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  • KARMA group celebrates its 25th anniversary in India

    Published on August 14, 2018

    Karma Group is proud to be celebrating its 25th year of operations in India. Under the guidance of Chairman and Founder John Spence, the award-winning international travel and lifestyle brand offers extraordinary experiences in the world’s most beautiful locations and is currently operating 22 resorts in more than 10 countries.

    In 1993, when John visited Goa, India, he was inspired and captivated, realising this was the place where he wanted to develop his first resort property. Purely using a cash injection from his life savings, John founded Royal Resorts to pioneer vacation ownership in India and South East Asia and began by developing their first Resort – The Royal Goan Beach Club in Cavellosim Goa. That was a huge success and diversification outside India followed with projects in Bali and Lombok, Indonesia, Gold Coast of Australia, Chiang Mai and Phuket in Thailand. Since then the company has grown to have turnover in excess of US$100m and employ more than 2,500 team members around the globe with no material third party debt. During this period there have been multiple transformations to the hospitality sector and none more so than in India where rapid economic growth and ensuing liberalisation has seen the hospitality sector flourish, which has given the Group impetus to grow in the Indian and global markets.

    “We strive as a company to embody the celebration of life, inspired by beauty and style, fitness and health, in the world’s most beautiful locations,” said John Spence, Chairman and Founder of Karma Group. “This, in turn, inspires our loyal, alpha lifestyle driven guests from all over the world who, much like our team at Karma Group, relish challenging themselves by working hard and playing even harder. India will always inspire me, holding a special place in my heart and the mythology of Karma as it was here that our wonderful journey began, making it our spiritual home.”

    Having been crowned as the 2010 Ernst & Young Australian Entrepreneur of the Year, and a Commissioner on the West Australian Tourism Board from 2006 until March 2010, John used his considerable knowledge and experience in the luxury travel sector to steer Karma Group to new heights. Besides being a supporter of numerous charities, he was also invited to join leading entrepreneurs from around the world in Monaco to be a member of the judging panel for the Ernst & Young World Entrepreneur of the Year 2013, and awarded the mantle of ‘Philanthropist of the Year’ by the American Resort Developers’ Association (ARDA) in 2006. John has been awarded the Edward P. Bass Distinguished Visiting Architecture Fellowship at Yale University and the Distinguished Visiting Fellowship in the Department of Architecture and Urban Design at UCLA. John’s commitment to sharing his knowledge and experience has seen him this year working with students from the University of Pennsylvania, inspiring them to design plans for a chateau development in Carcassonne, France.

    Since 1993, Karma has donated more than US$1 million to Christel House, making the Group one of the biggest donors in India. The core premise of ‘karma’ is one John Spence avidly believes in and since Bangalore was the location of the first city centre office for his company, it is no accident that he gives a helping hand to the local community. For John, it is tremendously important to make a real difference in the lives of children and by extension their families, who are lifted out of poverty by their children’s success.