Naveen Patnaik Vol XX No by gbs13765

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									Vol. XX No. 16; August 2 nd issue 2008                                A DDP PUBLICATION                                                              Pages:36                                            Rs. 50/-


                                      Aamir Khan is the brand ambassador for tourism campaign ....03
                                      Airlines-travel agents stalemate over zero commission ..............10
                                      Singapore Airlines to double daily flights from Delhi................18

Focus on partnership;
industry discovers Orissa
ASSOCIATION OF TOUR OPERATORS (IATO), held in                                                                          Award for ‘An Indian Journey’
Bhubaneswar from August 7 to 10, apart from being
known for many things would be mostly remembered
for its stress on partnerships.

       A N I L M AT H U R                                     to ensure more professional organisation,
                                                              leaving the leadership to take active part
      he annual convention of IATO,                           in deliberations as such. The meet led to

T     which was held at the Swosti Plaza,
      Bhubaneswar this year with
'Managing Growth' as its theme, attracted
                                                              the outside world coming to know more
                                                              of Orissa, which has traditionally, more
                                                              often than not, been represented by peo-

                                                                                                                          It was a proud moment for Durga Das Publications (DDP) at Bhubaneswar. An
                                                                                                                       Indian Journey, published by DDP, was honoured with the 'Best Travel Magazine'
                                                                                                                       award by the Indian Association of Tour Operators.

                                                                                                                      bial red carpet for the delegates, be it the          this challenging exercise was evident
                                                                                                                      cultural or cuisine offerings. At the pro-            throughout, even from the planning
                                                                                                                      fessional level, the thrust and focus at the          stage. M C Bhandare, governor, Orissa
                                                                                                                      convention was on partnerships. This                  and Naveen Patnaik, chief minister,
Orissa chief minister Naveen Patnaik, S Banerjee, secretary tourism, Vijay Thakur, IATO president and others at the   word, synergy, and infrastructure devel-              Orissa took time off to address the
convention opening
                                                                                                                      opment, along with awareness, kept crop-              convention while D P Mishra, tourism
over a thousand delegates and was the first                   ple like J K Mohanty from the Swosti                    ping up during the three days of serious              minister, Orissa sat through most of the
such meet in the eastern state of Orissa.                     group and B Patra from Toshali.                         deliberations.                                        sessions. S Banerjee, secretary tourism,
   Besides this, the convention had many                          The political, bureaucratic and indus-                 That the state was keen to promote                 Sanjay Kothari, additional director
other firsts too. It was partly outsourced                    try leadership in the state laid the prover-            tourism and involve the private sector in                                  Contd. on page 5

Aamir Khan is the brand
ambassador for tourism campaign
MOT is apparently gearing up to draw the world's attention to
'Incredible India' through massive campaigns. Example being the recent
announcement of Bollywood star Aamir Khan as the brand ambassador.
     T T B U R E AU                                                                                         to sensitise people
                                                                                                            against harassment of
     fter a meeting with                                                                                    tourists particularly
A    Ambika Soni, Union
minister for tourism and cul-
                                                                                                            women          tourists.
                                                                                                            "Safeguarding of our
ture, Aamir Khan has agreed                                                                                 rich cultural heritage
to be the brand ambassador                                                                                  while        promoting
of 'Atithi Devo Bhavah’                                                                                     tourism is an important
Campaign for the ministry of                                                                                issue and the associa-
tourism, government of                                                                                      tion of Khan will defi-
India. Khan will promote the                                                                                nitely bring desired
ministry's efforts both for                                                                                 results," she added.
domestic and foreign tourists Addressing a joint press conference (L-R): Ambika Soni and Aamir Khan            In its endeavour to
through ad-campaigns in                                                                                     make tourism the most
print and electronic media in hon-      tourism ministry's efforts to make                    viable employment generation sec-
orary basis to increase social aware-   people aware about the safety and                     tor, the ministry of tourism also
ness about the needs of the domes-      security of tourists, hygiene, sanita-                demonstrated spectacular activities
tic and foreign tourists, especially    tion and vandalisation of historical                  during Beijing Olympics in China tak-
women tourists.                         monuments. She also informed that                     ing advantage of the large number of
    According to Soni, the mass         the ministry's efforts will be to have                participants, visitors and media par-
appeal of the actor will further boost  an idea exchange with Khan on how                     ticipating in the event.
     # 1     I N   C I R C U L AT I O N     &    R E A D E R S H I P

                                                                                                                                                       TRAFFIC UPDATE
       TRAVTALK                                                                      Reasonable air traffic witnessed,
                                                                                     private carriers increase share
  Bhubaneswar                                                                        TRAFFIC UPDATE The ministry unveiled that the international passenger
                                                                                     traffic has registered an increase of 9.7 per cent at all airports taken
    follow up                                                                        together during April-May 2007- 08, while the domestic passenger traffic
                                                                                     has registered marginal increase of 6.8 per cent during the same period.
     he success of the 24th Annual
T    Convention of IATO in Bhubaneswar
has given reason to rejoice for the local
                                                                                          T T B U R E AU                                                         lows: Air India
                                                                                                                                                                 (domestic) - 17.71
                                                                                           ccording to the recent traffic                                        lakhs, Jet Airways -
hosts, Orissa and the country as such, as
it signalled the coming on the scene of
                                                                                     A     update published by the min-
                                                                                     istry of civil aviation, the interna-
                                                                                                                                                                 24.28          lakhs,
                                                                                                                                                                 JetLite- 9.48 lakhs,
another convention destination.                                                      tional passenger traffic was 2.6 mil-                                       Deccan - 15.54
   The growth of the IT and other indus-                                             lion registering an increase of 10.8                                        lakhs, Kingfisher -
tries in the eastern state is sure to                                                per cent during May 2008 as com-                                            16.52          lakhs,
                                                                                     pared to passenger traffic handled                                          SpiceJet - 12.04
induce more demand for conventions                                                   in May 2007. The domestic passen-                                           lakhs, Paramount -
and meetings, and the IATO convention                                                ger traffic in May 2008, on the other                                       1.41 lakhs, Go Air -
has led to some justified confidence that                                            hand, touched 8.11 million from                                             4.49 lakhs and
                                                                                     7.62 million in May 2007 register-                                          IndiGo- 13.50 lakhs.
this can be done well in the state capi-                                             ing an increase of 6.5 per cent.                                                The percentage share of the         Paramount - 0.49 lakhs, Go Air -
tal. While good hotels and convention                                                    The share of private airlines on                                        carriers in the second quarter of       0.75 lakhs, IndiGo - 3.20 lakhs,
facilities have developed, it is still to be                                         the domestic sector has further                                             2008 was: Air India (domestic) 15.4     MDLR - 0.07 lakhs.
seen if the infrastructure, such as trans-                                           improved to 83.5 per cent, 85.0 per                                         per cent, Jet Airways - 21.1 per cent,      Market share of Air India, Jet
                                                                                     cent and 77.0 per cent in aircraft                                          JetLite - 8.2 per cent, Deccan - 13.5   Airways, Kingfisher, Jetlite and
port and electricity, will be able to meet                                           movement, passenger and freight                                             per cent, Kingfisher - 14.3 per cent,   Paramount have increased from 16.4
the sustained requirements.                                                          traffic respectively during May 2008.                                       Spice Jet - 10.5 per cent, Paramount    per cent, 21.2 per cent, 14.3 per
   Much thought had gone into con-                                                   The overall share of Low Cost                                               -1.2 per cent, Go Air - 3.9 per cent    cent, 8.1 per cent and 1.3 per cent
ceiving the business sessions, which                                                                                                                                             and IndiGo - 11.7 per   in June 2008 to 18.3 per cent, 23.5
                                                                                                                                                                                 cent.                   per cent, 15.4 per cent, 8.3 per cent
ensured that the delegates attended                                                                                                                                                  The percentage      and 1.6 per cent respectively in
them in good numbers, unlike in some                                                                                                                                             share of the carriers   July 2008.
earlier conventions. But a point which                                                                                                                                           in the second quarter       The total domestic passengers
                                                                                                                                                                                 of 2007 was: Air        carried by the scheduled airlines of
would need attention sooner rather                                                                                                                                               India (domestic) 21.0   India in the month of June, 2008 on
than later is what follow up or action is                                                                                                                                        per cent, Jet Airways   the other hand, were 35.06 lakhs.
taken after the sessions.                                                                                                                                                        - 21.9 per cent,        The break-up is as follows: Air India
   Another point that emerges from the                                                                                                                                           JetLite - 7.0 per       (Domestic) - 5.75 lakhs, Jet Airways
                                                                                                                                                                                 cent, Deccan - 18.1     -7.44 lakhs, Jet Lite -2.85 lakhs,
convention is that why the tour opera-                                                                                                                                           per cent, Kingfisher    Deccan - 4.48 lakhs, Kingfisher -
tors were not proactive earlier and                                                                                                                                              - 12.0 per cent,        5.02 lakhs, Spice Jet -3.66 lakhs,
decided to wait for such a meet to pro-                                                                                                                                          SpiceJet - 8.3 per      Paramount - 0.46 lakhs, Go Air -
mote Orissa.                                                                                                                                                                     cent, Paramount -1.4    1.08 lakhs and IndiGo - 4.22 lakhs.
                                                                                     Airlines for the month of May 2008                                          per cent, Go Air - 3.7 per cent and         The percentage share of the car-
   Many delegates admitted that far                                                  was 38.9 per cent in the domestic                                           IndiGo - 6.7 per cent.                  riers in the month of June 2008 was
from marketing or promoting the des-                                                 passengers' traffic compared to 35.1                                            The figure of the total domestic    Air India (Domestic) - 16.4 per cent,
tination they had not even visited the                                               per cent in May 2007.                                                       passengers carried by
                                                                                        It may be recalled that the total                                        the scheduled airlines
state capital, not to mention the other                                              domestic passengers carried by the                                          of India in the month of
places in the state. IATO has long prid-                                             scheduled airlines of India in the first                                    July has also been pub-
                                                                                                                                                                                                    The share of private airlines on
ed itself, as any travel organisation                                                quarter of 2008 (January 2008 to                                            lished by the ministry          the domestic sector has improved to
should, in claiming that the visitors to                                             March 2008) was 111.90 lakhs. The                                           of civil aviation. The            83.5 per cent, 85.0 per cent and
                                                                                     break-up of passengers carried is Air                                       number is 30.85 lakhs,
the convention location get a big boost                                              India (domestic) - 16.42 lakhs, Jet                                         while in the month              77.0 per cent in aircraft movement,
after it holds its convention there.                                                 Airways -25.44 lakhs, JetLite - 7.98                                        of June, 2008 the total             passenger and freight traffic
   This is welcome as far as it goes but                                             lakhs, Deccan - 16.39 lakhs,                                                domestic passengers
                                                                                     Kingfisher - 16.26 lakhs, SpiceJet -                                        carried was 35.34                  respectively during May 2008.
does not speak too well of the individ-
                                                                                     11.55 lakhs, Paramount -1.42 lakhs,                                         lakhs.
ual agents and operators who should                                                  Go Air - 4.92 lakhs and IndiGo -                                                The break-up of
take initiative in marketing lesser                                                  11.52 lakhs.                                                                passengers carried by the airlines in   Jet Airways - 21.2 per cent, JetLite
known destinations even before the                                                      The total domestic passengers                                            July, 2008 is as follows: Air India     - 8.1 per cent, Deccan - 12.8 per
                                                                                     carried by the scheduled airlines of                                        (domestic) - 5.56 lakhs, Jet Airways    cent, Kingfisher - 14.3 per cent,
travel associations decide to meet there,                                            India in the second quarter of 2008                                         -7.17 lakhs, Jet Lite - 2.53 lakhs,     SpiceJet - 10.4 per cent, Paramount
as IATO did in Bhubaneswar.                                                          (April 2008 to June 2008), was                                              Deccan - 3.45 lakhs, Kingfisher -       -1.3 per cent, Go Air - 3.1 per cent
                                                                                     115.14 lakhs. The break-up is as fol-                                       4.69 lakhs, Spice Jet - 2.55 lakhs,     and IndiGo - 12.0 per cent.

