Category Archives: Hotels

IHG enters global partnership with Alipay

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has signed a global partnership with Alipay, China’s third-party online payment solutions company, making IHG the first global hotel company to give Chinese guests the ability to pay via Alipay through all of IHG’s online and mobile channels, as well as across its full estate of hotels globally. The global rollout of Alipay will begin in 2017. The new partnership, which has been agreed with Alipay’s parent company Ant Financial, will initially apply to IHG’s existing estate of more than 270 hotels in Greater China, as well as a number of hotels around the world that participate in IHG’s China Ready Programme, which offers a range of tailored services to Chinese travellers.

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Treebo offers Indian Olympians free lifetime vacations

Bangalore-based brand of budget hotels, Treebo Hotels, is paying homage to the Indian National Olympic Squad participating at Rio 2016 by offering each athlete free annual vacations for lifetime at any of the 125 Treebo hotels across the country. Commenting on the offer, Rahul Chaudhary, co-founder, Treebo Hotels said, “Our athletes have been training hard for the Olympics for months now, and we felt a strong need to do something to reward their hard work. Each of them deserves a vacation, and we couldn’t think of a better way of expressing our support than offering them free stays at any of our properties across the country. We have written a letter to the Indian Olympic Association about this, and look forward to hosting our athletes”. As a part of the initiative, each of the 120 athletes is eligible for five-free room nights every year for their vacations for the next 30 years. Not only is Treebo giving free annual vacations to the Olympics team, they are also offering a flat 30% discount at any of their hotels to all athletes in the country, young or old, for any sports-related travel.

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Lemon Tree opens two new hotels in Gujarat

The  Lemon Tree Hotel Company announced the formal opening of two new properties in Vadodara and Dahej besides the refreshed upscale property in Ahmedabad, signalling the group’s focus on Gujarat, in their overall expansion plans across India. Speaking on the occasion of the multi-city launch, Rattan Keswani, Dy. Managing Director, The Lemon Tree Hotel Company and Chairman, Carnation Hotels said, “We are excited at our fast paced growth in Gujarat. Being one of the most progressive and investor friendly States in India, we were keen to spread our wings here. Besides our owned hotel in Ahmedabad, the addition of these three properties in Gujarat opens new domestic locations for our existing customers offering them the same refreshing experience and close to home comfort that Lemon Tree is known for.”

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Hyatt aims for 27 properties in India by the end of 2016

Hyatt is all set to have a total of 27 properties in India by the end of this year. Harleen Mehta, Vice President, Sales Operations, South Asia – Hyatt Hotels Corporation says, “Currently we have a portfolio of 24 hotels in India, representing five brands (Park Hyatt, Grand Hyatt, Hyatt Regency, Hyatt and Hyatt Place). A sixth brand (Andaz) will enter India in latter part of 2016 with the opening of the Andaz Delhi. By end of this financial year, we aim to have 27 properties in India. Apart from the aforementioned Andaz Delhi – the thirteenth Andaz hotel in the world.”

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JA Resorts & Hotels appoints India representative

Mumbai-based Avant Garde Consulting has taken on JA Resorts & Hotels as part of its connoisseur’s collection, which is a collection of seven properties spread across Dubai, and one each in the Maldives and Seychelles. Pooja Wadhwa, Partner, Avant Garde Consulting, said, “The company has an analogous marketing philosophy and market segmentation as ours, and we see a perfect fit for each of their properties in various segments within the ever evolving Indian market that desires an authentic and enriching experience. We look forward to building the JA Resorts & Hotels brand in India, and subsequently acquire a large market share for JA in India.” JA’s Portfolio includes seven properties in Dubai, JA Manafaru exclusive island resort in the Maldives and Enchanted Island Resort by JA in Seychelles, which is a super-luxurious 10 villa property each with private beach access and a private pool.

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178-room ibis Hyderabad HITEC City opens

AccorHotels and InterGlobe Hotels have announced the opening of ibis Hyderabad HITEC City, marking the debut of the in-demand economy brand in the city. Strategically located in the heart of HITEC City, the hotel is easily accessible from Hyderabad International Convention Centre managed by AccorHotels. With 178 rooms, the hotel boasts of a contemporary design that offers unparalleled comfort and convenience with a range of in-room amenities at an affordable price. Speaking at the hotel’s launch, J.B. Singh, President & CEO, InterGlobe Hotels, said, “The Pearl City, is a perfect blend of leisure and business travel. Known for its heritage, history, and iconic tourist attractions, Hyderabad has always been a destination of choice for travellers. More recently the city has also emerged as a popular MICE destination, and has seen several domestic, and international business meetings and conferences. Along with AccorHotels, we are very happy to bring ibis to Hyderabad HITEC City which is the ideal brand and offering for the frequent Hyderabad business traveller as well as the leisure traveller.”

