In 1903, Spencer Hotel, Calcutta was started with a capital of Rs. 3 lakh. There are many good Indian-style hotels in all big cities of India. Many new companies are entering into the hotel field.
The Hyatt Regency Delhi, owned by the Asian Hotels Ltd., is a consortium company promoted by a group of non-resident Indian nationals. The hotel is situated at Cama Place, New Delhi.
In the past, construction of hotels has been mainly in the hands of the private sector. The Government paid no attention for the development of hotels in India. There were some rest-houses and tourist bungalows before 1963, which were run by the Department of Tourism and some of them by the state governments.
The tradition of State-owned hotels is quite old in our country- The Ashok Hotel in New Delhi, the Railway Hotels at Ranchi, Puri and Aurangabad, the State-owned hotel at Brindaban Gardens in Mysore, are some of the examples of hotels owned and run by the states.
On the basis of the recommendations of the Jha Committee and with a view to providing facilities needed for the foreign visitors, it was decided to set up three separate corporations:
(a) Indian Tourism Hotel Corporation Ltd. (1965), subsequently renamed as HCL Ltd. The main function of the corporation was the construction and management of hotels in public sectors;
(b) Indian Tourism Corporation Ltd. (1965). It was established with the object of producing material for tourist publicity; and
(c) Indian Tourism Transport Undertaking Ltd., was established in 1964 with a view to providing transport facilities to the tourists.
These three corporations were subsequently amalgamated into one composite corporation Indian Tourism Development Corporation in 1966. Realizing the importance of tourism in the country, the government of India created a separate Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation in 1967.
Indian Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC) promoting tourism backed by the country’s largest accommodation chain the Ashoka Group; over three thousand rooms in hotels, forest lodges, travellers lodges and beach resorts extend from Jammu in the north to Kovalam in the south. The Ashoka in New Delhi has been equated with the best convention facilities available in Asia.
ITDC has a shopping arcade in each of its hotels added to which are five duty-free shops at the international airports of Mumbai, Kolkata, Delhi, Chennai and Tiruchirapalli.
Air India’s decision to enter the hotel business is not something unusual. Air India decided not to get into hotel business under its own name. In 1971, it set up a wholly-owned subsidiary called Hotel Corporation of India (HCIL) with the capital of 6.5 million dollars. The HCIL opened the Centaur Hotel at Mumbai airport in 1974. It has also two other hotels.
Yet another entry of public sector in the field of Tourism and Hoteliering was the introduction of ‘Palace on Wheels’ concept, introduced by Rajasthan Tourism Development Corporation, in collaboration with the Indian Railways.
The hotel industry in India is making a remarkable progress in both sectors-public and private.