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                                                            BUSINESS SESSIONS                                                           AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008   TRAVTALK   5

More innovative product development urged for
    Contd. from page 1
general tourism and other department of       point being made that a dialogue process    made by both the stakeholders to keep the       Appropriately, focus on the host state,
tourism officials also travelled to the       should be put in place and some sacrifice   rates and packages at manageable levels.    especially in this case when the attrac-
                                                                                                                                      tions and potentials are less known, is one
                                                                                                                                      of the major objectives of such industry

  Focus on challenges                                                                                                                 gatherings. Orissa leadership, therefore,
                                                                                                                                      took full advantage of the convention to
                                                                                                                                      create greater awareness on the numer-
     This theme session                                                                                                               ous attractions, and investment opportu-
 on Managing Growth -                                                                                                                 nities available in the state.
 addressing India's chal-                                                                                                                 While the Buddhist attractions of UP
 lenges through respon-                                                                                                               and Bihar are well known, those of Orissa,
 sible tourism, was mod-                                                                                                              such as in Dhauli, are not. Long time
 erated by Arjun Sharma.                                                                                                              tourism administrator, Harsh Varma,
     Quoting figures,                                                                                                                 director - development assistance,
 Sharma revealed that                                                                                                                 UNWTO, Madrid, raised the point that
 even Dubai, where as                                                                                                                 India was becoming a stale destination as
 many as 72 hotels are in the pipeline, is going to rely on India for its HR requirements. Managing the growth that was coming        virtually no new worthwhile product has
 was the challenge India was facing, he said, setting the tone for the session.                                                       been added in the last few years. But this
     Amitabh Kant, principal secretary                                                                                                assertion was disputed by some, who said
 and special commissioner (industries)
 Kerala, did some interesting forecast-
 ing and looking-ahead exercise, point-
 ing out that there are many implications
 for travel in the changing economic and
 demographic patterns in the world.
     Harsh Varma, director, develop-
 ment assistance, UNWTO, Madrid,
 raised an important, controversial
 point, saying that the Indian product
 was getting stale. While Varma's stand
 was contested by some speakers and
 delegates, who felt that India had been
 fairly innovative in introducing new
 products, by and large the sentiments
 made by the long time UNWTO offi-
 cials were appreciated as they high-
 lighted the need for constant additions
 to attractions.
     Interestingly, he noted that sever-
 al states were still not being promot-
 ed. PATA associate director Oliver
 Martin felt that tourism was a resilient
 industry, and the middle class will
 continue to travel, in spite of minor
 problems. Arun Misra, joint secretary,
 ministry of civil aviation, emphasised
 the need for synergy between tourism
 and aviation industries.
     Talking of the prospects, Misra said
 that India was introducing sophisti-
 cated air traffic management system,
 and many airports were being built or
 modernised. Ajoy Misra, vice presi-
 dent, Hotel Association of India, said
 the supply of rooms was set to increase
 from the present 39,300 rooms to
 about 100,000 in the next five years.
     Top Taj Group official revealed that
 20 per cent of the Taj Group revenue
 came from the leisure market. Sanjay
 Kothari, additional director general
 tourism, spoke of the many initiatives
 taken by the department to boost

Temple City for the convention. The high
profile delegation elaborated on what
steps were being taken to boost tourism
and infrastructure and seeking the
active participation of the states and the
private sector.
    Talking of partnerships, an interest-
ing session was devoted on synergy
between the hotels and agents-two vital
segments of the industry, which may not
always agree on all things, especially tar-
iffs. Here, the deliberations led to the
  6 TRAVTALK     AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008                      BUSINESS SESSIONS

Over 1,000 delegates attended                                                                                                   North East tourism
that several new products had come up.
However, Varma quipped that a new hotel
                                              UNWTO official message was well taken
                                              - more innovative product development
                                                                                             ing place in many parts of the
                                                                                             world. The thread of synergy,      invites you
was not a product to attract a traveller      is required.                                   partnerships and cooperation
coming from abroad. Of course, the idea           In the sessions it also emerged that due   around the string of tourism                                   Tourism consultant P K
                                                                                                                                                        Dong, who has spent long
                                                                                                                                                        years in Germany, Malaysia

 Orissa - The Essence of Incredible India                                                                                                               and in Sikkim, promoting
                                                                                                                                                        tourism, spoke on the
                                                                                                                                                        attractions of North Eastern
                                                                                                                                                        (NE) part of the country. He
     Highlighting the importance and                                                                                                                    thanked IATO for always
 potential of the host state is always a                                                                                        remembering the NE sisters and appealed to the
 major plus point of IATO conventions.                                                                                          agents and operators to promote the region, which
 And this is not only in terms of the                                                                                           is undergoing dynamic changes.
 scenic attractions but also as an area                                                                                             Dong said that the air connectivity has improved
 for investment.                                                                                                                tremendously, with as many as five airports func-
     This is exactly what the second ses-                                                                                       tional in the region. He gave the important infor-
 sion set out to do, when Parag Gupta,                                                                                          mation that the Leave Travel Concession rules had
 secretary tourism, government of                                                                                               been liberalised, making air travel easier for A, B,
 Orissa, listed the many opportunities                                                                                          C and D categories of employees. Dong said that
 that the eastern, undiscovered state,                                                                                          LTC facility was available to some 30 lakh govern-
 has to offer to the investors in the hospitality sector.       four hotel projects. Similarly, near Konarak also, massive      ment employees and 60 lakhs PSU employee. This,
 Gupta emphasised that the state was seeking to augment         projects are envisaged, which will give investment              along with average of four family members, meant
 the tourism infrastructure through the Public Private          chances to the entrepreneurs. Gupta told the IATO del-          that as many as three crore people were waiting
 Partnership mode, and, hence, there were many areas            egates, more than a thousand of them, that golf resorts         for an opportunity to visit the North East. But,
 where investors can come in, for the mutual benefit of         and luxury tourist train, too, were coming up. The Orissa       Dong regretted that very few agents and operators
 all concerned. The Samukha Beach Project, on the Puri-         Tourism Development Corporation -OTDC - had                     had taken advantage of this huge, untapped mar-
 Chilka route, offers great investment opportunities for        embarked on upgrading its many properties.                      ket, and invited them to do so.

                                                                                                                                                     well. It goes to the credit of the
 New trends in tourism                                                                             by Shringi was that the ongoing online sen-
                                                                                                   timent was being aided by the 'urban chaos',
                                                                                                                                                     organisers, who had arranged
                                                                                                                                                     for a short session on HIV/AIDS
                                                                                                   where people preferred to do rail and air         to highlight the problem in the
    The third session of IATO Convention on       tensions would have an impact on tourism.        bookings on the net rather than face the          hospitality industry, conveying
 New Trends in Tourism was moderated by           He said that there was a need to create and      traffic jams on the roads.                        the message that there is no
 SanJeet, director, Durga Das Publications.       cater to new products.                               Similarly, Niranjan Khatri, general           use in brushing the problem
                                                                                                    manager, ITC Hotels spoke on his favourite       under the carpet, as it is being
                                                                                                    energy/ecology themes, saying that the           done. The need to be constant-
                                                                                                    tourists should be sensitised on the issues      ly alert on the Human
                                                                                                    of environment and climate change.               Resources front was also
                                                                                                        Vivek Govil, president and CEO, Pearson      stressed upon, along with the
                                                                                                    Education said, "Customer relationship man-      fact that the North East region
                                                                                                    agement is a process to replace what you can     should get more attention of
                                                                                                    no longer do yourself."                          the travel industry, especially
                                                                                                        However, he was against the idea of          since the 'Leave Travel
                                                                                                    sending newsletters. "Let the people come        Concession' facility for travel to
                                                                                                    to you for information," he said.                the beautiful region is now
 Backed by well-researched facts, he set the          Dhruv Shringi, co-founder and CEO,               Sudhir Sahi, UNDP consultant, spoke           available to numerous govern-
 subject in perspective by pointing out the, claimed that 'online' bookings        about Rural Tourism itineraries, not the          ment and PSU employees.
 likely new trends in tourism. Interestingly,     have already become mainstream. India has        concept.                                              Listing the many unex-
 he quoted the examples of Macau and              59 million personal computer users and 32            Lastly, S K Misra, chairman, INTACH,          plored attractions of his
 Dubai, which have become success stories         million Internet users. "India stands for        revealed how rural tourism projects had           State, Debasish Samantaray,
 in tourism.                                      everything and it should decide what to go       helped the incomes of the people in the           chairman, Orissa Tourism
     SanJeet said that the oil crisis, wars and   for," he quipped. An interesting point made      areas rise.                                       Development Corporation,
                                                                                                                                                     said, "Let us join hands to pro-
                                                                                                                                                     mote Orissa." He invited the
of such meets is not to strive for una-       notice has to be taken to technological        was evident in almost all the sessions and   IATO members and others to expl ore
nimity of views or praise everything. The     changes and the demographic shifts tak-        at the impressive, colourful inaugural as    Orissa, which has embarked on a massive
 8 TRAVTALK      AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008                     BUSINESS SESSIONS

