Tag Archives: Director

Switzerland witnesses 23% increase in overnights from India

Switzerland witnessed a 23.4 per cent increase in the overnights spent by Indians in Switzerland in 2017. Indian tourists are increasingly looking at Switzerland as a travel destination because of the plethora of options it offers to each traveller. In order to showcase these diverse options, Switzerland Tourism has taken its multiple offerings across Mumbai, Pune, Kolkata and Delhi through its recently-concluded annual roadshow. Switzerland’s increasing number of Indian overnights can be attributed to Bollywood actor Ranveer Singh coming on board as the brand ambassador. “This year has also been a very exciting one for Switzerland Tourism with Ranveer Singh continuing as our brand ambassador. He has showcased Switzerland in a very attractive and diverse light, be it adventure, sports, culture, food, new destinations or experiences. Each year, we see a growing interest among Indian travellers but 2017, thanks to Ranveer, the overnights have been extremely high. Our numbers this year are also encouraging – we are up 10 per cent in hotel overnights in the period January to August 2018 as compared to the same period last year. Besides this campaign, we also continue our travel trade campaigns – with regular webinars, training sessions in tier two and tier three cities as well our new e-learning modules on the Switzerland Travel Academy,” said Claudio Zemp, Director–India, Switzerland Tourism. The roadshows in all the four cities had a B2B session where Indian travel agents met and discussed business prospects and ideas with the Swiss delegation.

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Sri Lanka targets millennials with new brand platform

The Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) has announced a new brand identity under the platform ‘So Sri Lanka’ which targets millennial travellers who select holiday destinations based on what they can hope to experience there. Revealed at World Travel Market in London, the new brand platform is grounded on the insight that Sri Lanka is more than just a destination, it’s a feeling. The brand platform has a contemporary, social and engaging design to reflect the heart and individuality of the country. It will roll out across all tourism promotion materials in a multi-channel, international campaign starting early next year. Madubhani Perera, Director—Marketing, SLTPB, says “There has never been a better time for a rebrand. Sri Lanka has just been named Lonely Planet’s Number One Destination for 2019. For us ‘So Sri Lanka’ symbolises our evolution with the digital revolution. The modern traveller goes online to seek inspiration and to find the next life-changing travel experience. ‘So Sri Lanka’ helps us evoke the inimitable feeling of our beautiful, vibrant, authentic and generous country through the smartphones of potential travellers.” Sri Lanka is the essence of a people renowned for their hospitality, a stunning landscape, rich biodiversity and a wealth of immersive experiences on offer for travellers. The rebrand marks the start of Sri Lanka’s fresh approach to destination marketing.    

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Tourism Secretary, Rashmi Verma, inaugurates India pavilion at WTM London 2018

The India pavilion at World Travel Market 2018 in London was packed with activities for the trade and consumers alike. Addressing a press conference, Rashmi Verma, Secretary-Tourism, Government of India, enlisted the achievements of the Ministry. Accompanying Verma were Pramod Kumar Singh, Tourism Minister, Bihar; Vellamandi N Natarajan, Tourism Minister, Tamil Nadu; Aashima Mehrotra, Director, Ministry of Tourism and Charanjeet Singh, Deputy High Commissioner of India to the UK. Verma highlighted, “Last year has been a very good year for India tourism with a growth of about 14 per cent in foreign tourist arrivals and about 19 per cent in terms of foreign receipts, much more than the global growth of 6.8 per cent. We also crossed the 10 million mark for the first time. This was possible because of our adoption of the multi-pronged strategy. We focus hugely on creating world-class infrastructure in and around our tourist sites.” She pointed out, “Incredible India 2.0 campaign is more thematic in nature. Looking at the needs and demands of major markets like the US and the UK, we have made some thematic films on niche products like adventure, yoga, Ayurveda, etc. This campaign focuses heavily on social media besides print and electronic media. We are hopeful that through this new Incredible India campaign we will be able to encourage people to revisit india, stay longer and experience the various products we have on offer.” The MOT also recently concluded two new events — India Tourism Mart (ITM) and Paryatan Parv —to create awareness about India both internationally and domestically. “More than 250 foreign buyers participated at the first-ever ITM. Buddhist Conclave was also held to showcase various Buddhist destinations in India.” The key initiative of introduction …

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Minar Group to introduce new leisure and MiCE vertical

The Minar Group is set to come up with a new leisure and MiCE vertical known as ‘Wishcover- Inspire journeys by Minar’. The new vertical is headed by Jasmine Duggal, Director, Minar Airways. Attempting to create a benchmark in the outbound market, Wishcover will focus to provide an inspired experience to travellers within India and abroad. The group has set a target of generating 20 crore by 2020 with the new vertical.