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Keys Hotel Vishakhapatnam opens doors

Keys Hotels, part of Berggruen group of hotels, was officially launched in Vishakhapatnam, inaugurated by guest of honour, Pusapati Ashok Gajapathi Raju, Union Minister for Civil Aviation with Anshu Sarin, CEO, Berggruen Hotels. It is the second Keys Hotel in the state. Strategically located in the heart of the city, Keys Hotel, Vishakhapatnam is an ideal choice for both business and leisure travellers. The hotel is located close to the famous tourist attractions of the city such as Visakha Museum, Submarine Museum, R K Beach and the Kailasa Giri. Anshu Sarin, CEO, Berggruen Hotels Pvt. Ltd. said, “Southern part of the country, especially Andhra Pradesh is a critical market for us and the launch of the hotel in Vishakhapatnam will enhance our presence in the region reinforcing our commitment of growth in the state. Moreover, as part of our expansion strategy of entering into smart cities, we aim to attract business travelers from multiple industries besides leisure travelers. ”

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AccorHotels partners with Australia India Travel & Tourism Council

Australian hotel operator, AccorHotels has signed an agreement with the Australia India Travel & Tourism Council (AITTC) to further strengthen the opportunities for promoting tourism between Australia and India. As part of the partnership, AITTC will endorse AccorHotels market-leading Optimum Service Standards program for Indian visitation. AITTC will facilitate a service training program to help AccorHotels staff better understand cultural practices and learn basic greetings so they can respectfully serve these guests. Training is expected to commence in Sydney and Brisbane this August and AITTC will issue hotels with a certificate of accreditation once completed. In addition, AITTC and AccorHotels will be working together on promoting both inbound tourism from India as well as outbound opportunities to India. “Our goal is to see growth in bilateral tourism and this partnership with AccorHotels, which has strong presence in both India and Australia, so it will be win-win for both organisations,” says Sandip Hor, Chairman of AITTC. Chief Operating Officer, AccorHotels Pacific, Simon McGrath said, “We have been very fortunate to develop a great relationship with the Australia India Travel & Tourism Council, and look forward to working with them to better equip our hotels with the skills and knowledge to welcome visitors from India. AccorHotels launched its Optimum Service Standards for Indian visitation program to better cater to the specific cultural needs and growing numbers of Indian travellers to Australia and New Zealand. Accredited hotels have adopted services to meet the needs of this emerging travel market including the translation of hotel welcome kits, menus and business cards, Indian meals in the restaurant, Indian adaptor plugs, TV channels and newspapers to make guests travelling from India feel at home.

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Vadodara Municipal Corporation abolishes Health License for hotels, restaurants

In a landmark move the Vadodara Municipal Corporation has abolished health licences for hotels and restaurants operating in the city. According to a notification issued by the Corporation, Sanitary Health License under G.P.M.C Act was duplication as health and sanitation are already covered under Food & Safety Act 2006. “Central Govt and State Govt has in recent times been emphasising on ‘ease of doing business’ and simplification of regulations to reduce difficulties faced by general public. Considering this matter, with immediate effect, Vadodara Municipal Corporation, Ward Offices, Health Department, has cancelled issuance of Health License under Sec. 376 of G. P. M. C. Act, wherever license under Food Safety and Standard Act, 2006 is required and issued,” states the notification. Hailing the move as a milestone in the history of corporate India, The Hotel and Restaurant Association of Western India (HRAWI), the apex body representing hotels and restaurant across the western region of India has commended Vadodara’s new Municipal Commissioner and expressed hope that other cities will follow the precedent. “For the last nine years we have been petitioning Municipalities across the Western Region for the exclusion of this particular license as it was a repetition and merely added to paper work and red-tapism. The association welcomes the decision and appreciates the affirmative and expedited action of H.S. Patel, Municipal Commissioner, Vadodara,” says Bharat Malkani, President, HRAWI.

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60-suite Rio Royale Goa opens doors

The Rio Group of Hotels has launched its brand new Luxury resort, Rio Royale, in North Goa. Rio Royale features 60 suites and each suite offers an incredible view and comes with a private balcony. This All Suite property will offer bespoke experiences, distinctive spa sojourns, signature culinary delights and a world of sophisticated luxury. Anup Shah, Managing Director, Rio Group of Hotels said “We are overwhelmed with the response we have received for Resort Rio and are pleased to present Rio Royale which offers the highest standards of luxury and hospitality. The idea behind launching this new resort was to introduce our esteemed customers to an entirely different level of extravagance and that is why we decided to redefine the experience of hotel stays and make it more experiential with an enhanced level of service which is warm, caring and personalised.” Inspired by the famous temples of Khajuraho, Rio Royale embodies grandeur and opulence, exemplifying a regal lifestyle. Intricate handmade carvings from sandstone and innovative and engaging spaces can be found throughout the resort making every moment spent here reminiscent of royalty. Alpa Shah, Director, Rio Group of Hotels added “Our goal is to make a lasting impact on the local economy by creating jobs and opportunities. 80 % of our staff are locals. The concept, designing and interiors is all done in-house. We are confident that Rio Royale will set a benchmark by providing guests a chance to indulge themselves in a royal experience like never before at our resort.”

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