IATO meet sends strong signals for                                                                                                        24th IATO Convention
                                                                                                                                          • Held for the first time in Orissa

partnerships to ease hurdles                                                                                                              • Over 1,000 delegates participated
                                                                                                                                          • Managing growth was the main
infrastructure development programme.            In the same vein, Arjun Sharma,           "There are tremendous opportunities of
                                                                                                                                          • Served as platform to promote
The state has tremendous investment           senior vice president, IATO and chairman,    partnerships and we can be partners to
opportunities as well.                        XXIV IATO Annual Convention, felt,           ease hurdles." He spoke of 'Incredible
                                                                                                                                          • Was an opportunity for

 Tour operators & hotels synergies                                                                                                        • IATO signed MoU with MP
                                                                                                                                          • It will sign another pact with Orissa
     This important session - the cordial     rates, Bengaluru was seeing some shift       vice president, The Oberoi Group,
 ties between the two segments is vital       in guest patterns, while Chennai has had     appealed to the operators to try and fill      • The convention was carbon light
 for travel and tourism - was moderated       a five per cent decline in rates and occu-   up hotel rooms for longer periods, rather        and IATO planted 20,000 saplings
 by Vikram Madhok , MD, A&K India. It         pancy. Ajay Bakaya, executive director,      than just concentrate on a few months.           in Orissa
 generated some heat and a little light but   Sarovar Hotels, made the point that indi-    This would help matters, he felt.
 the achievement could be that the two        vidual hotels cannot be guided by phi-       Homa Mistry, MD, Trail Blazers, noted
 agreed to the need for a mechanism to        losophy and business decisions based on      that there has been a shift in focus in       Orissa, as it had done with Madhya
 sort out issues and differences. Manav       demand and supply have to be taken. But      hotels from the sales and marketing           Pradesh, said Vijay Thakur, president,
 Thadani, MD, HVS International, gave         he agreed to sit down with the operators     department to the revenue department.         IATO. He further stressed upon the need
 an overview of the demand-supply situ-       to sort out issues and problems.             “Can we sell rooms during the April-          for land banks in states to overcome the
 ation in some major cities. Delhi region,        Intervening, Subhash Goyal, of Stic,     September period?” he asked, adding           accommodation problems. Training and
 with a thousand new rooms supply, could      felt that high hotel rates was a 'short      that both hotels and operators should         education also need attention, felt IATO.
 see rate stabilisation. Because of high      sighted' policy. Ravish Swarup, senior       take a small cut in margins.                      Banerjee noted that tourism has
                                                                                                                                         emerged as a development tool. The dis-
                                                                                                                                         cerning traveller was waiting to explore
                                                                                           India' being on world map as never before     the diversity of the country, he said. He
Focus on HR issues                                                                         and emphasised the need to manage
                                                                                           growth and regional challenges.
                                                                                                                                         unveiled a joint advertising scheme,
                                                                                                                                         under which the Centre will provide 34
    Ashish Gupta, founder, Dimension Learning, till recently with Ernest & Young,          Significantly, the LPTI boss said, "We need   per cent assistance, and balance will be
 spoke on the importance of Human Resources in the hospitality industry. Gupta             to move the wheel, not to reinvent it."       given by states and private sector. In the
 said that HR was most important for sustainable growth. Both quality and                      To show that it cares for the environ-    case of North East, the ministry of tourism
 quantity were to be considered. For handling 10 million tourists, 50 million trained      ment, the convention was carbon               will bear 75 per cent of cost, and the state
 manpower was required, he said. He suggested that the travel trade bodies be              light and IATO planted 20,000 saplings        will not have to contribute any money.
 more pro-active on HR issues.                                                             in Orissa.                                        Close behind, Kothari revealed the
                                                                                               IATO is also signing a MOU with                                Contd. on page 14
                                                                                   HOTELS                                                          AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008   TRAVTALK    9

Tivoli gives form to its dream
                                                                                                                                                          our restaurant and pub."
                                                                                                                                                              Shifting his focus from the
                                                                                                                                                          new project, Gupta talks about
                                                                                                                                                          his existing Tivoli Garden Hotel.

project in Dharuhera                                                                                                                                      "Tivoli Garden Hotel is known for
                                                                                                                                                          making all the difference with
                                                                                                                                                          unmatched ambience, enchant-
                                                                                                                                                          ing surroundings and fascinat-
TIVOLI GROUP is in an expansion mode. The group is coming up with a                                                                                       ing luxuries at one place. Set
new property in Dharuhera and has a few more projects in the pipeline.                                                                                    amidst lush green sprawling
                                                                                                                                                          lawns is a Spanish Hacienda
Puneet Gupta, MD, Tivoli Group, speaks exclusively to       about the                         TRAVTALK                                                    promising the luxury of a 5-star
                                                                                                                                                          hotel. Just 12 km from the inter-
new ventures and the existing property.                                                                                      Puneet Gupta,                national airport and 14 km from
                                                                                                                             managing director,
                                                                                                                             Tivoli Group                 the domestic airport, the resort
    SANJANA BHOWMICK                            contained ultra-modern city will pamper           our base," he said.                                     is ideal not only for those look-
                                                its residents with scenic wealth and a                While sharing his                                   ing for a peaceful and refreshing

"D      haruhera is a small town in
        Haryana, which is creating quite a
buzz in the real estate market. Not only
will it neighbour the SEZ, this little town
is also reaping the benefits of its proximi-
                                                robust infrastructure. The landscape will
                                                be an interesting blend of buzzing cities
                                                and wilderness in its best manifestations,"
                                                says Gupta with a very positive attitude
                                                about his new venture, Tivoli Holiday
                                                Village which is coming up in Dharuhera.
                                                Further talking about the reasons behind
                                                                                                  promotional       and
                                                                                                  marketing plans for
                                                                                                  the existing property
                                                                                                  he said, "We are very
                                                                                                  aggressive with our
                                                                                                  promotional activities
                                                                                                  through various ways
                                                                                                                                    The current
                                                                                                                                scenario of the
                                                                                                                               industry is very
                                                                                                                                                          holiday but also for executives
                                                                                                                                                          looking for tranquil environs for
                                                                                                                                                          business occasions. At Tivoli
                                                                                                                                                          Garden, our international staff
                                                                                                                                                          takes pride in offering person-
                                                                                                                                                          alised services to each of our
                                                                                                                                                          guests. Highest levels of comfort,
 In the offing                                  choosing Dharuhera as the place for his           and different medi-
                                                                                                                                                          service, cuisine with lavish facil-
                                                dream project, he says, "Dharuhera is the         ums. In print media                                     ities for relaxation and enter-
 • Tivoli Holiday Village coming up             place which is wide open and allows con-          we are into all major               We all are          tainment, ensconced in Spanish
   in Dharuhera                                 venient accessibility to Delhi. Strategically     mainline newspa-                                        Hacienda architectural grandeur
                                                                                                                                     taking this
 •The group also plans to expand in             situated just 25 km from Delhi border on          pers, lifestyle maga-                                   and magnificence, Tivoli Garden
   Jaipur, Dehradun and Amritsar                NH 8, Dharuhera boasts of dedicated               zines and in-flight          trend on a very            has much more to unfurl. " He
   shortly                                      sectors, shopping mall and multiplex,             magazines. In out-             positive note.           further says, "The response for
                                                playgrounds, club with celebration zones,         door we are at the                                      the property is very encouraging

                                                academic and medicare facilities. The             best locations of                                       and we are on the verge of
ty to industrial hub Manesar. Experts are       group also plans to expand in Jaipur,             Delhi and NCR. Our                                      launching similar projects.
of the opinion that prices here will see an     Dehradun and Amritsar shortly.                    advertisements and                                      Average occupancy is 80 per cent
appreciation of 30 - 35 per cent over the           Tivoli's potential customers are social       property movies are also running in            and we expect it to reach 95 per cent."
next year. With saturation of South Delhi,      events clients, corporate, MICE and leisure.      cinema halls and PVR. Other than this              Gupta says, "The current scenario
it is time to look southwards. Dharuhera        "To attract our potential customers we            we are participating in various interna-       of the hospitality industry is very encour-
is the place which is wide open and allows      have advertisements, special schemes,             tional property fairs. Gourmet card takes      aging. We all are taking this trend on a
convenient accessibility to Delhi. This self-   incentives and direct tele-calling from           care of food and beverages sales of            very positive note."
  10 TRAVTALK         AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008                                ASSOCIATIONS

Airlines-travel agents stalemate                                                                                                                            Travel associations' take
                                                                                                                                                            • Agencies need time to change their
                                                                                                                                                              business model

over zero commission                                                                                                                                        • Agencies need time to renegotiate
                                                                                                                                                              customer contracts
                                                                                                                                                            • Agencies need time to modify
ZERO COMMISSION The current stalemate between airlines and agents bode well                                                                                   back-end software
for none. A delay in the resolution of the standoff could snowball into a major crisis as                                                                   • Agents need time to acquire skills to
                                                                                                                                                              serve as a consultant
it doesn't only mar domestic and international travel movement, or kills the agents or                                                                      • Agencies need time to train over
airlines, but also slows down the economic growth of these sunrise sectors.                                                                                   100,000 staffs across the country
                                                                                                                                                            • Agencies need time to change
     S H AYA N M A L L I C K                                                                                           Anil Kalsi, chairman -                 method of service tax assessment
                                                                                                                       Northern Region, TAAI,                 which would only be possible from
     wo integral part of travel industry, the                                                                          "Because of the scale of econ-         April 1, '09 due to service tax rules
T    travel agents and airlines' pitched war
over the implementation of 'zero commis-
                                                                                                                       omy, none of these airlines
                                                                                                                       can afford the where-withal
sion regime' is fast gaining steam. The asso-                                                                          to open up tens and thou-           hailed by several other domestic and inter-
ciations called a strike of travel agents                                                                              sands of their own distribu-        national airlines like Jet Airways,
across India on August 14 calling it 'a show                                                                           tion centres on a pan-India         Kingfisher, Singapore Airlines, and mor are
of unity and solidarity' against the airlines'                                                                         basis for their ticket sales.       expected to join the flock andhave all
decision of zero commission from                                                                                       Therefore this irrational deci-     planned to tow in tandem with AI's deci-
November 1, 2008 and to give airlines a                                                                                sion would not just kill the air-   sion The announcment was taken with a
taste of 'how life will be without a travel                                                                            line industry but also jeopar-      pinch of salt by travel agents and the
agent.' The travel agents and tour opera-                                                                              dise the survival of travel         representatives of TAAI, TAFI and IAAI met
tors across associations have all united         Rajji Rai,                        Anil Kalsi,                         agents across the country as        the AI officials at New Delhi on July 24,
under one umbrella in their fight against        vice president,                   chairman-Northern Region,           about 30 per cent of the trav-      2008. The meet eventually resulted in the
                                                 TAAI                              TAAI
the implementation of 'zero commission                                                                                 el agents would be out of           airlines considering their demand by
regime'. The associations have called the                                                                              business as an aftershock of        extending the commission regime by one
airlines' decision a unilateral one that has     business through travel agencies. Airlines              the decision's immediate repercussion."           more month, i.e. until Oct. 31. Whereas,
betrayed the spirit of principal agent rela-     like Air India (AI) only book about 8 per cent          Earlier on June 26, Air India, reeling under      the association is seeking the deferment of
tionship and would bear grave conse-             of tickets on their own and the rest 92 per             severe economic crunch because of soar-           zero per cent commission until April 30 as
quences for both the airlines and the trav-      cent is through travel trade. What ratio-               ing Air Turbine Fuel (ATF) costs, announced       they call it a renegade of AI's letter sent to
el agencies alike. Voicing strong protest,       nales do the airlines see of surviving if they          that with effect from October 1, 2008, it         them by the airline in 2004, which
Rajji Rai, vice president, Travel Agents         try to kill their distribution arm?"                    will not pay any commission which it pays         promised the agents a five year window for
Association of India (TAAI), said, "The air-          Airlines' major distribution arm in                as 5 per cent of base fare to the travel          the implementation of zero per cent regime
line industry gets about 85 per cent of their    Indian market is travel agent. Says                     agents. The decision has subsequently been        i.e. until April 30, 2009.
  12 TRAVTALK       AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008                         HOTELS/AGENTS

