Hotels engaging local artisans to promote craft tourism this New Year

Hotels like the Kathmandu Marriott and Postcard Gir Wildlife Sanctuary  collaborate with the local organisations to offer the guest experience of lifetime as tourists get a chance to try their hands on local crafts and culture.

Away from the conventional tourist sites, the Kathmandu Marriott’s Well Travel initiative bridges the gap between local community and tourists, the Founder of Shyam Badan Shrestha Nepal Naucraft Center is of the view that travelers seek a sense of authenticity, no matter where in the world they’re traveling and the impact his organization has made producing various products – all woven from natural fibers such as straw, bamboo and sage is  giving the intrepid chance to travel to learnt the skills.

As per travelers, the experience is the courtesy of an hour spent at the Nepal Naucraft Center through Marriott’s Well Travel initiative. Apart from craft demonstrations, the activities involve tribal dances in the reserve forest areas, Postcard Dining at Gir Wildlife Sanctuary.

“We have seen travel become increasingly purpose-driven and impact-oriented,” says Bart Buring, chief sales and marketing officer for Asia Pacific at Marriott International.

According to the 2022 American Express Travel Global Survey, 83% of Millennials are considering the importance of purpose when planning trips and deciding which companies to work with, up from 79% of overall survey respondents. they say.

At Urbanot, a discovery platform with local recommendations for travelers, founder Samyukta Ranganathan explains that COVID-19 has promoted experiential travel And now, people are thinking of them as experiences, but as routine activities.

Through the app, users can book everything from a pottery workshop to bespoke meals and unique experiences like swimming in hidden quarry pools in Goa or rafting in the Indus or Zanskar amidst the hustle and bustle of Mumbai. While some create a sense of learning and discovery, most offer an opportunity to get off the beaten path, away from the crowds.

Jarir de Vitre, an independent sustainability consultant who has done several Urbanoat experiences in Goa, explains that it is the chance to spend time in small groups and try local, offbeat experiences that appeals to him.

Bart notes. He explains, “With Good Travel by Marriott Bonvoy, we worked closely with NGOs and local experts, such as marine biologists and artists, to help curate the custom purpose-driven experiences offered by the program Could Some experiences require a minimal fee to allow these local experts and NGOs to help run the experience in a professional, informative and meaningful way.

The Postcard Gir Wildlife Sanctuary

Another such boutique property Nimmu House in Ladakh, about 45 minutes from Leh engages local people for guided tours of the village – such as buying vegetables locally. Indrani, host and curator at Nimmu House, says, “After the pandemic, more Indians are taking an interest in Village walks and hiking.”

Resonating with  Bart’s opinion,  Sanjeev Sharma, General Manager of RAAS Devigarh avers that after the lockdown, there is a new set of tourists, especially international tourists, who are “very eager to visit the villages and see the life of the villagers”. . Which is possible through village tours led by local people.

Hotels like Postcard Gir Wildlife Sanctuary offer a safari experience, there is a more local Siddhi Dhamaal dance experience that showcases Nagoma drumming and a tribal fire dance. Akanksha Lamba, Senior V Vice President – Operations, The Postcard Hotels, says, “Each Postcard experience has been conceptualized to provide a true sense of neighborhood and destination. Our dedicated Experiences team begins with an extensive preliminary research- shortlisting the region’s diverse experiences, be it spiritual, cultural, historical, adventure and even wildlife interaction.”

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