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Green stay and travel options in Karnataka

September 27, 2019 Headline News No Comments Email Email

The Government in the Southern Indian state of Karnataka offers hotels and resorts at prime tourist locations across the State and also operates tourist buses and taxis to facilitate visitors.

Mr Kumar Pushkar, Managing Director of Karnataka Tourism Development Corporation (KSTDC) elaborated on services offered by KSTDC during the recent Karnataka International Travel Expo 2019.

1.How many hotels does KSTDC operate? Any new ones in the offing?

KSTDC has 45 Hotels in the State of Karnataka and one Hotel in Ooty in Tamilnadu. Out of these, KSTDC operates 20 hotels directly while others are outsourced on long term lease or O & M contracts. The 20 Hotels include the prestigious State Guest House in Bengaluru, New Kumara Krupa Guest House with 180 keys. Overall, the number of rooms being managed by KSTDC is about 550 rooms.

A new Hotel is shortly opening at Almatti, Bagalkot, near the Almatti dam, with 14 rooms and 7 cottages. Another 20 room Hotel is starting within a month at Vijaypura/Bijapur.

KSTDC is also venturing into 3 star Hotel category. 60-100 room properties are being constructed at major tourist towns of Bijapur, Badami, Hampi and Belur and these are scheduled to be ready in 2 years time.

  1. Can you elaborate on KSTDC’s eco-friendly and zero waste initiatives?

KSTDC has adopted a 9 Point Green Charter- a step towards sustainable and responsible tourism recently. We have been giving maximum priority for the clean and green environment with least carbon footprint. We have successfully completed and implemented the Solid waste Management(SWM) practices at 2 of our Hotels at Madikeri and Srirangapatna and the same is now being replicated in other units. SWM practices involve segregation of the waste and composting of the wet waste while the dry wastes are segregated and being given to various agencies, who collect and recycle them. The use of plastics is being minimised at all Hotels.

The Sewage Treatment Plants are being installed at all the Units of KSTDC so that we reuse all the water on the same premises. This will help reduce our water consumption.

The geysers in all Hotels are being replaced with Heat pumps, which would improve the hot water supply as well as save energy to the extent of 75-80%.

And most importantly, we are installing Solar cum Wind energy based hybrid Power generation units in all Hotels, which would replace the conventional Electricity for everything except Air conditioners. This would drastically reduce the use of conventional electricity.

Clean and green environment with as many trees in the campus is our priority.

  1. What kind of logistics services does KSTDC offer to tourists?

KSTDC has all kinds of services for Tourists – be it 850 Airport Taxis at Bengaluru International Airport, Safari buses at Bannerghatta Wildlife safari or the 52 Luxury tourist buses for the packages tours to various important tourist and religious destinations. Besides, the luxury Tourist Train, The Golden Chariot , is our pride, which covers the whole of South India. KSTDC has also started the customised tour packages for tourists who need special experiences.

  1. Some of your properties are situated in best of locations (prime locations and excellent views) How are you making the most from these facilities? 

Most of our Hotels are located at the best tourist destinations like Mayura Valley View at Raja seat, Madikeri, Mayura Sudarshan at Fernhill Gardens, Ooty, Hotel Pinetop at Nandi Hills and so on. All our restaurants are multi-cuisine and also cater to the local cuisine and are extremely popular and do great business.

KSTDC has also announced its package to promote Corporate meetings at some of its locations, with limited capacity conferencing facilities. We would try and improve in handling our MICE capabilities to improve our weekday occupancies.

  1. What are your immediate future plans to make Karnataka more attractive to tourists?

A-5 )  KSTDC is working very closely with the department of Tourism and has been entrusted with various responsibilities by the Government. KSTDC is now handling the website, Digital and Social media of the Department of Tourism to reach out and promote Karnataka Tourism across the World. KSTDC shall also be organising about 16 International Roadshows and 24 Domestic Roadshows this year for Karnataka Tourism, besides participation in 7 International Travel Marts and many Domestic Markets, to promote and sell Karnataka Tourism.

KSTDC organised Karnataka International Travel Expo (KITE) attracted over 400 delegates from 30 different countries with successful B2B meetings.

Smaller initiatives like organising Karnataka Darshan for over 30000 students from class 8, from all over the Sate as well as starting Light and Sound show at Hampi and Srirangapatna, are some other activities. KSTDC is also in to developing tourism at new destinations, wherever entrusted, like managing boating and water sports at few places, development of Tourism at Devika Rani – Roerich Estate, on the outskirts of Bengaluru.

As per the strategy worked out for KSTDC for next 5 years, KSTDC, besides its regular role of operating Hotels, Restaurants, Luxury buses and package tours, Golden Chariot Train, KSTDC shall work actively on Tourism promotion, Tourism Product development and Skill training and upgradation in Hospitality and Tourism sector at the State level.

The department of Tourism is working with a very focussed approach to develop the basic infrastructure at all the major tourist destinations and a visible improvement would be seen, very shortly. All these activities to improve the infrastructure and the soft skills of the people involved, coupled with right amount of publicity, shall help Karnataka Tourism become more attractive to all the Tourists.

Compiled by Anand & Madhura Katti

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