TINGS – a concept for the free independent travelers

After trekking Poon Hill and visiting Chitwan, we stayed in Tings for one night before going home. We regretted …. should have stayed longer in this wonderful place.

At the time of checking-in, we were instantly impressed by the cozy atmosphere of the garden, totally isolated from the dusty street of Kathmandu. It was not a luxurious hotel, but stylish and comfy, nicely decorated with paintings/drawings, wooden benches and chairs.

The manager Dorjee was very helpful. She and her staff were all young and energetic, very helpful and diligent. We were nosy enough to get into their kitchen, meeting a group of playful and cheerful chefs. Great food indeed.

We stayed in the top lounge, which was very bright and clean, with two big bean-bags and a coffee table.

Even better, there was a nice big terrace attached to our balcony where you could take a lazy afternoon nap on the big couch …. a bed to be more exact. The best part of this place was indeed the design of space. You can almost find a couch/chair and a table anywhere, inside or outside the buildings, ground floor or upper floors, where you can hide away from other guests with privacy for your reading/drinking…. whatever you felt like.

Nicky L. from Hong Kong on TripAdvisor

Please have a few minutes patience. Let us explain what we have been doing since 2008 before we tell you why we posted the above quote. After all its only 1 out of more than 200 reviews on Tripadvisor.

Since our return from a !-year-around-the-world travel in 2001 we have played with an idea of creating something useful for all the skilled young boys and girls we have met on the road.

From around 2008 the idea became more concrete:

We want to create a sustainable business in a developing country that operates on market conditions and generate sufficient profit to improve the life of the talented young boys and girls that come through our life. 

Our problem then was that the businesses you usually find in developing countries are so far from our expertise and skills that we could only think of one industry we felt we knew about: Traveling! But in a broader context: Life as a traveler – accommodation, food, socializing, knowledge exchange, leisure etc.

By combining our travel experience with Annette’s interest and experience within Brand Identity, Interior Design, and Thomas’ ditto within Communication, Business Focus and Start Up we developed a new concept for a target group we knew very well: Ourselves.

We called the concept TINGS and created a platform where the core activity – Tings Tea Lounge and Lounge Hotel – and a wide range of elements/activities could grow from.

With a well defined core idea we started working like we had done for years – but his time not for clients. 

The result was a ready made business plan, a very detailed brand platform including visual guidelines and Dogmas for almost all aspects of businesses and tasks within the Tings Universe:

With our ready-to-roll-out-plan in our hands we went to our top 3 countries/markets and checked out the potential.

We choose Kathmandu as our first marked, left Copenhagen in 2009 and started working.

…. and that brings us back to the quote above.

This review not only nail the core elements in our brand essence. It’s also a solid proof that our strategy, target group, human intentions and efforts are SPOT ON!

The ambition from the start was to create a business that the young staff can run themselves within 12 months and without our physical presence.

At the time of writing Dorjee is not only managing Tings Tea Lounge & Lounge Hotel – she is doing it in a way that creates an international and relaxed ambiance that keeps Tings as one of the most popular Hotels in Nepal. From a business as well as  traveling point of view.

What the reviewer doesn’t know are all the elements from our plan that lives outside the hotel: Our Art Consultancy, our web shop and the progress from the young boys and girl who benefits from the business they generate themselves.

We are of course happy that the black figures prove the success of Tings.

But a review like the one above means more. How often do you get that in the business world.

In some ways Tings is the most ambitious project we have been involved in… so far 🙂

Not so much because we have proven that our plan works – we have done that in many other cases. And not so much because of the in scale of business – other projects have had far bigger reach.

But Nepal is a country with corruption, bureaucracy and lack of skilled employees. And this combined with an infrastructure with sometimes only 6 hours electricity pr day, slow (and some times) no web, water problems and a culture so far from the disciplined Northern European culture we’re born in have challenged us in different ways compared to the international companies we’ve worked for and with before.

The success in Kathmandu has prepared us for new ventures – developing Tings in other countries, creating other Tings business or something to us yet unknown.

NOTE: If you want to get an insights in our way of thinking and working methods click on the images in the right bar! Or contact us.

Kathmandu/Lisbon 2017

Thomas & Annette

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2 responses to “TINGS – a concept for the free independent travelers

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