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Tourism from India to Russia grows 27.5 per cent

At the recently-concluded Round Table on Tourism on the sidelines of the Russian Indian Summit 2018, Ivan Breganov, Regional Manager of IFS (Russian Visa Center) confirmed that the number of tourist visas issued from January to September 2018 has already surpassed the total number of visas issued in 2017, pegging the YoY growth around 27 per cent. The round table was organised by Russia Expo Center, Moscow along with Russian Information Center, Mumbai (RIC) with more than 120 trade professionals from India attending along with TAAI MC Member Rajan Sehgal and EEMA Executive Vice President Sanjiv Pasricha making the keynote address along with Timur Vekilov, Chief Representative in India of Russ Expo Center. The round table moderated by Paresh Navani, Director, Russ Information Center discussed the needs and special services required by Indians and ways to address the same. In this regard, Russ Information Center announced the pre-launch of Ural Airlines set to begin operations from March 24, 2019 connecting Mumbai to Yekaterinburg and Moscow along with some tourism products to take advantage of the new airline service between the two countries, further RIC presented its ‘Indian Friendly’ programme to the Indian travel trade, the Indian friendly programme trains Russian hotels on Indian culture, cooking Indian dishes and ensure that other specific needs are provided to Indians in Russia. Another point noted by the attendees was that tourists from Russia to India has also grown over the last years by around 29 per cent, showing good recovery of arrival compared to the past few years.

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Piyush Goyal launches ‘Rail Heritage Digitisation Project’ to showcase India’s rail heritage

Union Minister of Railways and Coal, Piyush Goyal has launched ‘Rail Heritage Digitisation Project’ of Indian Railways in collaboration with Google Arts & Culture through video conferencing. The project is a landmark effort to showcase the country’s rail heritage to national and international audience in an online story-telling platform. Ashwani Lohani, Chairman, Railway Board; Rajan Anandan, Vice President—South East Asia and India, Google; Amit Sood, Director, Google Cultural Institute, among other dignitaries and UNESCO representatives were among those present on the occasion. Goyal said, “As a 165 year old organisation, the Railways has a lot of material which we need to preserve and leave behind for posterity. Mumbai has a special place in the Railways, being the first railway line to be set up in India. We will be setting up 22 digital screens across different locations in India for showcasing this historic project. This partnership between the Railways and Google also has the dimension of the Wi-Fi, which we have proliferated to over 400 stations in India.” Lohani said that collaboration with Google Art & Culture has enabled Indian Railways to digitise National Rail Museum, Rewari Steam Centre, three World Heritage Railways, CSMT Mumbai building and other prominent aspects of country’s rail heritage.

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IHCL expands presence in Nepal; signs new hotel in Kathmandu

The Indian Hotels Company Limited (IHCL) has announced the signing of a new Vivanta hotel in Kathmandu, marking the entry of the brand in the city. This will be IHCL’s second hotel in Nepal after Meghauli Serai in Chitwan National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Commenting on the signing of this agreement, Puneet Chhatwal, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, IHCL said, “We are honoured to partner with R&R Hotels and Resorts for this new hotel. Kathmandu is an extremely popular destination and this hotel will help us complete a tourist circuit with Meghauli Serai, our Taj Safari Lodge in Chitwan National Park.” The hotel will have approximately 111 spacious rooms and suites with a selection of rooms offering panoramic views of the city. The hotel will also include all-day dining and specialty restaurants, a bar, banqueting facilities and a spa. Commenting on the partnership, Rahul Chaudhary, Director, R&R Hotels and Resorts, said, “We have had a long standing association with IHCL for a range of hotels in multiple destinations. We are extremely proud to carry this relationship forward with the new Vivanta in Kathmandu.” Kathmandu has been at the centre of Nepal’s history, art, culture and economy. Some of the most popular attractions include the sacred and famous temple Pashupatinath, one of the biggest stupas in the world Boudhanath Stupa and Narayanhiti Palace Museum amongst others.  

