Maya Enchants Southern India

The fourth edition of South India Travel Awards celebrated the best talent from the tourism and hospitality industry, as stalwarts from the region descended at Crowne Plaza Kochi to raise a toast to them.

Kochi played host to South India Travel Awards that were held at the Crowne Plaza Kochi on May 2, 2017. Leaders and achievers from the travel and tourism industry of the region were rewarded for their hard work and dedication. The gala evening saw in attendance high flyers from the tourism and hospitality industry from not just Kerala but all of South India. Gracing the occasion with his presence as Chief Guest was Dr A Jayathilak (IAS), Chairman, Spices Board of India, Ministry of Commerce & Industry. Acknowledging how awards act as a catalyst for the industry to excel, he said, “It’s a great initiative because we need to identify and encourage talent of all kinds in this vibrant sector and any award of this kind will go a long way in stimulating and encouraging more talent to develop themselves and also to contribute more to the development of this industry.”

India Travel Awards recognises stalwarts from the industry in all the regions, pan-India. These exclusive awards are based on the deliberations of a unique jury and a final list is made after a fair online voting process. The formal black-tie event was attended by over 150 notable personalities from the South Indian travel industry. Welcoming the guests for the award, SanJeet, Mentor, India Travel Awards, said that the awards acknowledged the consolidated efforts of trade partners from the southern region, owing to whom the travel industry had achieved a benchmark.

The awards were divided into four categories, that were Personal Awards, Business Awards, Trending Awards, and Partner Awards. Adding a touch of glamour and elegance to the evening was the Guest of Honour, Arni Sapkal, Gladrags Mrs India Mumbai 2017, who handed over the trophies to the winners alongside Dr Jayathilak.

Awards were presented in a total of 47 categories in both travel and hospitality. K.C. Chandrahasan, Vice Chairman, Kerala Travels Interserve, received the coveted Gallery of Legends award. Having served the travel industry for over four decades, Chandrahasan has worked tirelessly towards outbound travel, inbound travel, events, and social projects. On receiving the award, he said, “I feel greatly honoured to receive this award, especially on the day when I started my career in travel and tourism.”

M.P. Purushothaman, Chairman and Managing Director, Empee Group, was given the DDP Trailblazer award. Besides being at the helm of Empee Group, a conglomerate that includes hospitality, sugar production, property, power, and packaging across South India, Purushothaman has served as the President of Federation of Hotel & Restaurant Associations of India (FHRAI) for three terms and President of South India Hotels and Restaurants Association (SIHRA) for 10 years. “I am very happy that I was selected as a recipient of this prestigious award,” he said on receiving the award.