Recent surveys show that Indian travelers seek accommodation that expresses their individuality. They want to make a statement through a holiday that is particular in each manner. With domestic remains and boutique mattress-and-breakfast alternatives throughout the globe catering to this aspiration, Lounge spoke to Saurabh Rai, government vice-president (South Asia, South-East Asia, Middle East, Africa, and Australasia), Preferred Hotels & Resorts, which has a diverse portfolio of independent lodges, resorts, and houses, approximately how luxury inns are rising to this undertaking. Edited excerpts:
The outbound journey from India is still lots of approximate hotels, but there’s a small but rapid-growing segment of shared space accommodation space as nicely. The fashion of multigenerational travel—grandparents, parents, and youngsters visiting together—backs it up. The experience of freedom you get in a shared lodging is relevant. The 2nd issue is that city Indians have a mature travel palette. They experience the journey and want to strive for different things, away from the tried and tested inside the lodges area. Having stated that, ever considering we set up an office in India in 2007-08, we’ve got in no way visible a fixed of consecutive years when our numbers dipped.
The market is humongous, and the bounty is limitless, from primary towns, including Delhi, to secondary cities and tertiary ones like Indore. I am satisfied to verify that India’s outbound has been stable across segments. One sees growth in shorter-haul destinations with Singapore, Hong Kong, and Dubai. However, the thrilling exchange is that travel is now not approximately going to number one gateway cities, including Paris, but about staying in Lyon, Strasbourg, or Rhône Valley.
You have spoken in advance approximately the underwhelming numbers of global entertainment inbound tours. What can hotels do to fix that?
Last I heard, the metropolis of Dubai has a larger formally registered resort room stock—with near 118,000 keys across 3-, four- and 5-megastar inns—than India as a country. Motels have emerged as the window to the vicinity in locations controlled to do properly in the international leisure phase. It isn’t always about providing terrific enjoyment within the resort’s confines. However, it’s miles the general experience of the vacation spot that the traveler takes back.
While in India, we had been the front runners in providing fashionable international accommodation. Yet, the instant you step out, the blast in your face is so extreme that it makes you forget approximately that lap of luxury in no time. How do you convey an experience of consistency to the revel in? Not for a moment am I pronouncing that this desires to be an always steeply-priced experience, which compromises the authenticity of all of it. But can you curate an experience that is seamless, secure, and inspiring? Can a partnership among inns, journey, advisory, and the ground service network offer an authentic orchestrated enjoyment? Unless we convey completeness of revel, there could be an experience of fatigue around the destination.
What differentiators can inns provide to counter stories curated with boutique B&Bs?
The differentiator lies in the provider, human beings, and software program. Some of the most memorable visitor reports usually have to do with human beings and nearly never with the product. It’s the human touch that subjects.