Business Today

Home away from home

The Clarks Group of hotels enters the home-stay segment.

Tejeesh N. S. Behl        Print Edition: January 27, 2008

Kumar: Effort to standardise B&B
Apurva Kumar
Segmented and fragmented, the home-stay scheme launched by the Tourism Ministry in 2006—also known as the bread-and-breakfast scheme—has attracted the attention of the organised sector. The predominantly north India-based Clarks Group of Hotels has made a serious foray into the home-stay market by tying up with home-owners. “This is the first such effort at introducing branded and standardised B&B home-stay for tourists, started through our Jaipur Home Pride project in December 2005,” says Apurva Kumar, Managing Director, Clarks Group of Hotels.

Kumar feels that the Tourism Ministry’s methodology of approving home-owners is rather ambiguous. The project, which has now extended to Delhi and has undergone a name change— Home Pride from the earlier Jaipur Home Pride—has over 1,000 homes in the two cities affiliated with the hotel chain. “We only choose families who are known to us through referrals. We then match the home-owner’s profile with that of the guests,” informs Kumar. His company offers help in the paperwork for getting the necessary approvals from the ministry.

Earnings for the company accrue from a revenue sharing model. “While we don’t guarantee any specific number of room nights, we do take into account the home-owner’s expectations in terms of revenue per night,” points out Kumar, who is planning to expand his ‘experiment’ into Bangalore, Chennai and Mumbai.

 

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