Govt enforces new criteria for hotels in Nepal
The government has enforced a new set of criteria for star hotels and tourist standard resorts. It has also introduced a new category -- deluxe five-star.The new criteria was published in the Gazette on Monday.As per the notice published in the Gazette, the government has enforced the criteria by making amendments to the Hotel, Lodge, Restaurant, Bar and Tour Operator Regulation 1981.As per the new criteria, all star hotels need to increase rooms by 20 percent. Similarly, they should have facilities like Wi-Fi and CCTV and should have LCD/LED TV in all rooms.
New hotels should follow the criteria immediately, while existing hotels have five years to meet the new criteria. As per the notice, hotels that fail to meet the criteria within the given timeframe will be dropped to lower category. Hoteliers have welcomed the new standardization order. They say the new standards will help to raise the quality of hotels in Nepal in line with the international standard. They have also hailed the government decision to introduce deluxe five-star category, saying that it has opened the doors for investment in deluxe five-star hotels. Also existing five start hotels can upgrade themselves into deluxe five-star category by adding new facilities, they said.
Madhav Om Shrestha, executive director of the Hotel Association of Nepal (HAN), said the amendments to the regulation were made in consultation with the association. He also told Republica that HAN will help member hotels to implement the standardization order within the given timeframe. According to HAN officials, five-star hotels like Hyatt Regency Kathmandu, Hotel Radisson Kathmandu Hotel and Soaltee Crown Plaza already have the necessary infrastructures to upgrade themselves into the category of deluxe five-star. Other five-star hotels are also making preparations to upgrade to the deluxe five-star category, they said. As per the notice published in the Gazette, deluxe five-star hotels should have a minimum of 200 rooms, more than five food and beverage outlets with touchscreen or remote Personal Digital Assistance (PDA), banquets having at least 6,000 square feet, spa and sauna bath, and vehicle scanning equipment and baggage scanner, among others.
“The hotels that meet the criteria have to apply at the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation (MoCTCA) for upgradation. The government will then initiate necessary procedure for upgrading,” Shrestha added. Prabin Bahadur Pandey, executive director of Shangri-la Hotel, said the new standardization order helps existing five-star hotels to separate into different category on the basis of infrastructures and facilities they have. “We will upgrade ourselves into the deluxe five-star category. We have the required space to add the facility as specified in the standardization order,” he added.