With an increasing number of travellers interested in unique experiences with a feel of the local flavour, culture or experience, SOTC Travel, has reinvented the F&B experience for travellers across its product portfolio in association with an award winning food connoisseur to exclusively curate handpicked menus across all of its business verticals and bespoke tours.
Indian travellers have specific requirements while traveling abroad and food is an essential part of their travelling. A trendy addiction among Indian travellers is ghar–ka-khaana when on a holiday while others enjoy the famed dish of the destination as it connects them to the local culture. They would not compromise on the food and service quality as they travel for the love of food.
The food menus across the business verticals – MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Events), FITs (Free Independent Travellers), Group Tours and more will offer a combination of the home-style menus with simple recipes and the local cuisine. Customers can be assured of ease-of-convenience via meals that are of the highest standards, and tailored to their needs.
The initiative is in response to the insights gained from the SOTC India Holiday Report 2019, which revealed that across age groups – 25 years and above – food was a critical factor in determining the success and cognisance of their holidays and is especially top of mind when going on a holiday. The report reveals that majority of Indians are foodies with 75% seeking a combination of Indian and Local Cuisine while vacationing.
SOTC’s regional group packages like ‘Brahman Mandal’ dedicated to Maharashtrians, ‘Gurjar Vishwadarshan’ that is dedicated to Gujaratis and ‘Darshanams’ curated specially for South Indians; will offer day wise diverse menus of Indian meals as per their unique requirements and culinary preferences. The menus for South Indian products will incorporate regional favourites like filter coffee, curd rice & rasam and Unniappam while our Gujarati menus will serve specialities like Dhokla, Khandvi. Customers can also relish the taste of diverse cuisines across the world right from Awadhi, Karnataka, Arabic, South-East Asian and many more.
Care has also been taken to provide the eclectic variety of cuisines – both Indian and international cuisine, for MICE travellers as well. With the expertise of the food connoisseur, our MICE tours will offer customised culinary options suited for their palates. From exotic themed dinners to authentic Indian cuisine, Menus on tour will offer a fusion of both local and Indian cuisine for the quintessential native experience.
Daniel D’Souza, president and country head Leisure at SOTC Travel said, “Indians have diverse preferences, and they definitely crave home-cooked food a lot, no matter where they go. Additionally, food is one of the easiest ways to immerse oneself in a local culture or community, whether travelling with friends and family, or alone. The new-age Indian travellers have shown a rising level of interest for this type of cultural enrichment, as can be seen by insights gained through the SOTC India Holiday Report 2019. According to the report, 65% of Gen Z, 32% of Gen Y, 57% of Gen X and 49% of Senior Citizen travellers count exploration of local cuisine as their main reason to enhance holidays. We are positive that the food enhancements will transform the F&B experience for our customers, bringing a healthy mix of local and Indian food, across diverse preferences, via delectable cuisines. This will go a long way to ensuring a satisfying holiday experience for our travellers.”
SD Nandakumar, president and country head, B2B at SOTC Travel said, “Personalised food experiences are becoming increasingly important. At SOTC, we aim at finding the right balance for our MICE travellers. Authentic Indian meals have been an extremely important feature that brings us customer delight. Capitalising on food and beverage trends, our menus are planned with a lot of attention to include handpicked ingredients, sourced from the regions they are known for, to bring in authenticity of flavours. From Live food bars offering a range of food items and desserts with an Indian twist, the food offered is a combination of simple, comforting home-style Indian menus, as well as modified local cuisine, to suit the Indian palate, and specific dietary needs. SOTC has tied up with partner hotels in various international cities, to serve the menus specially created for our travellers.”
Chef Santosh Jori is a culinary expert with a career spanning over 20 years in curating well-crafted delectable menus for reputed brands in the hospitality business, mainly Luxury and Hospitality chains in India and overseas, including the Marriott Group, The Ritz Carlton, Starwoods Hotels, Jumeirah Hospitality, The Leela Group of Hotels and several others.