de Souza Group provides ultimate                                                                                                          Caper Travel
                                                                                                                                          turns ten
holistic experience to its guests                                                                                                              TT BUREAU

                                                                                                                                               aper Travel Company announced that
DE SOUZA GROUP In the serene beauty of Goa, de Souza group has set up five                                                                C    with the support its clients, associates
hotels that are a class apart. These hotels are Sun Village, Aldeia Santa Rita, Santiago                                                  and partners, it will be commemorating ten
                                                                                                                                          years of success in the travel industry on
Resorts, Horizon and the most recent Surya Sangolda. TRAVTALK finds out more.                                                             August 30, 2008. The company is headed
                                                                                                                                          by Bharat Atree, managing director, Caper
    TT BUREAU                                offering a perfect setting in which to        the 3-star Santiago Resorts. Each of its       Travel. Having started out in 1998 from a
                                             relax, with nine colourful Portuguese-        75 rooms is spacious, having separate                                          one-roomed ter-
   he 4-star hotel, Sun Village, presents    style blocks surrounding the refreshing       living rooms and balconies that over-                                           race office with
T  an indulgent, all-suite hotel experi-
ence within its landscaped environs. Sun
                                             pool. Sun loungers, spacious rooms, each
                                             with a private balcony and a multi-cui-
                                                                                           look the swimming pool. The resort has
                                                                                           a pool-side bar and a couple of restau-
                                                                                                                                                                           a staff of two, it
                                                                                                                                                                           now has two
                                                                                           rants that serve various cuisines.                                              offices in Delhi,
                                                                                               Located in the exciting strip of                                            one in Goa, and
                                                                                           Calangute, Horizon is perfect for holi-                                         associates and
                                                                                           daymakers of all ages who look for high                                         partners all over
                                                                                           standards of service right in the heart                                         the world. Its
                                                                                           of the resort centre. This attractive 3-                                        success in the
                                                                                           star complex is set in an excellent loca-                                       travel industry
                                                                                           tion, within easy reach of local ameni-        Bharat Atree,                    despite      stiff
                                                                                                                                          managing director, Caper Travel
                                                                                           ties and the beach. Besides visiting its                                        competition can
                                                                                           in-house multi-cuisine restaurant,                                              be attributed to
                                                                                           guests also have the option of visiting        effective networking, tapping all available
                                                                                           the nearby shacks on the beach for fur-        support sources, accurate marketing,
                                                                                           ther food and leisure options.                 understanding international consumer
                                                                                               Surya Sangolda, the first apart hotel      needs, and competitive pricing by con-
                                                                                           in Goa, is the fusion of an apartment and      tracting the best suppliers and negotiating
                                                                                           hotel, providing the comfort and the           the best rates. The Ball Room at Tivoli
                                                                                           service of a hotel, with the space and         Garden Resort, Chhatarpur Mandir Road
Village has 135 well-equipped rooms and      sine restaurant make Aldeia an irresistible   benefits of a fully furnished luxury           will witness a gala event celebrating the
offers a range of exciting cuisines in its   choice for the discerning tourist.            apartment. Surya Sangolda is designed          company's tenth anniversary. Big names
indoor and outdoor restaurants. Aldeia          An excellent choice for those who          to 4-star standards. It is a hamlet of self-   from the corporate world, hoteliers, and
Santa Rita on the other hand is a 3-star,    want a simple, compact accommodation          catering superior rooms, premium               the travel industry are expected to share
small and friendly 54-room complex,          and a friendly, informal atmosphere is        rooms and penthouses.                          in this joyous occasion.
                                                                          EXHIBITIONS                                                      AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008   TRAVTALK   13

New initiatives to help strengthen                                                                                                          29th episode
                                                                                                                                            •To date, around 80 per cent of the
                                                                                                                                              participants at the last edition

FITUR’s international dimension                                                                                                               have confirmed their attendance
                                                                                                                                              at FITUR´09
                                                                                                                                            • The fair's Website, www.fitur
FITUR will stage its 29th edition at Feria de Madrid between January 28                                                             , has been updated and
                                                                                                                                              is now available for all those who
and February 1, 2009. The staging of this edition will mark the renewal of its                                                                would like to consult the new
commitment to the industry. In this respect, new initiatives shall be undertaken                                                              features at FITUR ´09

to serve tourism professionals and to strengthen its international dimension.                                                              and global companies will feature in Hall
                                                                                                                                           6; America is presented in Hall 8; Europe,
    TT BUREAU                                                                                facilitating the orientation of trade visi-   North Africa and the Near East appears in
                                                                                             tors. The entire area available in Hall 2     Hall 10. As far as the national section of
     o date, around 80 per cent of the par-                                                  will once again be devoted to visitor reg-    the fair is concerned, the official Spanish
T    ticipants at the last edition have con-
firmed their attendance at FITUR´09.
                                                                                             istration. In this respect, the products
                                                                                             and services offered by companies will be
                                                                                                                                           bodies and organisations will be distrib-
                                                                                                                                           uted throughout the odd-numbered
Based on this marvellous response, the                                                       on show in Halls 4, 12 and 14.0. The rest         Halls 1, 3, 5, 7 and 9. Furthermore
fair´s organisers are working on various        place at the last edition of the fair, the   of the even-numbered halls will house the     FITUR CONGRESOS, to be staged
measures, such as conferences and coin-         29th edition will maintain the same lay-     international section: Asia, the Pacific,     between January 26-27, 2009 will be
ciding activities. Along with the new fea-      out and the same sections as before, thus    Africa and the international hotel chains     located in Hall 14.1.
tures that are due to be presented by the
exhibitors themselves, these measures
will consolidate the fair´s role as an effec-
tive meeting-point for all members of the
tourist industry.
    Furthermore, new issues of the digi-
tal newsletter known as FITUR News will
also be published shortly. This periodic
publication will offer information regard-
ing the fair, including new features to be
presented by exhibitors and news relat-
ing to the industry. It will be circulated to
more than 75,000 tourism professionals.
The fair´s Website,,
has also been updated and is now avail-
able to all those who would like to con-
sult the new features at FITUR ´09.
    In effect, the last edition of the fair,
FITUR ´08, brought together the tourism
products and services of some 13,530
represented companies from 170 coun-

          Digital newsletter
           known as FITUR
             News will be
          published shortly.
             This periodic
            publication will
           offer information
          regarding the fair.

tries/regions, distributed throughout a net
exhibition area measuring 100,500
square metres, which entailed growth of
12 per cent compared to the previous
year. Furthermore, some 255,817 visitors
were recorded, of whom 157,300 were
    For the second consecutive year,
FITUR will once again occupy the entire
exhibition space available at the exhibi-
tion centre (200,000 square metres), with
the halls presenting some important new
features, especially after the completion
of the work on Halls 12 and 14 and the
establishment of the new East Gate.
    The figures corresponding to the last
edition of FITUR included a new record
for participation at the event, thus con-
stituting the best starting-point for what
will now be its 29th edition.
    Following the reorganisation that took
  14 TRAVTALK       AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008                  BUSINESS SESSIONS

IATO signs MoU with Madhya Pradesh
    Contd. from page 8                       08 to 2011-12, he said, "It is the largest    41.8 million in 03-04, 44.7 million in        and interest in South East Asia could be
many steps taken by the MOT to boost         service industry in the country. Its impor-   2004-05, 47.8 million in 05-06, and           utilised by Orissa.
tourism and infrastructure and asked the     tance lies in being an instrument for eco-    grew to 51.1 million in 2006-07. Kothari          Bhandare, in an interesting address,
private sector to help in augmenting the     nomic development and employment              revealed that the part time guide scheme      spoke of the many unique attraction
accommodation and human resource sec-        generation, particularly in the remote and    was being launched to help the tourism        of Orissa, which should be explored
tors, which needed much attention.           backward areas."                              sector in a substantial way. He asked the     by the tourists. Giving the agents
Quoting the role of tourism from the XIth       Employment generation through              industry to promote, market, popularise       present a task, Bhandare said that each
Five Year Plan document, covering 2007-      tourism was 38.6 million in 2002-03,          circuits other than the most popular          of the 1000 delegates attending the con-

