Join 'Grihasthali' to protect heritage, promote hospitality.
Realising the importance of tourism in stimulating the economic development of the state, the Government of Kerala declared tourism as an industry in 1986. Today tourism is Kerala’s boom industry, and one of the fastest growing, high income and employment generating sector. Constant efforts are on to promote Kerala abroad and marketing strategies are being evolved along with new and exciting tourism products. The latest of these innovative projects are ecotourism and heritage tourism.
In addition to a wealth of natural beauty, Kerala has a rich and unique history and heritage. A new, two pronged development project aims at preserving the heritage of the land to promote tourism. The countryside abounds in sprawling traditional homesteads most of which are fast going to ruins. The proposal is to turn these heritage homes to tourist accommodations. This is also in view of the increasing preference shown by foreign tourists to stay in traditional buildings during their visit.
Introducing Grihasthali: The heritage protection scheme of Kerala Tourism
Grihasthali is a well thought out scheme to preserve our traditional architecture by converting them into excellent accommodation options with modern facilities. In addition to offering a taste of the authentic Kerala lifestyle which is increasingly becoming popular across the world, Grihastali will also inspire public participation in the promotion and development of Tourism in the State. The Department of Tourism has designed an exclusive package of incentives and financial assistance to projects which are approved. The financial assistance proposed has been arranged in collaboration with the Kerala Financial Corporation and nationalised banks.
Grihasthali also envisages registration of those properties where owners would not like to convert their buildings themselves but are interested in identifying a potential partner/buyer for the property. This will help the creation of an authentic database for investors, as well as property owners.
Grihasthali: Definition of a heritage building
Any building which is more than 50 years old and bears characteristics of the traditional Kerala architecture.
Objectives of Grihasthali
Convert heritage buildings in the State to tourist accommodation by giving incentives and financial assistance to approved projects.
Make a database of heritage properties available for sale in the State and register them for the benefit of potential investors.
Approval of projects
How to apply for approval
If you have a heritage home that can be turned into a profitable hospitality centre, rush your application in the enclosed format to the Director of Tourism for approval. All applications should be made in quadruplicate.
Documents to be submitted along with the application (in quadruplicate)
1. Proof of ownership/lease of the building (Power of attorney holders may submit necessary papers as proof).
2. Location plan showing access to the building from the major roads (need not be scale).
3. Plan, elevation and section of the existing building.
4. Plan, elevation and section of the building incorporating the proposed alteration, certified by a qualified engineer.
5. Site plan to scale showing the open spaces available on all sides of the building in the plot.
6. Estimate of the proposed renovation certified by a qualified engineer.
7. Photographs of the building, including interiors.
8. The department has prescribed regulatory conditions to be abided by promoters of approved projects. The promoters should furnish the acceptance of these regulatory conditions in the prescribed form. The regulatory conditions and proforma of acceptance is appended along with the application proforma.
Note: If the applicant only wants to register the property and not undertake any renovation, only 1, 2, 3, 5 and 7 need be submitted.
Your application should be accompanied by a non refundable fee of Rs. 1000/- in the form of a Demand Draft favouring the Director, Department of Tourism, Government of Kerala.
The project shall be approved after meticulous appraisal by an expert committee.
Incentives offered to approved projects
Subsidy for the preparation of project report up to 25% of the expenditure subject to a maximum of Rs. 10,000/-.
Investment subsidy up to 25% of the investment for renovation subject to a maximum of
Rs. 5 lakhs.
Financial assistance for the project through loans from financial institutions like KFC or banks.
Procedure for claiming incentives
Subsidy for preparation of project reports
Projects which are approved by the Department of Tourism and are operational are eligible for subsidy for preparation of project report. The subsidy will be 25% of the expenditure with a maximum limit of Rs. 10,000/-. The subsidy will be sanctioned by the state level committee for investment subsidy on the recommendation of the Director of Tourism. To claim the subsidy, the promoters shall apply to the Director, Department of Tourism in the prescribed form.
Investment subsidy will be given for approved projects after starting operation, according to the procedure stipulated in GO (P) No. 14/88/GAD dated 12.8.98. The subsidy will be 25% with a maximum limit of Rs. 5 lakhs. The Director of Tourism with whom the application for investment subsidy is filed, will refer the eligible applications to the state level committee with suitable recommendations. The committee will sanction the eligible subsidy.
Provision for recovery of subsidy
i. Where it is established that the unit has obtained the State Investment Subsidy by misrepresentation as to an essential fact or given false information, or
ii. Where the unit ceases to provide accommodation to tourists within 10 years of the date of commencement of operations, (expect in cases where units remain out of service for a short period not beyond 6 months for reasons beyond their control), the investment subsidy availed shall be repaid in full together with 12% interest on the principal. If the amount is not repaid, steps will be taken to effect recovery of the amount as arrears on land revenue.