Tag Archives: MD

IATO brainstorms on key issues on the first day

With a day stacked with business sessions focusing on imperative issues and state presentations, the audience was treated with intense discussions on day one of the two-day convention in Vishakhapatnam. The day started with the conventional IATO Run for Responsible Tourism in the morning. The first session of the day aimed to highlighted the challenges of touching the ambitious milestone of 20 million foreign tourist arrivals within the next few years. The panelists also touched upon the ways in which this can be achieved. The second session brought together members of key hotel companies face to face with tour operators to discuss what both industries can do to help the other since it is getting harder and harder to do business, whether it is the hotels or the travel trade.  The following session had an all-women panel who spoke about their personal experiences that are evidence that India is a safe country. However, they did present ways in which the safety of women travellers could improve. The final panel discussion, moderated by Rajesh Mudgill, MD, Planet India Travels, deliberated on how to change one’s business to adapt to the changing mindset of today’s travellers. In between the state presentations and panel discussions, the audience also took advantage of individual presentations made by Nakul Anand, Chairman, FAITH; an informative session on how travel agents can use digital marketing by Avijit Arya, Founder, Internet Mogul.  

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Holiday Inn Express expands footprint with Holiday Inn Express Gurgaon Sector 50

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has inaugurated the Holiday Inn Express Gurgaon Sector 50, the first Holiday Inn Express hotel in Gurugram. As part of IHG’s partnership with SAMHI for a portfolio of 14 Holiday Inn Express hotels, this property will be the first to open its doors to guests on September 15. Marking this celebration, IHG’s regional leadership team including Kenneth Macpherson, CEO-EMEAA and Pascal Gauvin, MD, IMEA, were present at the ceremony. Holiday Inn Express Gurgaon Sector 50 offers 205 intelligent, design-led, contemporary rooms, providing an efficient environment to guests. Boasting of an excellent location, Holiday Inn Express Gurgaon Sector 50 is strategically situated in a mixed-use complex populated with a shopping mall, restaurants, entertainment and wellness facilities, making it a perfect destination for business travellers as well as leisure seekers. Vivek Bhalla, Regional Vice President – SWA, IHG said, “We are delighted to launch the first Holiday Inn Express hotel as a part of our partnership with SAMHI. Our growth in India is fuelled by the Holiday Inn brand family, and this partnership underscores our commitment to grow our midscale offering in the country. We are confident that Holiday Inn Express Gurgaon Sector 50 will offer an uncompromising and modern guest experience to travellers visiting the city.” Ashish Jakhanwala, MD & CEO, SAMHI added, “The conversion and the rebranding exercise of our existing portfolio to the Holiday Inn Express brand is one of the largest in the hospitality industry. We strongly believe that a combination of strong locations, a vibrant product and the power of the brand Holiday Inn Express, will lead the way for the midscale hotel space in India.”   

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MP Tourism to host ATTA’s AdventureNEXT in Bhopal from Dec 3-5

In a curtain raiser event held in New Delhi, the Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board has announced that it will host ‘AdventureNEXT’ in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh from December 3-5, 2018. The event is organised by Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA). The curtain raiser saw in presence Hari Ranjan Rao, MD, Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board; Gergana Nikolova, Regional Manager – Europe, ATTA; Jake Finifrock, Regional Director – Asia, ATTA; and Swadesh Kumar, President ATOAI. Rao said, “India has been a great destination in terms of adventure travel. We are grateful to ATTA that it agreed to come to India and bring so many partners from other parts of the world. I am also grateful to ATOAI who have been at the forefront to take this event forward.” Organised for the first time in Asia, AdventureNEXT is known for putting emerging adventure destinations on the world tourism map. Finifrock added, “ATTA is a member organisation that is made up of over 1300 members throughout the world. We like to provide opportunities to people to come together to learn from one another, to inspire one another, to have more opportunities to network and grow the adventure travel community. It’s not only an event for Madhya Pradesh but also for all adventure travel across India. We are expecting around 300-350 delegates to attend Adventure Next. Many of these will be international buyers who will come to see travel products available in India.”