Family business - Taking on                                                                 Shiv Khera - Winners don't
the big boys and winning                                                                    do different things:
     This was rather a good topic but
 somehow the session and the speakers
                                             one was catering to the student and
                                             youth market segments and he took this
                                                                                            They do things differently
 failed to generate the required tempo or    up, with success.                                                                                Delegates had come with a lot of
 content to make it interesting.                 Interestingly, P N Nageshwaran, MD,                                                     expectations from Shiv Khera but his
     The rather unusual session sought to    Incent Tours, said that he did not believe                                                  talk, although well-attended, was full of
 discuss how family business can meet        in this big-small divide, adding that it                                                    empty gingoistic statements.
 the challenge from the big players.         was brand Incent that was important for                                                          He played to the galleries, which no
 Subhash Goyal, chairman, Stic Travel, a     him. Rajesh Mudgill, MD, Planet India                                                       doubt led to frequent clapping , but did
 success story of family enterprise, made    Travels, said synergy in the big players                                                    little else to cheer the delegates. Perhaps
 the point that self-confidence and faith    played a part in the whole success story.                                                   the low point of the convention was
 in self are most important to take on the       Industry veteran Inder Sharma said                                                      when Khera spoke of India still being
 big boys. He revealed that Inder Sharma,    that luck and ethics were important                                                         ruled by the whites, had it not been for
 of SITA World Travel, who was present       elements in the success story of SITA,                                                      Bhagat Singh.
 at the convention, was his role model,      as was the role of hiring competent
 when he set up Stic in 1973.                people like G Naqshband, who, too, was
     Find a gap in the market and fill the   present at the convention.
 gap, advised Goyal, stressing the need
 to be constantly innovative. He said no
                                                 Sharma said that while making prof-
                                             its was justified, profiteering was not.       MP: Improving infrastructure
                                                                                                Ashwani Lohani, MD, Madhya
                                                                                            Pradesh       Tourism     Development
                                                                                            Corporation (MPTDC) said that much
                                                                                            was happening to improve the road and
                                                                                            other infrastructure in the state, so that
                                                                                            the natural beauty could be enhanced
                                                                                            for the benefit of the visitors.
                                                                                            Significantly, he spoke of intra-state
                                                                                            travel, with people from one region
                                                                                            being encouraged to travel to other
                                                                                            regions. Lohani, who has been with the
                                                                                            ITDC and the ministry of tourism earli-
                                                                                            er, revealed innovative advertising cam-     given much importance. Frequent bus
                                                                                            paigns of the state tourism.                 services had facilitated travel, while
                                                                                                The revenues of the government           activities on Bhopal lake were popular.
                                                                                            tourism setups had risen much as a           The Rail Coach Restaurant at Bhopal
                                                                                            result of upgrading of services and pro-     was attracting a large clientele. Signage
                                                                                            fessionalism, he said, adding that the       was being improved and a list of
                                                                                            staff was also being well taken care of      heritage hotel sites was available for
                                                                                            now. Information Technology was being        the investors.

                                                                                           Gujarat to hold investor summit
                                                                                                 Gujarat, known for its outbound trav-   in tourism, according to Gujarat Tourism
                                                                                            el, is making efforts to increase inbound    officials.
                                                                                            travel, so that the economy gets a boost.        The state had business and pilgrim
                                                                                            A global investors summit is also slated     traffic and efforts were on to increase
                                                                                            to be held, with a target of Rs 15,000       the leisure segment.
                                                                                            crores. People in the travel industry,           Jammu and Kashmir, Puducherry,
                                                                                            such as guides, were being trained           Karnataka and other states also made
                                                                                            at government expense and one-day            presentations, showing what they were
                                                                                            training programmes were being organ-        doing for promoting tourism. Karnataka's
                                                                                            ised for drivers and conductors involved     Golden Chariot train was in focus.

                                                                                           ones, such as Delhi, Agra and Jaipur.         vention should send back at least
                                                                                              Offering his point of view, Patnaik        10,000 tourists each to Orissa,
                                                                                           spoke on the need to declare the existing     which will mean that one crore people
                                                                                           airport in Bhubaneswar as an interna-         will see the attractions of the State and
                                                                                           tional airport and that the proximity to      help the economy.
 16 TRAVTALK    AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008                  FAMILY ALBUM

Indian Routes                                                             Associations talk it out
launched in New Delhi
                                                                          Pictures show top executive members of TAAI, TAFI and IAAI at a
                                                                          meeting to decide on the action against 'zero per cent airlines
                                                                          commission. Praveen Chugh, C.V. Prasad, Rajji Rai (TAAI), Naresh
Select Group recently announced the launch of its new travel company      Rajkotia (IAAI), Rajiv Shroff (IAAI) and others attended the meeting.
'Indian Routes', a specialised destination management company for
India and South Asia. The team is lead by Kiran Joti, vice president &
business head. Joti is joined by Roma Satara, vice president - business
development, an industry veteran and founder and former owner of
'Distant Frontiers'.
                                                                                   HOTELS                                                           AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008    TRAVTALK     17

Starlite Hospitality appointed as
                                                                                                                                                                        Nizam' a specialty restau-
                                                                                                                                                                        rant, serving Hyderabadi
                                                                                                                                                                        and Indian Cuisine is
                                                                                                                                                                        amongst the best in the

Golkonda Hotel's north India GSA                                                                                                                                        city and has been recom-
                                                                                                                                                                        mended and featured
                                                                                                                                                                        in Jet Airways and
                                                                                                                                                                        Kingfisher        Airlines
STARLITE HOSPITALITY has been appointed as General Sales Agent (GSA)                                                                                                    in-flight     magazines.
for north India by The Golkonda Hotel, Hyderabad. Launched this year itself,                                                                                            Speaking on the expan-
                                                                                                                                                                        sion plans of Starlite,
Starlite DMC is in the process of adding more hotels to its fold.                                                                                                       Mitra said, "We are in
                                                                                                                                                                        negotiations with leading
                                                Starlite Hospitality said, "We are extreme-    room nights per year for             N Suresh Reddy,                     accommodation providers
    PREM KUMAR                                                                                                                      managing director,
                                                ly happy to be associated with The             Hyderabad and our core focus         The Golkonda Hotel                  in cities like Bangalore,
     y joining hands with Starlite              Golkonda Hotel as Hyderabad is a rapidly       would be to place Golkonda                                               Chennai, Cochin, Pune,
B    Hospitality, a division of Starlite
Hospitality Management Company, The
                                                growing market with both business and
                                                leisure segment and with our expertise, we
                                                                                               Hotel as their first choice.
                                                                                                  Ambar Mazumdar, EAM Food &
                                                                                                                                                                        Mumbai, Ahmedabad and
                                                                                                                                                       would be soon adding these hotels to our
Golkonda Hotel expects to grow its sales        should be able to achieve the desired          Beverage, The Golkonda said, "The 'All New              growing portfolio." He further added that
and marketing efforts in North India mar-       results. Although The Golkonda Hotel is a      Golkonda' has recently commissioned                     the company is expanding its wings to
ket, with prime focus on business travellers.   4-star property, its rooms are as good as      'Mélange', an all-day dining facility serving           international markets as well and will soon
    With an entirely renovated look, The        that of a 5-star hotel. "Currently prominent   a variety of global cuisines. This is                   offer some exciting accommodation and
Golkonda Hotel, with its completely refur-      demand generating companies in North           renowned for its 'Night Owler's Buffet'-the             travel options through its exclusive sales
bished and revitalised 134 Premium rooms        India generate between 15,000 to 18,000        extended late night buffet." 'The Jewel of              and marketing activities.
and 10 Premium suites is a classy
Downtown Business Class Lifestyle 4 Star
Deluxe Hotel situated at the foot of Banjara
Hills with central connectivity to the busi-
ness and shopping district of Hyderabad.

          N Rami Reddy,
          founder, The Golkonda Hospitality
          Services & Resorts

The hotel is strategically located at a dis-
tance of 22 Km from the new RGIA airport,
3 Km from Railway station and is also close
to Hi Tech City Center.
   Speaking on the alliance, N Suresh
Reddy, managing director, The Golkonda
Hotel said, "We see a huge potential from
North India, especially from Delhi, NCR
and neighbouring states of Rajasthan,

         Anshuman Mitra,
         managing director,
         Starlite Hospitality

Punjab and Uttar Pradesh as more and
more IT, Pharmaceutical and BPO com-
panies are opening offices in Hyderabad.
With local expertise of Starlite Hospitality
in the Northern region, we are optimistic
of increasing the brand visibility and busi-
ness volumes from this region."
    Anshuman Mitra, managing director,
  18 TRAVTALK        AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008                                   AIRLINES

Singapore Airlines to double
                                                                                                                                                             ket wants to explore new destina-
                                                                                                                                                            tions and we are making it possible
                                                                                                                                                           by offering new destinations besides
                                                                                                                                                                traditional ones. I think it's our

daily flights from Delhi                                                                                                                                                responsibility to not only
                                                                                                                                                                         fill up seats but also to
                                                                                                                                                                          explore new destina-
                                                                                                                                                                             tions," opined Grewal.
SINGAPORE AIRLINES has doubled its daily flights on                                                                                                                                  He pointed
Delhi-Singapore sector from 9 to 14 flights per week.                                                                                                                                        to the

The new service will start from September 1 with spe-
cial rates on economy fare. The service also offers to
connect India to new destinations. Manjit Grewal, manager -
northern India, Singapore Airlines talks to TRAVTALK about the developments.

    SANJANA BHOWMICK & SHAYAN MALLICK offer greater choice                                                         Manjit Grewal, manager-northern India, Singapore Airlines
                                               and connectivity to       New arrangement
    tarting from September, Singapore          support the traffic                                              Singapore      Airlines               fact that the frequency increase is com-
S   Airlines can boast of double daily
flights between New Delhi and
                                               coming to and beyond
                                               Singapore to other
                                                                         • Daily flights up from 9 to
                                                                           14 a week
                                                                                                                would provide greater
                                                                                                                flexibility to its cus-
                                                                                                                                                      ing at a time when stakes are down for
                                                                                                                                                      airlines across the world due to sky-
Singapore from the current nine flights        popular destinations in   • New service comes into               tomers to depart at                   rocketing Air Turbine Fuel (ATF) and the
a week to 14 flights per week. The             South East Asia, North      effect from September 1              either time. He high-                 industry across the board is cutting
much-awaited development taking place          Asia and the US.          • New service would operate            lighted the fact that                 down on frequencies to save on the cost.
after a gap of seven years provides that       Besides, with the           Boeing 777-200                       even the travel trade                 He, however, informed that Singapore
much-needed capacity increase on this          capacity increase we                                             communities        have               Airlines is coming up with exciting offers
important route. The new services effec-       are also promoting                                               found the timings very                and also giving the confidence that the
tive September 1 will be using Boeing          India as a destination."                                         convenient.                           market would grow further.
777-200 aircraft with a three-class con-           Congratulating the government                To further promote the new services,                     Sharing the airline’s future plans he
figuration - 12 First class, 42 Business       on the move, Grewal observed, "Delhi         Singapore Airlines has announced special                  said, "We are planning for mid-day
and 234 Economy class seats.                   is an important market for Singapore         economy fare (inclusive of taxes and sur-                 departure which would give us three
    Grewal informed, "With the last capac-     Airlines as it is the political hub of       charges) for its daylight services. The air-              windows and greater flexibility to our
ity increase taking place about seven          the country where embassies and              lines is offering huge discounts of upto 60               travellers. We also plan to introduce
years ago and the airlines averaging about     foreign missions are located."               per cent for select destinations like USA,                more services to Bengaluru and are also
80 per cent load factor on this route, there       He further said that with the            Cambodia, Vietnam, Hong Kong,                             planning to go to Tier II cities. Double
arose a strong need for capacity building.     commencement of double daily flights         Indonesia, China, Kuala Lumpur,                           daily flights to other metros are also
The new services have been scheduled to        scheduled in the morning and at night,       Singapore and Philippines. "Indian mar-                   on the cards."
                                                                              AGENTS                                                     AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008   TRAVTALK   19

