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Ayurveda Boosts Monsoon Tourism in Kerala

Despite dull and dreary rains during the monsoon season in Kerala, numerous tourists visit the state to savour ayurveda packages.//

It is believed that the months of June and July are best suited for administering ayurvedic treatment.

"In the last five years the number of tourist places offering ayurveda-related services in Kerala has more than doubled. Capital investment for a cottage in a resort now ranges from Rs.500,000 to Rs.5 million," said Jose Dominic, chief of CGH Earth, one of the leading players in Kerala's tourism industry.

According to a World Travel and Tourism Council report, tourism in Kerala is expected to grow at the rate of 11.40 percent per annum till 2013.

"Monsoon tourism has come to stay in Kerala. We have an increase of 30 percent in business this season," said Dominic.

"Ayurvedic tourism is going to be the selling point for Kerala because strong undercurrents indicate that this has put the state on the tourism map of the world," said Dominic, who owns half a dozen premium properties in the state.

John Muthoot, managing director of Muthoot Hotels, said: "This season we are inviting corporate houses to hold their annual conferences. Four groups have come and gone. This month we expect four more groups and each will have around 40 executives.

"After their routine meetings, they (conference delegates) head for our spa aroma therapy. This has come as a bonus and we have already started receiving inquiries for next year's monsoon season," said Muthoot.

Most resorts in Kerala offer attractive ayurveda packages to the tourists. These packages include body massages with different herbal oils and powders.

While the tariff varies from resort to resort, it starts from 50 euros a day, including for food, accommodation and treatment protocols.

The most preferred treatment protocol is the rejuvenation package, which consists of different kinds of massages. Pa ckages for slimming, stress management and beauty care are also in high demand. The duration of these packages ranges from one week to three weeks.

Most resorts have a special ayurveda kitchen with customized menu. To add colour to the ayurveda season, resorts also conduct cooking classes.

(Source: IANS)

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