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Love hotels are blossoming in India

VCheng

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A new gust from the winds of social change, perhaps, for better and for worse?


Room for improvement
Love hotels are blossoming in India

Canny companies are creating capacity for couples to canoodle in a conservative country


Locals call it “lover’s paradise”. Upvan, a picturesque lake in Thane, a satellite city of Mumbai, attracts its share of joggers, cyclists and pot-smoking college students. But mostly the lane surrounding the lake is filled with young couples getting cosy under umbrellas. Every Indian city has such spots, where skittish lovebirds find privacy out in the open. A socially conservative culture, small flats, joint families, pricey hotels and uptight hotel-owners mean that there is often nowhere else to go.

That is starting to change. “Love hotels”, which offer (very) short-stay rooms to unmarried couples, are a well-established concept in other Asian countries. But they have been a hard sell in India, says Prateek Singh, a co-founder of Brevistay, an app for hourly bookings at some 1,500 hotels. “The challenge was not convincing hotel owners of the business model, but changing their mindset.”

What couples need is a room, not judgment, says Amit Sharma of StayUncle, a similar service that offers rooms, including gay-friendly ones, in some 1,800 hotels. That is not a popular opinion in a country where moral policing is common. For years couples celebrating Valentine’s Day in Mumbai would be harassed and sometimes rounded up by the police. In March the chief minister of Uttarakhand, in northern India, bemoaned the state of the country after encountering women “showing their knees” in ripped jeans. Last month a state-run park in Hyderabad erected a notice announcing that “unmarried couples are not allowed inside the park”. It was taken down after a public uproar. “We need to be mature about the whole thing,” says an exasperated Amit Chakrabarty, who works at a hotel in Kolkata.

As in any other business, pleasing customers is the key, says Sikender Yadav, whose hotels in Delhi are listed on StayUncle. About one in ten bookings involve extra services, such as room decoration packages. Errant lovers sometimes ask management to spell out “sorry” with flower petals on the bed.

Apps do their bit to spice things up too. “We are all clean for you to get dirty,” runs a StayUncle slogan. The outfit supplies some rooms with a free “love kit” that includes chocolates and condoms. Mr Sharma says he intends to elevate the “in-room experience” by providing smart speakers and Spotify accounts. More ambitious plans include trying to convince hotels to soundproof their rooms. “We are not in the hotel business,” he says, “but in the freedom-of-expression business.”

This article appeared in the Asia section of the print edition under the headline "In and out"
 

Clutch

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A new gust from the winds of social change, perhaps, for better and for worse?


Room for improvement
Love hotels are blossoming in India

Canny companies are creating capacity for couples to canoodle in a conservative country


Locals call it “lover’s paradise”. Upvan, a picturesque lake in Thane, a satellite city of Mumbai, attracts its share of joggers, cyclists and pot-smoking college students. But mostly the lane surrounding the lake is filled with young couples getting cosy under umbrellas. Every Indian city has such spots, where skittish lovebirds find privacy out in the open. A socially conservative culture, small flats, joint families, pricey hotels and uptight hotel-owners mean that there is often nowhere else to go.

That is starting to change. “Love hotels”, which offer (very) short-stay rooms to unmarried couples, are a well-established concept in other Asian countries. But they have been a hard sell in India, says Prateek Singh, a co-founder of Brevistay, an app for hourly bookings at some 1,500 hotels. “The challenge was not convincing hotel owners of the business model, but changing their mindset.”

What couples need is a room, not judgment, says Amit Sharma of StayUncle, a similar service that offers rooms, including gay-friendly ones, in some 1,800 hotels. That is not a popular opinion in a country where moral policing is common. For years couples celebrating Valentine’s Day in Mumbai would be harassed and sometimes rounded up by the police. In March the chief minister of Uttarakhand, in northern India, bemoaned the state of the country after encountering women “showing their knees” in ripped jeans. Last month a state-run park in Hyderabad erected a notice announcing that “unmarried couples are not allowed inside the park”. It was taken down after a public uproar. “We need to be mature about the whole thing,” says an exasperated Amit Chakrabarty, who works at a hotel in Kolkata.

As in any other business, pleasing customers is the key, says Sikender Yadav, whose hotels in Delhi are listed on StayUncle. About one in ten bookings involve extra services, such as room decoration packages. Errant lovers sometimes ask management to spell out “sorry” with flower petals on the bed.

Apps do their bit to spice things up too. “We are all clean for you to get dirty,” runs a StayUncle slogan. The outfit supplies some rooms with a free “love kit” that includes chocolates and condoms. Mr Sharma says he intends to elevate the “in-room experience” by providing smart speakers and Spotify accounts. More ambitious plans include trying to convince hotels to soundproof their rooms. “We are not in the hotel business,” he says, “but in the freedom-of-expression business.”