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Cholan Tours inks agreement with Andhra Pradesh Tourism

Cholan Tours Pvt Ltd has signed an agreement with Andhra Pradesh Tourism Department for special darshans of Lord Venkateshwara at world famous shrine Tirupati Balaji, thus becoming first tour company to offer this service in collaboration with the Tourism Department. It is a known fact that it is probably the most visited Hindu temple by devotees from all over India and also by NRIs settled across the world. Pandian, MD of Cholan Tours Group informs, “Recent news reports mentioned that on certain days pilgrims waited for darshan for 20 hours and even people who paid Rs 300 for VIP darshan waited for 6 hours. Given the fact that mostly family members and elderly people come for Tirupati, these uncertain waiting hours are always a big concern for who wish to do this pilgrimage. Here, we in association with Andhra Pradesh Tourism come with a service of guaranteed special darshan (in maximum 02 hours’ time) in morning slot. I believe it will be a good news for those potential pilgrims who wishes to come to this holy destination. Those who book with us, will be taken in a group escorted by a guide who will ensure a quick & smooth passage for the tourists-cum-pilgrims.” He further informs that soon South Tourism will have its own office in Tirupati to ensure better coordination for the clients who book this service with them.

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120 Indians mark their presence at IMWF, Turkey

Around 300 attendees from over 55 countries are attending the International MICE & Wedding Forum taking place in Antalya, Turkey from May 28-June 1. India is represented by a strong contingent of 120 participants. The third edition of  the event is taking place at the  Titanic Deluxe Golf Belek, Antalya, Turkey.  Speaking at the event, Necip Fuat Ersoy, MD, IMWF said, “Our journey for this event has been hard, consistent and totally exhilarating. We pursued our dreams and each step we took propelled us to where we are today. I am so happy we dared to make this journey come true. Along the way, we met some incredible people and they all helped us. Friends, friends of our friends. I thank them all and without you this could not have happened.” IMWF brings together professionals, opinion leaders with strategic innovative ideas and partnerships in the industry. While the participants have the chance to communicate one-to-one with the world’s best MiCE and wedding planners, they establish long-term friendships and communication networks with industry trend makers from  different countries.

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Hellenic Travel Network opens sales office in Mumbai

Hellenic Travel Network has opened a sales office in India in co-operation with Griffon in Mumbai. With more than 30 years of proven experience in the travel industry, the company owns a fleet of cars and mini vans having capacity from 1-19 passengers. Besides this, the company also has an in-house IT department and launched an online B2B booking engine. Andreas Genthe, VP, Hellenic Travel Network, Greece, says, “We are excited to open our India sales office with Griffon in Mumbai. Vivek Jain, MD, Griffon, has been dealing with the Greek market for over 15 years as GSA of various cruise lines and airlines. He is well-versed with Greece mainland and islands and we are confident of our India sales office.” Hellenic Travel Network has launched a special India brochure that has packages designed for Indian travellers keeping in mind their special needs such as Indian vegetarian food, personalised private transfers and tours, and visits to monuments having special interest to Indian travellers. Hellenic Travel Network S.A. has also introduced private villa stay options so large families or close friends groups can stay in private villa which are fully equipped with swimming pool, gardens and even direct access to the beach.

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Ginger Hotels opens 24-key hotel in Goa

Ginger Hotels has opened its second hotel in Goa with the launch of Ginger Goa, Dona Paula. The move is in line with Indian Hotels Company Limited’s (IHCL) focus on increasing its footprint across segments to meet the consumer demand at various price points. The hotel offers 24 rooms with a choice of a private terrace or a balcony. Rahul Pandit, Former MD & CEO, Roots Corporation says, “We are delighted to expand brand Ginger in Goa with the opening of Ginger Goa, Dona Paula – our second hotel in Goa and the 17th in the western region. This move will only add momentum to the city’s thriving tourism and is in line with IHCL’s commitment to Goa.” Ginger Goa, Dona Paula enjoys a prime location and is situated between the Dona Paula beach and Vainguinim beach. The hotel is within a 40-minute drive from the airport and is near Panjim city centre as well as the Karmali railway station (Old Goa). It features a multi-cuisine restaurant, fitness centre, swimming pool, meeting facilities and complimentary Wi-Fi.

