Indian hospitality embraces sustainable growth

Indian hospitality entities are increasingly embracing sustainable practices in their operations. According to a recent KPMG report titled “Sustainability in Tourism: Reimagining India’s Sustainable Tourism Evolution,” the sustainable tourism market in India was valued at US$26.01 million in 2022 and is projected to reach US$151.88 million by 2032, with a rapid CAGR of 19.3% from 2022 to 2032.
The Federation of Hotels and Restaurant Associations of India (FHRAI) recently partnered with the Sustainable Hospitality Alliance to collaborate on joint projects and knowledge sharing. This partnership aims to leverage tools and programs to promote best practices within India’s hospitality sector.
“This collaboration demonstrates our strong commitment to reducing our environmental impact while optimising our beneficial influence on the communities we serve,” said Pradeep Shetty, President, FHRAI.
As per the KPMG in India report, innovative and eco-friendly accommodations, such as solar-powered hotels, bamboo cottages, and zero-waste guesthouses, will become the norm rather than the exception in the country.
“All our produce is 100 per cent organic and comes from our farms, which include leafy greens, vegetables, fruits, and herbs. We grow our own green salad leaves using hydroponic farming, which involves growing plants without soil, using water-based mineral nutrient solutions. Our hotels use solar energy for heating hot water, and 80 per cent of our lighting fixtures are energy-conserving LED. We are converting our fleet of vehicles to hybrid to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels. Our goal is to be paperless in most of our key departments and to introduce an e-ordering and billing system,” shared Kush Kapoor, CEO, Roseate Hotels & Resorts.
“We prioritise eco-friendly materials in the construction and maintenance of our luxury tents. This includes using recycled and biodegradable materials wherever possible, as well as reducing energy and water consumption through efficient systems and practices. Additionally, we actively engage with local communities to ensure that our operations have a positive impact on their livelihoods and cultural heritage. We source local produce and employ local staff, providing economic opportunities and fostering a sense of pride and ownership among community members,” said Bhavik Sheth, COO, Evoke Experiences – the company operates glamping sites across India.
However, implementing sustainable practices is challenging for Indian hospitality players.
Kapoor noted the need for upfront investments into technology, infrastructure, and materials, which can strain financial resources.
“Additionally, training staff to embrace and execute these new practices effectively demands time and resources,” he added.
Sheth said the need to balance environmental conservation with the luxury experience that guests expect required “careful planning and innovation”.
He added: “Operating in remote and culturally-rich areas also presents logistical challenges in terms of waste management, transportation, and access to resources.”
However, Indian hotels remain positive about adhering to sustainable tourism practices. “The long-term benefits of sustainability, both in terms of cost savings and environmental impact, make it a worthwhile endeavour for any forward-thinking hotelier,” concluded Kapoor.

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