Kerrie Hannaford, VP – Commercial, Accor India & South Asia is optimistic about the future of luxury hotels in India. “The hospitality industry will remain dynamic but will now be extra cautious, agile and innovative,” she asserts. Hannaford further believes that a rising number of discerning travelers are looking for memorable, inimitable luxurious experiences which a brand like Raffles delivers. “We strongly believe that the future of luxury hotels is very bright in India. Raffles is the tenth brand that Accor is introducing in the country,” she says.
While the pandemic may have put international travel on slow tracks, the rise in domestic travel and a quest for immersive, inimitable luxury holiday experiences continues to attract travelers. She adds, “Under current circumstances, with travel restrictions, more and more Indians are exploring domestic destinations. We strongly believe that this will help us sustain bookings and attract more traffic to the hotel. In an environment where you only have the opportunity to travel domestically, people will choose luxury, as travelers are looking for meaningful experiences that allow them to develop deeper connections with their loved ones.”
Keeping the Big Fat Indian Weddings and MICE in focus, Raffles Udaipur extends the largest ballroom in the city facilitating big meetings, weddings, conferences and product launches. “In a country like India, weddings will always see traction, as they are firmly entrenched in the culture. The ongoing global pandemic has brought in a wide range of new trendsetting patterns in the Big Fat Indian Wedding industry. A complete shift towards contactless food services, micro wedding ceremonies, in addition to the present norms of socially distanced gatherings, with a focus on highly sanitized venues,” she says.