Sunday, 8 November 2009

Making rooms for the games

Visitors to the Commonwealth Games in Delhi could find themselves short on accommodation. The authorities are trying alternative arrangements to increase supply ahead of the event.

There have been delays 
delays in approvals and permissions and it has become fairly evident that there is bound to be a shortage of rooms in Delhi for the Commonwealth Games.

This has led to backup measures with private residences being given permission to register single rooms as bed-and-breakfast accommodation. While not new, it was not profitable until the coming of the Commonwealth Games. Now that the system has been revived and officially ratified, it will continue at an organized level even after the Games. Home owners will have to renew their license every two years.

There has also been some speculation about farmhouses in the Delhi NCR region being mobilized as a stop gap accommodation measure. Requests by farmhouse owners to utilize their properties for this purpose have certainly been made. The provisions for the Bed & Breakfast scheme would extend to farmhouses, as well.

However, because of their location, and the fact that they have residential-use status only, this temporary semi-commercial utilization will not turn into a long-standing trend after the Commonwealth Games. These farmhouses are at the luxury end of the residential market, often with carefully maintained ambiance and infrastructure. Offering them up for long-term tourist use would not be a concept that would appeal to many of these farmhouse owners.

In the second place, most farmhouses in the Delhi NCR region are located in clusters around Mehrauli, Bijwasan, Rajokri and Chattarpur, which are far from strategically placed in terms of where the main Commonwealth Games action will be. As such, they would not present much of an advantage for visitors. Apart from the above measures, approximately 700 under-construction DDA flats coming up at Vasant Kunj and Rohini will be made ready to accommodate visitors.

Some of the 5-star hotels coming up for the Commonwealth Games are Crowne Plaza at Okhla Industrial area, Crowne Plaza at Mayur Vihar, Hilton (Piccadilly) at Janakpuri, Radisson Marina at Connaught Place and Hilton Convention Luxury Hotel at Dwarka, among others. The 5-star deluxe Leela Palace at Chanakyapuri is also in the pipeline. In the Gurgaon area, the 5-star supply includes Radisson Manesar and Frasers Serviced Apartments at Udyog Vihar. 5-star deluxe hotels include The Westin Gurgaon, The Oberoi, Four Seasons Gurgaon-DLF Golf Links and JW Marriott at Manesar. The 4-star hotels include Holiday Inn at Mayur Vihar, Novotel at Jhandewalan, Courtyard by Marriott, Park Plaza extension & Convention Centre and Park Inn. — Our Chennai Bureau.


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