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NB Blogs

Impact of Tourism on our Economy: Our industry Needs a New, Credible and contemporary Narrative!

Does our industry need a new narrative on how it matters to the Indian economy? Is the present story inadequate to convince the powers that be? Has the time come for the government to fund a new study, both at secondary and primary levels, or would it be prudent for industry associations to get the ball rolling? The time to act is now, when the industry needs a more favourable and urgent hearing? At a …

NB Blogs

Important That We Calibrate How Hotels and Tourism Open Up, As Caring and Not Charging Over the Top, Sensitive to A Nation in Grief

As we look ahead to open our industry again, we must be cautious in how we portray ourselves as an industry: we must be seen as caring, sensitive and emerge as the first line of defence against the virus. And, we should not go aggressive in raising tariffs that may look like profiteering! It is important that we are seen as sensitive and caring, and not catering to the privileged. Our messaging needs to be …

NB Blogs

New Team IATO Must Dream Big, Embrace the Bigger Picture as Tourism gets Poised for a New Innings!

IATO elections 2021 have provided a signal for Change: members have voted across the two contesting teams giving a mandate for a joint national effort. IATO, the specialist industry association for inbound tourism elected its new team for the next two years. It was the first industry association election since we started opening up during the Covid era. Bravely, they did not allow e-votes but insisted on physical voting and presence. A surprising but impressive over 90% …

NB Blogs

What could our Leadership have Done Differently? What Corrections we may Consider in Going Forward with our Mission? What’s the Big Lesson from 2020?

TRAVEL is the bigger picture. Insight of the bigger picture, we need fresh anchors to build our story hereon. The hospitality industry should stop pursuing its alignment with tourism and instead align with travel and infrastructure, as an essential accommodation sector. There is no travel without accommodation. And there is no economy and industry without travel. The year 2020 will go down in history – not as a year that marked the beginning of a …

NB Blogs

National carrier Air India is a Most Powerful ‘Made in India’ Brand; We Must Ensure we Keep it this Way!

PM Modi’s aspirations for India being a global power to reckon with are possibly going unrecognized in one very important and perhaps a most critical area. Among our various requisites on the country’s and indeed our Prime Minister’s, wish list ought to be air connectivity between India and the world, serviced by least 2 to 3 Indian owned, globally connected and reputed airlines. A natural corollary out of the present efforts to open travel across …

NB Blogs

Puneet Dhawan takes Charge at Accor; Hospitality Takeover by Indian Origin Heads is Complete!

Puneet Dhawan has taken over as Head of Accor in India! While the announcement was made a few months back, he took over physical charge recently, as he was held up overseas on account of Covid restrictions on air travel. With his joining as head of Accor, taking over from Frenchman Jean-Michel Casse, the changeover to local is complete. All other foreign chains in India have an Indian origin head. Marriott has Neeraj, Hilton has …

NB Blogs

ITC weighs ‘alternate structure’ for hotels business for value creation, says Chairman Sanjiv Puri

In an extensive report, published across newspapers, while commenting on the diversified conglomerate ITC’s progress report card, its chairman Sanjiv Puri has told at a media interaction that the company will examine an “alternative structure” for its hotels business. He is reported to have said that the company is considering focus on an asset-right strategy and will look at some alternative structuring vehicles for value creation. This would be in line with present trends in …

NB Blogs

Times Like These Warrant we give new names to Tourism and Hotels

The wheels of the nation have begun to move, after a most ominous pause, that at one time looked dangerously moving into a full-stop mode. Then, the stop appeared to become a comma, then, slowly started giving way to making short sentences, and now bigger ones. While the threat of lives, continues, the threat to livelihoods has become greater and given a calibrated move towards normalization, the world, and we in India, would start learning …

NB Blogs

PM emerges biggest mascot for Indian tourism; time to create a Tourism Commission

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s speech on the 73rd Independence Day has batted for tourism, even more vehemently than any tourism industry protagonist ever could! He used the word ‘tourism’ a dozen times, which in itself was remarkable for our industry that has come to accept that tourism is not meant to be mentioned. Because that has been the rule, more often than not. Such importance has come as a shot in the arm for an …

NB Blogs

Kapil Chopra puts his stamp on The Postcard; makes the much-anticipated announcement

Life has come full circle for Kapil Chopra. The much-awaited announcement has finally come. After quitting the Oberoi Group earlier this year, there was much speculation about what he would do next. Post his life at the Oberoi, he had assumed an active Chairperson role at EasyDiner, an enterprise he had already been associated with. In recent months, he had begun talking about his luxury brand. Amidst an intimate gathering of media, friends, and his …

NB Blogs

That the govt. means business is best demonstrated by not being in the business to run Air India: Are we missing an opportunity?

The much-awaited sale of the national carrier attracted no buyer. The writing was on the wall. Some concern had been expressed by the prospective bidders that the terms of proposed sale were not attractive enough. Firstly, the huge debt, estimated to be around INR 48,877 crore, that would come with the airline, the determination of the government to retain 24% equity, and then the uncertain future of Indian aviation were all dampeners. Did the government go ahead, …

NB Blogs

IndiGo 2.0 gets going

Indigo is in the news again, this time in the process of announcing its new management team, as it embarks upon its next phase of development. Having acquired 140 aircrafts, all one type, become India’s leading airline by market share, its next phase will fly on multi-type aircraft, low cost long haul, and buying planes instead of leasing them. Its next phase will need more senior people, with more international experience. Its outgoing president has …

NB Blogs

Heritage Needs PPP, Private Sector has Equal Stake in Conservation

The signing of the maintenance agreement between Dalmia Bharat and Indian government for the upkeep of Red Fort is being criticized, for all the wrong reasons. Infact, adoption can be game-changer for our monuments nationwide. Is the private sector less ‘national’ than the government? Is the PPP model a sell-out of national heritage? Has the government ceded control of its assets? None of this is true. Only the leasing of conveniences, upkeep and upgrading of …

NB Blogs

South Mumbai embodies the spirit of the city, needs to be cherished for tourism

South of South Mumbai!! How often do we visit this prized part of the city? If only we had meetings with government or had reason to stay at any of the two most iconic hotels of Mumbai – The Taj Mahal Palace, Mumbai and The Oberoi. A larger part of visitors come for business and stay which ever part of the city beckons them, and they stay adjacent to where the business is. And the …

NB Blogs

Ten million done, next ten million in three years, says Minister, but how is the question?

We clocked ​ten million international arrivals​ in 2017. Whatever the potential of our country may be, the fact is that it is a historic milestone. There were muted celebrations on the occasion which also stands to reason because none of us were really gloating over it. We all realise that given India’s potential as a tourist destination, this feat should have been achieved a long time ago. It was during the time of the then cabinet secretary …

NB Blogs

Kapil Chopra to start his innings as an entrepreneur, quits the Oberoi Group

Seasoned hotelier Kapil Chopra has called it a day at Oberoi Hotels. In a letter from the Executive Chairman PRS Oberoi, announcing his exit, Mr. Oberoi personally acknowledged the contribution of Kapil Chopra to his chain, specifically for showing up a high RevPar for all his properties. ​Over the years, ​Kapil has been known to be a tough taskmaster, always pushing his team to perform, ​ consistently harping on yields. ​H​e has also been instrumental …