The company has signed for setting up similar hotels in nine cities

Roots Corporation, a subsidiary of Indian Hotels Company, will have another 60 to 70 budget hotels ? christened as Ginger ? in 23 locations across the country. At present the company had budget hotels in 24 locations. Construction was underway in seven locations and the company has signed for setting up similar hotels in nine cities.

Addressing a press conference here on Wednesday, Prabhat Pani, Chief Executive Officer and Director, Roots Corporation, said the company was already constructing budget hotels in Bangalore, Tirupur, Amritsar, Jaipur, Mumbai and Hyderabad. All these hotels put together would have 700 rooms.

Launching the first budget hotel in Chennai, Mr. Pani said the hotel was situated in IITM Research Park campus in Taramani and had 80 rooms. Ginger Chennai would not only cater to the needs to the companies operational in Research Park but also other companies based on OMR (including in Tidel Park). The tariff rates were between Rs. 2,500 and Rs. 3,000 depending on the size of the rooms.

Mr. Pani said the growth rate of budget hotels in India was high. Of the total hospitality industry, nearly 50 per cent came under four and five star category and only 24 per cent were under budget segment. It was estimated that with the growth of tourism by 2015 there would be a shortfall of nearly 85,000 to 1.25 lakh rooms. Of the total shortfall, the gap for budget hotels rooms would be somewhere between 14,000 and 17,000. He hoped that Ginger budget hotels would be in a position to fill the gap and meet the demand. He said that travellers today were open-minded and analysed the various options of accommodation in a city as his or her budget.

Earlier, the company wanted to acquire the land and construct these budget hotels, which they had done it in Pondicherry. With the increase in real estate and cost of operations, the company decided to locate these hotels on leased accommodations in places such as retail malls, research institutions, government institutions among others. He said Ginger budget hotels would also replace company guest houses.