Kerala ranks among the top 10 states in India, accounting for 4.02% of foreign tourist arrivals nationwide (Tourism Statistics 2022, Govt. of India). Tourism has been a significant contributor to Kerala’s economy for decades, generating revenue of Rs. 35,168.42 crore for the sector in 2022 (Kerala Economic Review,2023). In 2022, both foreign and domestic tourist arrivals experienced significant growth. The annual growth rate of foreign tourist arrivals in Kerala surged by 471.28%, while India witnessed a growth of 714.26%, with Kerala making a substantial contribution to the country’s overall growth. This trend is visually depicted in Graph 1. Similarly, the annual growth rate of domestic tourist arrivals in Kerala skyrocketed from 7.75% in 2013 to an impressive 150.31% in 2022, as illustrated in Graph 2. This surge in tourist numbers indicates a heightened demand for food and accommodation units.

The hospitality sector in Kerala has played a significant role in accommodating the surge in tourism and related developments.

The state boasts a well-established hospitality ecosystem, comprising hotels, resorts, homestays, grihastali, ayurveda centres, and more, offering various types of accommodation and tourist experiences. According to the Kerala Economic Review, the state has a total of 8,036 tourist accommodation units, providing 108,656 rooms (refer to Table 1). Among these options, homestays stand out for their unique and experiential tourism offerings. They allow tourists to stay in private residences and immerse themselves in the host’s culture, cuisine, and way of life. Guests get to experience indigenous products, cuisine, beverages, festivals, and picturesque landscapes of their place of residence. Homestays rank as the third-highest provider of tourist accommodation rooms in the state, with hotels and resorts occupying the first and second positions.

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