This article appeared in the Asia section of the print edition under the headline "In and out"
I believe historically throughout the centuries these have been known as Whore Houses.


Normalization of the moral degradation!
 

SQ8

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I believe historically throughout the centuries these have been known as Whore Houses.


Normalization of the moral degradation!
Pakistan then has many whore houses and whore vehicles especially in its urban environments.

It is moral degradation but it isn’t just because of social evils -economic and cultural malaise is also a contributor
 

Clutch

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Pakistan then has many whore houses and whore vehicles especially in its urban environments.
Again...like I said... The normalization of of moral degradation. Taliban could have a better handle on this.
 

SQ8

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Again...like I said... The normalization of of moral degradation. Taliban could have a better handle on this.
Well you better leave Canada then and join them. After all, how can you stand the moral degradation in Canadian society while supporting Talibanization at the same time?
I can help you get in touch with the right Canadian government agencies so you can push for Talibanization if you wish.
 

Clutch

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Well you better leave Canada then and join them. After all, how can you stand the moral degradation in Canadian society while supporting Talibanization at the same time?
I can help you get in touch with the right Canadian government agencies so you can push for Talibanization if you wish.
I'm in Canada?

Hopefully Taliban do it with proper Islamic justice... Not from their cultural biases and oppressive ways. Islamic shari'ah through justice and Qur'anic law. Which is human rights right from God.
 

Clutch

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If you aren’t then your IP is a proxy and your flags don’t represent your true location. How can we go after Indian False flaggers when Pakistanis indulge in it?
Well IPs can changed through proxies. But it depends might have to make hijra. Depends on how Talibs evolve ... Do they become the army from Khaurassan as the prophet foretold or do they turn back to their 1990s oppression. Which one do you think it is?

Question: Did you support the Taliban in the recent war against the Ashraf Ghani government???
 

SQ8

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Well IPs can changed through proxies. But it depends might have to make hijra. Depends on how Talibs evolve ... Do they become the army from Khaurassan as the prophet foretold or do they turn back to their 1990s oppression. Which one do you think it is?

Question: Did you support the Taliban in the recent war against the Ashraf Ghani government???
Then proxies should not be used or the forum policy on use of proxies needs to be applied. After all, then you could be an Indian pretending to be a Pakistani, the first step is to eliminate the proxy.

I see very little of the prophet in anything the Taliban represent if that is your question.
As far as supporting them, no I did not support the Taliban. However, that doesn’t mean I supported the Ghani government either.

However, since the issue is more focused on love hotels and how you support Talibanization as a solution for it - why not apply it where you really live?

I will speak to the admin regarding your use of proxies.
 

Clutch

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Then proxies should not be used or the forum policy on use of proxies needs to be applied. After all, then you could be an Indian pretending to be a Pakistani, the first step is to eliminate the proxy.

I see very little of the prophet in anything the Taliban represent if that is your question.
As far as supporting them, no I did not support the Taliban. However, that doesn’t mean I supported the Ghani government either.

However, since the issue is more focused on love hotels and how you support Talibanization as a solution for it - why not apply it where you really live?

I will speak to the admin regarding your use of proxies.
I've been here since 2008 (longer than you)... As a "covert" Indian I have done amazing at not being caught or banned so far. Super-duper RAW agent here.

I too see little of the Prophetic way in the Taliban so far ... With some (spoken) glimpses of hope.. but no real action. That said, its a position I have... They may be the birth of the Army of Khaurassan... Which I do believe is true... Is it them? I don't know.

You need to pick a dog in the fight against the Indian proxies in Pakistan. I chose Afghan Talibs with apprehension. Better them than the Ghani lot. It's called strategy.

My Taliban comment is directed towards the normalization of immortality not that Talibs are the answer. It is a symptom of a society that's lost the fear of Allah. That's just my position. We can chose to disagree. I just think we are living in accelerated timed of human societal degradation where reality and appearances are usually opposite to each other.
 

VCheng

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I believe historically throughout the centuries these have been known as Whore Houses.


Normalization of the moral degradation!
Good point!

After all, there are no whores or whorehouses in Pakistan at all. Not only is there no pre-marital sex, there is no post-marital sex either, since all babies are born by fervent prayers only. Surely those are signs of moral upgradation.
 

Clutch

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Good point!

After all, there are no whores or whorehouses in Pakistan at all. Not only is there no pre-marital sex, there is no post-marital sex either, since all babies are born by fervent prayers only. Surely those are signs of moral upgradation.
Of course there are .. who said Pakistan or any other nation is immune to such things...
 

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