Palpa, March 12, 2017: The hospitality industry in the western Nepali city of Tansen in Palpa district has of late witnessed a massive shift with the emergence of new hotels.
Until a few years ago, finding a good hotel room in Tansen used to be quite difficult. But with more young entrepreneurs putting money into the hospitality sector, the city is seeing more hotels providing quality services.
Laxman Bashyal recently launched a new tourist hotel with an investment of more than Rs40 million. He is now planning to build a lodge with 22 rooms.
Raju Maharjan, former president of the Palpa Chamber of Commerce and Industry, has also built a 26-room hotel. Maharjan, a promoter of Gauri Shankar Guest House, has invested Rs50 million in the new facility.
Another young entrepreneur Kamal Karki has also started a 23-room hotel at Silkhan Tole in Tansen. Karki, who was into Dhaka apparel business, has invested Rs30 million in the new property.
As new hotel projects are sprouting in the city, those currently in the business are doing all they can to catch up and stay relevant. This has further increased the flow of capital towards the hotel sector.
Hotel entrepreneur Nirmal Shrestha, who runs Hotel White Lake, for instance, has just funnelled an additional Rs40 million to add 20 rooms to his property.
“We have invested in the hospitality business as we are optimistic about good returns,” Shrestha said. “We need to attract tourists from Lumbini and Pokhara to make Tansen a tourist hub.”
Tourism entrepreneur Shyam Lal Kakshapati, who opened Nanglo West in Tansen, has also injected fresh capital to expand his business, while hotels like Srinagar, Simrik and Diamond have also jumped on the bandwagon. Investments that are going into the hotel sector in Tansen are having a chain effect in the entire tourism industry, leading to opening of new restaurants, tour and travel agencies, and outlets that provide paragliding service. And investment has spilled over to remote areas in the vicinity of Tansen.
New Hotel Srinagar, which was opened with an investment of Rs20 million, has just come into operation in Rampur, about 70km from Tansen. More hotels are being built here, while those already in operation are expanding their businesses. Travel trade entrepreneurs said young entrepreneurs are more interested in investing in the hospitality sector. The ongoing development of international airports in Bhairahawa and Pokhara has also encouraged them to invest heavily in hotels, lodges and restaurants, they said.
Until two years ago, hotels in Palpa had 300 beds in total, according to tourism entrepreneurs. This number has not gone up to 500. “The rise in flow of tourists, particularly from India, has been a boon for the tourism sector in Tansen,” said Durga Thapa, a programme officer at the District Development Committee. “But those who have invested in this sector should compete in a healthy manner.”