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Luxury Hospitality in India

Checking in to a new experience

Hospitality is a vital part of the luxury market. Think hospitality and visions of huge luxurious hotels with tastefully furnished rooms, elegant candlelit dinners and liveried staffers waiting on your hand and foot come to mind. Hotels have always provided the common man a glimpse of what entails luxury.
Earlier, going to such hotels was reserved for special occasions. Businessmen or the working man would go for lunch or dinner parties. Going to luxury hotels was reserved only for the privileged in the past. Now, with a lot more disposable income to burn, people go to hotels to try out new things. Increasingly, thanks to social media, people want to try out new things, such as the cuisine offered in a hotel’s restaurant or the outdoor activities. People want to experience things far beyond just bed and breakfast. Hotels strive to make the experience for each guest unique and memorable.
These properties have also included luxury retail stores in their properties so customers can get shopping done while on holiday.
Among the many hotel chains, the Indian Hotels Company Limited (IHCL), the Oberoi Group of Hotels and ITC Group of Hotels are some of the oldest and have left an indelible mark on the luxury hospitality sector’s landscape. IHCL, the first hotel group in the country, was the parent company behind the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel that opened in 1903 in Mumbai, and 196 other Taj properties across the country and abroad. The said hotel, in fact, played host to several eminent personalities, including former US president Barack Obama and his wife Michelle.

The Oberoi Group operates 31 luxury hotels in the country and abroad while the ITC group has 14 luxury hotels. What do the three companies have in common? Luxurious and unmatched service that has remained unchanged for decades despite the changing times. These hotels have left a deep impression on people that helps draw in more guests, both old and new.
These companies have already built a teflon reputation but not far behind are some newer luxury brands that have managed to create a niche for themselves by focussing on experiential living and a non-generic approach to service.

One of these brands is the Roseate Hotels and Resorts Group, which opened the Roseate Delhi. The group also owns a luxury resort in Rishikesh and a villa in Bath, England. The group promises to provide luxurious stay for its guests along with a no-frills attached service. Not just that, they have their own retail portal for people to shop for confectionery and apparel. The group owns modern properties without compromising on substance. The Roseate in Delhi is one of the best choices for business travellers and people who’re looking for a chic and stylish hotel replete with luxury.

The Postcard Hotels group provides luxurious holidays in idyllic locations with its properties nestled in the most pristine locations in the country. They aim to provide a relaxing stay along with a focus on the area’s culture. If you get tired of just eating the sumptuous traditional food of the region and relaxing under the sun, their hotels provide traditional activities reflective of the culture there. The hotels also provide ayurvedic wellness treatments, ensuring when the guests leave they are ready to take on the world with renewed vigour.
Standing on a 21-acre private island in Udai Sagar Lake, among topiaries and obelisks, is the Raffles Hotel in Udaipur. The newly opened 101-room luxury haven was painstakingly decorated with the help of local artisans with influences of European and Mughal architecture. The food and liquor is all sourced hyper locally and the tastefully decorated, spacious suites are meant to elicit wonder among its guests.

With the Covid-19 pandemic wreaking havoc on the hospitality industry, many hotels were forced to scale down operations while some shut down for the foreseeable future. The current situation has forced hotels to depend on domestic tourists. Staycations, a relatively new concept, has gained a lot of popularity in the present situation. People, tired of being stuck at home with most working from home, pack up and literally run for the hills as soon as soon as the government eases the Covid restrictions. These hotels ensure that despite the strict protocols, guests get the best experience.
Despite the many obstacles, it’ll be very difficult for the hospitality industry to just stop functioning. Luxury hotels will continue to symbolise class, enjoying heavy patronage from within the country and abroad. Once the pandemic ends, many of these hotels can look forward to much brighter prospects.
To pursue a career in the Luxury Industry, join the Master’s degree in Luxury Brand Management at the INSD School of Luxury. A 12-month program that lets you study in India and Paris and work for up to 6 months, accredited by College De Paris.


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