From the time we began, to bring our hotel community together with the travel fraternity and the media in an informal ‘meet & party’ atmosphere and sometimes in a formal classroom mode for learnings and updates is something that came to us naturally.
This began as early as 2009 when we launched as RARE, taking advantage of the very eminent and creative hoteliers who were a part of our community. Their personal stories and their work always inspired and year upon year their brand strengthened under RARE and sometimes out of it. Many small hotels do acknowledge to have begun on RARE when they learnt the ropes of travel, the intricacies and jargon of the industry.
The RARE Showcase: The fragility and innocence of the community partners is such that it is easily lost amidst the noise and purpose of large brands and duplication of concepts. The Showcase in its fifth edition this year, despite a brief name switch and through the pandemic was wholly created by RARE when a small team worked day and night to convince fifty hoteliers to showcase their stories, implement a no-plastic and low impact strategy, rope in technology and to stick with the community so that their story stays true and undiluted by the imposing presence of large brands. The Pandemic year we nullified a physical event and took to the clouds as RAREfied – among the first event to use the magic of the virtual platform through Zoom and live chats clocking in 20 hours online and bringing together over 3000 viewers.
Discover RARE: We changed the paradigm in the industry when we began our Discover Series – no five star glitz and no alcohol – simply the famous Chai & Samosa of India International Centre and knowledge sessions to update travel partners through hotel presentations and expert talks, sometimes adding a class on social media and communication. With an online version during the Pandemic, 2020 was our 10th year organising Discover RARE.
As our footprint in the domestic market deepened, an early vision that worked for our community during the Pandemic, Discover RARE spread to regional centres as day events in Chennai, Bangalore, Mumbai and as independent road shows in Kolkata and Ahmedabad.
Reaching out to Esoteric Travellers: Small hotels are limited in there scope for budgets and hence visibility especially towards the end travellers. RARE has taken advantage of Embassy Fairs, Expat Networks, Diwali Melas, Heritage Fairs, India Craft Week, The Earth Collective and many such synergetic events to showcase our community to the end customer. A work that is largely unsung as the idea is to create leads direct to the hoteliers.
Trade Exhibitions: For many years the RARE Pavillion at the Great India Travel Bazaar (GITB), SATTE and some of the international fairs such as the ITB Berlin and WTM London was a conversation starter for unique and owner run hotels. We matched the buzz this year by being present at UNITE (US& Canada), Connections Virtual Week (September 2020) and Connections Asia Forum (February 2021).