Gilpin: Leaping into the next
                                                                                                                                                   we are established as a
                                                                                                                                                   corporate travel management
                                                                                                                                                   company in Australia. Even in
                                                                                                                                                   India, we are associated

dimension of corporate travel                                                                                                                      with corporate travel."
                                                                                                                                                       The present focus of
                                                                                                                                                   Gilpin, she said is to enhance
                                                                                                                                                   the business through incen-
GILPIN TOURS & TRAVEL MANAGEMENT (GTTM) Sandhya Kartha,                                                                                            tive groups. "We have data,
general manager, GTTM (India) told TRAVTALK that the company is now                                                                                expertise        and     proper
                                                                                                                                                   resources to implement our
planning to provide serviced apartments to its clients to tide over                                                                                customers' travel plans. Our
                                                                                                                                                   tours division has been oper-
'accommodation shortage' in several cities.                                                                         Sandhya Kartha,                ating for about a year now."
                                                                                                                    general manager,
                                                                                                                    GTTM (India)                   Commenting on the immense
    SRIPRAKASH MENON                                                                      Royal Rajasthan and so                                   potential in domestic tourism,
                                              Coming up                                   on. Our Indian business                                  she said, "The cash rich

"W       e are talking to several serviced
         apartment groups in a few
cities for tie-ups for giving us rooms
with 5-star like facilities, so that our
corporate travellers can have both pri-
vacy as well as modern amenities. In
Delhi and Kolkata, we have worked
                                              • In talks with several serviced
                                                apartment groups in a few cities
                                                for tie-ups
                                              • Will be launching its India Website
                                                                                          is taken care from
                                                                                          offices in Mumbai, Delhi
                                                                                          and Chennai. We are
                                                                                          happy that we try and
                                                                                          do everything for our
                                                                                          clients in respect to
                                                                                                                             We have
                                                                                                                             to create
                                                                                                                                                   Indians feel it is cheaper to
                                                                                                                                                   travel to Bangkok, Colombo,
                                                                                                                                                   Kuala Lumpur or Singapore
                                                                                                                                                   than going to Shimla, Kochi,
                                                                                                                                                   Jaipur or Sikkim. We have to
                                                                                                                                                   create affordable infrastruc-
                                                                                                                                                   ture within the country for
out tie-ups while in Chennai and              • Will be starting its online segment           Kartha said, "We                                     domestic tourism to flourish."
Thiruvananthapuram we are renovat-              next year                                 have always moved                within the                  At Gilpin, Kartha asserts,
ing our own properties for homestays.                                                     with technology and             country for              "We will soon provide access
                                              • The present focus of Gilpin is to
By September we will be launching this                                                    do not shy away from                                     to full reporting on all trans-
                                                enhance the business through                                                 domestic
new product," Kartha hoped.                                                               investing in technolo-                                   action within 24 hours with
                                                incentive groups
    Normally, she recounted, "Travel                                                      gy to aid the travel                tourism              our Management Information
agencies don't look beyond ticketing                                                      demands. We will be                                      Reporting (MIR) system. Gilpin
but our company has always been                                                           launching our India             to flourish.             has a tradition of delivering
keen on giving value-added services to       Australian Peter Dick with an Indian part-   website shortly for                                      sustainable efficiency precise-
our customers. We keep a low profile as
all our business comes through word of
mouth and corporate satisfaction.
Business houses are happy at our
performances and luckily we have good
client profile to service as of now."
    Gilpin was launched in Sydney by an
                                             ner Anup Rana (founder of the Indian oper-
                                             ations), director of the company in 1992.
                                             In Australia, it has corporate houses like
                                             Novartis, Allergan, etc.
                                                 She said, "In India we service travel
                                             requirements of Marriott, Mahendra
                                             Consulting, A W Faber Castell, Hyperciti,
                                                                                          making the Indian
                                                                                          market more aware of

                                                                                          online segment next year. Besides,

                                                                                          in New Zealand as well. Although
                                                                                          our products. We will be starting our

                                                                                          Australia and India, we have operations

                                                                                          we are now getting introduced to FITs,
                                                                                                                                                   ly tailored to individual corpo-
                                                                                                                                                   rate needs." Launched in
                                                                                                                                       1998, Gilpin Tours & Travel Management
                                                                                                                                       (GTTM), part of Australia-based Gilpin
                                                                                                                                       Travel Management Group, today spe-
                                                                                                                                       cialises in corporate travel and has sev-
                                                                                                                                       eral businesses to its credit.
            FAMILY ALBUM

Kingfisher Airlines' new
                                A new reservation
                                office of Kingfisher
                                Airlines spread over

ticketing office in Pune        1,000 square feet carpet
                                area was recently inaugu-
                                rated in Pune by Bhanu
                                Mohan Kaila, sales head,
                                Kingfisher Airlines
                                (Western Region). The
                                office will provide
                                Puneites easier and better
                                access to airline bookings
                                to various destinations in
                                the country. A puja was
                                also conducted on the
                                occasion. This new office
                                will allow guest to pur-
                                chase or pick up airline
                                tickets, enquire about
                                fares, change reservation,
                                get frequent flier assis-
                                tance and also buy DN
                                coded tickets. The office
                                will be open from 10:00
                                am to 5:00 pm from
                                Mondays to Saturdays and
                                on Sundays from 10:00
                                am to 1:00 pm.

TAFI's All India National
                            TAFI held its Northern India
                            Chapter election in New
                            Delhi and Karnataka

Committee election held     Chapter in Bengaluru to
                            elect new office bearers.
                            TAFI also held its election
                            for its All India National
                            Committee for the term
                            2008-2010. This meeting
                            was attended by many
                            who shared their inputs
                            with the gathering.
 22 TRAVTALK     AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008                   FAMILY ALBUM

Thai Airways opens office in Mumbai, organises
seminar showcasing promotions
Thai Airways opened an integrated office in Mumbai recently. The office was opened by Pandit Chanapai,
executive vice president (commercial), Thai Airways. The airline also organised a seminar in Mumbai
recently. The seminar was inaugurated by Yutthanai Piamprom, general manager-Mumbai. The seminar
showcased the recent promotions by Thai Airways through a presentation by the Thailand Tourism Board.

                                                                                                         Turkish Airlines recently screened the Hindi
Turkish Airlines' treat                                                                                  blockbuster 'Mission Istanbul' for its clients at
                                                                                                         PVR Rivoli, Connaught Place, New Delhi.

for the movie buffs in Delhi                                                                             The screening saw people from the travel
                                                                                                         fraternity in good numbers.
                                                                            AGENTS                                                        AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008     TRAVTALK    23

Globus & Cosmos partners with
                                                                                                                                                                   The Globus family of
                                                                                                                                                               brands includes Globus,
                                                                                                                                                               Cosmos, Monograms and
                                                                                                                                                               Avalon Waterways. With

Jet Airways' JetPrivilege                                                                                                                                      over 400 vacations to 65
                                                                                                                                                               countries across six
                                                                                                                                                               continents, the Globus
                                                                                                                                                               family of brands offers
THE GLOBUS FAMILY OF BRANDS has entered into a pact with Jet's                                                                                                 travellers experiences
JetPrivilege. JetPrivilege members will now earn 1 JPMile for every $1                                                                                         with tour directors
                                                                                                                                                               belonging to the region,
spent on taking a qualifying service with the Globus family vacations across                                                                                   local cuisine and a mix of
                                                                                                                                                               value-added sightseeing
Europe, North and South America, Australia, New Zealand, Japan and China.                                                 Gaurang Shetty,                      and free time. The
                                                                                                                          senior vice president,
                                                                                                                          Alliances and Interline, Jet Airways Globus family of brands
    TT BUREAU                                is constantly looking to delight and       clientele and we find the                                              offers travellers a range
                                             surprise its members with a superior       perfect fit between our cus-                                           of vacation options -
      ualifying services include vacations   customer experience, and the forging of    tomers and the profile of Jet Airways                   Cosmos offers vacations starting from
Q     undertaken by the JetPrivilege
member under the Globus, Cosmos,
                                             mutually beneficial partnerships such
                                             as these go a long way in helping us
                                                                                        travellers. This is a unique initiative for
                                                                                        us and we look forward to bringing
                                                                                                                                                just $65 a day to Globus using 4-star
                                                                                                                                                and above hotels. While Monograms
Monograms and Avalon Waterways brand         achieve that."                             value to our as well as Jet Airways                     gives guests the freedom to travel inde-
of holidays, for the price quoted in the        "We are very excited about this part-   customers through this partnership,"                    pendently, without a group, Avalon
brochure or on the Globus family Website,    nership. Globus family of brands vaca-     said Gauri Jayaram, regional director,                  Waterways sets the standards in
with applicable surcharges, if any, paid     tions target a very select up-market       Globus Family Vacations.                                European river cruising.
by the member.
    Furthermore, JetPrivilege members
will also be entitled to an exclusive $75
off for self and companions on any vaca-
tion booked between August 1 and 31,
2008, while earning JPMiles on the same.

        Gauri Jayaram,
        regional director,
        Globus Family Vacations

   Speaking on the partnership,
Gaurang Shetty, senior vice president,
Alliances and Interline, Jet Airways
said, "With a range of packaged vacation

       The JetPrivilege
       • Qualifying services include
         vacations undertaken by
         the JetPrivilege member
         under the Globus, Cosmos,
         Monograms and Avalon
         Waterways brand of
         holidays, for the price
         quoted in the brochure
         or on the Globus family
       • JetPrivilege members will
         also be entitled to an
         exclusive $75 off for self
         and companions on any
         vacation booked between
         August 1 and 31, 2008,
         while earning JPMiles on
         the same

options catering to diverse tastes
and price points, JetPrivilege is proud
to welcome the Globus family of
brands as its latest partner. JetPrivilege
                                                       This year's annual convention of IATO which took
Glimpses of the 24 IATO                                place in Bhubaneswar from August 7 to 10 focussed
                                                       on the theme 'Indian Tourism: Managing Growth'.

