AUGUST 15, 2013 (New York, NY) — Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces has been named a 2013 World Savers Award winner by Condé Nast Traveler, one of just 14 travel companies to be recognized for their exceptional achievement in social and environmental responsibility.
Taj Hotels receives the World Savers Award for Poverty Relief for its work with nonprofits to create jobs for thousands of youth in rural India, with training at its 36 vocational schools operated in conjunction with NGOs, followed by employment at one of its 102 properties throughout India.
“On behalf of our entire Taj Hotels family, we are deeply honored to receive this prestigious award for our work with poverty relief and job creation for rural youth throughout India. We are committed to serving our many communities with a wide range of philanthropic and sustainable initiatives, including underwriting education and skills training, particularly among rural Indian populations, and preserving Indian art, culture and wildlife,” said Raymond Bickson, Taj Hotels CEO and Managing Director.
“To really make a difference, we are tackling the root causes of poverty by helping people earn a sustainable livelihood. That includes operating these vocational schools and sourcing virtually all goods used at our hotels from local organizations and artisan groups, such as the bags used to deliver newspapers and slippers that are produced by the Women’s India Trust. Since 2011, we have sourced more than $2.2 million of such goods,” said Vasant Ayyappan, Director of Corporate Sustainability for Taj Hotels.
World Savers Awards Methodology
For the seventh annual World Savers Awards, applications were accepted in eight sectors—small hotel chains (fewer than 20 properties), large hotel chains, city hotels, small lodges and resorts (fewer than 50 rooms), large lodges and resorts, tour operators, cruise lines, and a new category for destinations—and assessed in five areas: Education Programs, Environmental and Cultural Preservation, Health Initiatives, Poverty Relief, and Wildlife Conservation, by a panel of judges.
The panel of judges included: Jeffrey Sachs(The Earth Institute), Laurie David (producer of An Inconvenient Truth), Olivia Wilde (Artists for Peace and Justice), David Alport (UN Special Envoy and MDG Health Alliance), Luigi Cabrini (UNWTO’s Sustainable Development of Tourism), and Dorinda Elliott (Condé Nast Traveler).
About Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces
Established in 1901, Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces is one of Asia's largest and finest group of hotels, comprising 102 hotels in 62 locations across India with an additional 17 international hotels in the Maldives, Malaysia, Australia, UK, USA, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Africa and the Middle East. From world-renowned landmarks to modern business hotels, idyllic beach resorts to authentic Grand Palaces, each Taj hotel offers an unrivalled fusion of warm Indian hospitality, world-class service and modern luxury. For over a century, The Taj Mahal Palace, Mumbai, the iconic flagship has set a benchmark for fine living with exquisite refinement, inventiveness and warmth. Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces is part of the Tata Group, India's premier business house. www.tajhotels.com