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India bags several PATA Grand and Gold awards in Langkawi

The winners of the 2018 PATA Grand and Gold Awards were felicitated at PATA Travel Mart 2018 on September 14 at the Mahsuri International Exhibition Centre in Langkawi, Malaysia.  PATA Gold Award 2018 for Women Empowerment Initiative went to Peak DMC, India, for empowering women through inclusive work and PATA Gold Award 2018 for Heritage was bagged by Sahapedia for India Heritage Walk Festival. SOTC Travel won the award for Marketing Media – Travel Advertisement Broadcast Media while Yalla Kerala campaign of Kerala Tourism, bagged the PATA Gold Award for Marketing Media – Travel Advertisement Print Media. Cox & Kings India won the award for Marketing Media – Travel Brochure, an experiantial showcase of Indian journeys. The Ultimate Travelling Camp (TUTC) won the PATA Gold Award for Marketing Media – Travel Video. Mario Hardy, CEO, PATA, said, “I would like to congratulate the 2018 PATA Grand and Gold Award winners as well as all of this year’s participants for their submissions. This year’s winners exemplify the true values of the association in working towards a more responsible travel and tourism industry in the Asia Pacific region.” Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes, Director, Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO), said, “This year’s PATA Gold Award winners present us with yet another wide array of remarkable accomplishments in different branches of the tourism industry. MGTO is honoured to help facilitate this PATA awards programme in inspiring tourism stakeholders throughout the Asia Pacific region.” This year’s awards attracted 200 entries from 87 organisations and individuals worldwide.

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Gurbaxish Singh Kohli elected as new president of HRAWI

Gurbaxish Singh Kohli, Director, Pritam Hotels has been elected as the President of the Hotel and Restaurant Association of Western India (HRAWI) at the 68th Annual General Meeting (AGM) held in Mumbai. Prior to being elected as the President, Kohli served as Senior Vice President of the association. Prrem Tiwari, former Vice President will now serve as Sr Vice President along with Sherry Bhatia acting as the Vice President and Pradeep Shetty as the Honorary Secretary. Nirav Gandhi will continue in the office as Jt Honorary Secretary with Dilip Kothari as the Honorary Treasurer and Aspi Nallaseth as Secretary General. “The HRAWI has made tremendous progress, and I would like to congratulate my predecessor Dilip Datwani and his team for doing an outstanding job during his term. From here, it is my intent to complement the efforts made so far by the association and maintain the momentum. I also hope to engage with the government, concerned authorities and other trade bodies as best as possible for the benefit of our fraternity. We will focus on resolving issues that are potential hindrances for the industry’s growth and will align efforts to best address and meet our members’ needs,” says Kohli. A second generation hotelier, Kohli is the owner of Dadar’s famous Pritam restaurant and who set up the iconic Pritam da Dhaba and the four-star Hotel Midtown Pritam in the 80s.

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Mauritius plans to attract 1.2 lakh Indian tourists in 2020

Mauritius is aiming to attract 1.2 lakh Indian tourists in 2020, up from 88,000 people expected to visit the island nation this year, a senior official from that country said. At a recent four-city India roadshow organised by Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority (MTPA), Arvind Bundhun, Director, MTPA, said that 80,000 tourists from India had visited his country last year. “In the last four years, Mauritius tourism has seen double digit growth, with Indian tourists contributing significantly to this. We are looking to attract 1.2 lakh Indian tourists to our country in 2020,” Bundhun said. He said that Mauritius has positioned itself as an affordable luxury destination which offers tourists different activities like golf, spa, sky diving, zip lining among others. “In order to create more visibility, we are inviting celebrities and top CEOs from India to Mauritius. Special packages are being offered to promote incentive trips,” Bundhun informed. He added that the wedding segment remains an attractive niche, with a lot of newly-wed Indians choosing Mauritius as a honeymoon destination. Bundhun said that Bollywood was also finding Mauritius attractive with its film promotion policy, adding that some Indian movies had been shot there recently. “Between October 17-19, the Mauritius Film Development Corporation is organising cinema week and a number of Bollywood stars have been invited there. The government has put in place special incentives to shoot movies in our country,” he said.

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