1) The Founder
Delhi-based Yash Malik; he got a BBA degree from the University of Miami and worked for EY, Deloitte and a global investment bank as a management consultant during his college days.
2) The Trigger
A fitness enthusiast, Malik took up swimming early in his life. Finding a swimming pool was not a problem in the US, but it was tough to find a suitable one when he came home. Residential clubs with pools were too few and all of them were overcrowded. He called up hotels and asked whether he could pay and use their pools without checking in. After some time, he came across an upscale hotel in Aerocity, Delhi, which had a pool-and-gym package for non-resident guests. Malik was intrigued by the concept. So, he decided to develop a portal and an app to bring on board hotels with and without day packages and others keen to try it out at discounted prices.
3) How it Works
Malik launched LuxePass (the company is registered as Starbird Enterprises), but it took him another six months to develop an app for Android and iOS users. At the consumer level, the platform enables users to book amenities in luxury and mid-scale hotels without booking a room. Users can pay as little as Rs 500 to access premium swimming pools, gyms, spas and salons for a few hours or an entire day. On the B2B side, it lists partner hotels for LuxePass day guests at discounted rates. The company claims to have posted 100 per cent growth in gross revenue since its launch. Its active user base has seen 50 per cent month-on-month growth, according to Malik.
4) The Way Forward
The start-up aims to scale up the number of hotel partners to 100 by the second half of 2020. The next target is to tap the pent-up demand across smaller towns where recreational options are limited compared to metros. Although there are fewer upscale hotels in Tier-II and Tier-III cities, people with enough time and disposable incomes would definitely like to opt for experiential but affordable luxury. Malik is not worried about scaling up, though, as a ready-made tech platform is already there to bear the load. He is also working on a model wherein users can access all hotel services through a single LuxePass membership, at an affordable price.
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