Mak­ing a gi­ant splash in Kolkata

With an inventory of 347 rooms, Novo­tel Kolkata Ho­tels and Res­i­dences is the largest ho­tel in the city and Jai Kis­han, the ho­tel's Gen­eral Man­ager, says they are a business ho­tel dur­ing the week and a leisure ho­tel on week­ends.

TravTalk - India - - Hotels - PE­DEN DOMA BHUTIA

It’s been a lit­tle more than a month now that you have opened in Cal­cutta. How has the re­sponse been so far?

We are very happy with the re­sponse that we have re­ceived so far. Right now, we are hav­ing the big­gest foot­ball event that hap­pens in In­dia and the play­ers are all stay­ing with us. So far, we have only heard the pos­i­tive side be­cause we have the largest inventory in the city. It is the big­gest Novo­tel ho­tel op­er­at­ing in In­dia as of now, and we have a mul­ti­tude of other di­men­sions as well which give us an up­per hand. So it’s all been pos­i­tive.

What gives you an up­per hand in the Kolkata hos­pi­tal­ity mar­ket and how are you go­ing to cap­i­talise on it?

The first thing is that we are as­so­ci­ated with Ac­cor. So, Ac­cor is a world­wide hos­pi­tal­ity chain and as our tagline goes, ‘Open­ing new fron­tiers in hos­pi­tal­ity’. So we have now raised the flag in Kolkata, plus we come with ev­ery­thing that Ac­cor brings to the ta­ble along with the Novo­tel brand, which is both in line with our business trav­ellers and our leisure guests. We are brand- new in Kolkata, and this is the first time that peo­ple are ex­pe­ri­enc­ing us and our hos­pi­tal­ity like our Le Femme rooms for our fe­male leisure trav­ellers, our apart­ments for long-stay guests and our fre­quency in terms of op­er­at­ing the ho­tels both in the MICE and the leisure seg­ment, as well as our restau­rants and recre­ational fa­cil­i­ties.

How are you try­ing to pro­mote your­selves?

We are try­ing to get into the mar­ket and talk to every­body in the re­gion. We will be tar­get­ting ev­ery sin­gle re­gion in the North-East, be­cause Kolkata is the Gate­way to the East. Our air­port will be the hub and we, be­ing close to it, will make all in­roads to ev­ery sin­gle cor­ner of the re­gion. Our Ac­cor brand gives us that lever­age. We are well es­tab­lished right now. First point is ac­knowl­edg­ing it and the sec­ond is es­tab­lish­ing a re­la­tion­ship. With our re­la­tion­ship es­tab­lished, we can build for a bet­ter stronger business.

What kind of com­pe­ti­tion are you look­ing at in the mar­ket?

I wouldn’t say com­pe­ti­tion; they are all op­por­tu­ni­ties for us to build be­cause we learn from each other. In that way, it is a win-win sit­u­a­tion for all of us. We are all hote­liers at the end of the day, and are com­pet­ing for the hos­pi­tal­ity sec­tor.

What do you see in terms of po­si­tion­ing of the ho­tel as leisure or business?

We will be po­si­tion­ing as both a business and leisure ho­tel. We have the largest 347-room inventory in the city and we need a mix of both. I think we can be a business ho­tel through the week, and serve as a leisure ho­tel on week­ends.

East In­dia has al­ways had great tourism po­ten­tial but

I think the first step is to ac­knowl­edge the po­ten­tial of the re­gion, and I think we have al­ready done that. The In­dia Tourism Award - East is a great step to­wards that di­rec­tion. I think this kind of recog­ni­tion paves the way for fu­ture gen­er­a­tions. I think the glitches, or ar­eas that re­quire im­prove­ment, would be firstly in­fra­struc­ture and se­condly pro­mo­tion or mar­ket­ing. So, once the mar­ket­ing ini­tia­tives come in, we would def­i­nitely be up there and in com­pe­ti­tion with any other re­gion in the coun­try.

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