The move will effectively enable Treebo to enter the thriving events and activities segment in India. Post the acquisition, Treebo has absorbed the entire Events High team. Commenting on the acquisition, Sidharth Gupta, Co-founder, Treebo said, “We are on a mission to offer delightful experiences to travellers and build the most loved travel network by offering curated local events and activities to our customers through Events High. Experiencing these local activities is a core part of people’s travel plans. More so now than ever before, people are keen to buy ‘experiences’ not ‘things’.” Nikesh Garera, Co-founder and CEO, Events High said, “Customers value engagement and unique experiences, and Events High has always been committed to curate these experiences and make them discoverable. Stay is an integral part of the huge number of travellers who attend such experiences, and with Treebo we share the vision to offer delightful experiences to such travellers.”

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