Deepika Arora is carving out a path less taken in a conventionally male-dominated industry with grit and patience. As the Founder of Rosakue Hospitality, she is doing her bit to add a bit of a desi and a very personal touch at her homestays. Rosakue Homestays’ exclusive lifestyle homes in serene, scenic locations are ideal getaways for guests seeking the intimacy of an upscale boutique stay without compromising on exacting standards. From signature rituals like dahi-shakkar welcome and turmeric milk turndown to bespoke experiences like organic farming, mountain hikes, heritage trails and riverside picnics, we make sure that warm hospitality remains an underlying theme. The two brands include the heritage-style Bara Bungalow and the bohemian-styled Rosa, with each property showcasing the destination, local culture, and cuisine through architecture, decor and cuisine. It is their endeavour to champion the cause of sustainable tourism by creating anchors for local communities, generate employment opportunities, showcase living traditions and support organic livelihood.

1) How has Rosakue’s journey been so far?
Rosakue has had an eventful journey so far. As a young brand that was just beginning to find its space, we encountered the pandemic and the unprecedented challenges that came with it. Though the past few years have been tumultuous, we have managed to sustain, consolidate and grow our presence across the country. We are now 20+ properties across 6 states with close to 300 rooms. Our home retreats have successfully built a steady and repeat clientele base.

2) How do you see Rosakue evolve in the next five years?
We are poised to be India’s leading hospitality company, aiming to create and nurture shared values within locations and communities via local employment generation, upskilling and sustainability initiatives. We will continue to strengthen our position in the boutique homestay segment and focus on the brand presence by selectively adding properties in more destinations.

3) Tell us about your journey so far.
While the road to entrepreneurship has so far been one of the most exciting and biggest learnings of my life, it has also been a reality check as a woman in an industry heavily dominated by men. My background as an architect and core experience working with global hospitality brands however gave me a head start.

4) Who are the women who have inspired you to shape your life the way you have?
There are many, but two women I would like to mention are Mae Jemison, the first African-American woman in space and Ronda Rousey an American Professional Wrestler. I am sharing two of their quotes that inspire me.
“Never limit yourself because of others’ limited imagination, never limit others because of your own limited imagination”.
– Mae Jemison
“You have to fight because you can’t count on anyone else fighting for you. And you have to fight for people who can’t fight for themselves. To get anything of real value, you have to fight for it.”
– Ronda Rousey

5) What are some of the life’s lessons and experiences you would like to share as a female leader?
I believe leadership is about being ‘one of the gang’ while demonstrating how to raise the bar. It’s not an either-or, one has to find the right balance. Team members connect with a leader who dares to be human, who steps down from the pedestal and keeps it real. My advice to women leaders would be to stay hands-on and engaged in every aspect of your business.

6) What’s the one leadership lesson which has been pivotal in your career?
Perseverance. The determination to continue the course irrespective of the challenges that come in the way.

7) What advice would you give to the current generation of women working in the hospitality industry?
Either outlive or outlast. Obviously this encompasses financial muscle/emotional care & concern for people and patience & perseverance. I would want us women to always believe and feel in control, not because we are perceived as “control freaks” but because we ARE capable and already have it all in us!