‘Hospitality landscape has evolved lately’

Post-pandemic, there has been a strong focus on alternate streams of revenue, says Moncrief Aviet, General Manager, Taj Jai Mahal Palace, Jaipur

Nestled amidst 18 acres of landscaped Mughal gardens, Taj Jai Mahal Palace, Jaipur is an iconic palace that dates back to 1745 AD. A masterpiece in Indo-Saracenic architecture, it is synonymous with the finest traditions of legendary Rajput hospitality, blending timeless luxury and opulence with contemporary comforts. From elegantly appointed rooms and marbled corridors to magnificent gardens, every corner at Jai Mahal Palace, Jaipur echoes history and tells tales of a bygone era. From food and beverage and wellness to timeless weddings and gourmet delivery service through Qmin, the hotel offers an array of experiences.

Not this alone, Jai Mahal Palace, Jaipur is home to some of the state capital’s finest dining experiences. The celebrated Cinnamon showcases majestic royal cuisines and regal gastronomical delights from the four former princely states of India. Set by the poolside, Giardino is Jaipur’s finest and only contemporary Italian restaurant with a stunning alfresco. Marble Arch, the all-day dining restaurant, serves an array of international cuisines along with local flavours while Marigold, Jaipur’s first watering hole, offers an exclusive selection of classic cocktails, Cuban cigars and post-dinner drinks.

“For an intimate yet gregarious setting for the perfect proposal, Royal Baradari Experience is ideal. The meal here is an experience in itself as it sweeps you back in time to the ceremonial and elaborate spread of the maharajas and maharanis of yore. The expert palace team helps you set up the space with flowers, candles and even a red carpet, if you so might choose – the ultimate romantic setting for two. Have your own personal assistance to pop open a bottle of bubbly and take care of all your needs as you serenade to music to suit your mood – be it a performance by local artisans, a two-piece band or just a mellow instrumental backdrop,” shares General Manager Moncrief Aviet.

He adds that in terms of banqueting, Jai Mahal Palace offers a host of venues, from elegantly designed ballrooms and state-of-the-art boardrooms to expansive lawns and outdoor venues. “In terms of wellness, Jiva Spa set amidst the beautifully landscaped gardens of the palace, with its luxurious spa tents, offers timeless traditions of ancient Indian healing wisdom. Overlooking the azure blue waters of the outdoor swimming pool, the ethos of our carefully recreated treatments is drawn on the rich wellness heritage of India, the fabled lifestyle and culture of Indian royalty and healing therapies that embrace Indian spirituality,” says Aviet who began his career in 2004 with IHCL as a management trainee at The Taj Mahal Palace, Mumbai. 

It was during his stint in the Maximum City that he essayed multiple roles in the Food and Beverage domain. In 2014, Aviet moved to Taj Palace, New Delhi as the F&B Manager. “Having taken on an increasing number of responsibilities, I was subsequently elevated to the role of Director of Food & Beverage. In 2017, I took over as the Resident Manager of The Taj Mahal Palace, Mumbai, post which I assumed the role of the General Manager at the Taj Tashi, Bhutan. I moved to Jai Mahal Palace, Jaipur in early 2021 and have been here ever since,” he shares.

Present-day hospitality landscape and future

“It is interesting to see the way the hospitality landscape has evolved over the last couple of years with exciting new products and offerings in the market. Post-pandemic, there has been a strong focus on alternate streams of revenue and I do believe these are here to stay. Multi-platform digital outreach and effectively narrating your story through social media has become imperative for the success of any new campaign,” Aviet says.

To be a successful hotelier

The General Manager at Taj Jai Mahal Palace, Jaipur shares that hoteliering for him is a craft that requires not just a deep sense of passion towards the field but also a knack of understanding the intricacies that are a part of the varied processes. “At living palaces like ours, the approach needs to be highly nuanced with robust understanding of history, culture and heritage. A clear vision, sharp and astute business acumen, a drive for operational excellence, an inherent sense of customer centricity and ability to synergistically work with people lead to overall success,” he says.

Sustainability efforts 

“The spirit of sustainability lies at the very heart of our palace which in itself is a stunning green oasis spread across 18 acres of landscaped gardens in the heart of the Pink City. We have been certified as an Earthcheck Platinum hotel from the world’s leading environmental certification and benchmarking programme for the travel and tourism industry, post assessment of parameters related to energy, water and waste management, biodiversity and community development among others,” he informs.

At the sewage treatment plant in Taj Jai Mahal Palace, 75 per cent water is treated and used within the premises post-recycling/treatment for the verdant gardens that span the length and breadth of the palace grounds, informs Aviet, adding that the waste compost machine at the property helps convert kitchen-wet waste to manure. “On a daily basis, approximately three kilo manure is generated. This is used in our lawns and herb garden. To contribute towards the success of our organisation’s efforts to eliminate single use plastic, we have initiated the installation of a water bottling plant that will soon enable us to provide the highest quality of purified drinking water for our guests and reduce the production of solid waste and our carbon footprint at the same time,” he says.

As a part of IHCL’s partnership with UNESCO to preserve and promote the intangible cultural heritage of India, Jai Mahal Palace curates itineraries to promote Bagru hand-block printing, blue pottery and kalbelia which are unique to Jaipur. “While guests can enjoy the art and craft in their ecosystem, the initiative helps provide visibility and employability to the artisans. Taking ahead our organisation’s commitment toward skill building, creating employability for the deserving and the marginalised, our Skills Certification Centre focusses on building hospitality skills in culinary, food and beverage and housekeeping,” says Aviet.

This article was published in BW hotelier issue dated '' with cover story titled 'BW HOTELIER MAY-JUNE 2022'


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