Convention in Bhubaneswar                              With around 1,000 participants who attended the
                                                       conference, it was a big hit. Participants experienced
                                                       a heady ambience of business mixed with pleasure.
                                                                                      CRS                                                     AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008     TRAVTALK     27

UNIGLOBE & Amadeus roll out
online booking solution
CAO     The new online tool enables UNIGLOBE agencies to
offer their customers competitive deals from a single integrated
platform. Uniglobe Travel (South Asia) and Amadeus recently
announced the roll-out of a specialised integrated booking
solution, Complete Access Online (CAO)                                                                      (L-R): Ritika Modi, regional president, UNIGLOBE Travel South Asia & Ankur Bhatia,
                                                                                                            managing director, Amadeus India

    TT BUREAU                                   their corporate customers, thereby cre-      nology is increasingly becoming an              nology that simplify the travel process
                                                ating a seamless online extension of their   indispensable tool for enabling travel          while adding overall efficiencies.
     niglobe Travel (South Asia), single-       physical office."                            managers to better plan and manage a            Our solutions are geared to offer the
U    brand travel franchisee company and
Amadeus, leading global technology part-
                                                    Commenting on the integrated offer-
                                                ing, Ankur Bhatia, managing director,
                                                                                             company's travel requirements. In
                                                                                             order to address this latent need,
                                                                                                                                             best deals including fares and flight
                                                                                                                                             availability while offering more choices
ner to the travel industry, recently            Amadeus India said, "As corporate trav-      Amadeus is continuously investing in            of the best airlines, hotels and car
announced the roll-out of a specialised         el witnesses exponential growth, tech-       creating new benchmarks in travel tech-         rental companies."
integrated booking solution, Complete
Access Online (CAO). The solution devel-
oped along with Amadeus empowers
travel agencies to offer enhanced online
and offline travel services to corporate as
well as individual customers.
    The booking solution, CAO, is inte-
grated with Amadeus' Application
Programming Interface (API) which facil-
itates dynamic availability of fares and
online booking. With this deployment,
Uniglobe now enables its franchisees to
have a fully-integrated online and offline
business travel service for their customers.
    CAO enables travel agents to cater to
infrequent customers without adding bur-
den to their existing service infrastruc-
ture as the bookings automatically fall
into the GDS of the agency. With the inte-

      Making life simpler
      • Uniglobe Travel (South
        Asia) and Amadeus
        recently announced the
        roll-out of a specialised
        integrated booking
        solution, Complete Access
        Online (CAO)
      • The booking solution,
        CAO, is integrated with
        Amadeus' Application
        Programming Interface
        (API) which facilitates
        dynamic availability of
        fares and online booking

grated payment facility, travel agents can
also use this tool to reduce the negative
impact of business receivables.
    Detailing the benefits of the platform,
Ritika Modi, regional president,
UNIGLOBE Travel South Asia said, "CAO
is an ideal solution for our franchisees as
they can benefit from an exceptionally low
entry cost and give their customers access
to this full service online application. With
this booking platform, agencies will be
able to enhance their service efficiency
by combining their proven offline com-
petency and local accountability with an
e-commerce application that allows their
customers to book online while adminis-
tering and managing their bookings. This
online tool also enables agencies to man-
age credit terms, fees or discounts for

Mixing business with pleasure
                                                                    TRANSPORTATION                                                            AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008   TRAVTALK   29

Volvo Buses India: Giving
a new face to road travel
VOLVO BUSES INDIA is uniquely placed as a single
window for all customer needs. In an exclusive interview
with TRAVTALK , Akash Passey, managing director, Volvo
Buses India talks about his company's growing presence.
    PREM KUMAR                                  class badly needs a better bus transport       when compared with metro systems, it           the country. Moving region by region,
                                                system that is safer and comfortable at the    takes only 5 per cent of the cost to set up    ensuring that we first establish our serv-
         e aim to keep pace with the            same time. In the last six years, the Volvo    a bus-based rapid transport system. Of         ices and parts set up before we sell a bus.
"W       industry and even plan to exceed
the expectations of our customers. In
                                                City Buses have actually catered to this
                                                need. Today, most passengers can travel
                                                                                               course, all of this can become even more
                                                                                               valuable to the final users of the transport
                                                                                                                                              We know our products provide a very high
                                                                                                                                              performance level and comfort across all
January, we inaugurated the new Volvo           in a Volvo across most key destinations of     if we can improve and develop our infra-       kind of roads." He added, "Today, all key
Body Building Factory and recently we           the country. An efficient bus transport sys-   structure at a quicker pace."                  tourist destinations have a common mode
established a new company - Volvo Buses         tem backed by modern buses has very                Passey said, "In India, we established     connecting one to another and this link is
India. With this, we are now uniquely           sound economical sense. For instance,          ourselves in a step-by-step manner across      none other than Volvo coaches."
placed as a single window for all cus-
tomer needs. The new bus factory sets
new standards in quality and production
and will also be the base for exports in
the region and beyond in the near
future," he added.
   "We have already upgraded or intro-
duced a new model each year. Earlier, we
had introduced the Volvo City Bus. This
year we introduced new service dealers
across the country and have a very high
quality and focussed support network in

         Akash Passey,
         managing director,
         Volvo Buses India

the country." He informed, "Last year, we
sold over 200 buses and this year we
plan to sell around 450 buses. The
market for luxury AC coaches is 600
buses approximately."
     Volvo is also exporting the buses from
India. The company has already exported
its buses to Bangladesh. Passey further said,
"With our new factory we are now working
on exports to Asian, Middle Eastern and
African markets in the near future."
     He added, "India can definitely be
among the hubs of buses in the region
and can be very competitive. As the mar-
ket matures and demands greater num-
ber of high-performing modern buses this
capability can only get better."
     He added, "Right now, people who use
personal cars are spending many times
more than what it would cost to take a
bus. To deal with this issue we need to
provide them with a bus and a bus-sys-
tem, which motivates them to leave their
vehicles at home. Not only this allows for
equitable use of city spaces, but is a much
more efficient and environment- friend-
ly approach to personal mobility."
     He further said, "The rising middle

IATO convention '08: Stalwarts get together in Bhubaneswar
                                                                                     AGENTS                                                             AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008    TRAVTALK    31

Birla Viking Travels packs the
                                                                                                                                                        maker. He further said, "Foreign tourists
                                                                                                                                                        love Indian films, especially Bollywood,
                                                                                                                                                        which they find colourful and culturally
                                                                                                                                                        rich. They are keen for a first-hand experi-

Bollywood punch for tourists                                                                                                                            ence with the artistes and people involved
                                                                                                                                                        with cinema by seeing them in action."
                                                                                                                                                            "Besides Filmcity," Nihalani said, "We
                                                                                                                                                        will be talking to other studios also for
BIRLA VIKING TRAVELS Travel agencies, MTDC and Bollywood film bodies have tried
their best to leverage film shooting and glamour associated with Bollywood to lure                                                                       Bollywood beckons
tourists but wasn't able to popularise it as an organised package. Birla Viking Travels                                                                  • Birla Viking Travels has taken the
has now come forward to launch 'Bollywood Tourism' for international tourists.                                                                             initiative to tie up with Pahlaj
                                                                                                                                                           Nihalani's Chiragdeep International
                                                                                                                     through Filmcity activities."         to launch 'Bollywood Tourism'
                                                                                                                         In phase two, Khan              • The idea is to make Bollywood as
     know there were a few attempts in the                                                                           hoped, "We will be organis-           popular as Hollywood from the
"I   past to promote tourism through
Bollywood cinema production and events
                                                                                                                     ing workshops, primary
                                                                                                                     courses, special orientation
                                                                                                                                                           tourist's point of view

but now Birla Viking Travels has taken the                                                                           sessions for foreign trav-
initiative to tie up with Pahlaj Nihalani's                                                                          ellers ranging from weekly         giving access to our guests so that the pack-
Chiragdeep International to launch                                                                                   to six months on subjects          age becomes successful. As of now, we will
'Bollywood Tourism'. We have already                                                                                 dealing with cinema, its           take the guests to the film and TV shoot-
talked to the film bodies, Maharashtra                                                                               post-production activities,        ings within the Filmcity premises and we
Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC)                                                                               etc. In the future, visit to a     will also show them Subhash Ghai's film
and Filmcity about our new project to boost                                                                          film museum and other cin-         institute 'Whistling Woods' where they can
tourism in Mumbai," Asgar Khan, CEO,                                                                                 ema-related activities at          also see our film post-production setup, etc.
Birla Viking Travels stated.                   Asgar Khan,                     Pahlaj Nihalani, president,           Filmcity will also be includ-      We are also planning to include ND studio
                                               CEO,                            Association of Motion Pictures and TV
    "Mumbai is frequented by a lot of for-     Birla Viking Travels            Programme Producers & filmmaker       ed for a wider package.            near Panvel once things get organised at
eign tourists and many are fascinated by                                                                             We are convincing the              our end. Our idea is to make Bollywood as
the Bollywood cinema. They want to know                                                                              Maharashtra government to          popular as Hollywood from the tourist's
how the stars look like, about their cos-      marketing this product through travel                   tap the potential international traveller        point of view. We are sure that with Viking
tumes, the way films are made, post-pro-       agents in India and Viking will be doing                interested in Bollywood." Bollywood              Travels, MTDC and the Maharashtra gov-
duction facilities, etc. So, we thought why    a presentation in about 30 countries to                 tourism is the best way to attract foreign       ernment, we will be able to make this
not give a glimpse of Bollywood in a half-     get tourists for Bollywood tourism. We                  tourists to Mumbai since it is also the birth-   tourism package successful. Eventually,
day package at the cost of $ 200 per per-      are also looking at organising film events              place of cinema, remarked Pahlaj Nihalani        tourists from the domestic market will also
son inclusive of a meal," Khan further said.   for the tourists. Initially, we will be con-            president, Association of Motion Pictures        get attracted to this manufacturing site of
    As a first step, he said, "We will be      centrating on showcasing Bollywood                      and TV Programme Producers and film              dream world," Nihalani observed.

