HOTELS AND RESTAURANTS
Hotels and restaurants have developed to a great extent in recent times and can expect to have an expanding business in the times to come. This could be attributed to a number of factors such as increasing economic activity and the avenues of employment in cities and towns, as well as the increase in the facilities of transport and communications. There is a considerable increase in the number of establishments and employment in them over the last few years. Hotels are found at all the taluka head-quarters and at big bazar places in the district. They are, however, mainly concentrated in Shrirampur, Rahuri, Ahmadnagar, Kopargaon and Sangamner.
Except for very small villages tea-shops are found all-over the district. Mostly, inns or small tea-shops established in small huts are commonly found in villages, while big hotels are found in urban areas of the district.
There were 23 hotels in Shrigonda, 17 in Parner, 17 in Karjat and 34 in Pathardi. According to the 1951 Census, the number of persons dependent on "hotels, restaurants and eating houses" was 641 (574 males, 67 females) in rural areas and 1,276 (1,172 males, 104 females) in urban areas. The 1961 Census later on grouped together the services rendered by hotels, boarding houses, eating houses, cafes and restaurants and similar other establishments to provide lodging and boarding facilities. This group accounted for 3,062 persons (2,757 males and 305 females) who were engaged in this occupation. Of these, 1,227 (1,060 males and 167 females) carried on this business in rural areas and 1,835 (1,697 males and 138 females) in urban areas. Thus there was a considerable increase in the number of persons following this occupation in 1961 over that in 1951. As per 1971 Census the number of persons in hotels and restaurants further increased to 7,574, out of which 2,395 were in urban areas while the remaining 5,179 persons were employed in rural areas. In 1971, there were in all 2,481 establishments in the district, out of which 1,920 were located in rural areas and 561 in urban areas. Though the rate of growth in employment in hotels
and restaurants cannot be derived from the census figures, it is quite obvious from the sample survey that this occupation has developed considerably.
The sample survey covered 23 hotels in the district, of which 5 were big-sized, 8 medium-sized and 10 small-sized. The common accessories used in a tea-shop were sugar, milk, tea, coffee, oil, semolina, atta, while those serving meals and snacks used cereals, pulses, condiments and spices, vegetables, mutton, wheat flour in addition to afore-mentioned accessories. The expenditure on these items ranged between Rs. 150 and Rs. 500 per month in case of small hotels while it was Rs. 1,500 per month on an average in case of a big hotel. Generally, the raw materials were purchased from local market.
An average restaurant in town was found to be equipped with a total equipment worth about Rs. 6,000. The equipment of its rural counterpart was not worth more than Rs. 2,000.
The employment in an establishment usually consisted of two cooks and servants such as waiters and some boys for cleaning tables. The number in each category naturally depended upon the size of an establishment. On an average, a cook in urban areas earned about Rs. 50 per month and other workers earned about Rs. 15 to Rs. 20 per month. The maximum wages paid to a worker in a big hotel were recorded to be Rs. 150 per month.
The sample survey revealed that while the gross income of some big hotels in the district was about five to ten thousand rupees, that of small hotels came to about 350 rupees per month. The net income of an average-sized hotel ranged from Rs. 100 to Rs. 500 per month. However, in case of some big hotels, the net income varied from Rs. 1,500 to Rs. 2,500 per month. During festivals or at the time of local fairs, their business is brisk but in rainy season, the business is slack. Hotels in rural areas have brisk business during the harvest time.
Some hotels were found to have their own buildings while others situated in rented premises had to pay rent varying from Rs. 15 to Rs. 85 per month depending upon the locality.
The hotel-owners of Ahmadnagar have organised an association for their common good.