Tim Graham | Getty Images
The Lake Palace Hotel with tourist boats arriving and leaving in Udaipur, Rajasthan, India.
From “glamorous camping” in Ladakh to opulent palace hotels in Rajasthan and from fancy train rides across the peninsula to village art appreciation walks, Indian holidays are being carefully crafted by professionals constantly thinking up ideas about how to wow wealthy travelers.
“The world doesn’t really know the possibilities that India has to offer,” said PN Narayanaswamy of Travel Scope India, who began marketing India as a luxury destination in 1999. Today he says everyone wants a slice of the high-end pie, which constitutes about 3 percent of total world travelers.
Of the 15.5 million who visited India in 2017, less than 10 percent were willing to spend upwards of $700 a day, said industry experts, who expect that market will double every three years.
Millionaires, who typically fly in chartered planes and can afford to pay $1,000 a night for a hotel room with a view of the Taj Mahal, are not easy to lure year after year. Therefore, India has had to continuously repackage and remodel itself, experts said.