Fair play in Nepal

Marriott debuted its Fairfield brand in the kingdom of Nepal this June, to tap the leisure as well as business traffic with its 115-key property in Thamel.

Hazel Jain

Nepal was recently introduced to Fairfield by Marriott, Marriott International’s first hotel in the country. Fairfield by Marriott Kathmandu is located five kilometres away from the airport in Thamel district, which was a bohemian haven before it became a popular shopping destination. The 115-room hotel is close to all USESCO World Heritage Sites as well as popular attractions including the Narayanhity Palace Museum, Garden of Dreams, and Kathmandu Durbar Square.

Prakash Jayadevan, General Manager, Fairfield by Marriott Kathmandu, believes this is the right product for this market as it fills a much-needed gap in the moderate-tier segment with its fresh, contemporary design. Speaking about the traffic to the hotel, Jayadevan says, “India is the biggest source market for Nepal. It has always been a key destination for Indians for religious and adventure tourism. Nepal is a year-round destination with some key religious destinations like Muktinath, Pashupatinath, and Lumbini. In fact, Kathmandu has been a favoured destination for Indians as it offers a quick getaway from the tropical heat.”

Fairfield by Marriott already has four hotels currently open in India – Fairfield by Marriott Bengaluru Rajajinagar, Fairfield by Marriott Bengaluru Outer Ring Road, Fairfield by Marriott Lucknow, and Fairfield by Marriott Belagavi.

Jayadevan adds, “Being in the tourist district of Kathmandu, we expect majority of our guests to be tourists. However, since we are also close to key embassies, government offices, and the commercial district, we are looking to get a good mix of tourists and business travellers. The hotel has been operational since June, this year, and we have seen a mix of 40 per cent Indian guests, 35 per cent Chinese guests, and the remaining being of other nationalities. We expect the hotel to achieve an ARR of around USD 85 by the end of the year.” He says that Nepal’s government is taking steps to promote Thamel as a 24-hour destination where activities and parties can continue non-stop.

For MICE, the hotel has two meeting rooms for board meetings and small trainings. In time, the hotel expects to have more business space on offer with larger banquet halls. It is a contemporary hotel with bright, natural lighting in the lobby and the restaurant. The art work gives a unique sense of place to the hotel and even though the building is modern, by looking at the artefacts, guests can immediately know they are in Nepal.

In a box
Inside the hotel

Kava, the all-day dining restaurant, serves local, Indian, and international cuisine. Kava – The Bar and lobby lounge offers coffee and cocktails in the evening. The business centre meeting rooms are equipped with the latest audio-visual facilities and all public areas and guest rooms have high-speed Wi-Fi. The hotel also features a 24×7 convenience store.