The tea voyage with MAYFAIR
Designed and developed as a confluence of old-world charm and contemporary comforts, MAYFAIR Tea Resort, Siliguri, is a destination unto itself. In an exclusive interview, Souvagya Mohapatra, Executive Director, Mayfair Hotels and Resorts, shares more about their latest experiential property, along with tea tales and a ‘Green Houses’ full of rare Orchids.
How many rooms and suites does the new property offer? What kind of banqueting and MICE spaces are its USP? What is the location of the resort?
MAYFAIR Tea Resort is a 154 Keys property that consists of luxury Rooms with Jungle View & Mountain View, Heritage Rooms, Themed Suits named as Colonial Suite, Directors Suite, Planters Suite, Sukuna Suite and Managers Suite. inspired by the luxury and allure of the bygone era, every room and suite at the resort is uniquely designed, featuring heritage furniture’s, ornate wood and glass work, plush interiors, miniature paintings and comes equipped with choicest of amenities. Add to this the soothing Tea Garden and mountain views that the room offers and there’s nothing like it. The true abode of luxury and comfort, one will always regret of having not spend some more time here.
Designed & developed as a confluence of old-world charm and contemporary comforts, MAYFAIR Tea Resort is a destination unto itself and we, therefore, believe that Destination Weddings will be its USP. Be it the location, climate, physiography, uniqueness of the resort for being nestled amidst thousands of acres of tea gardens, convenient connectivity or the best-in-class service, the property offers all that one could ask for at a memorable and happening destination wedding
However, though Destination Wedding will be our USP, MAYFAIR Tea Resort is a one-stop solution for events of all scales and types. With the presence of an exquisite range of venues with areas ranging from 825 sq. ft. to 66185 sq. ft., the property is adequately armed to cater any event to picture-perfection.
The resort is conveniently located at Sevoke Road which is about half an hour's drive from Bagdogra Airport and New Jalpaiguri Railway Station.
Can you expound on the finer points of an experiential stay that your new property will offer as it is in the midst of a tea plantation?
Being in the midst of a tea garden, the experiential stay at MAYFAIR Tea Resort would be themed around Tea and its Colonial Legacy. Every aspect and attribute of the resort has accordingly been very tastefully designed to ensure that it offers one-of-its-kind experience of tea tourism wrapped around unbridled luxury.
Right from the 16th Century Tudor architectural concept of the resort to chequered black & white Italian marbles, centuries old antiques related to tea, vintage cars, Victorian era furniture’s & fixtures, chip & dale bed, 125 year old c. Lazarus Billiard Table to 103 years old Rachael’s Grand Piano, MAYFAIR Tea Resort is a destination where the past blissfully interacts with the present, delightfully unfolding the tea tales and the journey of tea from a largely unknown beverage till the mid of 19th Century to now being the most consumed brew of the country.
While experiencing this tea voyage that spans across centuries, guests, if they desire can also in person witness the entire tea making process i.e. the journey of tea from garden to their cup.
Being a tea resort, what special offerings in terms of tea find the way into its F&B offerings and menu?
We take pride of having a multi-cuisine restaurant named “Tea Pot” - All Day Dining & Coffee Shop which is equipped to serve buffet as well as a-la-carte global delicacies. Bay Leaf - a magnificent Day Eatery overlooking the tea gardens and mountain, Planter's Club – a unique Tea Lounge where you can taste the verities of Teas across the world. Director's Lounge – meant for the residents only as a place for our guests to hang out with cheese & wine, Vintage Bar and Pool Bar are equipped serve wine and spirits. The best part is the “Green House” which has rare collections of Orchids, you may visit this unique place and relax with "Wine & Dine" Option.
What sustainable initiatives in terms of energy, water saving, recycling have been employed in this resort? What equipment has been installed for the same?
As a brand, we have always attached great significance to sustainability and eco-friendly practices. At MAYFAIR Tea Resort, our endeavour will be energy conservation by using efficient electrical appliances, sourcing our energy requirements from renewable sources like solar energy, saving water by smart water metering technique apart from rainwater harvesting, we shall also be strictly following the principle of 3Rs– reduce, reuse and recycle in all sphere of our activities and most importantly ensure that there is no excess or unnecessary utilisation of resources by undertaking extensive and regular awareness campaigns among staff as well as guests.
How can domestic tourism help the ailing travel and hospitality industry right now? How is Mayfair group of hotels trying to promote the same?
Until and unless the threat of virus subsides, the travel and hospitality industry should not expect any major relief because people are unlikely to indulge in discretionary spending.
Promoting domestic tourism has always been our top priority, especially in the Eastern and North Eastern India. Though now the situation is tough, we continue to promote domestic tourism through all ways that is possible with our resources and wherewithal. This apart, we also try to make impactful use of our association with leading industry bodies to effectively voice the concerns of the domestic tourism market and what can be done to ensure its robust growth.
What other ancillary sources of revenues can hotels come up with now that occupancies remain so low?
With revenues turning dry, we need to truly look up for ancillary sources of revenues. The airline industry is a very good example in this context on how ancillary sources of revenue can transform a whole sector. Hospitality industry too needs to emulate this model and look at unlocking their potential by exploring all possible sources of additional revenue. As far as the issue of what particular sources should be explored, this will be a very subjective assessment and will differ from brand to brand. Among others, marketing can be a very good source of additional revenue. For example, if a Hotel is using a mattress of a particular brand, it can tie up with that brand for marketing. The hotel can promote the product of the brand by conveying to the guests that the product they are using is of XYZ Company and in return of it, the company concerned can provide some benefits to the hotel. This will be a win-win situation for both without having any bearing on guest’s experience.
What remain the main challenges for growth of the hospitality industry in the East of India?
The Inadequate core infrastructure, poor connectivity, lack of thrust at the policy level to promote tourism and hospitality sector had been some of the challenges for the growth of hospitality in eastern India but now gradually all these concerns are being addressed. Governments in these states are now proactively promoting the establishment of new hospitality projects in their state and the state of Odisha is a great example in this context. From remission on land conversion charges, single-window clearance to creating a dedicated land bank, the state has undertaken a host of initiative to attract investments.
However, this is not to say that there are no more challenges in Eastern India, in fact, there are many but what is reassuring is the change in perception at the policy level who are cognisant of the benefits that this sector has to offer in terms of socio-economic growth of the country and are making diligent efforts at their end to remove these impediments.
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