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Interview with Kapil Chopra, founder of The Postcard Hotel

  • Aiming high: Interview with Kapil Chopra, founder of The Postcard Hotel

    by India Today Spice


    Is Arunachal the next big thing?

    The entire North East especially Arunachal Pradesh is relatively unexplored in the context of domestic tourism. What has happened with Covid is that people have started looking within India in a significant way. When we set up The Postcard Hotel two years ago, we were always confident that the luxury domestic traveller was looking at experiential destinations. The Covid pandemic has accelerated the trend of the luxury global traveller starting to look at destinations within India. As this is a key behavioral change, I am convinced that the Northeast will outpace the rest of India in terms of tourism growth year-on- year over the next decade. Arunachal Pradesh, being one of the most unexplored destinations of the Northeast, will grow faster than the other states as it opens up for tourism.

    Is Bhutan a good model?

    Though the Bhutan model is very nice, in my opinion, Arunachal Pradesh should focus on what Sikkim has done in terms of focussing on organic food. Arunachal has stunning natural landscapes. The state should become an organic state focussing on local produce. I think it will endure as an expensive destination due to the high cost of travelling to the state and the kind of hotels that will come up there.

    Do you have a favourite experience in the state?

    Arunachal Pradesh should not be sold as a single destination state. The Postcard Hotel is looking at doing journeys in the state, which means small intimate high-end hotels, across a sector in the entire state and not restricting ourselves to a city. One could then do a journey in the state and spend 10 days across four hotels, which will be situated in locations, which have not been explored as yet—or in popular locations such as the Ziro Valley. We believe this is the future of experiential tourism in the North East. One of the key things that the state will have to look at is airline connectivity to smaller places as a combination of air and road travel becomes challenging. They should follow the example of Nepal, which has done a very good job in connecting mountain destinations. Even the smallest village with minimal population has an airstrip in Nepal.

    Are we likely to see a Postcard hotel in Arunachal soon?

    We are actively looking at sites in Arunachal Pradesh. We see a future of The Postcard Hotel in the state with small intimate high-end luxury resorts at a price point closer to where Bhutan is. We are committed to doing journeys not only in Arunachal Pradesh but the other North Eastern states too.

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