Lonely Planet Awards 2012

Lonely Planet Magazine India’s first-ever travel awards

Lonely Planet Awards 2012The world’s most trusted travel brand, Lonely Planet, brings you the first-ever Lonely Planet Magazine India Travel Awards 2012, showcasing theexperiences most loved by the Indian traveller.


Lonely Planet Magazine India is the Indian edition of Lonely Planet Magazine, the UK’s most recognised travel magazine. For its first-ever travel awards, we decided that India’s increasingly sophisticated travellers would themselves vote for the destinations, hotels and travel service providers they preferred, voting both online and in the magazine.

39 of India’s favourite experiences are winners tonight, but, says Vardhan Kondvikar, Editor of Lonely Planet Magazine India, “The real winner is the Indian traveller. These awards are the first real platform for the Indian traveller to state his or her travel preferences, and I believe these awards will be a further incentive to tourism boards, hotels and travel service providers to give more of such preferred experiences, and to keep improving.”


Supported by Expedia.co.in, Chhattisgarh Tourism, Trident and Big 92.7FM, the Lonely Planet Magazine India Travel Awards 2012 was one glitzy night with the who’s who of the nation’s travel industry, nationally-recognised dignitaries and celebrities in attendance.


Commenting on the Lonely Planet Magazine India Awards, Tarun Rai, said,“Lonely Planet, which is arguably the biggest travel brand in the world, has been encouraging people to travel and experience new places and cultures for many decades now. And we have been doing that, through Lonely Planet Magazine India, for over the past two years. In these two years, we have built up a large base of passionate readers, and we thought that it was time we asked them what they considered their favourite destinations, hotels, airlines and travel facilitators.”


The 39 awards given out tonight were in three major categories: destinations, hospitality and travel service providers (including airlines, travel portals and tour operators), both in the domestic and international spheres. Switzerland has been selected as India’s Favourite Destination, while Jammu & Kashmir has been chosen as the Best Emerging Destination – Indian, and Fiji as the Best Emerging Destination – International.

The other winners & Presenters are:

Best Destination for Culture – Spain (International), Rajasthan (Indian)

Karan Johar: (Spain- Mr. Pablo Alzorriz, Manager Tourism Spain ) & (Rajasthan- Mr. Randeep Dhankar CM, RTDC)


Best Destination for Families – Singapore (International), Kerala (Indian)

Karan Johar: (Singapore- Randall Tan, Regional Director) & (Prashant Nair, MD, KTDC)


Best Emerging Detination FIJI & Jammu & Kashmir

Rani Mukherjee: (FIJI- Pranav Kapadia) & (Jammu & Kashmir- Nawang Rigzin Jora + Farooq).


India ‘s Favourite Destination

Rani Mukherjee: (Switzerland-Ritu Sharma, Deputy Director, ST)


Best Destination for Adventure – New Zealand (International), Himachal Pradesh (Indian) –

Mr. Tarun Rai: (Newland- Darshan Tripathi, Mrktng Development, NZ) & (Himachal Pradesh- Sudipto Roy, cheif secretary to HP Government).


Best Destination for Wildlife – South Africa (International), Madhya Pradesh (Indian)

Mr. Tarun Rai: (South Africa- Hanneli Slabber, Country Head) & (MP- Pankaj Rag, MD, MPTDC)


Best Value Destination – Thailand (International), Goa (Indian)

Ayushmann: (Thailand- Sethaphan Budhani, Director.


Best Destination for Food & Drink – Italy (International), New Delhi (Indian)

Zeba Kohli: (Italy- Ms. Roberta Rabuti, Consulate Genaral) & (New Delhi- Manish Chatrath, CM, Delhi Tourism).


Best Destination for Shopping – Dubai (International), Mumbai (Indian) –

Gulpanag, Ranvir & Rajat: (Dubai- Carl Vaz, Director of Charson Advisory) & ( Mumbai- Jagdish Patil, MD, MTDC).


Best Airline: Economy – Singapore Airlines (International), IndiGo (Indian)

Gulpanag, Ranvir & Rajat: (Singapore- G M Toh) & (Indigo- Sanjay Kumar)


Best Airline: Business/ First-class – Emirates (International), Jet Airways (Indian)

Sanju Soni: (Emirates- Vikrant Rao, Corp Commercial Head) & (Jet Airways- Sonu Kriplani, VP, Passenger Sales).


Best Resort – W Resort & Spa, The Maldives, North Ari Atoll (International), The Leela Kovalam Beach, Kerala (Indian)

Neil Nitin Mukesh: (W Resort & Spa- Ranjeet Khare) & (The Leela Kovalam Beach- Rajiv Kaul).


Best Business Hotel – The Radisson Edwardian New ProvidenceWharfLondon (International), JW Marriott Hotel Mumbai (Indian)

Neil Nitin Mukesh: (The Radisson Edwardian- Roshan Subba, SM, West India+South Asia) & (JW Marriott Hotel- Thomas Guss, General Manager).


Best Homestay – Capella, Goa

Neil Nitin Mukesh: (Capella, Goa,)


Best Value Hotel – Amari Watergate Bangkok (International), GingerHotels (India)

Dipannita Sharma: (Amari Watergate Bangkok- Caroline Rowe, Managing Partner, QUO) & (Ginger Hotels- Prabhat Pani, CEO).


Best Heritage Hotel – Four Seasons Istanbul at Sultanahmet (International), Devi Garh, Udaipur (Indian)

Sonali Bendre: (Four Seasons Istanbul- Andrew Harrison, GM) & (Devi Garh- Neeta Gupta, Global Head, Sales & Marketing)

Best Luxury Hotel – Six Senses Laamu, Laamu Atoll, The Maldives (International), TajRambagh Palace, Jaipur (Indian)

Atul Kasbekar: (Six Senses Laamu- Kim Verma Modi, Director Marketing) & (Taj Rambagh Palace- Satyajeet Krishnan, General Manager).



About Lonely Planet Magazine India

Lonely Planet is the world’s most recognised and trusted travel brand, having helped travellers find their way since 1973. Bought over by BBC Worldwide in 2007, it was launched as a magazine in the UK in 2008, and subsequently in India in 2010. In the two years since its February 2010 launch, Lonely Planet Magazine India has become India’s preferred travel magazine, and the best recognised name in the travel literature sphere.  Lonely Planet Magazine India has proven to be an invaluable aid to those planning their holiday, both in India and abroad. With sections like Easy Trips (weekend trips in India and short-haul international destinations), Mini Guides (free, handy tear-out guides to various destinations)and the signature Features section, Lonely Planet Magazine India has brought a level of useability and insight never before seen in the country.

A word from our sponsors

Expedia.co.in (www.expedia.co.in)

Lonely Planet Magazine India is a true traveller’s gateway, one through which theyexperience this world the way it should be, and Expedia is the medium through which the Indian traveller can realise their travel dreams. It was, then, the perfect association, and it made sense for us to come together for these awards. Lonely Planet caters to the breed of experiential travelers in India, and Expedia’s partnership with them has strengthened our reach to this section of travellers.  


Chhattisgarh Tourism (http://www.chhattisgarhtourism.net/)

“Lonely Planet Magazine India is all about finding new destinations, and Chhattisgarh has also emerged as a promising destination on the tourist map. We are happy to associate with the Lonely Planet Magazine India Travel Awards 2012, and we would like to congratulate them for making this initiative. Chhattisgarh offers a lifetime experience for tourists, with scenic waterfalls, wildlife reserves, vibrant cultural and religious heritage, magnificent temples, caves and much more.”


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