Foray will benefit tourism in J&K; signifies change in market perception, says K B Kachru

Calling Carlson Rezidor’s move into J&K a significant step forward in signalling changing times in the valley, he saw this venture not only a smart business move to capture market early, but also a strong message to the global business community that the state was right and ready to host patrons again.  

KB KachruJ&K has been in news for all good reasons in recent months. The state is in midst of rolling out a new tourism policy which aims at increasing footfalls and creating new tourism infrastructure and products. K B Kachru, Chairman South Asia who also features on the panel of high-powered committee on tourism in the state said “We are working on it. The state government is facilitating the draft tourism policy for Jammu and Kashmir.  I hope that with a definite tourism policy in place, it will be of great help in setting a concrete direction for future.”

He had a word of praise for the state government for its proactive approach in augmenting its visibility and tourist numbers. “The government has been very supportive of us. As you are aware that I am also a member of the recommendation committee, so it is being very accomodating– which is good for the future of tourism and hospitality,” said K B Kachru.

He divulged that besides an aggressive entry into the state, this concerted push would not be limited to only J&K. “We will also move into other cities and non-metros with equal vigor,” he shared.

Noting that the signing of agreement would send a positive message to the market that J&K was right and ready to host guests, he reasoned that “These should serve as an indicator of J&K heading to normalcy again, and also of the larger market sentiments towards the state.” He mentioned that local investors were coming forward and there was an international brand on board. “So, it speaks a lot about future possibilities,” he said.

He added that “in terms of sense of security and by having an international brand coming to the state – it will send a positive signal to domestic and international market.”

Pointing towards the fact that, till now, no hospitality chain had thought of going to J&K, he said that they would have to wait and see how people reacted to this foray. “However, it is the state which will be the ultimate winner in this process,” he believed.

When asked whether this launch would catalyze the process of altering state’s positioning as a destination, he concurred. “I am in total agreement with the logic. That’s what we want. The success of this endeavor will depend on delivering,” he said.  “We have a saying in hospitality: ‘how many heads can you put to bed’? So, we have to actually have a pull factor to get people to visit Kashmir,” he further noted.

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