Monday, December 20, 2010

Coimbatore gears up to be an ideal host- The Hindu

The years 2010 and 2011 are significant for Coimbatore as well-known hotel brands enter the city, throwing open a new line of luxury stay and dining facilities. This also means Coimbatore needs more chefs, florists, decorators, drivers, cleaners, etc, to give its guests a pleasant and comfortable stay.
Some of the value-adding services that come with a good hotel are travel desk, foreign exchange counter, wi-fi accessibility, florists, health clubs, and decorators. Customers ask for video-conferencing facility in every meeting room. For entertainment, the guests look out for a small shopping space. They also prefer a kids' zone, book, jewellery, and handicraft shops. Apart from these hundreds of personnel are required to service the guests. A 250 room star hotel needs a large number of cars and drivers who will assist in valet parking too.
According to an industry source, all these requirements have thrown open several employment and business opportunities. Hotels have started recruiting from towns and cities that are about 50 km away too.
They conduct regular training programmes for these recruits.
With inadequate local suppliers, many hotels here now go to other cities to source their inventory and for maintenance services. Vendors should be available at affordable costs for those who want to outsource some of these services.
Gopinath Balasundaram, General Manager – Operations of The Residency told The Hindu that when a particular industry develops in a city, related sectors also see growth. Personnel are needed for front office, etc. In Coimbatore, hotels will have to train the recruits as they usually come with work experience in a different industrial sector.
With booming employment opportunities in the hospitality sector, several people are moving in to Coimbatore from other towns. Similarly, those from Coimbatore but currently employed in hotels in other cities are also looking at shifting to their home town.
The hotels usually retain the critical departments that are direct customer contact points. They prefer to outsource cleaning the exteriors, valet parking, etc. The hotels need a regular supply of glassware and crockery, and domestic availability of maintenance personnel for AC plants, generators and laundry machines. Sourcing these from other cities is not cost effective, he says. Similarly, trained personnel are needed to polish the marbles, and clean the glasses. Such services are hardly available here.
Apart from the number of hotels going up in the city, related sectors should also develop for a sustainable growth. Thus, a boom in the hospitality services has thrown open several business opportunities for the local entrepreneurs.

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