ITDC plans makeover of hotel fleet; eyes duty-free biz

ITDC plans makeover of hotel fleet; eyes duty-free biz

New Delhi: Buoyed by its growing profitability, state-run tourism agency ITDC has embarked upon upgradation of its hotels at an estimated investment of 146 crore, while looking for duty-free business beyond India in tie-up with a Spanish firm.

Indian Tourism Development Corporation has formed a 50:50 joint venture with Spain’s Aldeasa, a senior ITDC official told PTI. The JV has won the rights to run duty free shops at Mumbai international airport and is also planning to set up such shops at the sea-ports.

“We are also eyeing other airports in India and outside the country specifically places in South Asia like Mauritius or Fiji Islands where a large number of Indian diaspora reside," the official said.

He said at the new duty free shops, ITDC would focus on perfumes, jewellery, toiletries and other luxury goods which were not given much attention by the company in past.

ITDC’s annual profit rose to 75.22 crore in 2006-07, up from 52.57 crore in the previous year.

In the first quarter of the current financial year, the company’s net profit has more than doubled to 9.73 crore from 4.06 crore in the same quarter of 2006-07.

ITDC has set a target of upgrading 245 rooms of Hotel Ashok here, of which 60 rooms have already been given a new look based on international standards, a company spokesperson said.

The company is also planning a makeover for 40 rooms of Hotel Samrat and 75 rooms of Hotel Janpath in the national capital, 73 rooms of the Jaipur Ashok and 40 rooms of its hotel in Guwahati by September this year.

While, upgradation of the property in Jammu and Kashmir would start in next year, the process has already began for those located at Patna, Bhubaneshwar and Pondicherry as well.