LuvStay is India’s first budgeted couple-friendly hotel chain that offers affordable rooms to couples (married/unmarried) as well as travelers.
Founded in September 2016, LuvStay started with the mission of enabling unmarried couples in the country to get safe and secure rooms at affordable rates without any hassle as the concept of a ‘love’ hotel is still new in India. Inspired by the Love Hotels of Japan, LuvStay is the ‘celebration-of-love’ destination for couples and secret lovers who wish to keep things discrete, and travellers who need a place to crash. The company also offers special short-stay rates where rooms are charged based on 12-hourly tariffs.
Working on a simple platform, the LuvStay app / website takes a person directly to the list of properties as soon as they enter the location, date, and time of stay. The reservation and payment process too are equally easy to get through. What makes LuvStay so popular is the fact that they offer exclusive amenities like special birthday cakes, bespoke love kits, flowers, and other customizable gifts which are delivered to the room. Another point where LuvStay scores amidst fierce competition is their rigorous quality control (QC) and selection process. Every partner hotel is shortlisted after screening through a checkpoint of 40 carefully selected parameters. They also have a strong QC team, which assesses and audits every property from time to time.
The company has only grown since inception with more than 500 partner hotels onboard and a wide presence in over 40 cities. LuvStay has been positioned not as a business but as a social movement to bring about a change in the mindset of people, especially in a country where moral policing is common and where unmarried couples and casual flings are still frowned upon. As per the founder, India is ready to explore into this avenue. The concept of love hotels is set to outgrow that of conventional hotels in the next 4 to 5 years. The initial demand only shows that India is more than ready for Love Hotels as there are many takers for the idea.
For this innovative bootstrapped startup, funding was not a challenge in feeding its voracious growth. What started off with just 3 people has now grown to a team of 8 in a matter of 24 months. The company now has its own development team and is expected to achieve an in-house strength of 25 in the coming year. The startup has grown by leaps and bounds to touch the USD 10million mark in the last financial year. The website boasts of 4000 to 5000 page views per day, and more than 1000 daily hits. LuvStay served more than 10,000 couples last year and is set to extend its unique service to more than 50,000 couples this year. The company is also targeting at expanding its presence in all major Indian cities (including Tier2 and Tier3) by the end of this year. Deriving from the fancy outward appearance of their Japanese counterparts, LuvStay wants to foray into commercial ownership to facilitate infrastructure development based on special love themes.
Pricing being an important factor in a developing country like India, LuvStay aims to service only the budgeted hotel niche and not the luxury hotel segment, such that their service can be availed by the common working class as well. The competition in this segment is intensifying but LuvStay has already captured the market. While how conservative India is about the concept of Love-stays remains debatable, LuvStay is definitely here to stay as there is a huge consumer base for this business.
About the Founders:
Sumit Anand is the Founder and CEO of Luvstay, India’s first budgeted couple-friendly platform. He started his career as a business development executive at Modi Mundi Pharmaceuticals in the year 2009. Sumit went on to assume the position of Marketing Partner at Gateway Technologies (Pvt.) Ltd where he handled the strategic management, marketing and sales operations and business development aspects.
Later, as a manager at Meros Technologies, he handled the marketing and sales operations, branding and identity, strategic consulting and channel partner management of Cappuccino, the company’s flagship project.In the year 2012, Sumit co-founded Whitelight Consultancy Services, a venture that managed, organized, controlled, and directed events related to marketing,branding,promotion, and advertising.
Thereafter, Sumit took on the responsibility of a project manager at Jubilant IT Services Pvt. Ltd, where his work spanned across areas such as acquiring new projects and business planning to client feedback and technical support.
Karan Mago is the Co-founder and CEO of Luvstay.com. He is an experienced marketing professional with a demonstrated history of working across various sectors and possesses the entrepreneurial drive and to identify white spaces for leveraging untapped business opportunities.Karan started his career as a business analyst with Evalueserve in the year 2008 where his work spanned across areas such as providing business insights to recommendations to senior personnel on performance and potential areas for action.
Later, as a marketing analyst at the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Karan undertook a project on administration in hospitals; and marketing analysis in primary health centers.He also worked briefly with the Kirat Youth Foundation in the capacity of a vice president. It was in the year 2016 that he co-founded Luvstay.com. As the CEO, his responsibilities at the venture include devising strategies to drive online traffic to the company website; developing and managing digital marketing campaigns;overseeing the social media strategy for the company along with SEO; business development;managing core operations of daily business; and evaluating customer research, market conditions and competitor data; among other things.