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CTRIP’s Tours4fun acquires stake in Travstarz Global Group

India Travel Award winners Pankaj Nagpal and Sucheta Nagpal, the founders of Travstarz, have announced that Tours4fun, a booking portal for global tours and activities and subsidiary of CTRIP, has ventured into India by acquiring a stake in Travstarz Global Group. The company will continue to be led by them as the Managing Director and Director & CEO respectively. Tours4fun has ventured into global travel B2B business with the launch of RezB2B Global Limited and its platform Rezb2b.com. The details of the deal were not disclosed by both parties. Post the investment, Travstarz Global Group will merge its platform Travelrezonline.com with Rezb2b.com and will dedicatedly run the group’s B2B business in Indian Sub-Continent and other adjoining regions. “With this alliance, we will expand much faster and will get access to latest technology, wide range of products and global markets. We shall be merging our online platform travelrezonline.com into Rezb2b.com and all further developments will be jointly done by our India and Global IT Teams to offer an advanced and robust online B2B system with best worldwide inventory of flights, hotels, packages, transfers and sight seeing, visas, travel insurance and forex. It will provide complete IT Solutions for travel agents, DMCs and hoteliers to seamlessly manage their own content online and provide them a platform to sell their own products to a worldwide audience through us. It is a technology driven product and will change the way travel businesses run across the globe. We will be rapidly expanding our DMC operations under the Travstarz Global DMC Network Program also,” said Pankaj Nagpal, MD, Travstarz Global Group and Sucheta Nagpal, Director & CEO. Established in 2009, Travstarz Global Group started with selling Hong …

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IRCTC likely to lower prices of luxury trains

Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) will be reducing the prices of luxury trains, informs Sarab Jit Singh, MD, Travelite (India) who recently attended IRCTC’s 1st Tourism Interactive Session with Travel Trade Partners and Associations. Singh informs that Ashwani Lohani, Chairman, Indian Railway Board, had a meeting with the major stakeholders in the travel trade, where he revealed this news. “Mr. Lohani is looking at rationalising the rates of luxury trains, which are extremely high at the moment. They will be starting the lowering down of rates with Maharaja Express. This is the first ever meeting by anybody from Railways with the travel trade. They had taken all notes and they will be taking necessary action which will benefit both tourism industry and railway board. It’s a very positive sign and we are very hopeful with Mr. Lohani taking such initiatives,” informed Singh.

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PATA India Chapter unanimously elects team for 2017-19

Rashmi Verma, Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, will lead PATA India Chapter as its Chairperson for the term 2017-19. This was announced during the 47th Annual General Meeting of PATA India Chapter held at The Claridges, New Delhi on December 19. While SanJeet, Director, DDP Publications, was re-elected as the association’s Vice Chairman; J.S. Taneja, MD, Travel Spirit International, will continue to hold the post of Hon. Secretary, and the post of Hon. Treasurer has been re-assigned to Vikram Madhok, MD, Abercrombie & Kent. The association also elected its Executive Committee for the term 2017-19. Under the Active Government Category, Rashmi Verma and Suman Billa, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India will hold the post, while Ravneet Kaur, CMD, ITDC and Sanjiv Garg, Additional Member T&C, Ministry of Railways will be EC members under the Associate Government Category. Pankaj Srivastava, Director-Commercial, Air India, has been elected EC member under the International Carrier category. Under the Domestic Carrier category, Ragini Chopra, VP, Jet Airways and M.P. Mall, CMD, IRCTC have been elected. The four posts for Travel Agents/Tour Operators category have been given to Vikram Madhok, J.S. Taneja, Snirmol Ghosh, Director, Indo Asia Tours and Anoop Kanuga, Director, Bathija Travels. Under the Hotels/ Associate Hotels category, the three members are: Renu Basu, VP, Indian Hotels; Arjun Sharma, MD, Select Holiday Resorts; and Rohit Arora, GM, Apeejay Surendra Park Hotel. SanJeet will be an EC member under the Sustaining Member category.

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