Railjet to hit the tracks in December '08                                                                                                               els and newspapers/magazines in First. In
                                                                                                                                                        Economy, snacks, packed lunches and din-
                                                                                                                                                        ners will be available against payment.
                                                                                                                                                                   Passengers can have meals
RAIL EUROPE has launched the high speed                                                                                                                            served directly to their seats
                                                                                                                                                                   ("at-seat service") in all classes.
train - Railjet, which hits the tracks in December                                                                                                                     Post December 2008, the
2008. This will usher in a new era of long-distance                                                                                                                range of services will be
                                                                                                                                                                   extended step by step to six
transport for rail travellers.                                                                                                                                     connections from Vienna to
                                                                                                                                                                   Munich and seven to the
     TT BUREAU                                 ry will have a bistro, the First and                                                                                Hungarian capital of Budapest
                                               the Premium class will offer high-                                                                                  every two hours. December
     ustrian Railways premium product          quality equipment and a service                                                                                     2009 onwards, the Railjet will
A    'Railjet' shortens journey durations
through a maximum speed up to 230
                                               concept with a personalised touch.
                                                   Catering will be taken over by
                                                                                                                                                                   also be used for the lines
                                                                                                                                                                   Vienna - Innsbruck - Feldkirch
km/h. Furthermore it has enabled the par-      the renowned - Express/Meinl am                                                                                     - Bregenz and/or Zürich. The
ticipation in the alliance of the European     Graben and the selection of set                                                                                     connections Vienna - Graz -
high-speed railways, the 'Rail Team'.          meals will comprise Austrian deli-                                                                                  (Ljubljana/Zagreb) and Vienna
    The Railjet with its high-class ambi-      cacies as well as international spe-                                                                                - Villach - (Venice) will be
ence offers a total of 408 seats in the        cialties. Cold and hot snacks, drinks as well        will be included in the passenger fare for          established step by step from the end of
three different classes. Economy catego-       as hot towels and newspapers/magazines               Premium, and welcome drinks, cold tow-              2010 onwards.

Travel industry
converge in
34 TRAVTALK         AUGUST 2 ND ISSUE 2008                                  MOVEMENTS

 BJN Group of Hotels                                          DOTW                                                          Svelte Personal Suites,
 Vivek Pathiyan has recently been appointed                   Gaurav Sharma has been appointed as regional                  New Delhi
 as the COO of BJN Group of Hotels to support P               manager, sales - Western & Central India in                   Priya Anand has been appointed as the general manager
 B Nichani and develop the group with his guid-               Destinations of the World (Subcontinent) (DOTW). He is        of Svelte Personal Suites, Delhi's first suite hotel located at
 ance. This is a new role for him but he is an old            based out of Mumbai Office and in his role he would           Saket. Anand started her career with Taj Palace Hotel where
 player in hospitality business with 32 years                 spearhead growth and expansion of DOTW's distribution         she worked as manager room reservation and then went on
 dedicated to Oberoi, Marriott International,                 channel in the western and central Indian markets.            to join Hotel Crowne Plaza Surya as front office manager. In
 Leela, Ramada Palm Grove and The Orchid                      After completing his graduation from Delhi University in      1999 she joined Jaypee Palace Hotel &
                             Mumbai. His role is              Mathematics (Hons.), he joined Thomas Cook and relo-          Convention Centre, Agra as the
                                of immense                                                 cated to Jaipur to manage        front office manager and
                                  importance for                                                outbound sales for          later rose to become the
                                  the expansion of                                                Rajasthan region.         executive assistant
                                     the company                                                   He moved back to         manager there. In
                                      business.                                                    Delhi and joined         2004 she moved to
                                                                                                   The Oberoi, New          The Grand, New
                                                                                                   Delhi to manage          Delhi as the director
                                                                                                 corporate and              of rooms. Her last
                                                                                                  inbound sales for         assignment before join-
                                                                                                      Delhi NCR             ing Svelte Personal
                                                                                                         region.            suites was as room
                                                                                                                            division manager at
                                                                                                                            The Grand, New

Hyderabad Marriott Hotel                                         Sonata Travels India                                        Singapore Airlines
& Convention Centre                                              Amitava Mukherjee has joined Sonata Travels India
                                                                 as general manager - marketing & operations. He has
                                                                                                                             Edwin Chiang has been appointed as the new manager for
                                                                                                                             Singapore Airlines' operations in Punjab. Based in Jalandhar,
Ty Collins has been appointed general manager,
Hyderabad Marriott Hotel & Convention Centre. Collins            done his post graduate diploma in tourism from              his responsibilities include overseeing operations, business
comes with a vast knowledge and experience in the                University of Delhi and has 23 years of experience in       development, marketing and sales activity for the Punjab
hotel industry. Prior to moving to Hyderabad, Collins                                          inbound travels. Prior to     region. Chiang has been working with Singapore Airlines for
was the opening general manager of the Marriott                                                     this, he had worked      over four years. Prior to taking over the role of state manager,
Executive Apartments, Yeouido Park Centre, Seoul and                                                    at Abercrombie &     Punjab, he served as the regional
                             Soo Fitness & Spa. Before                                                    Kent, Distant      marketing manager - West
                                moving to Seoul, Collins                                                  Frontiers, Far     Asia and Africa. Before
                                  spent several years                                                     Horizon, Trans     that, he was managing
                                   working in the award                                                  Indus and The       corporate accounts at the
                                    winning JW Marriott                                                  Luxury Holidays.    airline's Singapore sales
                                      Phuket Resort and                                                                      department. A product of
                                      Spa and Marriott's                                                                     prestigious Nanyang
                                       Phuket Beach club                                                                     Technological University in
                                     as the Director of                                                                      Singapore, Chiang has a
                                     Rooms. Collins has                                                                      rich experience
                                    worked for Marriott                                                                      in sales, mar-
                                      for over 13 years in                                                                   keting and
                                            the mainland                                                                     handling cor-
                                            U.S. Hawaii,                                                                     porate
                                            and Asia.                                                                        accounts.

The Residence                                                     Royal Orchid Hotels                                           Taipei Economic and Cultural
Sachin Mahesh has been promoted as head of sales                  B Chandrasekaran has joined Royal Orchid Hotels               Center, Delhi
of The Residence for Karnataka region. He has had a               as the company secretary. He comes with a graduate
rich and varied experience in his career. He had been             degree in commerce and law and has 24 years of                Paul Shek has been appointed the deputy director gen-
with The Oberoi Hotels for around seven years and then            experience in company secretarial, finance, accounts          eral of Taipei Economic and Cultural Center (TECC) in
set up the Royal Orchid Park Plaza in Bengaluru. He               and legal functions. He has worked with reputed com-          New Delhi. He joined ministry of foreign affairs of
also had a successful five-year stint with BPOs involved          panies such as Biocon and Future Group Companies,             the Republic of China (Taiwan) in 1984. He was
in managing operations. He has been with The                                                    including a stint of            senior staff at Dept. of East Asian and Pacific Affairs of
Residence for little over a year now. His hobbies are                                                three years over-          MOFA from August 2002 to
                         playing sports, watching                                                       seas at Port            July 2003, assistant
                                   movies, listening to                                                  Moresby,               director      general,
                                     music and reading                                                   Papua New              Protocol Department
                                       books. He also                                                    Guinea, a              from February 2004
                                           loves travelling                                               South Pacific         to February 2006 and
                                          and travels a                                                   nation, near          deputy director gen-
                                         lot.                                                            Australia.             eral, department of
                                                                                                                                East Asian and
                                                                                                                                Pacific Affairs from
                                                                                                                                February 2006
                                                                                                                                to November

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                                               END MARK

Phoenix Group plans expansion,
to venture into real estate
PHOENIX GROUP is in the process of planning its first foray into the
highly lucrative Indian real estate market with a first of its kind,
luxurious villa project in Goa. Aditya Kamani, director, Phoenix Group
Global, Bengaluru shares his plans and strategies with TRAVTALK .
    SANJANA BHOWMICK                       We plan on develop-                                                    Sharing his views
                                           ing a property here                                                on the changing
     he Phoenix properties include         that will also have a                                              hospitality trends
T    Radisson Plaza Resort & Spa,
Kumarakom, Radisson White Sands
                                           commercial section
                                           attached. The group's
                                                                                                              he says, "The hospi-
                                                                                                              tality sector is today
Resort, Goa, Country Inn & Suites,         luxury brand shall be                                              witnessing a shift in
Goa. After the successful stint with       launched with the                                                  consumer       trends.
hospitality, for the first time, the       Whitefield property                                                Buoyant economic
group is in the process of planning        in September 2008."                                                growth,      changing
its first foray into the highly lucra-         Sharing his plans                                              lifestyles and cus-
tive Indian real estate market with a      for the Phase 2 of                                                 tomer tastes, savvier
first of its kind, luxurious villa proj-   expansion, he says,                                                travellers          and
ect in Goa. Talking about this initia-     "We intend to venture                                              increased lodging
tive, Kamani says, "This is still in the   into other cities such      Aditya Kamani,                         demands make it
initial stages and will be a very high-    as Mysore, Cochin,          Phoenix Group Global, Bengaluru
                                                                                                              imperative to change
end project. We are awaiting the final     Nagpur, Ahmedabad,                                                 with the evolving
approval from the concerned author-        Chennai and Vizag.                                                 landscape. This rapid

ities before we go ahead and plan          These cities are                                                   growth of the indus-
any further."                              lucrative locations for                                            try has led to new
    Sharing the group's future expan-      the hospitality sector                We are in                    concepts, business
sion plans Kamani says, "We are in         and are in serious                    the final                    innovations and mar-
the final phase of construction of our     need of quality busi-                                              ket segmentation.
latest property in Bengaluru. This         ness hotels." For the                 phase of                     More and more, the
will be our first property in              immediate expan-                 construction                      industry is beginning
Bengaluru and will also mark our           sion, the group has                                                to target niches in a
                                           planned an invest-
                                                                             of our latest                    bid to stay ahead.
                                           ment of around 2,000                  property                     Many hotels now
 Plans                                     crores and are at
                                           present also looking
                                                                            coming up in                      incorporate regional
                                                                                                              and cultural attributes
 • The group is in the process of          at consolidating their             Bengaluru.                      into     their     core
                                           companies so that it                                               concepts in a bid to

   planning its first foray into the
   highly lucrative Indian real            can possibly consider                                              provide a product dif-
   estate market                           becoming an IPO or                                                 ferentiation. Hotels
                                           raise funds vis private equity.                   are also increasing their focus on
 • For the immediate expansion,                Apart from these expansions, the              green initiatives and sustainability
   the group has planned an                group also plans to bring their                   in a bid to be environmentally
   investment of around                    Floriculture operations to India. They            proactive."
   2,000 crores                            are currently in talks to procure                     As a part of their promotional
                                           approximately 50 hectares to grow                 plans for this year they have intro-
                                           roses and other varieties.                        duced summer and monsoon pack-
foray into the luxury business hotels          "Despite the period of April to               ages for their discerning guests. In
segment. This property is slated to        September being low season for                    Bengaluru, they have tied up with
be the finest 5-star business hotel in     resorts, we have been on an average               'Little Italy' restaurants where guests
Bengaluru's booming IT corridor,           occupancy that is in the region of 60             who dine at Little Italy outlets are
Whitefield. We have also procured          per cent. We hope to achieve an                   given exciting discounts over and
land     near      the    Bengaluru        occupancy of 90 per cent or above                 above the monsoon offers that are
International Airport in Devanahalli.      post September," says Kamani.                     currently on.

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